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Degrees & Certificates

The purpose of the Merritt College Radiologic Science program is to prepare qualified practitioners in the art and science of medical imaging. Radiologic Technologists manipulate sophisticated technical equipment and computers to obtain detailed images of the human body. These images assist physicians in the diagnosis of injury and disease in the clinical environment. Radiologic Technologists work in hospitals, clinics, imaging centers, and physicians’ offices. A successful and competent Radiologic Technologist is one who works well as a team member, thinks critically, solves problems creatively, possesses strong technical skills, and cares for patients with sensitivity and compassion. The technologist must be flexible and able to work with patients from diverse cultural backgrounds with various needs, abilities, injuries, and disease processes. The program’s student learning outcomes focus on developing these important characteristics in program graduates.

The Associate of Science in Radiologic Science degree will be awarded upon satisfactory completion of the Prerequisite requirements, the Degree Major requirements, and the local AA/AS General Education requirements. See the Associate Degrees and Certificates section of this catalog for more information on the local AA/AS overall requirements and the local AA/AS General Education requirements. A Certificate of Achievement will be awarded upon satisfactory completion of the Prerequisite requirements and the Certificate requirements. The certificate-only option is available only to those who have already earned an Associate degree or higher.

The curriculum includes a clinical practicum at various East Bay hospitals. This is a continuous program of 24 months’ duration. Students applying to the program must be prepared to make a full-time commitment (approximately 36 hours per week during daytime hours) for two full years, including summers. Upon successful completion of the required courses in Radiologic Science and the Merritt College Associate degree requirements (or equivalent), the student is eligible to take the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists examination required for certification and practice in the state of California. Upon successful completion of the program and obtaining the California certificate, graduates will qualify for employment as Radiologic Technologists performing a wide variety of patient radiographic procedures in hospitals, clinics, and medical offices and imaging centers.

The program is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology, 20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 2850, Chicago, IL 60606-3182 (www.jrcert.org), and the California Department of Public Health, Radiologic Health Branch, MS 7610, PO Box 997414, Sacramento, CA 95899-7414 (http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/Pages/RadiologicHealthBranch.aspx).

Program Learning Outcomes:

Students who complete the degree or certificate will be able to:

  • Produce diagnostic-quality medical images in a competent, safe, and compassionate manner for all basic radiography examinations in a hospital work environment.
  • Communicate effectively with patients and family members by taking appropriate histories, giving clear instructions, and providing information as needed.
  • Communicate in a professional manner with hospital staff, instructors, and peers.
  • Exercise critical thinking and problem-solving skills by adapting radiologic procedures examinations to individual patient needs and conditions.
  • Establish and maintain satisfactory professional relationships with other members of the healthcare team.
  • Function as an effective healthcare team member by providing services in a manner that complements those performed by other team members.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to professional devel-opment.

Enrollment in the Program:

Enrollment in the program is every year in the Fall semester, by special application directly to the Radiologic Science program. The application period is EVERY OTHER YEAR (even-numbered years) between January 15 and April 15. All courses used for consideration for enrollment in the program must be completed before the application deadline date. All supporting documents must be received no later than April 15 of the application year. Please be advised that due to the number of applications received by the program, qualified students generally remain on a wait list for 2-3 years before entry into the program.

A.. Eligibility Requirements:

1… Completion of high school or GED test or equivalent (must provide proof).

2… Completion of all prerequisite courses prior to application with a “C” grade or better for each course and an overall GPA of 2.5 or better (for prerequisite courses only).

3… Prerequisite courses must be current within 7 years.

4… Currency for old Math courses may be established by taking the Math Assessment Test (available through the Merritt College Counseling department). A copy of the assessment test scores must be submitted with the application packet, if pertinent.

5… Completion of all General Education requirements for the Associate degree. Students with prior Associate degrees or higher meet this requirement. Due to the high volume of program applicants, students who have not met this requirement will not be enrolled in the program nor placed on the wait list.

6… Students must obtain medical clearance (at their own expense) and show proof of immunity to hepatitis, diphtheria, tetanus, polio, rubeola, rubella, mumps, and chicken pox before enrolling in the program. A negative Tuberculosis screen (PPD skin test or chest X-ray) is also required.

7… Students must obtain a drug screen and background check (at their own expense) prior to enrolling in the program. Students with a history of illegal substance abuse and/or felony convictions, including abuse or fraud, may be excluded from participating in clinical education and from taking the ARRT licensing examination. Other types of offenses may also result in exclusion from clinical education (at the discretion of the clinical affiliate) and/or the licensing examination. Students with such histories are required to complete a pre-application review with the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (www.arrt.org, 651-687-0048 ext. 580). Students who are unable to obtain a provisional clearance with the ARRT will not be permitted to enter the program.

B.. Application Procedures (Between January 15 and April 15 every other year – even-numbered years):

After completion of the Prerequisite courses and General Education courses, applicants shall:

1… Request three official sets and one unofficial set of transcripts from all colleges attended outside of the Peralta Community College District. Two sets of unofficial transcripts from colleges within the Peralta Community College District are sufficient. One official set should be sent directly to the Peralta Community College District Admissions and Records Office, 333 East 8th St., Oakland, CA 94606. Order two official sets and one unofficial set to be sent directly to you. Two official sets from each college must remain sealed to be submitted to the Radiologic Science program along with the application packet. The unofficial set is for review by the enrollment evaluator and the Counseling Department at Merritt College and may be opened and reviewed by the student. Transcripts sent directly to the Merritt College Radiologic Science program without accompanying application materials will not be retained.

2… Request one set of high school transcripts or provide proof of high school completion (a copy of the diploma or GED certificate, or equivalent). This document must be submitted with the application packet; no exceptions are made.

3… Schedule an appointment during the application period (between January 15th and April 15th, 2012) with the Radiologic Science enrollment evaluator (see the Allied Health secretary in D102, or call 436-2422) for verification of the prerequisite courses and a record of General Education courses completed. Upon verification, the evaluator will complete a “Permit to Apply” form and give you an application. The completed “Permit to Apply” form and General Education verification will be forwarded directly to the Radiologic Science program by the evaluator. Applicants are responsible for submitting the application, proof of high-school completion or GED, and transcripts from all colleges attended. Application materials will not be considered for students who have unfinished prerequisite courses and/or have not completed ALL General Education requirements by the deadline date.

4… Submit the complete application packet directly to the Radiologic Science program. A complete application packet consists of: The Permit to Apply, a record of General Education coursework completed (verified and delivered by the evaluator), the completed application, assessment test scores to validate Math classes more than seven (7) years old, proof of high-school graduation (or equivalent), and two official (unopened) sets of transcripts from each college attended (including colleges in the Peralta Community College District). The application packet may be hand-delivered to the Allied Health Office in D102 on the Merritt campus, or mailed to the Merritt College Radiologic Science Program, 12500 Campus Drive, Oakland, CA 94619. Incomplete application packets will not be considered.

C.. CPR Certification/Medical Requirements:

After admission and prior to starting the program, the student shall provide proof of immunity to communicable diseases, medical screening, drug screening, background check, and current CPR (Basic Life Support for the Health Care Provider) certification. CPR and tuberculosis screening must be kept current throughout the length of the program.

Prerequisite Requirements:

Students must have completed the four prerequisite courses, with a grade of “C” or better on each course, before applying to the program. Additionally, the average GPA for the four prerequisites courses must be at least 2.5. All prerequisite courses must be current within seven (7) years. Old Math grades may be validated for currency by taking the Math Assessment test available by appointment through the Counseling Department.

The prerequisite courses include:

A.. Radsc 1A, Survey of Radiologic Science: This course may not be waived for any reason. It must be taken at Merritt College to qualify.

B… Math 203, Intermediate Algebra, or higher (equivalent course may be taken at other colleges): This course is required effective Fall 2009 unless the student has catalog rights to an earlier requirement. See section on “catalog rights” in the college catalog or see a counselor for more information.

C… Anatomy and Physiology: This must be a two-semester course sequence with a minimum of 8 units total and include a lab (equivalent courses may be taken at other colleges). At Merritt College there are two options that qualify:

….. Biol 20A and Biol 20B (Human Anatomy and Phy-siology) (5 units each, 10 units total), OR

….. Biol 2 (Human Anatomy) and Biol 4 (Human Phy-siology) (5 units each, 10 units total).

Highly Recommended Preparation:

Computer Proficiency Expectations: Students entering the program are expected to demonstrate proficiency using Microsoft Word, email, PowerPoint presentation software, and navigating the Internet. Students who are not proficient should see Item No. 1 below in Additional Recommended Preparation.

