Your Guide to Becoming a Radiologist Today by Dr. James Fleckenstein

Dr James Fleckenstein
3 min readJun 24, 2022

Radiology is the science that deals with use of high radiation or X-ray to do both diagnosis and treatment of different ailments the body may suffer from. It can furthermore be broken down into different subsections including abdominal, breast, and pain medicine, cardiothoracic and even musculoskeletal radiology where graduated radiologists can specialize in. Unlike other regular university courses, Dr James Fleckenstein says it takes about a decade before one can become a fully licensed radiologist. The course therefore calls for commitment even as you go through the different stages of education highlighted in the details discussed below.

Enroll for pre-requisite courses advised

Before admission into most medical schools, interested students must enroll for pre-requisite courses advised by the medical school of their choice. Some of these courses include physics with a lab, writing courses, organic chemistry with a lab, biology and even general chemistry with a lab. Remember to focus on the pre-requisite course because your admission is heavily dependent on the grade you get ultimately. Most medical schools selection committee recommends getting B or grades higher for one to gain admission.


The MCAT refers to the Medical College Admissions Test which is a computer based test that takes approximately 8 hours to complete. Strive to score highly in your MCAT for faster admission into the medical school of your choice. The tests generally covers several sections you must excel in including critical analysis and reasoning skills, biological and biochemical foundations for living systems, chemical and physical foundations for biological systems and even psychological tests. You basically have to pass in all these tests before you can win the favor of the selection committee and be admitted into a medical school for further studies.

Admission into allopathic/osteopathic medical school

There are two sections of your time in radiology training with the first part being the theoretic section you learn in classrooms and the rest of it in the hospital where you are given in-field training. In the classroom you will mainly be taught about the foundation of medicine while in the field, you will be rotated through different clerkships like pediatrics, neurology, surgery, family medicine, psychiatry and internal medicine. At the end of your medical course which is during the last year, you should apply for the residency of their choice where you will be matched to the residency to go for using a computer algorithm system which you can only join upon graduation.

Finish your internship and residency

The first year after graduation also called preliminary year is spent on internship program for amplified medical training. You then have to dedicate four years to radiology learning where you not only meet patients needing radiology treatment but also decide for yourself the right treatment routines to use. You also learn how to interpret medical imaging, radiologic tests and ultrasounds from tests. It is after this session that one can get a board certification before receiving a professional license to training although board certification is not compulsory. It is only after that one can be eligible to sit for the core exam before being admitted into 36 months of residency. The second exams come after you pass the first exams and also 12 months after you finish diagnostic radiology residency. After the second board examination which is the certification exams, it is optional to pursue subspecialty of radiology to make you a radiology specialist.



Dr James Fleckenstein

James Fleckenstein M.D. is a Radiologist who practices in several locations including Chicago, Ill. He specializes in Diagnostic Radiology and Neuroradiology