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Radiology Technologist Schools and Careers in Iowa

Iowa’s colleges and universities offer many options for earning a degree or certificate in radiologic technology, with programs designed for general career tracks in addition to specialty career tracks like sonography. The following guide to radiologic technologist and technician schools in Iowa provides key information to help you make a decision that is right for you. Online radiologic technologist and technician programs are an alternative to traditional on-campus programs that may also be a good match for your interests and desired career track. Read about the difference between radiology technologists and radiology technicians. Or read more about radiologic technologist schools in Iowa and potential career tracks in this field below, where you will find a table of rad tech programs, student reviews, and more.

Quick Facts

  • There are 11 colleges and universities with radiologic technology degree programs in Iowa.1
  • 2 schools offer a certificate program in radiologic science.1
  • 9 schools offer an associate’s degree in radiologic science.1
  • 3 schools offer a bachelor’s degree in radiologic science.1
  • No schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in radiologic science.1
  • 8 schools have medical imaging programs accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT).2
  • 3 schools have medical imaging programs accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).3
  • 1 school has a medical imaging program accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Educational Programs in Nuclear Medicine Technology (JRCNMT).4

For not-for-profit schools with radiologic technology programs.

Table of Contents
Iowa Medical Imaging Schools Comparison
Select Schools in Iowa with RT Programs
How to Become an RT in Iowa
Iowa RT Salary and Job Outlook
Student Reviews

Iowa Medical Imaging Schools Comparison

We have designed the following table to allow you to easily compare all of the not-for-profit radiologic technology and medical imaging programs in Iowa on a variety of factors. You should check with the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) to ensure that the program you are considering will meet licensure requirements.

School NameAssociate’s Imaging ProgramBachelor’s Imaging ProgramGraduate Imaging ProgramNational AccreditationCompletion Rate2Credential Exam Pass Rate2Job Placement Rate2Net Price1
Allen CollegeYesYesJRCERT, CAAHEP86%94%100%N.Av.
Briar Cliff UniversityYes$20,437
Eastern Iowa Community College DistrictYesJRCERT94%96%99%$9,996
Indian Hills Community CollegeYesJRCERT77%95%100%$7,057
Iowa Central Community CollegeYesJRCERT32%90%97%$10,239
Mercy College of Health SciencesYesJRCERT, CAAHEP100%84%100%$20,368
North Iowa Area Community CollegeYes$8,399
Northeast Iowa Community CollegeYesJRCERT83%91%97%$10,328
Northwest Iowa Community CollegeYesJRCERT59%77%88%$11,288
St. Luke’s CollegeYesJRCERT79%93%100%$21,704
University of IowaYesJRCERT, CAAHEP, JRCNMT100%96%100%$17,008

  • — indicates none.
  • N.Av. indicates no data available.

Select Schools in Iowa with Radiology Technologist Degree Programs

Eastern Iowa Community Colleges: Scott Community College

Scott Community College, part of the Eastern Iowa Community Colleges (EICC) system, allows students to earn an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Radiologic Technology. The two-year program requires students to spend between 20 and 30 hours a week in radiologic technology classes on campus and clinical rotations at an assigned medical facility. Clinical experience is gained at affiliated medical sites such as Genesis Medical Center or Mercy Medical Center. Students will begin their first clinical rotations in the second semester of the program and will complete a clinical internship each semester of the program thereafter. Radiologic technology coursework encompasses medical terminology, radiographic exposure, film evaluation, and radiation protection. Enrollment in the program requires completing prerequisite courses with a “C” or better, completing the TEAS exam, and maintaining a GPA of at least 2.5. Successful applicants to the program begin their studies in the fall semester.

Mercy College of Health Sciences

Mercy College of Health Sciences features an Associate of Science (AS) in Radiologic Technology program that prepares graduates to begin work as radiologic technologists and to sit for the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam. The radiologic technology program spans six semesters and combines didactic education and clinical rotations. Radiologic technology classes are held during the day and cover subjects such as imaging systems, radiation physics, and advanced patient care. Applicants to the program must have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.7 and a minimum GPA of 2.0 in specific math and science classes as well as an ACT score of 20 or above. Admission to the program is competitive; meeting the minimum qualifications for acceptance does not guarantee admission. Successful applicants begin the program in the summer semester. Graduates of the associate’s program may continue their studies to earn a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Health Science or Health Care Administration.

Northwest Iowa Community College

Northwest Iowa Community College (NCC) offers an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Radiologic Technology that takes two years (including summers) to complete. Students take a variety of general and radiologic science coursework and gain clinical experience to complete their degree. Six continuous semesters of classroom/laboratory work and five semesters of clinical education comprise the program’s curriculum. Students begin clinical rotations in their second semester of 14 hours each week, which will increase during the second year of the program. The remaining studies will be spent in radiology courses such as Radiologic Patient Care, Quality Assurance, and Special Procedures. Clinical experience is obtained across various approved sites, while classroom courses are taught on the NCC campus. Prospective students must have a high school GPA of 2.0 or higher, complete all prerequisite courses with at least a “C,” and complete a program entrance assessment.

