• Certifications
  • R (ARRT) - Radiography RT

    • Cost $225
    • Renews anually


    In Person


    The Radiography Registered Technologists (R.T.(R) is offered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). The ARRT is a leading credentialing organization that recognizes qualified individuals in medical imaging, radiation therapy, and interventional procedures. It offers certifications and registrations in various disciplines to help medical imaging and radiation therapy professionals further their careers. It has over 330,000 registrants, including the Radiography Registered Technologists (R.T.(R). Most radiologic technologists enter the profession as radiographers, capturing images of patients' bones, soft tissues, and organs with X-ray equipment. ARRT certification and registration in Radiography recognizes individuals qualified to work as radiographers.

    Eligibility Requirement

    To earn Radiography (ARRT) certification, candidates must use the primary eligibility pathway. This pathway has three steps candidates must complete, which include education, ethics, and examination.

    Cost: $225 (Effective January 1, 2022)

    Reapplication: $200

    Course Format

    Earning R.T.(R)(ARRT) certification begins with education. Applicants must:

    • Earn an associate degree or higher in any subject from an educational institution accredited by an ARRT-recognized agency

    • Candidates may earn this degree before, after, or while they complete a radiography education program

    • Complete an ARRT-recognized educational program in radiography

    • Verify program completion, including Didactic and Clinical Competency Requirements and all degree-related requirements including degree conferment

      • Information must be completed on the Program Completion Verification Form on the ARRT Educator Website after the candidate completes their Application for Certification and Registration

    After meeting all education requirements, graduates have three years to apply for ARRT certification and registration. After applying for ARRT certification and registration, candidates have three more years and three attempts to pass the ARRT exam.

    In Person

    Pearson VUE administers the Radiography exam at over 200 test centers throughout the U.S. and its territories. It also offers ARRT exams in selected Canadian, European, Australian, Asian cities. The Radiography exam is a computer-based exam. Applicants must receive their Candidate Status Report before they can schedule their exam. The Candidate Status Report contains the applicant's identification information, ARRT ID number, and the dates of their exam window. The exam window runs 365 days, beginning two calendar days after the date the applicant completed their educational program or application, whichever was latest. They must take their exam within this window. Once the window closes, they can no longer take the exam. The exam window closes automatically after 365 days or if the candidate:

    • Misses their scheduled exam without providing the required notice

    • Doesn't sign their nondisclosure agreement at the test center within 2 minutes

    • Is turned away from Pearson VUE because of a name discrepancy

    Applicants may schedule their exam with Pearson VUE online or by calling the toll-free number listed on their Candidate Status Report. Once scheduled, Pearson VUE sends a confirmation to the applicant's email address within minutes. If confirmation doesn't arrive, follow up with Pearson VUE. ARRT doesn't have access to exam appointment information.

    Applicants may cancel or reschedule their exam appointment if they call Pearson VUE at (800) 632-9055 at least 24 hours before their scheduled appointment. They must speak to a person, leaving a voicemail isn't acceptable. They may also reschedule using their online account at least 24 hours in advance and following all prompts to complete the process.

    Steps on Test Day

    • Arrive 30 minutes early

    • Don't bring cell phones, purses, wallets, backpacks, watches, notes, pencils, pens, calculators or other similar items with you

      • Items not allowed brought to the testing center must be placed in a locker provided by Pearson VUE

      • It assumes no responsibility for these items

    • Check in by signing a digital signature pad

    • Present two valid forms of identification

      • Primary ID must be a government-issued ID, such as a driver’s license, state ID card, passport, or military ID card with name, photo, and signature or military bar code

      • Secondary ID must include name and signature, such as a U.S. Social Security card, an employee ID badge, a bank or credit card, a school ID, or an additional form of primary ID

    • Have your photo taken and palm veins scanned by Pearson VUE staff

    • Complete a short orientation

    • Get escorted to computer terminal and receive test booklet

      • Don't write in test booklet until starting the exam

    • Complete a short tutorial covering the exam format and using the online calculator

