Diagnostic Medical Sonography (Ultrasound) Bachelor of science degree

e3834405-2f5f-4a2f-9681-3ed9904e06e2 | 80219

Overview

In RIT's diagnostic medical sonography degree, you'll learn to examine and identify the body for abnormalities and diseases in real time using skills that can be applied in a range of health care settings.


Imagine the possibilities that can result from attending a nationally-ranked ultrasound program that houses a modern, state-of-the-art scanning suite where classes are taught by outstanding faculty who are leaders in their field. The outcome is a first-rate educational experience, complete with a year of on-site clinical training, that sets you a path for success in a dynamic health care field.  

Ultrasound has revolutionized the field of medicine. It offers a unique opportunity in the diagnosis, evaluation, and treatment of medical diseases and conditions without the use of surgery, injection of dyes, or radiation. Diagnostic medical sonography is a noninvasive, nontoxic diagnostic medical imaging modality in which high-frequency sound waves are used to produce images of the human body. Ultrasound is readily used to image the heart, blood flow, and abdominal organs as well as the developing fetus and male/female reproductive organs. But ultrasound has found itself to be a critical health care tool beyond radiology, OB/GYN, vascular, and cardiology. It is now used in areas such as emergency medicine, orthopedics, sports medicine, ophthalmology, rheumatology, pain medicine, intensive care, and more. The profession has grown rapidly in the last 20 years and is expected to continue to grow over the next several decades. Evaluation of the job market, advancements in medical technology, and a survey of current employers all indicate a strong demand for well-trained sonographers.

Plan of study

The diagnostic medical sonography degree is a four-year program that includes a one year clinical internship. It’s one of a few programs nationally that can lead to a bachelor of science degree. The program provides extensive didactic lectures, full immersion ultrasound scanning in a state-of-the-art Ultrasound Scanning Suite, and a one-year clinical internship. The program combines a strong science education with practical experience and liberal arts course work to prepare students for a career in ultrasound, a related medical field, as well as preparation for graduate study, including medical and dental school. The program emphasizes skills in administration and research, in addition to the development of scanning and diagnostic abilities with a focus on relevancy to clinical practice. This high-quality comprehensive background makes you well-prepared, well-trained, and sought-after in the work place.

Apply your knowledge

With a rigorous hands-on approach, coupled with an emphasis placed on experiential learning, you will gain a wealth of experience applying what you’ve learned in classroom lectures and lab experiences to a variety of real-life situations. A dedicated faculty is both engaged and passionate about your education and are fully committed to the development of exceptional sonographers and leaders.

Graduates are prepared to pursue a variety of career options, nationally and internationally, in medical, industrial, and educational settings. Graduates can be found in a wide range of positions, including supervisory and administrative, in hospitals, clinics, private physicians’ offices, teaching, research, sales, and industry. Graduates also can work as freelance sonographers or for mobile services.

Medical Community Support

The diagnostic medical sonography program benefits from a comprehensive, supportive medical community comprised of highly-trained radiologists, physicians, sonologists, sonographers, and echocardiographers that guide, educate, and train our students. Many of these professionals are involved in teaching our students at both on-campus and off-campus clinical sites. Our partner clinical sites also employ many of our graduates. Through these interactions, you are exposed to generous and dedicated health care professionals who will enhance your education through professional development, increase your awareness of community needs, and share a sense of cooperative spirit 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 our program. Learn more about the program's affiliated faculty.

Program Outcomes and Attrition Rate

The diagnostic medical sonography has exceptional passing rates on the national examinations:

  • OB/GYN: 93%
  • Abdomen: 100%
  • Cardiac: 100%

The program has a very low attrition rate (0%) and a retention rate of 100%. Job placement is also 100%.

Program Policy and Procedures Handbook/Technical Standards

Please refer to these two documents for more information:

Additional Educational Opportunities

In addition to a BS in ultrasound, RIT also offers a certificate in diagnostic medical sonography and a certificate in echocardiography (cardiac ultrasound). Both of these options are not only designed to meet the growing needs of the national and international medical communities but also the needs of individuals who:

  • Hold a degree in the life sciences and other closely related degrees that may be approved by the program director. Additional pre-requisite coursework may be required for any type and level of degree.
  • Have a current, active license or registry in an area of medical or allied health sciences, some examples of medical or allied health sciences areas include respiratory therapy, nuclear medicine, physical therapy, radiography (x-rays), nursing, and more. Any of the more than 200 medical or allied health sciences fields also will be considered.

