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Radiation Therapy Technology

                                                    Radiation Therapy Technology Certificate​​​​​​​​

Program Description

Established in 1978, the Radiation Therapy Program at Galveston College is the state’s oldest radiation therapy program. The Radiation Therapy Technology Certificate program is designed for general studies students. This associate program consists of five semesters and is twenty one months in length. Total cost of the program is approximately $5,000.00 with books and fees.

The radiation therapy program integrates new treatment procedures as they become available. Currently, students enrolled in the programs are afforded the opportunities to assist in intensity modulated radiation therapy treatments, applications of brachytherapy, image guidance radiation therapy, tomotherapy, stereotactic radiosurgery and cyber knife treatment procedures. Students will learn the most advanced treatment techniques using cutting edge technology.

Responsibilities of a Radiation Therapist

Radiation therapists treat patients diagnosed with cancer. They work with physicians, physicists, dosimetrists and nurses in the radiation oncology department to develop and administer a treatment plan customized to the patients’ diagnosis. Radiation therapist operates the linear accelerators, the machines that deliver the radiation doses, monitor the patients throughout the treatment process and assists patient and families with their needs.

Characteristics of a Radiation Therapist

Radiation oncology is a medical specialty that attracts a very special type of person. Radiation therapists are critical thinkers who possess the analytical skills necessary to work in a highly complex and rapidly evolving field. Communication skills, oral and written, are essential. The therapist must possess the compassion and sensitivity necessary to provide for the physical and psychological comfort of the patient. Radiation therapists must communicate and cooperate with other allied health professions and institutions.

Mission Statement

The mission statement of the Radiation Therapy Program is committed to providing its students a very diverse clinical and education of the highest quality.  The program is competency based to ensure students success in the clinic as well as the classroom.  Graduates of the program will be prepared to deliver excellent patient care while pursuing a lifelong learning career in the field of radiation therapy.

 

Program Goals

  • Provide graduates with academic and clinical skills necessary to secure employment in an entry level position in the field of radiation therapy.
  • Provide graduates with effective communication skills pertinent to the field of radiation therapy.
  • Produce graduates who are critical thinkers with good problem solving skills.
  • Achieve a program registry pass rate of 75% or greater over the past five years for graduates first attempts on taking the registry.
  • Achieve a program employment rate, within 1 year of graduation of 75% or greater over the past five years for graduates actively seeking employment.
  • Produce graduates who actively and accurately practice acceptable standards of practice in radiation therapy.

GOALS AND STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES

Goal: Students will be clinically competent.
1. Student will demonstrate accurate charting skills.
2. Student will accurately deliver patient treatments.
3. Students will perform treatment related tasks.
4. Student will provide patient care during patient treatments.


Goal: Students will communicate effectively.
1. Students will demonstrate oral presentation skills.
2. Students will demonstrate written communication skills.
3. Student will effectively communicate with patients.
4. Student will effectively communicate with staff. 

Goal: Students will think critically.
1. Students will modify patient treatments based on changes in patient’s medical or mental condition.
2. Students will solve a variety of problems in patient treatment scenarios.

Goal: Students will demonstrate professionalism.
1. Students will comprehend ethics.
2. Student will demonstrate professional behavior.

 
The radiation therapy program has established student goals for success.
  • Prepare student for entry level position in the field of radiation therapy.
  • Develop effective oral and written communication skills.
  • Learn to apply critical thinking skills in a clinical setting.
  • Teach student to recognize and manage ethical issues both in an academic and clinical setting.
  • Graduates are qualified and eligible to apply for the national credentialing examination.
  • Promote and embrace a commitment to lifelong learning.

Program Effectiveness Data: July 1, 2014

Five-year average credentialing examination (American Registry of Radiologic Technologists Radiation
Therapy examination). Benchmark is 75% passing on first attempt.

 

Percent passing on

Year

1st attempt

Number of students

2010

75%

3 of 4 students passed on 1st attempt

2011

100%

3 of 3 students passed on 1st attempt

2012

100%

5 of 5 students passed on 1st attempt

2013

100%

3 of 3 students passed on 1st attempt

2014

75%

3 of 4 students passed on 1st attempt

5 year average = 90%

Program completion rate
Program completion rate is defined as the number of students who were accepted into the program versus
the number of students who completed the program.

