It’s a common misconception that Radiology Tech School is harder than Nursing School. In fact, the two schools require different skill sets and knowledge. While Nursing School may be more difficult in terms of memorizing material and completing clinical hours, Radiology Tech School is definitely not easy. It takes years of practice and experience to become a radiologist technician.
Both radiology tech school and nursing school are difficult in their own ways. But one may be harder than the other, depending on your strengths and weaknesses. Let’s explore which is harder!
Radiology Tech School vs. Nursing School: Academic Requirements
Nursing school is more difficult in terms of academics. To get into a nursing program, you need to have a college degree and some sort of experience in the medical field. This may be an EMT job or volunteering at a hospital. Some students even take prerequisite classes before applying to nursing school.
Radiology tech school is broader than nursing school. There are several accredited radiology tech programs, but none of them require college degrees or prerequisite classes. The only requirement for the majority of radiology technician schools is that you must apply within 1 year of completing your training and passing the registry exam.
The difficulty of Nursing School
Nursing school is extremely difficult. This is not an opinion; it’s a fact based on how many people fail at this program. In fact, in many states, the pass rate for nursing students hovers between 50 and 70 percent. And this is after students have taken several classes in college! There are many reasons for this. For one, the nursing school itself is difficult.
The material is very tough to learn and easy to forget if you don’t use it constantly. You also need a lot of knowledge about the body anatomy, physiology, biology, etc. The clinical practice also adds to the difficulty. Every test during clinical contributes to your grades, so if you fail or do poorly on an exam or quiz, that makes every other exam harder too.
And that’s not all; there’s also a fear factor at work here. Students are afraid of getting things wrong because they’ll be working under real-world conditions soon enough, typically within weeks of graduation! This leads to more stress and less attention. Many nursing programs are also very competitive, which makes them even harder to get into.
You need good grades, high test scores, excellent communication skills, experience in the medical field (which means you’ve worked hard before getting accepted), and many other things to make it through this tough program.
The difficulty of Radiology Tech School
Radiology tech school is challenging but nowhere near as difficult as nursing school. For one thing, there are no actual course requirements for radiologic technology; you only need a high school diploma or GED equivalent. So unlike nurses who have an average GPA of 3.5 or 4.0, students don’t need high marks in order to enter the program!
Also, unlike nursing school, there isn’t any clinical work to be done. It’s possible for students to take the first semester without setting foot in a hospital at all since many schools do not require an internship or other field experience! But that doesn’t mean radiologic tech school is easy either though; it’s still hard.
Radiography involves science (radiation physics), math (techniques like conversion and fractions), and other practical skills you can pick up fairly quickly but apply equally as well long-term. In fact, most students have no trouble keeping up with the program because they’re developmentally advanced enough to handle college classes from day one!
The only downside is that they may not have had much exposure before entering the program, which is why so many students struggle with calculus, for example.
However, the real challenge is not in college courses but putting that into practice when you graduate. You see it’s one thing to know how to read an x-ray or film; it’s another entirely to perform these procedures on a human being!
Radiology tech school teaches you both sides of this job (the technical and the practical), which means you are prepared to take your state board exams after graduation without much additional training.
The bottom line is that it’s easier to become a radiologic technician than a nurse because there are fewer entry requirements, and you have more time to learn the material since the program is not as intensive.
Is Radiology Tech School Harder Than Nursing School
Unfortunately, you can’t really answer this question because nursing and radiologic tech schools are fundamentally different! Only a nurse can tell you whether they’re “hard,” and only a radiologic technologist can say the same thing; there’s no way to compare them or declare one is “harder” than the other.
So what’s the answer? Well, it depends on how you define “hard.” Look at it this way: if your goal is to become a nurse who spends more time in front of a computer or learning about science, then radiologic tech school probably appeals to you. It’s less emotionally draining, and you won’t be stuck with the same scenarios over and over again like nursing students.
But if you want to become a nurse who gets to help people, make decisions, care for patients and work in hospitals, then nursing school is much more your speed!
So which is harder? They’re both difficult in their own ways! However, if forced to choose, I’d say the nursing school has more challenges than radiologic technology school. For one thing, you need to keep up with the coursework while studying for your state board exams. And going through clinical experience takes a lot of time and effort!
In comparison, there is no specific science requirement for radiologic technology school, making it a bit more flexible. But remember that if you want to become a registered nurse, you’ll need at least an associate’s degree from an accredited nursing program! There are some RN jobs that only require certification, but these are pretty rare nowadays.
Both professions require a considerable commitment in terms of education and time. Nursing requires regularly working with other people, while radiologic technicians tend to spend more time alone. Radiology technicians typically need only an associate degree for licensure and certification, whereas nurses must earn a minimum of a bachelor’s degree.