Premedical and Health Professions Advisory Program

Medical schools and graduate programs in the health professions (such as physician assistant, physical therapy, and occupational therapy) welcome applications from students majoring in a wide range of academic programs. Acceptance into these programs requires the completion of pre-med requirements such as course work in biological and physical sciences, a strong academic record, pertinent experiences in the field, and key intrapersonal and interpersonal capabilities. Learn more about how RIT’s Premedical and Health Professions Advisory Program can help you become a competitive candidate for admission to graduate programs in the medical and health professions.

Sonography as a Pre-Med Option

Being accepted into a medical graduate program requires certain qualifications, including completing prerequisite courses, a strong academic record, acquiring pertinent experiences in the field, and developing key intrapersonal and interpersonal qualities. The Premedical and Health Professions Advisory Program works with all students on an individual basis to help them become competitive candidates for admission to graduate programs in the medical and health professions.

The diagnostic medical sonography major has assisted students in entering the world of medicine and dentistry. With the addition of a few courses and without extending your study at RIT, the program can prepare you for medical, dental, veterinary, or other graduate school programs in the medical or health sciences. Graduates of the program have gone on to become physicians, dentists, chiropractors, veterinarians, and more. Learn more about how diagnostic medical sonography can be used as a pre-med option.

Graduates work primarily in the Health Care industry.

Experiential Learning

Clinical Internships

The one-year clinical internship provides hands-on experience at two or more approved medical facilities. After completing the pre-internship course work, all students begin the internship by attending an intensive two-week experience on campus. During this time they enhance and polish the skills they previously learned, prepare to perform complete sonographic examinations as performed in real clinical settings, and advance their knowledge in recognizing anatomy and disease states using a variety of equipment in the Ultrasound Scanning Suite. Students also learn about hospital, departmental, and administrative operations. After completing these requirements, candidates are assigned to a medical training site for their clinical experience. At these facilities, students work side-by-side with sonographers, physicians, and other health care professionals to learn, develop, apply, and sharpen the necessary skills to perform general ultrasound examinations. Students’ clinical progress and performance are closely monitored by the program’s clinical coordinator and program director, who have regular communication and make periodic visits to the clinical internship sites. Additionally, students return to campus each month for three days of lectures, presentations, projects, and testing. Students may complete their clinical internships at any approved regional or national medical ultrasound facility, with approval of the program director.

Explore salary and career information for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (Ultrasound) BS 

Curriculum for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (Ultrasound) BS

Diagnostic Medical Sonography (general ultrasound), BS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
BIOL-101
General Education – Elective: General Biology I
This course serves as an introduction to cellular, molecular, and evolutionary biology. Topics will include: a study of the basic principles of modern cellular biology, including cell structure and function; the chemical basis and functions of life, including enzyme systems and gene expression; and the origin of life and evolutionary patterns of organism development on Earth. Lecture 3 (Fall, Summer).
3
BIOL-102
General Education – Elective: General Biology II
This course serves as an introduction to animal and plant anatomy and physiology, in addition to the fundamentals of ecology. Topics will include: animal development; animal body systems; plant development; unique plant systems; Earth's terrestrial and aquatic environments; population and community ecology; animal behavior; and conservation biology. Lecture 3 (Spring, Summer).
3
BIOL-103
General Education – Elective: General Biology I Lab 
This course provides laboratory work to complement the lecture material of General Biology I. The experiments are designed to illustrate concepts of basic cellular and molecular biology, develop laboratory skills and techniques for microscopy, and improve ability to make, record and interpret observations. (Co-requisities: BIOL-101 or equvialent course.) Lab 3 (Fall, Summer).
1
BIOL-104
General Education – Elective: General Biology II Lab 
This course provides laboratory work to complement the material of General Biology II. The experiments are designed to illustrate concepts of animal and plant anatomy and physiology, develop laboratory skills and techniques for experimenting with live organisms, and improve ability to make, record, and interpret observations. (Co-requisites: BIOL-102 or equivalent course.) Lab 3 (Spring, Summer).
1
MATH-111
General Education – Mathematical Perspective A: Precalculus
This course provides the background for an introductory level, trigonometry-based calculus course. Topics include functions and their graphs, with an emphasis on functions that commonly appear in calculus including polynomials, rational functions, trigonometric functions, exponential functions, and logarithmic functions. The course also includes the analytic geometry of conic sections. One hour each week will be devoted to a collaborative learning workshop. (Prerequisites: Students may not take and receive credit for MATH-101 and MATH-111. See the Math department with any questions.) Lecture 3, Recitation 1 (Fall, Spring).
3
STAT-145
General Education – Mathematical Perspective B: Introduction to                 Statistics I
This course introduces statistical methods of extracting meaning from data, and basic inferential statistics. Topics covered include data and data integrity, exploratory data analysis, data visualization, numeric summary measures, the normal distribution, sampling distributions, confidence intervals, and hypothesis testing. The emphasis of the course is on statistical thinking rather than computation. Statistical software is used. (Prerequisite: MATH-101 or MATH-111 or NMTH-260 or NMTH-272 or NMTH-275 or a math placement exam score of at least 35.) Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring, Summer).
3
YOPS-10
RIT 365: RIT Connections
RIT 365 students participate in experiential learning opportunities designed to launch them into their career at RIT, support them in making multiple and varied connections across the university, and immerse them in processes of competency development. Students will plan for and reflect on their first-year experiences, receive feedback, and develop a personal plan for future action in order to develop foundational self-awareness and recognize broad-based professional competencies. Lecture 1 (Fall, Spring).
0
 
