|Q: How easy will it be to get a job once I qualify?
A: In recent years the majority of graduating students have secured a post in Radiography on qualification.
Q: Will I have to pay course fees?
A: No. The course is fully funded by the Department of Health, (Department for Employment & Learning and Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety in Northern Ireland, and the Student Awards Unit in Wales). You will also be able to apply for an NHS student bursary which would provide additional financial support throughout your radiographic education. This is means tested the amount you receive depends upon your personal financial circumstances.
All students can also apply for student loans.
Q: How long is the course?
A: The majority of courses run over three (or in some cases four) academic years. Many universities operate an extended academic year to allow you to gain the necessary clinical experience based in one or a number of either a radiology or radiotherapy departments. This may mean that you may have reduced vacations compared to a non-vocational degree course.
Q: I am 46 years old...am I too old to apply?
A: No, radiography welcomes the experience that mature students can bring into the profession. There is no age limit for entry onto the programmes.
Q. How long will I spend in the clinical environment (hospital) during my course?
A: This differs slightly from University to University but there is essentially a 50/50 split between academic study and practical work.
Q: Where will I be placed for my clinical learning?
A: All Universities have their own approved clinical learning centres within local hospitals and NHS Trusts. For some radiography programmes you will be placed in the same hospital for the full three years of your training (this usually includes some elective placements at hospitals of your choice at certain times during the course). Other programmes operate a system of rotation through a series of hospitals throughout the training period.
Q: I have to make childcare arrangements so I need to know how long each working day is.
This varies from programme to programme but generally your clinical work will involve a 9 5 commitment whereas University days may start a little later and/or finish a little earlier. You should visit the website or contact the admissions tutor at the Universities you are interested in.
Q. Are there any part time radiography courses?
A: There are no part time programmes nationally at the moment.
Q. What opportunities are there for me once I have qualified?
A: General radiography is an exciting and challenging career with a reasonable salary and plenty of development opportunities. There is also wide range of role extension areas in both therapy and diagnostic radiography. In addition, you could move into management, education or research. See the main website for further details.
Q. Can I work abroad?
A: The BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography and BSc (Hons) Radiotherapy degree is internationally recognised and readily accepted in many overseas countries.
Q: What qualifications do I need as a mature student?
A: There is a range of qualifications that may be considered, depending on the University. Usually the Access to Health or Science, or an A level (science-related) are recommended pre-entry courses, although many Universities will consider other options such as professional qualifications. Give the admissions tutor a ring to find out more.
Q: Do I need any special qualities to be a radiographer?
A: See the student entry profiles on the UCAS website to view the skills and personal attributes required. (This will help you when completing your UCAS form personal statement as well!) You will also need to be of sound moral character and so a criminal record check will be made. You should be aware that no criminal convictions or cautions are considered spent for the purposes of employment in the Health Service.
Q: Do I need to be physically fit to be a radiographer?
A: Radiographers need to be quite fit, you will need to be on your feet for large
periods of time and moving and lifting patients and equipment is quite physical.
Q: I have asthma. Will this be a problem?
A: Each Trust and University has its own policy for assessing health and special needs. Universities are obliged to adhere to the Disability Discrimination Act 1995.
Please contact the admissions tutor at your University of choice for further details about their health screening policy.
Q. How do I find out more about the role of a radiographer?
A: Most x-ray and radiotherapy departments will be happy to let you spend a day shadowing a qualified radiographer so you can be sure what is involved before you apply. You could contact your local hospital or ring the admissions tutor for details about their placement sites. A clinical visit is usually mandatory prior to starting most radiography programmes of study. You can download a clinical placement self-report form which you might find useful to capture some of your thoughts about the visit. This in turn will help you when filling in your UCAS form or preparing for interview.
Q. How do I apply?
A: Contact UCAS on 01242 227788 for an application form. You can also apply on line (http://www.ucas.ac.uk/).