 

Year

Percent Completion

Number of students

2010

100%

4 students were accepted into the program, 4 graduated

2011

75%

4 students were accepted into the program, 3 graduated

2012

100%

5 students were accepted into the program, 5 graduated

2013

75%

4 students were accepted into the program, 3 graduated

2014

100%

4 students were accepted into the program, 4 graduated

5 year average = 90%

Five-year average job placement rate. Benchmark 75% secured employment within 6 months post
graduation
.

 

Year

Percent job placement

Number of students

2009

100%

2 of 2 students secured employment

2010

100%

4 of 4 students secured employment

2011

100%

3 of 3 students seccured employment

2012

80%

4 of 5 students secured employment

2013

66%

2 of 3 students secured employment

Five year average

17 students graduated over a 5 year period

15 students secured employment = 88%

 

All program courses are taught at Galveston College. The student’s clinical education is obtained through five clinical affiliates of Galveston College which are located throughout the greater Houston area.


Programmatic Accreditation

The radiation therapy program is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT) and recognized by the American Registry of Radiologic Technology (ARRT).

jrcert

Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology

20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 2850

Chicago, IL 60606-3182

www.jrcert.org

mail@jrcert.org

312-704-5304

ARRT
American Registry of Radiologic Technologists
1255 Northland Drive
St. Paul, MN 55120-1155
651-687-0048


Articulation agreement with:
Midwestern State University
Wichita Falls, Texas

Admission Criteria for Certiricate Program

 

Non-Academic Program Requirements: Because of the inherent requirements of the profession, certain minimum physical abilities are expected. An otherwise qualified individual for admission is someone who, with or without an accommodation can perform and/or possess the following non-academic program requirements.

 

     1. Vision and Observation Skills

  • Visual acuity corrected to 20/20
  • View computer screens and for extended periods of time.
  • Visually discern details in treatment procedures and equipment operations in low light settings.
  • Hear low tones, distinguish background noises associated with patients and equipment.

     2. Physical and Motor Skill Requirements

  • Possess sufficient motor function skills to operate all equipment associated with patient care and administration of treatments.
  • Ambulate sufficiently to participate in patient treatments and perform all other related clinical responsibilities.
  • Demonstrate manual dexterity to perform all clinical duties.
  • Lift 30 pounds for placement of treatment blocks, wedges and other treatment devices.
  • Transport patients in wheelchairs and stretchers.
  • Transfer immobile patients from wheelchairs and stretchers to treatment and simulation couches.

     3. Communication Requirements

  • Must be able to communicate and articulate in English proficiently.
  • Communicate effectively both orally and written formats in English.
  • Communicate proficiently and effectively with patients and coworkers. 

·    Communicate proficiently and effectively with patients and coworkers.

 

      4. Critical Thinking Skills

​                

·    Must be able to interpret and process clinical data pertinent to clinical responsibilities.

·    Ability to make correct decisions applying critical thinking skills.

·    Ability to solve clinic situations applying assessment and critical thinking skills.

·    Prioritize clinical and didactic information.

·    Solve situational problems associated with patient care in classroom and clinic.

 

5. Professional Behavior

·    Adhere to Radiation Therapy Code of Ethics.

·    Respect all aspects of the Patient’s Bill of Rights.

·    Adhere to radiation therapy program policies and procedures.

·    Follow clinical guidelines of affiliates.

·    Maintain a professional appearance at all times.

·    Respect others and maintain personal integrity.

      6.  MRI Safety policy

Students  may be exposed to MRI machines. 

 

 

1. Academic Requirements

  • TSI scores for TSI-eligible students or placement scores for TSI-exempt students which permit enrollment in college level courses must appear on official transcript.
  • Make application to Galveston College.
  • Submit program application prior to the application deadline of October 15. Submission of program application does not guarantee admission into the radiation therapy program.
  • Be a graduate of an accredited Radiologic Health Science Program.
  • Schedule a meeting with the program director.
  • Overall a minimum GPA of 2.5.
  • Have certification in radiography prior to the application deadline

Students with special needs are requested to notify the Special Services for Students with Disabilities Counselor regarding assistance and/or special accommodations. Students with disabilities, impairments, or other health conditions are required to provide documentation from medical physician(s) and/or referral agency; i.e., Texas Rehabilitation Commission, Texas Commission for the Blind, etc.

