Diagnostic Medical Sonography

  • Program Cost I
  • Program Costs II
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  • Mission Statement:

    In keeping with the mission of Collins Career Center and the Lawrence County Board of Education policy, the Sonography Program is committed to providing its students with a wellrounded education in the General, Vascular, or Cardiac Learning Concentrations of Diagnostic Medical sonography principles. Included as well are the opportunities for the student to develop advanced medical imaging skills to prepare the graduate for employment in the field of Medical Sonography. The faculty members of the Sonography Program are committed to assisting the student toward the greatest academic, personal, and professional potential through quality courses and instruction.

    T he Collins Career Center Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Educational Programs (CAAHEP) upon the recommendation of the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS).

    2yrs. (excluding July) 4 days/week Chesapeake Campus

    Information | Admission Requirements | Pre-Requisite Coursework Requirements| Student Selection Process | Background Checks | Advanced Placement Guidelines | Program Costs | Health Standards | Technical / Clinical Standards | FAQs


    The Diagnostic Medical Sonography program will provide education to students desiring a position as a medical sonographer in a hospital, clinic or physician's office. The program is designed to provide training in abdominal, ob/gyn, as well as vascular sonography. The curriculum includes a combination of classroom, laboratory instruction, as well as clinical practice in area hospitals, doctors' offices, and clinics.

    Program Goals: To prepare competent entry-level general sonographers in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains. To prepare competent entry-level vascular technologists in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains.

    The Diagnostic Medical Sonography program is Six (6) semesters or twenty- two (22) months in length, as students are exempt from class the month of July. A certificate of completion is awarded to students upon completion of the required curriculum. With the completion of the program, students will be eligible for the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers, in the areas of physics, abdomen, ob/gyn, and vascular imaging.

    Admission Requirements

    The Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program at Collins Career Center offers a certificate plan of study for those individuals who are interested in the field of Sonagraphy. Approximately ten students will be accepted per program/per year. The program is a two (2) year program. The following admission procedure will be followed:

    The Work Keys Exam is required for the program-see Work Keys link for more info. The only exception to the pre-entrance exam is an ACT score of 21 or above received within the past 3 years.

    Accepted test scores include:

    If you are concerned about being able to make required scores and you would like to "brush up" on some of your skills prior to the pre-entrance exam, the Collins Career Center's ABLE program is available for tutoring services Monday-Thursday, 2:30pm-7:30pm. For more information, please contact the Adult Education office at 740-867-6641 Ext. 400.

    Individuals with a passing score on all parts of the pre-entrance examination will be mailed an application packet for admission into the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. The application must be completed (in full) before the admission date (the last Friday of May) of each calendar year. There is a $10.00 application fee to be paid when the application is returned to Collins Career Center.

    Pre-Requisite Coursework Requirements

    The following are considered prerequisites for the DMS Program in compliance with ARDMS guidelines (passed with a C or better):

    Student Selection Process

    The selection process for the DMS Program consists of a point system, selecting the highest scores first and proceeding until all slots are filled. The following is the point system utilized in the selection process:

    ** Job Shadowing requirements include 4 hours in The laboratory and/or classroom at Collins Career Center. Appropriate forms must be completed with the application to receive full credit. Forms will be given upon completion. Call 740-867-6641 ext 400 for appointments.

    **In the event of a tie for the final opening for the program, the selection will be determined by college GPA or high school GPA, if neither prospective student has had a post secondary education.

    **Students are notified by mail when they are accepted into the program. In the event we are not successful in contacting a candidate by mail or telephone, they will be eliminated and the next available candidate will be considered.

    Background Checks

    **An electronic FBI Criminal Record Check is required for all health students prior to the beginning of the program.

    Program Costs

    **If the pre-requisites are taken at Collins Career Center, the tuition cost is $150.00 per class.

    **Tuition for the program is $8,700 per year. Fees are approximately $1,810. Books are approximately $1,200 (both years). The total cost for the two (2) years is approximately $20,410.

    **If more detailed information is required regarding tuition, please contact 740-867-6641 ext. 410.

    Advanced Placement Guidelines

    An applicant may be considered for admission with advanced standing if:

    The applicant withdrew at the end of the term in a previous class with a passing grade in all courses. (Must have been within the previous year. If over 1 year, the applicant must start at the beginning of the program.)

    The applicant is a direct transfer from another school.

    To apply for advanced standing, the applicant must:

    *Applicants shall be admitted with advanced standing only if there is an opening in the program and a plan can be worked out for assuring that all the program objectives can be met.

    **Students may request transfer of college credits for Anatomy & Physiology, Medical Terminology, Basic Physics, Biology, and College Algebra. In order to accept credit for these courses, the following guidelines must be met:

    Health Standards

    All students are required to complete an individual student health questionnaire. For the DMS Program, students are required to secure a physical examination prior to program acceptance. Students should be in a sufficient state of health to successfully pursue the diagnostic medical sonography program.

