Health Occupations
& Technology

Radiation Therapist

To be a successful Radiation Therapist you should…

  • have a strong interest in helping others
  • be able to follow orders precisely
  • have excellent communication skills

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What will my job be like?

Radiation therapy technology, also known as radiation therapy, comprises another subset of workers known as radiological technologists. These professionals administer doses of radiation to treat patients afflicted with cancer. By applying radiation in the form of x-rays, gamma rays, and electron beams to specific body parts, the radiation therapist attempts to halt the spread of disease or offer relief from symptoms.

Radiation therapists deliver the course of radiation, give support and information to the patient, and work closely with oncologists to weigh treatment options and monitor patient progress. Cancer patients and their families often develop a meaningful relationship with these health care providers over the course of treatment.

Where could I work?

While most radiation therapists are employed in hospitals, many others work in clinics and research facilities. Forty-hour work weeks are common, and may include non-business hours. The workload is often emotionally draining, due to their involvement with children and adults who are seriously ill.

Other workplace settings:

  • Cancer Centers
  • Physician Offices
  • Equipment Sales
  • Technical Applications
  • Education

What is the average annual salary?


What is the future of this career?

Employment of radiation therapists is projected to grow 9 percent from 2020 to 2030, about as fast as the average for all occupations, according to the BLS.

About 1,100 openings for radiation therapists are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

What type of education and/or training do I need?

Four options are available:

  • 1 year hospital-based certificate programs, usually restricted to graduates of accredited radiography programs
  • 2-year hospital-based certificate programs
  • 2-year associate degree programs
  • 4-year bachelor’s degree programs

Where can I get the education and/or training?

  • Gateway Community College, New Haven
  • Manchester Community College, Manchester

Do I need a license or certification for this career?

Licensure is required in the state of Connecticut.  Prerequisites include successful completion of a course of study in an accredited radiologic technology program and examination in Radiography or Radiation Therapy Technology of the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (AART).

Please visit the State of Connecticut Department of Public Health website for more information.

Where can I get more information?

American Association of Medical Dosimetrists
2201 Cooperative Way, Suite 600
Herndon, VA   20171
(703) 677-8071

American Registry of Radiologic Technologists
1255 Northland Drive
St. Paul, MN   55120
(651) 687-0048

American Society of Radiologic Technologists
15000 Central Avenue, SE
Albuquerque, NM   87123
(800) 444-2778