Radiologic Technologist

What does a Radiologic Technologist do?

Radiologic technologists (radiographers) use X-ray equipment to help diagnose and treat diseases or injuries. They work under the direction of a physician. Radiographers work in hospitals, clinics, imaging centers or physicians’ offices. Some operate mobile X-ray equipment at the patient’s bedside, in the emergency room or in surgery. Others work in medical laboratories or for private industry.

What might a Radiologic Technologist do in a workday?

Radiologic technologists:

  • review physicians’ orders and patients’ records to determine required procedures.
  • evaluate patients’ conditions and explain X-ray procedures.
  • position patients and X-ray equipment to make routine radiographs of specific anatomical areas.
  • determine the proper voltage, current and X-ray exposure.
  • prepare and administer mixtures required for some procedures.
  • assist radiologists in performing sophisticated or invasive procedures.
  • ensure proper equipment operation using quality control techniques.
  • provide radiation protection for patients, others and self.

Developing a Career as a Radiologic Technologist

Radiologic technologists may specialize in using certain types of equipment or procedures that involve specific body parts.

  • Computed tomography (CT) technologists use computerized X-ray equipment to take cross-sectional pictures of the body’s internal structures.
  • Picture archiving and communications system (PAC) specialists convert from images to computer-generated images.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technologists use radio waves, powerful magnets and computers to create images of body parts.
  • Special procedures technologists use specialized X-ray equipment to study and assist physicians in widening narrowed blood vessels.
  • Mammography technologists specialize in imaging of the breast tissue.

How much salary do Radioloigic Technologists make?

Annual Mean Wage

How do I become a Radiologic Technologist?

Students intending to pursue a career as a radiologic technologist should prepare by taking the most challenging high school courses available in science, math and English.

Registered radiologic technologists must complete a two-year training program at an approved hospital or school. High school graduation (or GED) is required for entry into a radiologic technology program. In addition to hospital-based certificate programs, degree programs are offered at two- and four-year colleges and universities. Upon graduation from an accredited program, certification can be obtained through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. This certification is voluntary, but is preferred by many employers.

Where else can I learn about becoming a Radiologic Technologist?

Professional Associations:

Virginia Society of Radiologic Technologists
P.O Box 1114
Salem, VA 24153
(540) 355-6778

American Society of Radiologic Technologists
15000 Central Avenue S.E.
Albuquerque, NM 87123-3909
(505) 298-4500
(800) 444-2778

State License Requirements for Radiologic Technologists

A license is required to practice as a radiologic technologist in the state of Virginia. For more information on licensure, applications and forms, visit

Virginia Board of
Perimeter Center
9960 Mayland Drive
Suite 300
Henrico, VA 23233
Phone: (804) 786-0370

Find Local Support

Blue Ridge Region AHEC – Shenandoah Valley

Capital Region AHEC – Richmond Metro and surrounding areas

Eastern Virginia Region AHEC – Southeast Virginia and Peninsula

Northern Virginia Region AHEC – Northern Virginia

Rappahannock Region AHEC – Northern Neck, Fredericksburg, and Middle Peninsula

South Central Region AHEC – Lynchburg, Danville, and surrounding area

Southside Region AHEC – South of Richmond

Southwest Virginia Region AHEC – Roanoke Valley and West