Special Services for Students with Disabilities:

  1. Student Guidelines for Special Services – describes the services for students with disabilities, lists campus resources, and identifies local community referral agencies.
  2. Pre-enrollment advising, class scheduling, and priority registration. (Students must notify their Counselors/Advisors regarding Special Services about special needs or accommodations.)
  3. Special Orientation – familiarizes students with the Galveston College campus and provides information of the support services available to meet student needs.
  4. Student Equipment – are available to students with disabilities who provide appropriate documentation.
  5. Sign Interpreters – assistance in locating speech interpreters to translate information to the hearing impaired (in cooperation with the Texas Rehabilitation Commission).
  6. Tutors – tutoring services are provided at no cost by the College’s Student Success Center.
  7. Personal Counseling – assistance with referrals to appropriate local agencies and organizations and serves as liaison to the Texas Rehabilitation Commission, Texas Commission for the Blind, the local high schools, etc.

Acceptance into the Program:

Once the applicant has been accepted into the program they are responsible for the following:

  • Provide proof or complete the Hepatitis B immunization series including titer or show proof of illness prior to clinical attendance deadline of June 1, summer semester.
  • Complete Varicella immunization (Chicken Pox)at applicants expense, or show proof of illness prior to the clinical attendance deadline of June 1, summer semester.
  • Complete a background check through Galveston College, at student’s expense, upon acceptance into the program. Approximate cost to applicant is $50.00
  • Complete a drug screening test through Galveston College, at student’s expense, upon acceptance into the program. Approximate cost to applicant is $50.00
  • File a copy of current Texas Department of Health certification in admissions office and allied health office.
  • File a copy of current certification with the ARRT or NMTCB in admissions office and allied health office.
  • Successfully complete program math prerequisite college algebra 1314 prior to making program application.
  • Applicant must me certified in American Heart Health Care Provider level CPR prior to beginning clinical practicum in the summer semester and throughout length of the program.
  • Attend mandatory program orientation prior to enrolling in program courses.

Curriculum

The curriculum for the radiation therapy program is based on the American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT) curriculum grid. The ASRT curriculum grid is approved by the program’s accrediting agency, the JRCERT. All program courses must be completed with a minimum grade of 75% to progress in the program. Upon completion of program requirements the student receives a certificate in radiation therapy. The student is also eligible, upon graduation, to apply to the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) to sit for the national certification examination.

 Galveston College academic calendar available on Galveston College website

Spring Semester

Oncology I                                                                           4 credit hours

Dosimetery I                                                                        4 credit hours

Instrumentation and Methodology                                      3 credit hours

Special Topics: Trends                                                         1 credit hour

Summer Semester

Dosimetry II                                                                          3 credit hours

Oncology II                                                                            3 credit hours

Clinical Practicum I                                                               2 credit hours

Fall Semester

Technical Procedures                                                          2 credit hours

CT Cross-sectional Anatomy                                               3 credit hours

Clinical Practicum II                                                             4 credit hours

Spring Semester

Clinical Practicum III                                                            4 credit hours

Special Topics: Seminar                                                       2 credit hours

 Note:  Students accepted into the program may be required to travel 1 hour and/or fifty plus miles to attend clinical affiliates for clinical training.

TOTAL SEMESTER CREDIT HOURS IN PROGRAM 34

 

Transfer of Credit: Students who wish to transfer course credits from another radiation therapy program will be evaluated on an individual basis as their entry status. Transfer grades below a “C” are not accepted for credit. The student requesting transfer credit must

  • Meet admissions requirements for Galveston College.
  • Meet admissions requirements for the radiation therapy program.
  • Currently have a minimum GPA of 2.5 in the previous program.
  • Submit all course work completed with syllabus and course descriptions from transferring program.
  • Submit a letter of recommendation from the previous program director.
  • Submit 2 letters of recommendation from clinical personnel associated with the previous radiation therapy program. 

Upon completion of the evaluation process, the program director will determine the student’s entry level placement in the program. The student is not guaranteed that acceptance in to the radiation therapy program at Galveston College automatically places student at the same level of their previous program.

 

For more information about the Radiation Therapy

Certificate Program, contact Hubert Callahan, Program Director at

(409) 944-1492  email hcallaha@gc.edu or Allied Health Office

at (409) 944-1490.

 

 

Updated 8/4/2015 - Content Author eiles