North Central College - Naperville, IL

Radiation Therapy Courses

NOTE: This page contains all of the regular course descriptions for this discipline or program. Academic credit for each course is noted in parenthesis after the course title. Prerequisites (if any) and the general education requirements, both Core and All-College Requirements (ACRs), which each course fulfills (if any) are noted following each course description. Not all courses are offered every year. Check Merlin, our searchable course schedule, to see which courses are being offered in upcoming terms.

RDT 410 Management and Methods of Patient Care I (2.00)
An overview of the foundations, concepts, and theories in radiation therapy and the practitioner's role in the health care delivery system. The interrelation of standards of care, law, ethical standards, and competence is examined, along with medical terminology (the standardized language of medical practice, including abbreviations and symbols). Concepts and competencies in assessment and evaluation of the patient for service delivery. Psychological and physical needs and factors affecting treatment outcome are examined. Routine and emergency care procedures are presented. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 412 Radiation Safety and Protection (2.00)
Presents basic principles of radiation protection and safety for the radiation therapist. Radiation health and safety requirements of federal and state regulatory agencies, accreditation agencies, and health care organizations are incorporated. Specific responsibilities of the radiation therapist are discussed, examined, performed, and evaluated. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 413 Medical Imaging (2.00)
Procedure for imaging human structures and their relevance to radiation therapy; topographical anatomy, radiographic and cross-sectional anatomy. Identification of anatomic structures as demonstrated through various imaging modalities. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 414 Pathology (2.00)
The course content is presented in two parts: general pathology and neoplasia. General pathology introduces basic disease concepts, theories of disease causation, and system-by-system pathophysiologic disorders most frequently encountered in clinical practice. Neoplasia provides an in-depth study of new and abnormal development of cells. It presents the processes involved in the development and classification of both benign and malignant tumors. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 416 Radiation Physics (2.00)
Establishes a basic knowledge of physics pertinent to developing an understanding of radiations used in the clinical setting. Covers fundamental physical units, measurements, principles, atomic structure, and types of radiation. Also presents fundamentals of x-ray generating equipment, x-ray production, and its interaction with matter. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 418 Radiation Therapy Physics (2.00)
Reviews and expands concepts and theories in the radiation physics course. Presents detailed analysis of the structure of matter, properties of radiation, nuclear transformations, x-ray production, and interactions of ionizing radiation. Also covered are treatment units used in external radiation therapy, measurement and quality of ionizing radiation produced, absorbed dose measurement, dose distribution, and scatter analysis. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 420 Radiation Biology (2.00)
Presents basic concepts and principles of radiation biology. Covers the interactions of radiation with cells, tissues, and the body as a whole, and resultant biophysical events. The theories and principles of tolerance dose, time-dose relationships, and fractionation schemes as related to the clinical practice of radiation therapy are discussed, examined, and evaluated. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 422 Introduction to Technical Radiation Therapy (2.00)
Covers the factors that govern and influence the production and recording of radiographic images for patient simulation, treatment planning, and treatment verification in radiation oncology. Radiation oncology imaging equipment and related devices are presented. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 430 Principles and Practice of Radiation Therapy I (3.00)
An overview of cancer and the specialty of radiation therapy. The medical, biological, and pathological aspects, as well as the physical and technical aspects, are discussed. The roles and responsibilities of the radiation therapist, the treatment prescription, and the documentation of treatment parameters and delivery are presented. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 431 Principles and Practices of Radiation Therapy II (3.00)
Examines and evaluates the management of neoplastic disease using knowledge in arts and sciences, while promoting critical thinking and the basics of ethical clinical decision making. The epidemiology, etiology, detection, diagnosis, patient condition, treatment, and prognosis of neoplastic disease are discussed and evaluated as they relate to histology, anatomical site, and patterns of spread. The radiation therapist's responsibility in the management of neoplastic disease is examined and linked to the skills required to analyze complex issues and make informed decisions. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 434 Quality Management (2.00)
Presentation of the evolution of quality management (QM) programs and continuing quality improvement in radiation oncology. Topics include the need for quality assurance (QA) checks; QA of the clinical aspects and chart checks; film checks; evaluations and tests performed on simulators, megavoltage therapy equipment, and therapy planning units; the role of radiation therapists in QM programs; legal and regulatory implications for maintaining appropriate guidelines; and the role computers and information systems serve within the radiation oncology department. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 435 Technical Radiation Therapy I (2.00)
Provides the student therapist with the technical aspects of radiation therapy. Discussion includes orientation to the function and operation of radiation therapy equipment. The clinical lab component provides a hands-on, sequential application, and clinical interpretation of concepts and theories in the radiation therapy clinic and the didactic portion discusses concepts of team practice and patient-centered and clinical practice. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 436 Technical Radiation Therapy II (2.00)
An overview of factors that influence and govern clinical planning of patient treatment. Included are isodose descriptions, patient contouring, radiobiologic considerations, dosimetric calculations, compensation, and clinical application of treatment beams. Optimal treatment planning is emphasized. Particle beams, stereotactic, and emerging technologies are presented. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 440 Operational Issues in Radiation Therapy (2.00)
Focuses on various radiation therapy operational issues. Continuing Quality Improvement project development and evaluation and assessment techniques are emphasized. Human resource issues and regulations impacting radiation therapists are examined. Covers accreditation agencies and the radiation therapist's role in the accreditation process. Presents billing and reimbursement issues pertinent to the radiation therapy department. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 442 Clinical Practicum I (3.00)
Sequential development, application, analysis, integration, synthesis, and evaluation of concepts and theories in radiation therapy. Through structured sequential assignments in clinical facilities, concepts of team practice, patient-centered clinical practice, and professional development are discussed, examined, and evaluated. Includes supervised clinical education, which offers exposure to a sufficient and well-balanced variety of radiation treatments, examinations, and equipment. Rotations include: three general radiation therapy treatment rooms, Simulator/CT simulator, Nursing Department, and Physics/Dosimetry Department. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.

RDT 443 Clinical Practicum II (2.00)
Continuation of RDT 442, Clinical Practicum I. Prerequisite: Admission to RDT program. Instructor consent required.