What if you could turn your EEG credentials and work experience into a college degree? It turns out there are several colleges and universities that will allow you to do just that.
One of the schools profiled in a recent newsletter from ASET: the Neurodiagnostic Society is Siena Heights University in Adrian, Michigan, which offers a bachelor’s of applied science in neurodiagnostic technology. As ASET notes, schools participating in this kind of program give neurodiagnostic techs a “wonderful opportunity” to earn a college degree and elevate the profession.
We reached out to Logan Campbell, the enrollment advisor in the Office for Graduate and Professional Enrollment at Siena Heights to take a deeper dive into what it takes to convert tech credentials into a bachelor’s degree.
The following Q&A includes excerpts from our interview. They have been modified lightly for clarity.
NI: What benefit does a bachelor’s degree offer a neurodiagnostic technician?
Campbell: It depends from student to student. I’ll have some students that come in who have been in the field for 30 years who just want a bachelor’s degree to say they did it. I’ll have some people who know somebody is retiring in their office and they want to have the education present for when that job opens up. And then I’ll also have some people who might be interested in going into teaching. The rule of thumb is that you need a degree higher than what you’re teaching. So, if you teach at the associate level, you need at least a bachelor’s.
NI: What does it take to qualify for the neurodiagnostics bachelor’s degree program at Siena Heights?
Campbell: There are actually a few ways that a student can qualify. The easiest is to have an associate’s degree in neurodiagnostics or something similar. If they don’t have an associate’s degree, they have to have a certification or have completed a hospital-based training program and have at least two years of work experience.
NI: Is the program offered online? Can students take in-person classes if they want to?
Campbell: There are a variety of ways that students can complete them, and yes, one of the options is entirely online. If they are in the state of Michigan and would like to attend college classes [pre-COVID] we do have classes offered at different distance locations.
NI: What types of certifications or credentials does the program accept for credit?
Campbell: Credentials that we give credit for include R. EEG T., R. E.P. T., CNIM, CLTM, RPSGT, and R. NCS. T. Any additional ones that they might have, we can look into. One of the good things — students can start with us right now, so long as they can complete their certification before they graduate.
NI: How many credits do students have to take? How long does it take to get the degree?
Campbell: We have something called the three-plus-one program. That means we can transfer up to 90 credits towards a student’s degree, with a bachelor’s degree being 120 credits. We can transfer credits, whether it’s through work experience, registries, college, or military training, towards a degree.
If they have that 90, and if they’ve completed the correct courses, they would only have 30 credits to complete with Siena, which is 10 classes. This means if a bachelor’s degree takes a student four years to complete, their first three years can be done elsewhere, then they transfer to Siena for the fourth and final year.
NI: Does the program offer flexibility for students who work full-time?
Campbell: One of the things that sets our program apart is that we only have 7-week long courses. Most institutions, most colleges, most universities operate on a 16-week schedule. That absolutely helps students work around their schedules.
Also, it’s not one of those online programs where students have to punch in at a select time. It’s more of, they have an assignment due Wednesday at 11: 59 EST, and they can get on and do their assignments on their own time. It’s flexible enough for students who are working, have families, and have other obligations.
NI: What kinds of classes do students take as part of the bachelor’s program?
Campbell: When they come into Siena, we sort of round out their education at that liberal arts bachelor’s level. I tell students, you’re actually not doing anything technically EEG related, because in order to qualify for the program, you have to have that education. We assume that you already know what you’re doing in your field.
If a student pursues a minor, seven of their elective courses need to be in the discipline of the minor. Out of all my neuro students, 96 percent of them are doing a healthcare management minor with us. Then when they graduate, it adds an additional credential to their resume. It’s more attractive to have a bachelor’s of applied science with a healthcare management minor when the supervisory or management positions open up.
Special thanks to Logan Campbell, Enrollment Advisor in the Office for Graduate and Professional Enrollment at Siena Heights University in Michigan, for his detailed explanation of their NDT program.
If you are interested in learning more about Siena’s bachelor’s of applied science in neurodiagnostic technology visit their program page or contact Logan Campbell at 517.483.9726 or firstname.lastname@example.org.