Medical Photography Education and Training / Industry / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

Medical photographers take medical photos of patients, organs and procedures for research and medical books. If you want to enter this ...

Medical photographers take medical photos of patients, organs and procedures for research and medical books. If you want to enter this field, you will need to pursue medical photography education and training that encompasses both medical knowledge and a knowledge of photographic techniques. You will also want to pursue certification from a biocommunications association.

When pursuing medical photography education and training, it is important to keep in mind that there are very few medical photography schools or even specific programs in the country. Most professionals seek out medical photography jobs by pursuing a science degree and training in photography. When seeking your own training, consider the following:

  1. Earn a biology degree or a specialized medical photo degree.
  2. Seek certification to learn more about medical photography supplies and techniques. 
  3. Pursue coursework in the specialized field of dental photography.

Attend a medical photography school or seek a biology degree

One of the main requirements in becoming a medical photographer is to understand anatomy, biology and physiology enough to take accurate pictures. Many professionals achieve this understanding by earning biology or science degrees and pursuing photography classes as additional coursework.
Rochester Institute of Technology is the only school in the country that offers a bachelor's degree in biomedical photographic communications, which prepares you for a career in photos for medicine by teaching both science and photography. Georgetown College offers a biology undergraduate degree that can help lay the groundwork for a career in medical pictures.

Get a certification and join professional organizations to learn more about medical photography

Certification or membership in a professional organization shows that you are serious about continuing education in your career. Staying current with professional organizations for medical and science photographers gives you access to conferences and other learning opportunities that help you stay abreast of the latest medical photography info.
The BioCommunications Association offers Body Mapping Certification for professionals who will be performing photographic documentation on patients. The Health and Science Communications Association offers photography for medicine resources and educational opportunities.

Attend dental photography schools or classes to get trained in this emerging field

The field of dental photography is growing in popularity as digital cameras enable more sophisticated dental imagery solutions. Most dental photography classes teach students to take dental photographs, edit images and utilize digital photography to improve patient care.
Continuum for Complete Care offers digital dental photography courses designed for hands-on learning in a small group environment. The Pankey Institute provides classes in digital dental photography for dentists, assistants and lab technicians.
  • When seeking medical photography jobs, it will be useful to have a portfolio of medical or science photos to share with potential employers. As you pursue degrees, keep taking pictures and preserve your best medical or science photos in a format that can easily be shared with potential employers.

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