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Study Therapeutic Radiography, why & how to study

Therapeutic radiographers treat people fighting cancer with precise, targeted doses of radiation. See what it’s like to study this area, and if the career is for you.

Two therapeutic radiographers examine a patient in an MRI scan.

CONTENTS

  1. What’s Therapeutic Radiography?

  2. What Therapeutic Radiography degrees can you study?

  3. What do you need to get onto a Therapeutic Radiography degree?

  4. What topics does a Therapeutic Radiography degree cover?

  5. How will you be assessed?

  6. Why study Therapeutic Radiography?

  7. What do Therapeutic Radiography graduates earn?

  8. What jobs can you get as a Therapeutic Radiography graduate?

  9. What are the postgraduate opportunities?

  10. Similar subjects to Therapeutic Radiography

  11. Have any questions?

What’s Therapeutic Radiography?

Therapeutic Radiography uses radiography for cancer treatment. Study this subject area, and you could play a crucial role in treating patients with cancer.

Radiation therapy, or radiotherapy, uses high levels of radiation to kill cancer cells and minimise tumours. Working alongside oncologists as part of an inspiring team, therapeutic radiographers have the knowledge and expertise to deliver the best treatment.

You’ll learn how to care for patients with cancer in a technical and personal way. You'll train using the latest equipment and develop skills in imaging and targeting human tumours. You will also develop relationships with patients and provide emotional support during their treatment.

What Therapeutic Radiography degrees can you study?

Undergraduate degrees in Therapeutic Radiography include: 

  • Healthcare Science (Radiotherapy Physics) BSc
  • Radiotherapy and Oncology BSc
  • Radiotherapy BSc
  • Therapeutic Radiography and Oncology BSc

Options may include an integrated foundation year. January start dates may be available.

What do you need to get onto a Therapeutic Radiography degree?

Most undergraduate Therapeutic Radiography courses ask for 112–120 UCAS points. Not all unis base their offer on UCAS points, and some courses can have lower or higher requirements. Qualifications may include:

  • A Levels: BBB–BCC
  • BTECs: DDD–DMM
  • International Baccalaureate: 32–28
  • Scottish Highers: BBBBBB–BBBB
  • Universities will usually ask that you have studied: at least one A Level or Higher in a science subject such as physics, biology or chemistry

Other good subjects to have studied include:

  • Double science, human biology

Experience that would look good on your application:

  • An interest in the technology
  • Volunteering or paid work in the care sector
  • If possible, try to spend some time in a radiography department or talk to a radiographer to find out more about their everyday job
  •  Check out the website of the Society of Radiographers for insights into the role

Other requirements for this subject include:

  • Pass in the practical element of any science taken at A Level
  • You’re likely to work with members of the public, so you may also need to complete Disclosure and Barring Services (DBS) checks (PVG scheme in Scotland)

What topics does a Therapeutic Radiography degree cover?

Typical modules for courses in this subject include:

  • Advanced radiation oncology and patient care
  • Anatomy and physiology for the radiographer
  • Planning and dosimetry
  • Radiation physics
  • Research methods for effective practice
  • Supportive care in oncology
  • Working in interprofessional teams

How will you be assessed?

You’ll be assessed through a range of methods, depending on the module. You’ll be expected to communicate your views and evaluations using evidence and research.

  • Case study projects
  • Coursework
  • Practical and clinical assessments
  • Presentations
  • Written and oral exams

Why study Therapeutic Radiography?

Study a Therapeutic Radiography degree, and you can learn how to make a positive difference in people's lives.

Career-specific skills:

  • Knowledge, skills and technical expertise to deliver treatment efficiently
  • Familiarity with advanced technology, including the safe use of equipment to target tumours and deliver the right amount of dosage

Transferable skills:

  • Communication
  • Manual dexterity
  • Adaptability
  • Analytical and reflective thinking
  • Empathic interpersonal skills
  • Team working

Professional accreditation: 

  • Programmes must be approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
  • Degrees may also be approved by the College of Radiographers (CoR), and may offer student membership of the Society of Radiographers (SoR)

What do Therapeutic Radiography graduates earn?

Therapeutic Radiography graduates can expect a starting salary of around £25,655. With experience, an advanced practitioner can earn £40,057–£45,839. Heads of department may be paid around £60,000–£65,000 (NHS Band 8b).

What jobs can you get as a Therapeutic Radiography graduate?

Because of the ageing population and improvements in cancer detection, there's a high demand for qualified professionals in cancer care.

After qualifying, you can become an oncologist or therapeutic radiographer. With experience, you could advance in management or become a consultant. Many graduates go into research or teaching.

Specialist areas include:

  • Certain cancers, techniques or equipment
  • Children
  • Counselling
  • Emerging technologies
  • Palliative care
  • Sonography

What are the postgraduate opportunities?

If you have a first degree in another science discipline, you can take a graduate-entry pre-registration course to qualify as a radiographer. Many graduates of Therapeutic Radiography continue their studies and become specialists in certain areas. Examples of postgraduate degrees include:

  • Advanced Clinical Practice in Radiotherapy and Oncology MSc
  • Cancer Biology and Radiotherapy Physics MSc
  • Radiology PhD
  • Radiotherapy and Oncology PgCert/PgDip/MSc

Similar subjects to Therapeutic Radiography

If you like the idea of working with technology to help diagnose patients, you could consider:

Have any questions?

Get in touch with our experts by emailing ask@thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk with your question about studying Therapeutic Radiography. We’ll be happy to hear from you!

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