Online Ultrasound Technician Schools 2021
An ultrasound technician degree can lead to new and exciting career opportunities. Here, we list the top online schools.
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Ultrasound technicians, sometimes called medical sonographers, often qualify for high-paying entry-level jobs even with just a two-year associate degree. These professionals earn a median annual salary of $70,380, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
This figure exceeds the median annual salary of $41,950 for workers in other occupations. The BLS projects jobs for ultrasound technicians to grow 12% between 2019 and 2029.
Associate-trained practitioners who earn a certification in a specialized sonography field, or those who pursue a bachelor's degree at an ultrasound technician school can often expand their career options and salary potential.
Why Get an Ultrasound Technician Degree?
In addition to above-average median salaries and reliable employment, ultrasound technicians typically work in a climate-controlled indoor environment during regular working hours. However, practitioners in large facilities such as major hospitals sometimes follow a rotation schedule that includes weekend work. In general, ultrasound technicians enjoy a stable career, steady income, and a safe and comfortable working environment.
Students who enroll in an online ultrasound technician school reap the added benefit of paying less for their education. Distance learners do not incur on-campus expenses such as room and board and other fees for onsite enrollees.
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Most ultrasound technicians complete a two-year associate degree in the field, which qualifies them for entry-level positions. Aspiring ultrasound technicians can also enroll in four-year bachelor's programs.
According to the BLS, these professionals earn an annual median salary of $70,380, surpassing the median annual income of $41,950 for all occupations.
An ultrasound refers to the tool that uses sound waves to take pictures inside the body, while the sonogram is the picture that results from using an ultrasound.
Yes. The BLS projects jobs for these professionals to grow 12% between 2019 and 2029.
Courses in an Ultrasound Technician Program
Ultrasound technician programs usually include core science and mathematics classes such as biology, chemistry, physiology, physics, and algebra. A well-crafted curriculum in ultrasound technology also includes communication coursework since practitioners regularly interact with patients and other healthcare professionals.
Ultrasound technician programs include supervised hands-on training in workplaces where students learn how to use sonographic machines and hone their communication skills with patients. Most schools allow online enrollees to complete this requirement locally.
See below for three common courses in ultrasound technician programs.
This course gives enrollees an overview of the different systems in the human body, including the skeletal, muscular, lymphatic, and circulatory systems. By understanding the human body's structure and how it functions, students learn how to apply ultrasound technology properly and efficiently to yield more accurate sonograms. The course prepares enrollees for advanced sonography classes.
Anatomy and Physiology
This course familiarizes enrollees with scanning technology and sonographic techniques. Topics include instrumentation, annotation, and image orientation. Students also explore the field's ethical and legal issues, the development of ultrasound technology, and sonographic terminology. The class includes a review of the different specialization areas to help enrollees decide on a specific subfield.
Introduction to Sonography
Students develop a thorough understanding of sonographic principles and equipment through classroom instruction and hands-on training. Learners study topics such as transducer technology, biologic effects, imaging artifacts issues, and sonographic detection. Enrollees compare different technologies such as color Doppler and 2D imaging.
Career and Salary Outlook for Ultrasound Technicians
Most ultrasound technicians work at medical and surgical hospitals (44,570), according to the BLS. These professionals may also work at physicians' offices (15,110), medical and diagnostic laboratories (8,330), and outpatient care centers (3,200).
Professionals who work at outpatient care centers earn the highest salaries ($102,070). Companies and business enterprises, colleges and universities, and physicians' offices also pay above-average salaries ($87,190, $84,710, and $84,530, respectively).
Aspiring ultrasound technicians should consider where they want to live and practice. These professionals earn the highest salaries in California ($108,400), Hawaii ($101,570), Alaska ($95,990), and Rhode Island ($92,460).
|Bottom 10%||Median Annual Salary||Top 10%|
|Less than $53,790||$75,920||More than $105,340|
Scholarships for Ultrasound Technician Students
Colleges and universities offering ultrasound technician programs often support enrollees through a mix of scholarships, grants, and work-study programs. Students can also explore additional financial aid opportunities from professional organizations and private nonprofits with ties to the field.
|Scholarship||Amount||Who Can Apply|
Diagnostic Medical Sonography Scholarship
|$1,000||Learners who are enrolled in or plan to enroll in a sonography program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs may apply. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or hold a student visa.|
SDMS Sonography Student Scholarships
|$2,500||The Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography offers this scholarship to students enrolled in an accredited program in diagnostic medical sonography or cardiovascular technology. Applicants must submit the FAFSA and essay responses.|
Love Your Career Scholarship
|$1,000||JonesTshirts.com awards this scholarship twice annually to learners studying any subject, including ultrasound sonography, at a U.S. college or university. Applicants must submit proof of enrollment and an essay containing 1,000-3,000 words outlining how they plan to pursue a career they love.|
Online Ultrasound Technician Schools 2021
Washburn University, located in Topeka, was established by members of the Congregational Church in 1865. Today, more than 7,500 students pursue programs at the College of Arts and Sciences and schools of Applied Studies, Business, Law, and Nursing. The university’s Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program offers a two- and four-year degree. Specialties are offered in general, vascular, general/vascular, and cardiac fields. Both programs have offered didactic courses in an online format for more than 11 years, with clinical experiences offered in a range of professional settings. Graduates are qualified to sit for appropriate ARDMS or CCI certification examinations.
