inbox

Get information that is essential for all newcomers to Canada

Subscribe! Subscribe

Medical Radiation Technologist

Medical Radiation Technologist

Medical Radiation Technologist is a regulated profession in most Canadian provinces. You need to be registered with the relevant provincial authority in Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan so that you are allowed to practice and use the professional designation.

Although the profession is regulated in the remaining provinces and territories, employers may require proof of successful completion of the national certification exam and proof of registration with the provincial association.

The Canadian Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (CAMRT) is the national professional association and certifying body. CAMRT represents four disciplines:

  • radiological technology
  • magnetic resonance
  • nuclear medicine
  • radiation therapy.

To help internationally educated medical radiation technologists to decide to live and work in Canada, the CAMRT provides online tools and resources to assess your credentials and help you prepare. This includes tools to help assess if you're likely to meet requirements to practice in Canada, and what the Canadian work environment is like.

Before you immigrate

There are steps that you can take to improve your chances of practicing your medical radiation technology profession in Canada:

  • Research how your international qualifications may be viewed in Canada and get a general sense of the Canadian labour market.
  • Contact the Canadian Association of Medical Radiation Technologists and find out about the procedure to follow, and the potential costs and time required to obtain a permit. As well, ask about the steps in the licensing process that you can take before and after you immigrate.
  • If you have completed your medical radiation technology education in a language other than English or French, contact the regulatory bodies mandated with regulating your profession in the province where you will settle. Find out about any specific language requirements to work as medical radiation technologist in Canada. If you received your professional training  in English or French, the training institution may have to confirm what language you received instruction and were assessed.
  • You need to have strong English or French (depending on your destination province) language competency and you may be tested. Even if you speak fluent English or French, it’s helpful to improve your language skills and enroll in language classes while you are in your home country and continue them after you move to Canada.
  • Gather and organize your official education, work and identity documents while still in your home country. Find out what documents you need to bring for employment purposes, or to continue education. Verify if the documents need to be translated. You may need to use a professional translation service in Canada.
  • Know the name of your job in Canada and make a list of potential employers.
  • Find out how to get a driver’s license in Canada and apply for it right after you land. It will be useful to have when you get a job, or even to search for a job.

Could not find block specified! Please check out the Shortcode parameters.

Skills Development as a Medical Radiation Technologist

Skills Development as a Medical Radiation Technologist

Canadian employers put a high emphasis on soft skills, which are personal attributes that enhance your interactions, job performance, and career prospects. Unlike your hard skills, you can apply your soft skills broadly.

Soft skills, such as good communication, problem-solving and analytical skills are important for medical radiation technologists.

As a medical radiation technologist, you are expected to be sensitive to the patient’s physical and psychological needs, pay attention to detail, and be able to work as part of a team. In addition, you are expected to be familiar with the machine and technology in order to offer good technical services.

If your hard skills will get you an interview, most probably it is your soft skills that will get you the job and enable you to keep it afterward.

Though not a must, upgrading your education and skills through a bridging program or other educational courses and workshops may be an important part of your journey to becoming a successful medical radiation technologist in Canada. You will constantly face changing technology and varied demands from patients, employers, government, and the general public. Therefore, it is important for you to participate in lifelong learning and demonstrate your professional growth.

Could not find block specified! Please check out the Shortcode parameters.

Skills upgrading

You may have strong technical skills, but often that is not enough to get a job or maintain it afterward. You may need more training or skills upgrading, especially with regards to your oral communication skills and critical thinking.

Having strong skills in one or both of Canada’s official languages – English or French – is extremely important for your future in Canada. Whether you choose to focus on learning or improving English or French will depend on which of the two languages most people speak in the area where you intend to live.

You may be eligible for Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) program. Otherwise, you can find other free or affordable classes in English as a Second Language (ESL) or French as a Second Language (FSL) classes through the school boards or settlement agencies. There are even language courses to teach you professional terminology, such as job-specific language training and Occupation Specific Language Training (OSLT) in Ontario. And, if you already speak one of Canada’s two official languages at a high level, learning the other one is a good option, as it may offer you better employment opportunities.

Education

Many immigrants take further education after coming to Canada. Some even want to change careers or enhance their careers with a Ph.D. or MBA.

Bridging programs

Bridging programs are a good way to transition from your international experience and training to the Canadian workplace. Many colleges, universities, and immigrant-serving agencies offer bridging programs or workshops. You may be eligible for one. Do some research to find a program that’s suitable for you.

Michener Institute – Toronto
Access & Options for Internationally Educated Health Professionals
The program assists foreign-trained qualified health professionals in certification and registration within Canada. An individualized program will be developed to prepare internationally trained medical radiation technologists to write the CAMRT certification examination.

Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) – Edmonton
Medical Radiological Technology Bridging Program
The program provides tools to assess and enhance the practical readiness of internationally-educated medical radiological (x-ray) technologists for the Alberta workplace.

Canadian employers who often do not know how to assess education and work experience from other countries, may require or prefer you to have experience working in Canada. Lack of local market experience can pose a challenge for newcomers, but there are ways to overcome some of these challenges.

When an employer tells you that you have no “Canadian experience” often they mean that they’re not sure if you’re going to fit into their workplace. They are not sure that you are familiar with Canadian codes and standards of practice or that you have the communication skills, etiquette or inter-personal savvy to be an asset to their firm. Employers want friendly, assertive professionals with above average communication skills who will fit right in and over time become leaders.

You can overcome this barrier and acquire a good understanding of how a Canadian workplace operates by volunteering, meeting people, having a mentor, getting an internship or job shadowing.

Could not find block specified! Please check out the Shortcode parameters.

Volunteering

Volunteerism is an important part of Canadian society and lifestyle. It helps you settle in faster, make friends, practice skills and even it might lead you – in some cases – to a job at the organization where you are volunteering or somewhere else.

You will find tons of volunteering opportunities in nonprofit organizations and community centres where you can utilize your knowledge and expertise. Look for opportunities in the health sector, photography, technical work, lab work, or other jobs involving contact with people; it would be useful for you to mention them as your “Canadian experience” in your medical radiation technologist resume.

You can know about these opportunities by contacting your local volunteer centre or community organizations in your area. As well, you can ask your relatives, friends or colleagues for volunteer opportunities that suit your skills and interests. Regardless, you should consider volunteering in your community as it is an important tool that helps you practice your communication skills or learn some new technology skills.

Internship

Another good way to acquire Canadian experience is by having internships. Career Edge is an innovative internship program that allows you to apply for paid internships at Canada’s leading private, public or non-profit sector employers. The program regularly posts internship opportunities and offers paid internships of four, six, nine or 12 months for recent immigrants:

  • with fluency in English
  • with at least a Bachelor’s level education
  • with a minimum of three years international work experience

The program is run by Career Edge, a not-for-profit social enterprise that has managed over 9,200 paid internships across Canada since 1996.

Another opportunity is the Federal Internship for Newcomers (FIN) Program which provides recent immigrants with valuable temporary Canadian work experience and training opportunities with federal government departments and other public and private sector organizations. Interns are hired as casual employees for 90 working days, with the possibility of extending the internship an additional 90 working days.

Internships are offered in categories such as:

  • policy
  • administration
  • project management
  • computer science
  • communications and science.

A mentor will be provided for the duration of the internship.

Mentoring

It is important to find someone such as a practicing or retired medical radiation technologist or someone with a background in healthcare, who can coach or mentor you and share information about working in your profession in Canada.

Many professional associations or firms offer this type of “buddy” program, where a seasoned member guides a junior one. Contact the relevant associations in your area to know about the available mentorship opportunities.

As well, many bridging programs and immigrant-serving agencies have mentorship programs where they team up a newcomer with someone in their professional field. The Mentoring Partnership brings together recent skilled immigrants and established professionals in occupation-specific mentoring relationships. The program is managed by the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council.

You can also look for mentoring opportunities online, by registering for sites such as MentorCity.

 

Job shadowing

Not exactly a mentorship or a volunteer opportunity, job shadowing is an interesting way to get some inside information on your industry in Canada, know about how the Canadian workplace operates and possibly make some good networking contacts. This can last anywhere from an hour to an entire day. Job shadowing is a great way to find out what an hour or a day on your job is like in Canada.

As in volunteering, identify 5-10 companies or organizations you wish to work for and try to use your network to approach medical radiation technologists – or other employees in a healthcare role – who work there. Contact them, explain that you are a newcomer and ask them if it’s possible to job shadow them for some time to get familiar with the local work culture.

Job finding techniques

There’s a high demand for medical radiation technologists in Canada, however, the Canadian job market is very competitive, so be prepared and understand each of the steps needed to gain employment. As well, finding a job in Canada may be very different than in your home country.

You must look for jobs in the region where you will settle. Therefore, take your time to research job requirements in that region and develop a plan for finding work.

There are many ways through which you can search for jobs in the education sector.

  • Broaden your search and include alternative careers and sectors.
  • Seek out a mentor in the medical radiation technology sector – for example, a retired medical radiation technologist – who would give you valuable insight and advice and probably introduce you to their professional network.
  • Join business related job-finding or networking clubs through immigrant-serving agencies.
  • Attend industry job fairs and regularly check the employment sections of your local newspapers.
  • Some colleges or associations may maintain a job bank or suggest a commercial job site.

Could not find block specified! Please check out the Shortcode parameters.

Immigrant settlement agencies

Most settlement agencies and other immigrant-serving organizations offer help with finding job vacancies, updating your resume, writing cover letters, preparing for interviews and understanding what Canadian employers are looking for.

To find immigrant services in your area, click here.

Resume writing

Your medical radiation technologist resume needs to cover your technical excellence and proficiency at handling technical issues, linked with radiation functions. That’s why you need to create a good resume that corresponds to the requirements of the job you are applying for, and highlights your technical efficiency to handle patients.

Your resume should systematically showcase your abilities and skills to manage technical handling of x-ray and scan functions, with due care and safety measures. Offering such details will surely add some extra advantage to your profile.

Below are some tips for writing your medical radiologic technician resume:

  • Create a well integrated and professional format using medical resume templates available online.
  • Coordinate essential technical details associated with the work, such as familiarity with x-rays and CAT scans, and highlight accomplishment of required training courses.
  • Let your resume communicate your professional practice at handling radiation functions well. As well, stress your strong analytical and mathematical skills to carry out the required evaluations and tests, to generate satisfactory diagnosis. Use your prior working experiences or internship for that.
  • Highlight your understanding of the required safety measures to provide effective services, and specify your knowledge of advanced technological developments in the field.
  • Ensure that your skills and qualifications will create the expected results, by reporting your excellent monitoring of related activities.
  • Stress on your abilities to collaborate with other departments of the health care center or hospitals, to offer the patients with excellent services.

Interview techniques

While the future looks bright for medical radiation technologists in Canada, you need to be well prepared for your job interview. The Canadian job market is competitive and probably many others have also applied to the same job you will be interviewed for.

Prior to your job interview, review your qualifications for the medical radiation technologist position so you can complete the interview with confidence. Assess your level of experience and determine if your qualifications are enough to meet the demands of the position.

Here are a few questions that are likely to be asked during your job interview.

What are your best qualities?

Don’t be shy, they really want to know. It’s a plus if you can use something that’s relevant to medical radiation technology, such as your organizational skills, ability to work on a team or your people skills.

How would you handle calls for mobile X-rays, theater and in-patients waiting all at the same time?

This is the time to demonstrate your organizational and time management skills. Of course, you’d break down the cases in order of severity and then, if necessary, you’d ask for assistance.

How would you respond to a patient who refuses an X-ray?

The interviewer wants to know you can handle a difficult patient with detente. Your response should be that you’d make sure the patient understands what the procedure entails and would then ask about their concerns. If they continue to refuse the exam, you would notify the referring physician and not force the issue.

What would you do if an underage girl comes in with her mother and tells you in confidence that she may be pregnant?

This situation happens more often than you’d think. Answering correctly will highlight your communication skills, professional boundaries and discretion. Your response should be to discreetly ask the girl about her pregnancy status out of ear shot from her mother. Contact the referring physician to find out if they’re aware of the situation and ask how they want to proceed.

