How Long Does it Take to Become an Ultrasound Technician?
There are several educational options to becoming an Ultrasound Technician. You may earn an associate’s degree or a bachelor’s degree in diagnostic medical sonography, which takes about two or four years, respectively. There is also an option to get a one-year certificate, available to those already working in a health care profession. Programs are available at medical colleges, universities, junior colleges and career institutes.
What is the classwork like?
Coursework is comprised of the study of anatomy, physiology, medical terminology, physics, ultrasound principles, equipment use and maintenance, patient care, and medical law and ethics.
Ultrasound Technicians are usually trained in one or more specialties. These specialties are usually focused around a part of the body, such as abdomen, pelvis (especially pregnancies), the brain and the nervous system, and vascular systems.
Any internship/externships required?
After the student has completed their coursework, they will be required to perform an (unpaid) externship. This externship consists of performing usual Ultrasound Technician tasks, learning under the guidance of an experienced sonographer or doctor. This externship can take place at a hospital, doctor’s office or a diagnostic imaging center. The externship usually lasts about 960 hours, or 24 weeks at 40 hours a week. After the successful completion of this externship, the student will take the required exams.