- Step One: Graduate High School or Obtain a GED (Four Years) …
- Step Two: Earn a Degree (Two to Four Years) …
- Step Three: Gain Clinical Experience (Time Varies) …
- Step Four: Become ARRT-Certified and/or State Licensed (Time Varies)
Washburn’s Radiation Therapy (XT) program is an online program accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT) and administered through the School of Applied Studies, Department of Allied Health.
|Quick Facts: Radiation Therapists|
|2020 Median Pay||$86,850 per year $41.76 per hour|
|Typical Entry-Level Education||Associate’s degree|
|Work Experience in a Related Occupation||None|
According to official projections, the radiation therapy field will be in a state of growth until 2026. Now is the best time to get started on a radiation therapy degree and a professional career. Even with the high growth rate, there will be competition for many of these highly favorable positions.
Applicants to radiation therapy certificate or degree programs must hold a high school diploma or equivalent with two years of math and two years of lab science classes. High school students interested in pursuing a career in radiation therapy should take courses in anatomy, physics, chemistry, and mathematics.
Becoming a radiation therapist takes between two and four years to obtain your desired degree. An associates degree takes two years to complete, and a Bachelor of Science in Radiation Therapy takes four years to complete.
Radiation therapist programs can range from 1-to-2 years. One-year programs result in a certificate or diploma, while students in 2-year programs will earn associate’s degrees. One-year programs emphasize supervised clinical education in training facilities like hospitals.
An early career Radiation Therapist with 1-4 years of experience earns an average total compensation (includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of €38,792 based on 19 salaries. A mid-career Radiation Therapist with 5-9 years of experience earns an average total compensation of €46,245 based on 12 salaries.
The states and districts that pay Radiation Therapists the highest mean salary are California ($119,800), New York ($115,150), New Jersey ($106,630), Oregon ($105,810), and Washington ($101,630).
Is It Hard to Be a Radiation Therapist? Radiation therapy can be challenging, just like any other medical career. Yet, most of the challenges can be resolved through education and experience. Let’s go over some of the challenges you may experience as you enter the field.
Often working as part of an oncology team, radiation therapists administer treatments to patients with cancer and other diseases. Although they may spend long hours on their feet and work with seriously ill patients, this is still a relatively low-stress job.
Radiation therapists earn about the same as related careers in California. On average, they make less than health services managers but more than acute care nurse practitioners.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, radiation therapy employment is expected to grow 9% by 2028, faster than average employment growth. This means that radiation therapists are in high demand across the United States.
To complete a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree in Radiation Therapy, you will first complete foundational coursework in math and science. This commonly includes classes in general and organic chemistry, biology, physics and calculus. You will also study anatomy, physiology and medical terminology.
X-rays, CT scans and other diagnostic imaging procedures—all radiology techniques—are used to help locate, stage and diagnose cancers. Radiation therapy is a treatment that uses high doses of targeted energy to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors.