Is it a boy or a girl? As a diagnostic medical sonographer, you could be the one looking for that answer to this or many other life-impacting health questions with the use of ultrasound technology.
Diagnostic Medical Sonography is one of the most dynamic and fascinating careers available in medical imaging. The sonographer enjoys working with highly technical equipment using high frequency sound waves to view the human body. This provides a real-life internal snapshot that can assist the physician in making a diagnosis.
Beyond babies, sonograms are used today in a wide range of procedures with specialties including abdominal, breast, vascular, cardiac, and neurosonography. Besides being part of a rapidly expanding health care industry, sonography is gaining popularity as a safer alternative to radiologic procedures, creating excellent job opportunities. The field is expected to grow by 24% between 2014 and 2024.*
This is a career that challenges your expertise on a daily basis. The registry is national meaning you can find employment in any location. It also affords you the opportunity to grow within the field by acquiring certification in multiple specialties, thus allowing you to broaden your areas of expertise. Sonographers with multiple areas of specialties are highly sought after.
Ultrasound is a rewarding career choice. It requires a great deal of commitment as your abilities directly impact patient care. It's a job with both personal and technical elements, including getting a patient positioned just right so that a properly calibrated machine can produce the best possible image. This career also requires excellent interpersonal skills since you'll be the first person nervous patients turn to for information about their condition.
A successful sonographer is someone who can function independently, is eager to learn and has a strong ethical background. Sonographers can choose to work in clinics, hospitals, private practice physician offices, public health facilities, laboratories, and other medical settings interacting with healthy and critically ill patients.ADA Technical Standards for the Profession
Disclosure of the Physical Demand Requirements for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers can be found here.
* US Dept. of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition
- Program Description
The Diagnostic Medical Sonography degree program begins with strong classroom curriculum which is supported by a hands-on, interactive learning environment. Combined with clinical your clinical externship, you can learn about:
- Ultrasound principles, operation of equipment and quality control
- Sonographic principles of the abdomen, obstetrics and gynecology, breast and other superficial structures, invasive sonographic procedures, neonatal, trauma, and an introduction to vascular sonography
- Cross-sectional anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology
- Production of diagnostic images and appropriate examination adjustment according to patient condition and findings
- Recording, analyzing and processing diagnostic data and other pertinent observations made during the procedure for presentation to the interpreting physician
- Patient care and education, including ethical and legal aspects, interpersonal communication, infection control, physical assistance and transfer, and medical emergencies
Examinations are available through the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS). Examinations include: registry examination in Ultrasound Physics and Instrumentation (SPI), and the Abdomen (AB) and Obstetrics/Gynecology (OB/GYN). The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) Certification test in Sonography is another certification available. Certification by either ARDMS or the ARRT is required for employment.
This is a career that challenges your expertise on a daily basis. The registry is national meaning you can find employment in any location. It also affords you the opportunity to grow within the field by acquiring certification in multiple specialties, thus allowing you to broaden your areas of expertise. Sonographers with multiple areas of specialties are highly sought after
- Possible Career Track
A Diagnostic Medical Sonographer is also known as Sonographer, Ultrasonographer or Ultrasound Technologist. Ultrasound is a rewarding career choice. It requires a great deal of commitment as your abilities directly impact patient care. It's a job with both personal and technical elements, including getting a patient positioned just right so that a properly calibrated machine can produce the best possible image.
This career also requires excellent interpersonal skills since you'll be the first person nervous patients turn to for information about their condition. A successful sonographer is someone who can function independently, is eager to learn and has a strong ethical background
Graduates with a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer Degree could possibly work in a variety of healthcare settings including:
- Medical Imaging Centers
- Outpatient Care Centers and Mobile Imaging
- Primary Care Clinics
- Private Practice Physician offices
- Interact with both healthy and critically ill patients
Career advancement opportunities exist in education, research, administration, and in commercial companies as education/application specialists, sales representatives, and technical advisors.**
**Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography, 2745 Dallas Pkwy., Suite 350, Plano, TX 75093-8730. Internet: www.sdms.org
55 semester credit hours
Course ID Course Name Credits DMS100 Essentials of Sonography & Ethics 3 DMS107 Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation 2 DMS107L Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation LAB 1 DMS108 Ultrasound Physics and Instrumentation II 2 DMS108L Ultrasound Instrumentation LAB II 1 DMS109 Sectional Anatomy 3 DMS200 Abdominal Sonography 3 DMS201 Advanced Abdominal Sonography 3 DMS202 Obstetrics & Gynecologic Sonography 3 DMS203 Advanced Obstetric & Gynecologic Sonography 3 DMS204 Vascular I 3 DMS205 Vascular II 3 DMS206 Introduction to Clinical Education 1 DMS207 Clinical Education I 4 DMS208 Clinical Education II 4 DMS209 Clinical Education III 4 DMS210 Clinical Education IV 4 DMS211 Clinical Education V 4 DMS213 Clinical Education VI 2 DMS241 General/SPI Registry Review 2
Arts and Sciences
21 semester credit hours
Course ID Course Name Credits BIO111 Anatomy & Physiology I w/Terminology 3 BIO111L Anatomy & Physiology I w/Terminology LAB 1 BIO116 Anatomy & Physiology II with Terminology 3 BIO116L Anatomy & Physiology II with Terminology LAB 1 ENG110 College Composition 3 HUM205 Culture and Diversity 3 PHY120 Physics 3 PHY120L Physics LAB 1 PSY105 Introduction to Psychology 3
4 semester credit hours
Course ID Course Name Credits COR191 Career Orientation 1 FOR110 Essentials for Success 3
1,920 total contact hours
- Prepare students for the challenging responsibilities of the profession and provide opportunity to acquire a working knowledge of the field.
- Provide a clinical educational experience that enables students to be capable of performing routine sonographic procedures and related functions specific to general Diagnostic Medical Sonography.
- Provide an education experience that promotes effective communication skills, critical thinking abilities and professionalism.
- Promote the development of core values and ethical standards necessary for the delivery of quality, patient-centered care.
- Program Guide
- Download Program Guide (386.85 KB)