Additional Recommended Preparation:

The following specific coursework and experiences are recommended as preparation for the program. While not required for enrollment, completing these courses prior to entering may increase the likelihood of successful program completion.

Coursework:

1… Introduction to Computer Information Systems (CIS 1 at Merritt College) or an equivalent course(s). The course or a combination of courses should result in proficiency in the use of Microsoft Word, PowerPoint presentation software, navigating the Internet, and e-mail.

2… Higher Mathematics (such as College Algebra, Pre-Calculus, or Calculus).

3… Physics such as Introduction to Physics, General Physics, or Physics of Radiation and/or Electro-magnetism.

4… Medical Terminology.

5… Professional or Business Communications.

Recommended coursework may satisfy some of the General Education requirements. Students should meet with a Merritt College counselor to plan accordingly.

Experiences:

1… Work experience (as an employee or volunteer) in a healthcare environment, preferably involving direct patient care.

2… Customer service experience (as an employee or volunteer) involving face-to-face contact and communication with the public.

Student Selection Process:

In the likely event that the number of qualified applicants exceeds the available program slots, a lottery will be used as a means of student selection. Qualified applicants on the wait list from the previous year are given priority for the current year’s selection process. Detailed information regarding the status of the student selection process for a particular application period may be obtained from the Radiologic Science program and will be presented in the prerequisite course, Radsc 1A, Survey of Radiologic Science. Depending on the number of clinical placements available at affiliate sites, the program accepts approximately 25 students per year. All applicants will be notified of acceptance status.

Degree Major/Certificate of Achievement Requirements:

Dept/No. Title Units
RADSC 1B Introduction to Medical Imaging 2
RADSC 1C Introduction to Medical Imaging Clinic 2.5
RADSC 2A Radiographic Physics I 2
RADSC 2B Radiographic Physics II 4
RADSC 2C Digital Applications in Medical Imaging 4
RADSC 3A Positioning I 4
RADSC 3B Positioning II 4
RADSC 4A Radiation Protection 2
RADSC 4B Radiobiology 2
RADSC 5A Patient Care I 3
RADSC 5B Patient Care II 3
RADSC 6 Quality Management/Fluoroscopy 2.5
RADSC 7 Advanced Imaging Procedures 3
RADSC 8 Sectional Anatomy and Radiographic Pathology 4
RADSC 9A Clinical Experience I 4
RADSC 9B Clinical Experience II 4
RADSC 9C Clinical Experience III 6
RADSC 9D Clinical Experience IV 6
RADSC 9E Clinical Experience V 6
RADSC 10A Seminar 1.5
RADSC 10B Seminar 1.5
Total Required Units for Degree Major
or Certificate:
 71

Recommended Sequence of Courses for Six Semesters:

FIRST YEAR

FIRST SEMESTER (FALL)

Dept/No. Title Units
RADSC 1B Introduction to Medical Imaging 2
RADSC 1C Introduction to Medical Imaging Clinic 2.5
RADSC 2A Radiographic Physics I 2
RADSC 3A Positioning I 4
RADSC 5A Patient Care I 3
Semester Total: 13.5

SECOND SEMESTER (SPRING)

Dept/No. Title Units
RADSC 2B Radiographic Physics II 4
RADSC 3B Positioning II 4
RADSC 9A Clinical Experience I (16 hours per week) 4
Semester Total: 12

THIRD SEMESTER (SUMMER)

Dept/No. Title Units
RADSC 4A Radiation Protection 2
RADSC 4B Radiobiology 2
RADSC 10A Seminar 1.5
RADSC 9B Clinical Experience II (24 hours per week) 4
Semester Total: 9.5

SECOND YEAR

FOURTH SEMESTER (FALL)

Dept/No. Title Units
RADSC 2C Digital Applications in Medical Imaging 4
RADSC 5B Patient Care II 3
RADSC 9C Clinical Experience III (24 hours per week) 6
Semester Total: 13

FIFTH SEMESTER (SPRING)

Dept/No. Title Units
RADSC 6 Quality Management/Fluoroscopy 2.5
RADSC 7 Advanced Imaging Procedures 3
RADSC 8 Sectional Anatomy and RadiographicPathology 4
RADSC 9D     Clinical Experience IV (24 hours per week) 6
Semester Total: 15.5

SIXTH SEMESTER (SUMMER)

Dept/No. Title Units
RADSC 10B Seminar 1.5
RADSC 9E Clinical Experience V (36 hours per week) 6
Semester Total: 7.5