The health-care industry continues to enjoy excellent job growth, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics. This means increased demand for skilled professionals such as electroencephalographic technicians, who can choose jobs in hospitals, clinics or labs.
Neurologists use EEG scans to trace electrical activity in the brain. Abnormal patterns may indicate seizure activity, brain trauma from stroke or causes for sleep disorders.
Responsible for administering the EEG and reporting findings, the tech attaches electrodes to different positions on a patient's head (a painless procedure), records brain wave activity on a computer and passes on results to the doctor. Depending on the issue under investigation, the patient may be asleep for the test, awake and lying still or exposed to stimuli such as flashing lights.
EEG technicians work alongside physicians, nurses and administrative staff. The patients they test are sometimes quite ill.
An EEG test does not use radiation, decreasing concerns about potential exposure that might be the case for technicians doing X-rays. Close patient contact does require precautions regarding potential exposure to communicable diseases.
EEG technicians generally attend a training program and earn the equivalent of an associate degree. Information regarding accredited programs is available through the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (see Resource below).
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Healthcare
Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs: Accredited Program Search