In 1924, the Sisters of Mercy founded Misericordia University, making it the first four-year institution of learning in Luzerne County. Since the 1970s, MU has been a co-educational university and today serves more than 3,000 students on its upper and lower campuses near Wilkes-Barre. The full time Bachelor degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography is a hybrid program blending on-campus coursework with online studies. Students can sit for the ARRT Sonography exam. Practicing sonographers can elect to complete an Express Diagnostic Medical Sonography Bachelor Degree on a part-time basis. Sonographers with credentials can apply earned credits toward the 125-credit express degree.
Founded as a Catholic University in Adrian in 1919, Siena Heights University became a coeducational institution in 1969. Today, as one of the nation’s 18 Dominican Catholic colleges and universities, SHU serves 2,700 students. The Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) degree in Radiologic Technology program requires applicants to hold an Associate of Applied Science Radiologic Technology degree or a combination of hospital-based training, two years of related work experience, and ARRT registry. The program includes no additional RT training, focusing instead on a curriculum that satisfies bachelor degree general education requirements. Students can also complete the Associate of Applied Science RT degree at SHU’s Adrian and Southfield campuses.
Fort Hays State University was established on 200 acres in Hays, KS in 1902. FHSU currently enrolls more than 14,210 campus students, with another 6,000 students pursuing degrees online. The 55-credit-hour core making up the Bachelor of Science Degree in Medical Diagnostic Sonography includes 22 credit-hours of practice experience (12 months) with local clinical affiliates. Coursework is completed in five semesters, including one summer of studies. Specialties include abdomen and superficial structures, musculoskeletal, obstetrics/gynecology, pediatric echocardiography, neurosonography, vascular, ophthalmology, breast, and adult echocardiography. The program is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Established in Omaha in 1891, Nebraska Methodist College serves 1,000 students dedicated to the study of art and science of healthcare. The focus is on service-learning experiences and community-based education affiliated with the Methodist Health System. The 21-month sonography program combines didactic instruction with hands-on clinical training. The 76 credit-hour degree includes the Educated Citizen Core Curriculum. Prerequisites include completion of college algebra, physics (including a lab), psychology, anatomy/physiology, and medical terminology. There are electives in clinical experience and clinical externships. Graduates are prepared to take American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) abdomen and obstetrics/gynecology examinations.
Oregon Institute of Technology (Oregon Tech) was founded in 1947. Every degree program is based on theory and practice, blending clinics, lab-based classes, and externships in addition to the general-education core. The Diagnostic Medical Sonography baccalaureate program, located at the Klamath Falls campus, is comprised of 192 credits to be completed in four years. The competitive admission program gives preferences to applicants with previous coursework in biology, chemistry and mathematics. Graduates are prepared for certification exams offered through the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS). More than six scholarship programs are available to DMS applicants.
MCPHS University was founded as the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy in 1823, making it Boston’s oldest institution of higher learning. Today it offers programs through campuses in Boston, Worcester, and Manchester. Baccalaureate degrees in Diagnostic Medical Sonography are offered at the Boston and Worcester campuses. Sonography students complete 1,000 hours of hands-on clinical training across New England. The accelerated bachelor degree DMS program can be completed in three years. The MCPHS fast-track program for applicants with previous college work leads to a degree in 15-24 months. Students can choose from a General Track or Echocardiography Track.
The diagnostic medical sonography program at Adventist University of Health Sciences was launched in 1988. Partnered with the Adventist Health System, the university offers a Christ-centered education with extensive clinical opportunities. The full-time track is built on a two year, six-semester program with tracks in general sonography or cardiovascular sonography. Graduates are prepared to sit for the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) certification examinations.
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, College of Health Professions (CHP) was established in 1971 to offer full degree programs as well as professional continuing education. The Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography has an annual March 1 deadline for applicants to begin courses in a cohort of 12 students the following academic year. The 120-credit degree program includes 48 semester credits of prerequisite studies. ARDMS-certified sonographers can complete the degree without any required clinical rotations. Upon completing the degree, graduates can take American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) certification examinations.
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