    • Accept the nondisclosure agreement within two minutes of accessing it

    • Remain in assigned seat during and after the exam, until a Pearson VUE staff member authorizes applicants to leave

    Exam Format

    Most questions on the R (ARRT) exam are multiple-choice with one best answer. However, some may ask test takers to:

    • Select multiple answers from a list

    • Use their mouse to sort options in the correct order

    • Use their mouse to select an image on the screen

    • To answer a multiple-choice question after viewing a short video clip

    Exams present questions in random order. They also include some unidentified pilot questions used to evaluate potential questions for future exams but don't impact the applicant's score. Test takers should flag difficult questions and return to them later if time allows. The amount of exam time left appears in the top right corner of the computer screen.

    Radiography Exam

    The Radiography exam includes 200 scored test questions and 30 pilot questions. The total testing time is 4 hours and 10 minutes and includes:

    • Tutorial: 8 minutes

    • Non-disclosure agreement: 2 minutes

    • Test: 3 hours 50 minutes

    • Survey: 10 minutes

    Applicants receive a preliminary score at exam completion. However, they receive their official score within 30 calendar days of the exam date from ARRT through the mail. The Radiography exam uses a scaled score, ranging from 1 to 99. To pass, applicants must earn a scaled score of 75 or higher.


    Steps to earn R.T.(R)(ARRT) Certification

    • Create an online ARRT account

    • Complete educational program

    • Earn an associate degree or higher

    • Undergo an ethics review, if necessary

    Once candidates apply for certification and registration with ARRT, they must comply with ARRT Standards of Ethics, including the Rules of Ethics. Candidates concerned that something in their past may impact their eligibility for certification and registration may request an Ethics Review Preapplication along with a nonrefundable $100 Ethics Review fee, payable to ARRT by personal check or money order.

    • Apply for ARRT certification and registration through online account

    • Review your Candidate Status Report

      • Includes candidate's assigned examination window

      • Should post two days after submitting application

      • Candidates who mail a paper application, instead of applying online won't receive their Candidate Status Report for at least 30 calendar days

    ARRT is converting to an online application process. Candidates with questions about completing a paper or online application should call (651) 687-0048 and choose the option for earning an ARRT credential.

    Applications can only apply for one ARRT credential or state licensing exam at one time. Candidates applying for multiple credential/licensing exams must choose which one they're going to take first.

    Exam Requirements

    Candidates must pass the Radiography exam to earn their ARRT credential. They have three attempts to pass this exam. These attempts must occur in the three-year window, which begins when the window for their first exam opens. Candidates who don't pass the exam within three attempts during this three-year window lose their eligibility for certification and registration, unless they requalify.

    When taking the exam at a testing center they must present two forms of identification. The name on these IDs must exactly match the name on the candidate's application and their Candidate Status Report.

    Candidates who don't pass the exam and applied online will see a Reapply button appear on their online dashboard. Those who applied using a paper application will receive a reapplication form through the mail. The reapplication fee is $200. After the third exam attempt, candidates who don't pass receive instructions on how to requalify.

    State Licensure

    Some, not all, states require radiography technologists to be licensed before they can practice. Licensing laws differ by state, so applicants must check with the appropriate state licensing board. Some states may require ARRT certification and registration for licensure and don't have their own exam. Others may require applicants to pass a licensure exam based on state regulations and don't recognize ARRT certification.

    Either way, passing a state licensing exam and/or being licensed by a state doesn't make candidates eligible for ARRT certification and registration. ARRT certification and registration may or may not make candidates eligible for state licensure. Check state licensure rules.


