Ultrasound Technician Certification Programs

Ultrasound Technician Certification Programs

After graduation, ultrasound technicians may choose to enhance their employability by becoming nationally registered by an organization such as the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS). Students are usually prepared to take the necessary certification exam upon graduating, though continuing education is a requirement to maintain certification. Organizations such as the ARDMS and the Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (SDMS) can provide students and professionals with a wealth of useful information regarding training, registration and new developments in the field.

How to become a registered or certified ultrasound tech or sonographer?

If you want to become a registered or certified ultrasound tech or sonographer you must graduate from one of the accredited ultrasound technician programs. According to Stanford University’s School of Medicine most employers require the ultrasound techs or sonographers they hire to become certified in addition to completing an accredited ultrasound tech school program. Many employers will only hire those who have already completed their training and passed the ultrasound technician certification exam.

You will be able to apply to take an ultrasound certification exam if you graduate from an ultrasound tech school accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

Typically coursework at accredited ultrasound technician programs includes classes in anatomy, physiology, physics, medical ethics and medical terminology, and patient care. It is very important you check the ultrasound technician programs in which you are considering enrolling to be sure the program you choose is accredited by CAAHEP’s Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography.

You will also want to make sure the program in which you enroll offers sufficient clinical experience working with ultrasound equipment in a hospital setting to ensure you qualify to take the certification exam when you complete your ultrasound technician training program.

You will be able to find two-year accredited ultrasound training programs at many vocational, technical and community colleges as well as through the armed forces and some hospitals. Eligibility for admission to these programs typically requires a high school diploma or GED. There are also four year bachelors degree accredited programs at some colleges and universities. Admission to the four year programs is generally more competitive and is based on your prior educational performance, references and test scores.

There are also accredited online ultrasound schools if you are looking for a more flexible ultrasound tech training alternative.

Ultrasound Technician Certification Exams

The ultrasound technician certification exams are offered by the American Radiological and Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) Association. ARDMS offers accreditation as a diagnostic medical sonographer and several specialty certifications including diagnostic cardiac sonography, vascular technology, and ophthalmic biometry.

You can also be certified in breast and vascular sonography by The American Registry of Radiologic Technologist and The Cardiovascular Credentialing International provides a certification for cardiac sonographers. Depending on the type of ultrasound technician certification you wish to obtain there are different classes you need to take. ARMDS’ website, www.ardms.org, has more information on the continuing-education requirements. The ultrasound tech certificate exam typically includes a test in physics and an instrumentation exam. To keep your ultrasound technician certification current you must complete a required number of continuing-education hours.