Nuclear Medicine Degrees

Nuclear Medicine Academia

In most cases, there are some requirements that must be met before you can even enter a nuclear medicine degree program. If these requirements are in effect, they are typically put in place by the school and not an outside governing body. A minimum of a high school education is certainly required, but a school will sometimes require some previous college credit before allowing for entry into their nuclear medicine program.

If a school is mandating that you have more than just a high school diploma, they will probably be asking that you have either some clinical experience or two years of undergraduate study. Some of the course prerequisites that will likely be expected by nuclear medicine schools will include:

  1. Biology
  2. Physics
  3. Math
  4. High school level chemistry course

The reason that some schools offering nuclear medicine degrees adhere to these admission requirements is because the Joint

Nuclear Medicine Degree Options

While there are specific educational requirements to work as a nuclear medicine technologist, there is a good amount of laxity on what the standard entry-level education should consist of. Currently, a student is eligible for state licensure, in most states, and certification if he or she has completed the minimum of a certificate program.

Certificate Program

A certificate program in nuclear medicine is a designed to be a one-year short course that awards a certificate upon the completion of the program. Likewise, it can be considered somewhat of an accelerated program because of how quickly the course is taught.
Certificate programs, are certainly sufficient for employment as a nuclear medicine technologist. However, most certificate programs are only taught in hospitals where a student already has a working knowledge of medicine and healthcare in general.

Associate’s Degree

Working towards and associate’s-level nuclear medicine degree will take about two years of your time and is highly recommended as the minimum amount of specialized education by various different organizations within the medical field.

Over this two-year time span, you will be introduced to an array of medical information as it pertains to radiopharmaceuticals, technology, chemistry, and physical science. You will also have clinical requirements for graduation of an associate’s degree.

Bachelor’s Degree

This is by far the best degree choice for a student in this field. Not only is a program of this nature much more comprehensive, but a bachelor’s-level nuclear medicine degree is also highly favored by many employers in the nuclear medicine field.

A bachelor’s degree will usually take about 3 to 4 years to complete because of the extensive amount of information taught. This courses offered by nuclear medicine schools offering bachelor’s degrees will involve all of the basics of anatomy and patient care and will also present to you the in-depth process of learning about the chemistry and physics behind the practice of nuclear medicine.

While some of this material may also be taught at the associate’s level, you can rest assured that the bulk of everything you ever wanted to know about the profession will be taught at this degree level.

Postgraduate Degree

A postgraduate nuclear medicine degree is any type of degree obtained after the successful completion of an undergraduate program, which would be the bachelor’s degree. A bachelor’s degree is the highest level of education that can be obtained on an undergraduate basis, so anything above that is considered to be postgraduate.

The nuclear medicine field does not dictate what degree level that a professional holds; however, you can be positive that the higher you go with your education in this field, the more recognized, knowledgeable, and higher paid you will be. In this case, your postgraduate degree would be a master’s in science degree.

This type of nuclear medicine degree will take you even further into the study of science as it relates to the field of medicine and would put you at the scientist level of nuclear medicine. If you were considering working behind-the-scenes on developing new ways to use science as a foundation for medicine, then this would be the degree of choice for you.


Bureau of Labor and Statistics,
www.bls.gov Joint Review

Committee on Educational Programs in Nuclear Medicine Technology,

Nuclear Medicine Schools