    To maintain the R.T.(R)(ARRT) credential, certified radiography technologists must:

    • Renew their credential every year on or before the last day of their birth month

    • Complete Continuing Education (CE) requirements every two years or biennium

      • An R.T.'s biennium ends on the last day of the month before their birth month every other year

      • The CE biennium deadline date is NOT the same as the annual renewal date

    • Fulfill Continuing Qualifications Requirements (CQRs) every 10 years

      • Detailed information about the CQR process is available on the R.T.'s online account

      • CQRs help identify gaps in an R.T.'s knowledge and skills that might cause them to fall behind current entry-level qualifications

      • CQRs develop a plan for refreshing an R.T.'s understanding and abilities

    • Remain compliant with ARRT Rules and Regulations and ARRT Standards of Ethics

    Renewal Cost: $30 for first discipline and $15 for any additional disciplines.

    Continuing Education

    Radiography R.T.s must earn 24 CE credits each biennium to maintain their credential. They may use a range of activities to fulfill their CE requirements, including approved online classes, self-study readings and modules, classroom learning, and lectures at professional society meetings. R.T.s may be randomly audited and must maintain proof of participation in CE activities for 5 years. They may have their CE documentation maintained by an ARRT-approved record-keeping mechanism.

    Other Resources

    Related Certifications

    Once a radiography earns their first ARRT credential, they may earn additional ones through ARRT's Postprimary Eligibility Pathway. These credentials may include:

    • Bone Densitometry - R.T.(BD)

    • Breast Sonography - R.T.(BS)

    • Cardiac Interventional Radiography - R.T.(CI)

    • Computed Tomography - R.T.(CT)

    • Magnetic Resonance Imaging - R.T.(MR)

    • Mammography - R.T.(M)

    • Vascular Interventional Radiography - R.T.(VI)

    • Vascular Sonography - R.T.(VS)

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    Frequently asked questions

    Do I need a radiologic technology certificate to work in this field?

    Employers often prefer to hire medical imaging professionals who have at least a radiologic technologist certificate. However, the legal requirements vary by state. Due to radiologic science's complex and rapidly-changing nature, earning a certificate and becoming licensed can help you secure a job faster or move up from an entry-level position.

    What is the typical salary for a radiologic technologist?

    According to Vivian, the average salary for a staff radiology technician, the average hourly rate was $28.95 in June 2022, which works out to about $60,216 per year. However, radiology technicians were averaging $35 per hour in some states and were earning up to $46 per hour in some positions. Travel radiology technicians were averaging $2,461 per week during this same period but averaging $2,907 weekly in some state and earning as much $4,560 in some positions.

    What are some certifications I can pursue after obtaining R (ARRT) certification?

    You can pursue Cardiac-Interventional Radiography RT (CI-ARRT), Mammography RT (M-ARRT), Bone Densitometry RT (BD-ARRT), Breast Sonography RT (BS-ARRT), Computed Tomography RT (CT-ARRT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging RT (MR-ARRT), Vascular-Interventional Radiography RT (VI-ARRT), Vascular Sonography RT (VS-ARRT), Positron Emission Technology (PET-NMTCB) or Computed Tomography (CT-NMTCB), among others.

    Does my associate degree (or higher) have to be in radiological sciences to qualify for ARRT Radiography certification?

    No, your associate's degree (or higher) can be in any subject, as long as you earned it at an institution accredited by an agency that ARRT recognizes. However, you must also complete an education program in radiography to complete all educational requirements.

    Is the ARRT Radiography exam hard?

    The ARRT Radiography exam can be difficult for those not properly prepared. One of the biggest challenges when studying for the exam is trying to anticipate what will be on the test. Focus on the material ARRT includes in its major content categories covered on the Radiology exam. Don't underestimate the exam's difficulty, put in some study time but don't be intimidated, and you should do fine.

    What is the passing score for the ARRT Radiology exam?

    The ARRT Radiology exam is scored on scale that ranges from 1 to 99. You need a total score of 75 to pass the exam but this isn’t a percentage. The number of correct answers necessary to earn a scaled score of 75 varies based on the difficulty of the exam version you take.

    What other certifications should I consider after getting the ARRT Radiography?

    If you reside in the state of California, you can pursue the Fluoroscopy Permit (CA).