Radiation Therapy Bachelor of Science Degree
The Radiation Therapy program at Indiana University School of Medicine is a four-year baccalaureate degree program and has two tracks: one for the non-radiographer and one for the radiographer.
For the nonradiographer, the program is composed of 48 credit hours of prerequisites and general-education requirements and a 22-month professional core in the junior and senior years. For the radiographer, the program includes general-education requirements and a 20-month professional core.
Offered by the school’s Department of Radiation Oncology in Indianapolis, the Radiation Therapy program advances academic education and clinical training to prepare qualified radiation therapists. Students in this professional degree program learn to demonstrate the appropriate knowledge of radiation therapy procedures; apply principles of radiation protection for patient, self and others; perform radiation therapy simulation procedure; perform basic radiation therapy dose calculations and access treatment plans; and deliver radiation therapy treatments as prescribed by a radiation oncologist. Students also learn to evaluate patient for effects, reactions and therapeutic responses; demonstrate effective oral and written communication skills; apply basic research methods; and formulate methods for the pursuit of lifelong learning.
After completion of the radiation therapy program coursework, graduates are able to pass the ARRT national certification exam on the first attempt; secure employment within 12 months post-graduation, if pursuing employment; and complete the professional program within 22 months.
Working as a Radiation Therapist
Radiation therapy involves the use of different forms of ionizing radiation for the treatment of benign and malignant tumors. Radiation therapists administer the prescribed dose of ionizing radiation to specific sites of the patient’s body as directed by the physician. They operate varied types of equipment, including high-energy linear accelerators, and work with radioactive materials. In addition, radiation therapists observe the clinical progress of the patient undergoing radiation therapy, observe the first signs of any complication, and determine when treatment should be withheld until a physician may be consulted.