During the interview, standard radiological questions are asked as well, including: post exam film check protocol, image order for trauma series and best projections for a variety of injuries.

It's always hard to know what to expect exactly when going in for your interview, but research and preparation can make all the difference.

Informational interviews

An informational interview is a brief (20–30-minute) meeting that you schedule with a person who is currently working in your target field and geographic location to learn more about that particular sector.

You should not try to get a job during an informational interview but rather find out whether or not a particular position or industry might be a good fit for your interests and your personality. An informational interview with a contact from your network can be an excellent source of career information because, in addition to basic information about a particular type of industry (such as you might find on an organization’s website), it also offers you the benefit of a professional’s first-hand experiences and impressions.

Networking

Networking is an essential tool that may give you job leads, offer you advice and information about a particular firm or industry, and introduce you to others so that you can expand your network. As many job vacancies are not advertised, you must make connections with practicing physiotherapists and others in your field.
Good places to network are gatherings such as conferences, association luncheons, and industry get-togethers for the convenience in meeting people, building relationships, and sharing information.
LinkedIn is another important professional tool for networking. It is great for reconnecting with your ex-colleagues and employers, search by company or jobs, and get introductions and recommendations. You can also join some related professional groups.

But remember, that you have to allow time to cultivate and grow the ties you establish through networking. Nothing will happen overnight and you need to be patient.

Associations for Medical Radiation Technologist

The associations listed below provide additional information about licensure and certification and offer professional development, education, and networking opportunities.

National

Canadian Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (CAMRT)
85 Albert Street, Suite 1000
Ottawa ON   K1P 6A4   Canada
Phone : 1-613-234-0012
Email : [email protected]

Could not find block specified! Please check out the Shortcode parameters.

Provincial regulatory bodies

Alberta

Alberta College of Medical Diagnostic & Therapeutic Technologists (ACMDTT)
800, 4445 Calgary Trail
Edmonton AB   T6H 5R7   Canada
Phone : 1-780-487-6130
Email : [email protected]

New Brunswick

New Brunswick Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (NBAMRT)
180, rue Noel
Moncton NB   E1C 8V7   Canada
Phone : 506-872-1297
Email : [email protected]

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (NSAMRT)
3205 Mayfield Ave.
Halifax NS   B3L 4B4    Canada
Phone : 902-434-6525
Email : [email protected]

Ontario

College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario (CMRTO)
375 University Avenue, Suite 300
Toronto ON   M5G 2J5   Canada
Phone : 416-975-4353
Email : [email protected]

Quebec

Ordre des technologues en imagerie médicale, en radio-oncologie et en électrophysiologie médicale du Québec
6455 rue Jean-Talon Est
Bureau 401
Montréal QC   H1S 3E8   Canada
Phone : 514-351-0052
Email : [email protected]

Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (SAMRT)
218 – 408 Broad Street
Regina SK   S4R 1X3   Canada
Phone : 306-525-9678
Email : [email protected]

Other

British Columbia

British Columbia Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (BCMRT)
102 – 211 Columbia Street
Vancouver BC   V6A 2R5   Canada
Phone : 604-682-8171
Email : [email protected]

Manitoba

Manitoba Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (MAMRT)
202 – 819 Sargent Avenue
Winnipeg MB   R3E 0B9   Canada
Phone : 204-774-5346
Email : [email protected]

Ontario

Ontario Association of Medical Radiation Sciences
415 A -175 Longwood Road South
Hamilton, ON  L8P 0A1   Canada
Phone: 289-674-0034

Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (PEIAMRT)
61 Queen Elizabeth Dr.
Charlottetown PE   C1A 3A8   Canada
Email : [email protected]

Immigrant networks

Professional immigrant networks are organized, volunteer-run member-based associations or networks created by and for immigrant professionals that seek to:

  • create a forum to contribute to and enrich their respective communities
  • provide opportunities for their members to find meaningful employment and achieve their professional goals

Activities of these networks include networking events, mentoring, information sessions, professional development opportunities such as workshops, speaker events and training and connections to employment opportunities.

Nova Scotia

isans: Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia 
isans helps newcomer professionals with their full economic and social integration in the province of Nova Scotia.

Ontario


Professional Immigrant Networks (TRIEC)