General Education – Elective
3
 
General Education – Ethical Perspective
3
 
General Education – Artistic Perspective
3
 
General Education – Social Perspective
3
 
General Education – Global Perspective
3
 
General Education – First Year Writing (WI) 
3
Second Year
MEDS-201
General Education – Elective: Language of Medicine
Language is a systematic means or method of communicating ideas, events, or feelings. It is a combination of words or symbols used to encode and decode information. Medicine has a language to communicate information regarding the human body, its functions, diseases, tests, and procedures. This course explores the language of medicine, the rules of “language,” language mechanics that apply how to create words, define terms, and identify abbreviations. In addition to learning the fundamentals, the student will gain experience in writing, using the language of medicine, as well as interpreting that language into everyday English. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring, Summer).
3
MEDS-250
General Education – Elective: Human Anatomy and Physiology I
This course is an integrated approach to the structure and function of the nervous, endocrine, integumentary, muscular and skeletal systems. Laboratory exercises include histological examination, actual and simulated anatomical dissections, and physiology experiments with human subjects. (Prerequisites: (BIOL-101 and BIOL-102) or (BIOL-121 and BIOL-122) or (1001-201 and 1001-202 and 1001-203) or (1001-251 and 1001-252 and 1001-253) or (MEDG-102 or 1026-213) or NUTR-BS equivalent courses.) Lab 3, Lecture 3 (Fall).
4
MEDS-251
General Education – Elective: Human Anatomy and Physiology II
This course is an integrated approach to the structure and function of the gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, immunological, respiratory, excretory, and reproductive systems with an emphasis on the maintenance of homeostasis. Laboratory exercises include histological examinations, anatomical dissections and physiological experiments using human subjects. (Prerequisites: (BIOL-101 and BIOL-102) or (BIOL-121 and BIOL-122) or (1001-201 and 1001-202 and 1001-203) or (1001-251 and 1001-252 and 1001-253) or (MEDG-102 or 1026-213) or NUTR-BS equivalent courses.) Lab 3, Lecture 3 (Spring).
4
PHYS-111
General Education – Natural Science Inquiry Perspective: College               Physics I  
This is an introductory course in algebra-based physics focusing on mechanics and waves. Topics include kinematics, planar motion, Newton’s laws, gravitation; rotational kinematics and dynamics; work and energy; momentum and impulse; conservation laws; simple harmonic motion; waves; data presentation/analysis and error propagation. The course is taught using both traditional lectures and a workshop format that integrates material traditionally found in separate lecture, recitation, and laboratory settings. Lab 4, Lecture 2 (Fall, Spring, Summer).
4
PHYS-112
General Education – Scientific Principles Perspective: College Physics II 
This course is an introduction to algebra-based physics focusing on thermodynamics, electricity and magnetism, optics, and elementary topics in modern physics. Topics include heat and temperature, laws of thermodynamics, fluids, electric and magnetic forces and fields, DC electrical circuits, electromagnetic induction, opyics, the concept of the photon, and the Bohr model of the atom. The course is taught using both traditional lectures and a workshop format that integrates material traditionally found in separate lecture, recitation, and laboratory settings. (Prerequisites: PHYS-111 or 1017-211 or equivalent course.) Lab 4, Lecture 2 (Fall, Spring).
4
 
