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Who is a Radiologist Assistant?

A radiologist assistant (RA) is an advanced practice radiologic technologist who works under the supervision of a radiologist. The primary role of an RA is to enhance patient care by assisting the radiologist with patient assessment, patient management, and radiological procedures. The RA also makes initial observations of diagnostic images but does not provide an official interpretation in the form of a written report (Advanced Practice Advisory Panel, 2002).

An RA must be an ARRT-certified radiographer who has successfully completed an advanced academic program encompassing a nationally recognized radiologist assistant curriculum and a radiologist directed clinical preceptorship (Advanced Practice Advisory Panel, 2002). For additional information regarding this new and exciting healthcare career, see the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists and American Society of Radiologic Technologists.

Why choose the RA Program?

The UNC Radiologist Assistant Masters in Radiologic Science program was developed with the intent of being consistent with the national curriculum developed by the American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT) and the American College of Radiology (ACR) and in accordance with the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification requirements.

The RA program is 24 months in length. The curriculum combines distance education and web-based instruction with a radiologist- directed clinical preceptorship. This clinical preceptorship includes a minimum of 1,792 clinical hours and is completed off-campus. Students are encouraged to identify a radiology practice to serve as preceptors. This radiology practice must include American Board of Radiology (ABR) certified radiologists who are willing to instruct and assess the competence of the RA student working and learning under their supervision.

In addition to the distance education courses and clinical preceptorship, one to two on-campus seminars are required each semester. These sessions are designed to provide students the benefit of face-to-face contact with faculty and to enhance critical thinking and analysis skills related to radiological procedures and images. Educational activities fill each session’s schedule, but there are also opportunities for professional networking with other RA students and faculty.

Mission Statement, Goals, and Accreditation


The UNC Radiologist Assistant Masters in Radiologic Science program prepares students to practice competently and effectively as medical imaging professionals in radiology. The academic and clinical foundation in the curriculum develops graduates with professional flexibility and adaptability to assume prominent roles and responsibilities after graduation in both career and scholarly pursuits.


  1. The program develops competent, effective radiologist assistants.
  2. The program supports development of skills necessary to practice as an integral team member in a radiology practice.
  3. The program curriculum, teaching methods, and philosophy promote development of integrative, critical thinking, and communication skills to include written, oral, and electronic discourse.

Program Accreditation

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill RA program achieved program recognition from the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.

For further information please contact:

Joy Renner, M.A., R.T.(R)
Division of Radiologic Science
3063 Bondurant Hall, CB# 7130
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7130

(919) 966-5147