CareerGPS

Radiation Therapists
Summary Occupational Forecast Data for Radiation Therapists
Employment Employment Change Average Annual Job Openings Wage & Training Levels
2018 2023 Numerical Percent New Jobs Replacement Jobs Total Median Hourly Median Annual Training Levels
62 70 8 12.69% 2 3 5 $63.02 $131,087 Associate's degree
Description: Provide radiation therapy to patients as prescribed by a radiologist according to established practices and standards. Duties may include reviewing prescription and diagnosis; acting as liaison with physician and supportive care personnel; preparing equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, and protection devices; and maintaining records, reports, and files. May assist in dosimetry procedures and tumor localization.
Staffing Pattern Data Forecast Data Source: EMSI (2nd Quarter 2018)

Occupation Details

The information in this section represents occupational characteristics included in O*NET which defines key features of an occupation as a standardized, measurable set of variables called "descriptors". These distinguishing characteristics of an occupation are described in greater detail in the O*NET Content Model. All items are listed in descending order of importance.

  • Administer prescribed doses of radiation to specific body parts, using radiation therapy equipment according to established practices and standards.
  • Position patients for treatment with accuracy according to prescription.
  • Enter data into computer and set controls to operate and adjust equipment and regulate dosage.
  • Follow principles of radiation protection for patient, self, and others.
  • Maintain records, reports and files as required, including such information as radiation dosages, equipment settings and patients' reactions.
  • Review prescription, diagnosis, patient chart, and identification.
  • Conduct most treatment sessions independently, in accordance with the long-term treatment plan and under the general direction of the patient's physician.
  • Check radiation therapy equipment to ensure proper operation.
  • Observe and reassure patients during treatment and report unusual reactions to physician or turn equipment off if unexpected adverse reactions occur.
  • Check for side effects such as skin irritation, nausea and hair loss to assess patients' reaction to treatment.
  • Educate, prepare and reassure patients and their families by answering questions, providing physical assistance, and reinforcing physicians' advice regarding treatment reactions and post-treatment care.
  • Calculate actual treatment dosages delivered during each session.
  • Prepare and construct equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, and protection devices.
  • Photograph treated area of patient and process film.
  • Help physicians, radiation oncologists and clinical physicists to prepare physical and technical aspects of radiation treatment plans, using information about patient condition and anatomy.
  • Train and supervise student or subordinate radiotherapy technologists.
  • Act as liaison with physicist and supportive care personnel.
  • Provide assistance to other health care personnel during dosimetry procedures and tumor localization.
  • Implement appropriate follow-up care plans.

Knowledge

79%
Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
77%
Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
69%
Physics - Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
67%
English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
66%
Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
63%
Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
62%
Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
58%
Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
58%
Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
57%
Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Skills

65%
Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
65%
Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
62%
Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
62%
Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
60%
Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
60%
Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
60%
Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
56%
Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
53%
Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
53%
Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
53%
Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
53%
Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
53%
Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
50%
Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
50%
Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
50%
Management of Personnel Resources - Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.

Abilities

75%
Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
69%
Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
69%
Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
69%
Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
65%
Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
62%
Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
62%
Arm-Hand Steadiness - The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
62%
Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
62%
Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
62%
Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
60%
Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
60%
Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
56%
Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
56%
Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
56%
Control Precision - The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
53%
Far Vision - The ability to see details at a distance.
53%
Finger Dexterity - The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
53%
Perceptual Speed - The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes compa
50%
Multilimb Coordination - The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
50%
Manual Dexterity - The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
50%
Flexibility of Closure - The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
50%
Visualization - The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.

Work Activities

90%
Assisting and Caring for Others - Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
87%
Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
86%
Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
86%
Controlling Machines and Processes - Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
85%
Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
83%
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
82%
Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
82%
Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
81%
Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
77%
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
76%
Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
75%
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
75%
Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
74%
Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
74%
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
74%
Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
74%
Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
70%
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
69%
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
66%
Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
65%
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
57%
Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.
57%
Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
55%
Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
54%
Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment - Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.
52%
Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
52%
Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
50%
Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
Title Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed
Overall Experience Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.
Job Training Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
Job Zone Examples These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include food service managers, electricians, agricultural technicians, legal secretaries, interviewers, and insurance sales agents.
Education Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Interests

Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outsi
Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Work Styles

Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Concern for Others - Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Social Orientation - Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.

Work Values

Relationships - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Support - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Working Conditions - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.