General Education – Immersion 1
3
 
General Education – Immersion 2 
3
 
Open Electives
6
Third Year
DMSO-301
Sonographic Scanning Skills and Techniques I
The course provides students with hands-on experience by performing basic and general abdominal, small parts, obstetrical and gynecological ultrasound examinations. Sonographic examination protocols and techniques, review and recognition of normal anatomic structures, high quality image production, and image interpretation are stressed. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 3) Lec/Lab 6 (Fall).
3
DMSO-302
Sonographic Scanning Skills and Techniques II
The course is a continuation of Sonographic Scanning Skills and Techniques I (DMSO- 301). The course provides students with further hands-on opportunities to perform advanced abdominal and OB/GYN, peripheral vascular (upper and lower) and carotid Doppler examinations including color flow. Ultrasound examination protocols and techniques, review and recognition of normal anatomic structures, high quality image production, Doppler and color flow optimization and image interpretation are stressed. (Prerequisites: DMSO-301 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 6 (Spring).
3
DMSO-309
Sonography Physics and Instrumentation I
This course addresses how the principles of ultrasound physics are directly applied to the use of ultrasound instrumentation in medical imaging. Transducers, signal production, memory systems, data display, manipulation of controls, and artifacts, are discussed. Throughout the course, the student will integrate previous knowledge of anatomy with ultrasound physics and instrumentation. (Prerequisites: PHYS-112 or equivalent course and student standing in DMSO-CT, DMSO-BS or ECHO-CT.) Lec/Lab 6 (Fall).
3
DMSO-310 
Sonography Physics and Instrumentation II
This course is a continuation of Sonography Physics and Instrumentation I (DMSO-309). It provides a foundation of the basic physical principles of ultrasound and the fundamentals of fluid dynamics, Doppler physics including color, power, and spectral Doppler, quality control, Doppler artifacts, and biological effects. Students will learn to integrate previous knowledge of anatomy, ultrasound physics and instrumentation with Doppler skills and techniques. Development of scanning techniques, use of instrument controls, and production of high quality diagnostic images utilizing laboratory equipment are stressed. (Prerequisites: DMSO-309 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 6 (Spring).
3
DMSO-312
Human Cross-Sectional Anatomy
This course covers basic sectional anatomy of the abdomen, pelvis, fetus and small parts, building on the basic knowledge of anatomy. This course prepares the student to recognize sectional anatomy of major human structures, especially as they relate to medical imaging techniques. Lectures are augmented with exercises using prepared human sections, organ modeling, and diagnostic imaging units. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 3) Lecture 3 (Fall).
3
MEDS-333
Patient Care
This course will introduce key elements of integrated, high-quality patient care. Through lecture, role-play and hands-on practice, essential aspects of team-based patient care will be explored. Vital skills and behaviors such as professionalism, communication, documentation, workplace safety, patient assessment, patient positioning and transfers, and acute medical situations will be presented. Infection control, medications and their administration, and medical-legal issues will also be examined. (Prerequisites: (BIOL-101 and BIOL-102) or (BIOL-121 and BIOL-122) or (1001-251 and 1001-252 and 1001-253) or (1001-201 and 1001-202 and 1001-203) or equivalent courses.) Lec/Lab 2 (Spring).
2
MEDS-415 3
 