St. Luke’s College

St. Luke’s College offers an Associate of Science (AS) in Radiologic Technology and specialty options for licensed radiologic technologists, including Computerized Tomography (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Sonography, and Mammography. The Radiologic Technology program requires applicants to complete eight hours of job shadowing with a radiologic technologist before applying, at least four of which must be at UnityPoint Health-St. Luke’s. Applicants to the program are evaluated based on various factors, including ACT score, high school and college GPA, number of general education courses completed, and an interview. Combining classroom teaching and learning with real-world clinical experiences, coursework includes Introduction to Radiology & Patient Care; Radiographic Imaging & Fundamentals; Fundamental & Radiologic Physics; Radiographic Pathology; and Advanced Radiographic Imaging. Clinical rotations will take place at the school’s affiliated medical facilities and include a rotation at a rural clinical site in the state. Each student will be required to complete evening and weekend rotations.

University of Iowa

Students in the University of Iowa’s (UI) Bachelor of Science (BS) in Radiation Sciences program can concentrate in one of three areas: Radiologic Technology, Diagnostic Medical Sonography, or Radiation Therapy. Students in the Radiologic Technology (RT) track will complete general education courses, major coursework, and clinical rotations at local medical facilities, including the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics system. Each RT student will complete both the RT program and a second program in Breast Imaging, Cardiovascular Interventional, Computed Tomography, or Magnetic Resonance Imaging. All students will complete RT courses including Pathology for Radiation Sciences, Patient Care for Radiation Sciences, and Medical Ethics and Law. Prospective students must complete all prerequisite courses with a minimum 2.5 GPA and two years of high school language courses before applying to the selective program. Graduation from the BS program requires 120 credit hours, a minimum GPA of 2.0, and 75% or higher in all major courses. Graduates will meet the educational requirements to sit for the ARRT certification exam in their chosen modality.

How to Become a Radiology Technologist in Iowa

The IDPH requires radiologic technologists in the state receive a permit to practice in their modality. Permits are granted to those who pass the ARRT or Nuclear Medicine Technologist Certification Board (NMTCB) certification exams. Rad techs seeking a permit must complete the following steps:

  1. Complete an educational program recognized by the ARRT or NMTCB.
    The IDPH has no specific education requirements; however, the ARRT and NMTCB require candidates to complete a certificate, diploma, or degree program in their chosen modality. The ARRT also requires candidates to complete a minimum of an associate’s degree.
  2. Pass a certification exam in your modality. The IDPH recognizes the ARRT certification exam for all modalities and the NMTCB certification exam for nuclear medicine technologists certification.
  3. Apply for a permit. Candidates must submit an application, applicable fees, and proof of passing a certification exam through the IDPH online portal.
  4. Renew your license and complete continuing education. Permits are renewed annually through the IDPH online portal. Rad techs must complete 24 hours of continuing education (CE) every two years. Current certification with the ARRT or NMTCB will qualify as proof of completed CE.

The IDPH offers another category of licensure, the Limited Radiologic Technologist (LRT) permit, for limited scope x-ray operators. This permit requires candidates to have completed an IDPH-recognized training program and pass the IDPH State Limited Examination in limited radiologic technology or its equivalent. Candidates must first apply for permission to take the exam; once permission is granted and the exam has been passed, candidates may apply for the permit.

Iowa Radiology Tech Salary and Job Outlook

Projected Job Growth

11.6%

Radiology Techs in Iowa from 2018-20285

Projections Central reports expected job growth of 11.6% for radiologic technologists and technicians in Iowa between 2018 and 2028, which is faster than the expected nationwide rate of 9% during the same time period.5 As of 2019, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that an estimated 2,310 rad techs were employed in the state.6 The mean annual salary for radiologic technologists in Iowa, as of 2019, was $52,770.6 The BLS does not track occupational data for limited scope x-ray technicians. However, limited scope technicians typically earn less than fully-licensed radiologic technicians due to the lower educational requirements and work responsibilities. Radiologic technologists and technicians generally secure employment in hospitals, imaging centers, doctors’ offices, and other medical facilities. Among the organizations that hire radiology technologists and technicians in Iowa are Sanford Health, Genesis Health System, Mercy One West Des Moines Medical Imaging, Mercy Imaging Center and Mercy Medical Center, Skiff Medical Center, the University of Iowa hospital system, and UnityPoint Health.

Iowa Radiologic Technologist Salary by Metro Area

CityNumber Employed7Average Annual Salary7
Cedar Rapids240$47,980
Des Moines-West Des Moines620$54,930
Dubuque80$51,260
Iowa City190$58,240
Waterloo-Cedar Falls190$54,670

Student Reviews

Note: Student Reviews are based on the experiences of a few individuals and it is unlikely that you will have similar results. Please review the “Data, Student Reviews and Other Information” section in our Terms of Use and Disclaimers.

Allen College
1990 Heath St
Waterloo, IA 50703
(319) 226-2000
https://www.allencollege.edu/default.aspx

Student Review: “I had a great experience at Allen College during their Radiography Program. The class sizes are small allowing for a lot of one on one between teacher and student both in lecture and lab. All the staff is friendly and knowledgeable and always answered any questions I had and really took the time to explain areas that I was struggling with until I got it. We attended a wide variety of clinical settings which made it easier to decide which area I wanted to seek employment in after graduating.” – Student at Allen College
stars-5

References:
1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology Program Effectiveness Data: https://www.jrcert.org/resources/program-effectiveness-data/
3. Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs: https://www.caahep.org/Students/Find-a-Program.aspx
4. Joint Review Committee on Educational Programs in Nuclear Medicine Technology: https://www.jrcnmt.org/find-a-program/
5. Projections Central Long Term Occupational Projections: https://projectionscentral.org/Projections/LongTerm
6. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, Radiologic Technologists and Technicians: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes292034.htm
7. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oessrcma.htm