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What degree do I need to be a radiologist?

Talk about looking at someone inside and out: A radiologist is a medical doctor who uses radiologic technology like X-rays, ultrasounds, MRIs and CT scans to look inside patients' bodies to diagnose and treat a wide range of conditions. Radiologists are responsible for delivering radiation treatments for cancer and other illnesses. Radiologists routinely tackle serious medical issues with their patients and the field requires a huge commitment to obtain the necessary training and specialization needed to advance.

As medical doctors, radiologists are required to have a rich background of education and thorough training. According to information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, all physicians - including radiologists - must complete a four-year bachelor's degree program, four years of medical school, and between three and eight years of medical residency. Some degree programs have streamlined the first two legs of the educational journey by offering combined pre-med and medical degrees in six or seven years. No matter what path they ultimately choose, future radiologists can plan on picking up essential skills during residency, as this part of the education process is where clinical specialty skills are generally obtained. The residency should also help prepare students for licensure, which can be obtained from the American Board of Radiology. Radiologists can choose to become licensed in a specialty including diagnostic radiology, radiation oncology, nuclear radiology and more. Though the degree requirements that come with being a radiologist are great, driven, passionate individuals can flourish in this advanced medical field.


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