Radiography and nuclear medicine educational program directors report that the number of enrolled students declined marginally in 2020, while radiation therapy programs saw a slight increase, according to a survey conducted by American Society of Radiologic Technologists.
Entering class enrollments and longitudinal enrollment data are among the findings released this month in the ASRT Enrollment Snapshot of Radiography, Radiation Therapy and Nuclear Medicine Technology Programs ─ 2020. The survey also tracked the impact of COVID-19 protocols on educational programs.
According to the survey results, an estimated 15,620 students were enrolled in radiography programs in 2020, down from 15,972 in 2019. Nuclear medicine programs saw a decrease as well with an estimated 1,076 students enrolling in nuclear medicine programs in 2020, down from 1,129 in 2019. Radiation therapy programs grew, but only slightly. An estimated 1,182 students enrolled in American Registry of Radiologic Technologist-certified radiation therapy programs in 2020, up from 1,155 in 2019.
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“We also asked educational program directors a series of questions about the effect of COVID-19 protocols on their programs,” said ASRT Associate Executive Director, Myke Kudlas, M.Ed., R.T.(R)(QM), CIIP, PMP, CAE. “In April, nearly 74 percent said COVID-19 has reduced their ability to place students in a clinical setting. A follow-up survey in October, however, indicated a large shift toward allowing students back into clinical rotations from the April 2020 survey.”
ASRT sent the survey to all directors of radiography, radiation therapy and nuclear medicine technology programs currently recognized by the ARRT. ASRT sent the survey by email to 957 program directors in October 2020: 353 participated, a response rate of 36.9 percent. ASRT has conducted the survey every year since 2001.
The Enrollment Snapshot of Radiography, Radiation Therapy, and Nuclear Medicine Technology Programs ─ 2020 is available free of charge.