Diagnostic Medical Sonography
The Diagnostic Medical Sonography (Ultrasound) Program at RIT is one of only a few baccalaureate degree programs in the nation and has graduated leaders in the field since its inception. RIT's Program combines a strong science education, practical experience, and liberal arts education to prepare you for a career in ultrasound, a related field, medical, dental, or graduate study. The program emphasizes skills in administration and research in addition to development of scanning and diagnostic abilities, with a focus on relevancy to clinical practice. This high-quality comprehensive background will make you well prepared, well trained, and sought after in the work place.
RIT is one of very few universities that offer a program in ultrasound that can lead to either a Bachelor of Science degree or certificates in Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography (Cardiac Ultrasound).
What is Ultrasound?
Diagnostic Medical Sonography, better known as Ultrasound, has been an important, dynamic, and integral part of diagnostic medical imaging. It has revolutionized the way medical professionals diagnose diseases and detect abnormalities. It provides the medical community with the means to diagnose diseases without injections of radioactive material, making incisions, or introducing radiation to the patient. It is simply seeing through sound.
For centuries bats have used high frequency sound waves to avoid enemies and track food supplies. The SONAR (SOund NAvigation and Ranging) frequently used by the Navy is another means of utilizing high frequency sound waves to detect submarines or other objects in the sea.
In Diagnostic Medical Sonography, high frequency sound waves are transmitted to the patient's body by a device called a transducer and then the transducer listens for the returning signal. Consequently, an exact image of the organ evaluated is displayed on a high-definition screen. The performance of Ultrasound examinations requires structured training in not only understanding normal and abnormal anatomy, physiology, and patient care, but also the instrumentation. Therefore, quality Ultrasound examinations can only be performed by well-trained, well-educated sonographers.
Due to the rapid, widespread acceptance of ultrasound as an imaging modality, a shortage of educated sonographers has been created nationwide. The RIT Ultrasound Program can prepare you to become a leader in this field. The Rochester Institute of Technology is one of only a few universities that offer a Bachelor of Science degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography/Ultrasound as well as Certificates in Diagnostic Medical Sonography/Ultrasound and Echocardiography.
A Career in Ultrasound?
Yes, that’s right, a career in Ultrasound. Sonographers enjoy the best that the medical field has to offer. Using the latest technology, caring for others, and working in a vibrant health care environment makes ultrasound a fun and exciting career. Sonographers are challenged on a daily basis to provide the best possible care and examination. Sonographers are not just found in hospitals. Private offices, clinics, and even mobile ultrasound companies are also employers of sonographers. With the wide range of work-place options also comes the variety of specialties in ultrasound and flexible hours and work schedules. Direct healthcare settings aren’t the only place to work either. Companies that manufacture ultrasound machines often need Ultrasound specialists to help market, sell, and demonstrate their machines.
The Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program combines a strong science education, practical experience, and liberal arts education to prepare individuals for a career in Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Echocardiography, and related fields or graduate study. Curricula provide individuals an opportunity to make significant contributions to the society, in general, and to the profession, in particular.
Cultivated in our program’s curricula are the skills of listening, critical thinking, learning, writing, and speaking. The balanced curricula serve to stimulate the growth and maturation of ideas, values, and ethical awareness among its students.
Ethical values are of special concern to those of us associated with the field of health care and, therefore, we believe our program is enhanced through the student's exposure to individuals who have committed their lives to helping others through competent health care delivery.
We, as a program, therefore, promote self-motivated learning that extends throughout a lifetime and encourage informed alert thinking, articulate use of language, and a sensitive and practical concern for the needs of others.
In summary, we hope to instill in our students the desire to be leaders in the profession, models for human interaction, advocacy of human values, community leaders, and lifelong learners who relish meaningful work and have a commitment to their profession.
Upon completion of the Diagnostic Medical Sonography or Echocardiography programs, it is our vision and goal that the candidate will be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the humanistic and ethical considerations and working knowledge of hospital functions in general, and the ultrasound department in particular, to include: basic skills, emergency care, patient-technologist relationships, medical legal aspects and professionalism.
- Describe and utilize routine procedures performed in Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography as well as demonstrate proficiency and fluency in the use of medical terminology, especially those pertaining to Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography.
- Perform the daily ultrasound workload of OB/GYN, abdominal, small parts, or cardiac, to include Doppler procedures.
- Distinguish between normal and abnormal sonographic appearance of different anatomical structures by identifying and understanding the important features of disease processes which includes pathophysiology, signs and symptoms, significant laboratory data, diagnostic techniques, prognosis and treatment.
- Develop practical knowledge, skills and strategies for, and familiarity with the operation of sonographic instrumentation and laboratory equipment.
- Develop research familiarity, skills and knowledge pertaining to Diagnostic Medical Sonography or Echocardiography.
Medical Community Support
The RIT Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program is very proud to have a very supportive medical community. The Program utilizes highly trained radiologists, physicians, sonologists, sonographer, and echocardiographer teams to precept the students. Our clinical sites have extensive experience training Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography students and/or employ them. Through these interactions, you will be exposed to many generous and dedicated health care professionals who will enlighten you in additional areas of professional development, community needs, and sense of cooperative spirits in which medicine is practiced. In addition, many of our clinical instructors, echocardiographers, and sonographers are alumni and are familiar with the standards, expectations, and rigor of the Program.
The Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program at RIT is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRCDMS) of the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).
It is noteworthy to mention that the program is NOT ONLY institutionally accredited BUT ALSO programmatically accredited. This type of accreditation meets both the professional and employer requirements. It also allows our graduates to immediately sit for the national board examinations administered by the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) without any delays or further experience.