    Technical / Clinical Standards

    Diagnostic Medical Sonographers function in a broad spectrum of clinical situations. In order to ensure patient safety and provide accurate diagnostic information, sonographers must be able to adapt and perform in a variety of settings. Certain skills and abilities are needed to function as a professional sonographer. The following are non-academic criteria, which all students in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program are expected to meet in order to participate in the clinical courses and professional practice.

    Physical Activity:
    Intellectual and Quantitative Abilities:


    Can I work while I am in the program?

    A general College guideline indicates that students taking 12 or more hours (full-time) may find it difficult to work while going to school. The curriculum of this program is considered a high degree of difficulty and it is suggested a student not be employed while taking this program. However, the student will have weekends free and it is not the practice of the school to deny a student seeking employment as long as the student is able to complete the course requirements successfully as stated in the Program Requirements for Graduation. During the final semester of the program , if a clinical site wishes to hire a student and the work schedule does not interfere with the student's ability to successfully complete their class work to obtain graduation, it will be permitted.

    **Students may not take either the responsibility or the place of qualified staff. It is not permissible for a student to work as entry-level sonographers without having received adequate training and met satisfactory competency.

    What happens if I become pregnant during the DMS Program?

    The Pregnancy Policy states any restriction indicated by the student's physician must be provided in writing to the Program Director. After delivery, a release note must be provided from the physician, identifying any activity restriction or stating when the student is permitted to resume normal activity. The student must make up all clinical time missed, complete all course requirements and clinical competencies not completed as a consequence of the pregnancy to complete the requirements for the DMS course.

    How long will it take before I can start the clinical portion of my program?

    The length of course time prior to clinical rotation is 8 weeks.

    Can I re-enter the program if I withdraw?

    Yes. Students need to refer to the re-entrance policy stated in the Allied Health Handbook.

    What facilities are used for the DMS clinical experience?

    The sonography program at CCC has 10-15 clinical sites to employ all aspects of the program. These departments are located in hospitals, medical imaging clinics, mobile ultrasound, as well as doctor's offices.

    Will I do all my training at one hospital?

    No. Students will receive adequate training in general and vascular clinical settings, changing every 8 weeks, taking into consideration the need of the student.

    How far do students have to travel for their clinical rotations?

    Clinical rotations will be divided equally among all students based on the type of rotation needed, and the experience available in different departments. It is the responsibility of the the Program Director and/or the Clinical Coordinator to assign clinical rotations for all students. Students must expect to have a few rotations that require some distance to travel (approximately 3-4 hours one-way).

    Is transportation provided to the clinical site?

    No. Students must provide their own transportation.

    How does CCC's sonography program differ form other sonography programs?

    CCC's DMS Program offers study areas of general sonography as well as vascular sonography, without the students needing to make a choice, providing a well rounded education. Students will gain both classroom and clinical experience in three areas and be eligible for the national ultrasound board exams in all areas. This will make the student more marketable to area medical facilities.

    How long does it take to complete the medical sonography program?

    It takes approximately 2-3 years to complete CCC's sonography program, considering pre-requisites that are required prior to acceptance into the program. These courses include Anatomy and Physiology, Algebra, Physics, English, Sectional Anatomy, Computer Technology, Introduction to Sonography, and English Once the pre-requisites are accomplished, the DMS program takes two (2) years to complete.

    Is there a laboratory on campus?

    The medical sonography scan lab at CCC is state-of-the-art. Students have the unique opportunity to practice their skills on up-to-date ultrasound equipment as well as visualize many different types of pathology by utilizing one of the newest tools in ultrasound education: the ultrasound simulator. This cutting edge technology allows the student to perform simulated ultrasound procedures on a mannequin with the aid of computer software that replicates ultrasound images. Actual hands-on scanning begins the very first day of the sonography program. Under close supervision by faculty, students are instructed on how to begin the sonographic examination, proper imaging technique, and the ergonomics of scanning.

    Can I attend the program part-time?

    No. Unfortunately, the program requires the combination of classroom instruction and clinical instruction in each of the sonography specialties to occur at the same time. You will likely be in class two days a week and in clinical the other two days of the week.

    How many students are accepted into the program each year?

    Approximately 10. The number of students depends largely upon the number of clinical rotations available.

    Will I be able to find a job when I graduate?

    The U.S. Bureau of Labor has stated that imaging professionals are in great demand and the need is increasing as medical imaging has seen a large increase of examination volume, due to an aging population and preventative care. Employment of diagnostic medical sonographers is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2018 as the population grows and ages, increasing the demand for diagnostic imaging and therapeutic technology. Collins Career Center's job placement program will assist the student in any way they can. The student will also receive assistance in writing a resume.

    What is the expected rate of salary?

    Starting salaries usually range from $36,000-$55,000. Graduates find work with: colleges and universities, equipment manufacturers, hospitals, mobile companies, outpatient centers, physician offices, private imaging centers, and research centers.