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Become An Oncologist

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Working As An Oncologist

  • $330,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Oncologist Do At George Washington University

* The Gynecologic Oncologist will work 4
* half-day sessions in the clinical area.
* The AM sessions run from 8am
* pm and PM sessions are from 1pm
* pm with an average of 16
* patients each session.
* The FT Gynecologic Oncologist will have 3 half-days to perform surgery and pursue administrative and scholarly projects

How To Become An Oncologist

Physicians and surgeons have demanding education and training requirements. Almost all physicians complete at least 4 years of undergraduate school, 4 years of medical school, and, depending on their specialty, 3 to 7 years in internship and residency programs.


Most applicants to medical school have at least a bachelor's degree, and many have advanced degrees. Although no specific major is required, all students must complete undergraduate work in biology, chemistry, physics, math, and English. Students also take courses in the humanities and social sciences. In addition, some students volunteer at local hospitals or clinics to gain experience in a healthcare setting.

Medical schools are highly competitive. Most applicants must submit transcripts, scores from the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), and letters of recommendation. Schools also consider an applicant’s personality, leadership qualities, and participation in extracurricular activities. Most schools require applicants to interview with members of the admissions committee.

A few medical schools offer combined undergraduate and medical school programs that last 6 or 7 years.

Students spend most of the first 2 years of medical school in laboratories and classrooms, taking courses such as anatomy, biochemistry, pharmacology, psychology, medical ethics, and the laws governing medicine. They also gain practical skills, learning to take medical histories, examine patients, and diagnose illnesses.

During their last 2 years, medical students work with patients under the supervision of experienced physicians in hospitals and clinics. Through rotations in internal medicine, family practice, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, and surgery, they gain experience in diagnosing and treating illnesses in a variety of areas.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Physicians and surgeons need to be excellent communicators. They must be able to communicate effectively with their patients and other healthcare support staff.

Compassion. Physicians and surgeons deal with patients who are sick or injured and may be in extreme pain or distress. Physicians and surgeons must be able to treat patients and their families with compassion and understanding.

Detail oriented. Physicians and surgeons must ensure that patients are receiving appropriate treatment and medications. They must also monitor and record various pieces of information related to patient care.

Dexterity. Physicians and surgeons must be good at working with their hands. They may work with very precise and sometimes sharp tools, and mistakes can have serious consequences.

Leadership skills. Physicians who work in their own practice need to be effective leaders. They must be able to manage a staff of other professionals to run their practice.

Organizational skills. Some physicians own their own practice. Strong organizational skills, including good recordkeeping, are critical in both medical and business settings.

Patience. Physicians and surgeons may work for long periods with patients who need special attention. Persons who fear medical treatment may require more patience.

Physical stamina. Physicians and surgeons should be comfortable performing physical tasks, such as lifting or turning disabled patients. Surgeons may spend a great deal of time bending over patients during surgery.

Problem-solving skills. Physicians and surgeons need to evaluate patients’ symptoms and administer the appropriate treatments. They need to do this quickly if a patient’s life is threatened.


After medical school, almost all graduates enter a residency program in their specialty of interest. A residency usually takes place in a hospital and varies in duration, generally lasting from 3 to 7 years, depending on the specialty.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

All states require physicians and surgeons to be licensed; requirements vary by state. To qualify for a license, candidates must graduate from an accredited medical school and complete residency training in their specialty.

All physicians and surgeons also must pass a standardized national licensure exam. M.D.s take the U.S. Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE). D.O.s take the Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination (COMLEX-USA). For specific state information about licensing, contact your state’s medical board. 

Certification is not required for physicians and surgeons; however, it may increase their employment opportunities. M.D.s and D.O.s seeking board certification in a specialty may spend up to 7 years in residency training; the length of time varies with the specialty. To become board certified, candidates must complete a residency program and pass a specialty certification exam from the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), or the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS).

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Oncologist jobs

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Oncologist Typical Career Paths

Oncologist Demographics


  • Female

  • Male

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Asian

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • Chinese

  • Japanese

  • French

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Oncologist Education


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Real Oncologist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Gynecologic Oncologist Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center New York, NY Jul 21, 2014 $450,000
Oncologist/Hematologist Physician Marietta Health Care Physicians, Inc. Belpre, OH Dec 09, 2016 $450,000
Oncologist Physician Samaritan Medical Center Watertown, NY May 10, 2016 $450,000
Oncologist Physician Samaritan Medical Center Watertown, NY Jul 13, 2015 $450,000
Oncologist Sanford Bismarck Bismarck, ND Jul 01, 2014 $435,000
Oncologist Medcenter One, Inc. Bismarck, ND Jul 01, 2011 $435,000
Radiation Oncologist Arizona Radiation Therapy Management Services, Inc. Peoria, AZ Mar 19, 2014 $400,000
Oncologist Physicians Group of New Ulm, Ltd. New Ulm, MN Aug 30, 2016 $400,000 -
Oncologist Appalachian Regional Healthcare, Inc. Hazard, KY Jan 09, 2016 $400,000 -
Oncologist Physicians Group of New Ulm, Ltd. New Ulm, MN Jan 07, 2016 $400,000 -
Radiation Oncologist Arizona Radiation Therapy Management Services, Inc. Peoria, AZ Aug 04, 2014 $400,000
Radiation Oncologist Arizona Radiation Therapy Management Services, Inc. Scottsdale, AZ Aug 04, 2014 $400,000
Oncologist Mayo Clinic Waycross, GA Jul 01, 2014 $348,157
Oncologist Lake Region Medical Group, P.A. Fergus Falls, MN Jul 01, 2015 $345,000
Oncologist Lake Region Medical Group, P.A. Fergus Falls, MN Jul 01, 2014 $345,000
Oncologist Marshfield Clinic Chippewa Falls, WI Jul 01, 2012 $342,000
Oncologist Marshfield Clinic Rice Lake, WI Jul 01, 2012 $342,000
Oncologist Marshfield Clinic Eau Claire, WI Jul 01, 2012 $342,000
Radiation Oncologist South Florida Radiation Oncology, LLC Palm Beach Gardens, FL Mar 02, 2011 $315,000
Oncologist Physician Presbyterian Healthcare Services Rio Rancho, NM Dec 10, 2014 $315,000
Oncologist Mayo Clinic Rochester, MN Jun 27, 2015 $311,750
Oncologist University Health Services Inc. Augusta, GA Aug 25, 2014 $300,000
Oncologist University Health Services Inc. Augusta, GA Jul 01, 2014 $300,000
Radiation Oncologist Integrated Medical Services Chandler, AZ Oct 01, 2011 $300,000
Oncologist/Hematologist Oncology/Hematology Associates of Saginaw Valley West Branch, MI Jul 01, 2012 $300,000

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Top Skills for An Oncologist


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Top Oncologist Skills

  1. Oncology
  2. Body Radiation Therapy
  3. Cancer Patients
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Consulted with outside primary care veterinarians for possible patients to be referred for radiation oncology treatment.
  • Treated cancer patients with Chinese and western medicine.Examined patients with ultrasound, perform heart, vascular, and abdomen exams.
  • Adapted quickly to new locations as a travel technician accepting positions in hospitals and treatment centers nationwide.
  • Process requests privileges ensuring compliance with criteria outlined in clinical privilege descriptions.
  • Handled inbound faxes from pharmacies, insurance companies and test results.

Top Oncologist Employers