General Education – Immersion 3
3
 
Open Electives
6
Fourth Year
DMSO-414
Sonographic Vascular Evaluation
This course provides knowledge of general vascular evaluation with an emphasis on the Sonographic approach. Two-dimensional real-time imaging and Doppler techniques are presented as well as a discussion of other imaging modalities and their use in vascular evaluation. Performance of examinations on laboratory equipment is stressed. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lec/Lab 3 (Spring).
3
DMSO-452
Obstetrical Sonography I
This course provides the ultrasound candidate with the knowledge necessary to perform obstetrical examinations. High-quality image production, recognition of normal structures, and basic pathologic states are stressed. Examination protocols, review of specific anatomy and pathology, film reading, and use of other imaging techniques are also addressed. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lec/Lab 3 (Fall).
3
DMSO-453
Gynecological Sonography 
This course provides the information necessary to perform basic and advanced gynecologic Sonographic examinations. Examination strategies for various procedures are explored, as well as the integration of ultrasound into established clinical practices. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lec/Lab 4 (Fall).
3
DMSO-454
Obstetrical Sonography II
This course provides information necessary to perform more sophisticated obstetrical procedures utilizing ultrasound equipment. Examination strategies for various procedures are explored as well as the integration of ultrasound into established clinical practices. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lec/Lab 3 (Spring).
3
DMSO-456
Abdominal and Small Parts Sonography I 
Laboratory simulation and classroom instruction are used to develop practical skills and clinical knowledge necessary to perform basic abdominal and small parts examinations utilizing ultrasound equipment. High-quality image production, recognition of normal abdominal structures and basic pathologic states are stressed. Examination protocols, review of anatomy, film reading, and use of other scanning techniques are addressed. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lec/Lab 4 (Fall).
3
DMSO-457
Abdominal and Small Parts Sonography II
This course is a continuation of Abdominal and Small Parts Sonography I (DMSO-456). Laboratory simulation and classroom instruction are used to develop the practical skills and clinical knowledge necessary to perform basic and advanced abdominal and small parts examinations utilizing ultrasound. High-quality image production, recognition of normal abdominal structures and basic and advanced pathologic states are stressed. Examination protocols, review of anatomy, film reading and use of other scanning techniques are addressed. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lec/Lab 4 (Spring).
3
DMSO-460
Administration and Research in Sonography (WI-PR)
Speaking, writing, and researching skills are explored. Methods of basic research, developing writing strategies, and oral presentations are stressed. Students develop or critique a research project and prepare a written document following common publishing guidelines in addition to making oral presentations. Additionally, candidates prepare a complete plan for an ultrasound department as if they had been hired to establish a new department in a hospital setting. The candidates work together to develop the physical facilities, administrative, and financial aspects of a department. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lecture 3 (Spring).
3
DMSO-570
Clinical Sonography I
This course prepares the student for application of classroom knowledge to the practice of ultrasound by means of a clinical internship. Performing basic general ultrasound examinations in the areas of abdomen, small parts, obstetrics, gynecology and basic peripheral vascular in both the laboratory and clinical settings is stressed. Nursing procedures, ethical issues, and medico-legal considerations are also discussed as they relate to the practice of ultrasound examinations. This is an internship course. (Prerequisites: DMSO-BS or DMSO-CT and YR 4) Lec/Lab 7 (Fall).
7
DMSO-571
Clinical Sonography II
This course provides the final development of ultrasound examination skills by means of clinical internship. The candidate is expected to perform basic and advanced general ultrasound examinations in the areas of abdomen, small parts, obstetrics, gynecology and peripheral ultrasound examinations with no assistance by the end of this course. This is an internship course. (Prerequisites: DMSO-570 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 5 (Spring).
5
Total Semester Credit Hours
125

Please see General Education Curriculum (GE) for more information.

(WI) Refers to a writing intensive course within the major.

Please see Wellness Education Requirement for more information. Students completing bachelor's degrees are required to complete two different Wellness courses.

Admission Requirements

Freshman Admission

For all bachelor’s degree programs, a strong performance in a college preparatory program is expected. Generally, this includes 4 years of English, 3-4 years of mathematics, 2-3 years of science, and 3 years of social studies and/or history.

Specific math and science requirements and other recommendations

  • 3 years of math is required. Pre-calculus is recommended
  • Biology is required. Physics recommended

Transfer Admission

Transfer course recommendations without associate degree

Courses in liberal arts, sciences, and math

Appropriate associate degree programs for transfer

AS degree in liberal arts with science option; allied health; radiologic technology

Learn about admissions, cost, and financial aid 

Accreditation

The diagnostic medical sonography (ultrasound) program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs upon the recommendation of the JRC-DMS.

Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs
25400 US Hwy 19 N., Suite 158
Clearwater, FL 33763
727-210-2350
caahep.org

It is noteworthy to mention that the program is institutionally accredited and programmatically accredited. This type of dual accreditation meets both professional and employer requirements and also allows our graduates to immediately sit for the national board examinations administered by the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS).

Facilities

  • A group of people performing a sonogram on a patient
    Ultrasound Scanning Suite

    To remain a leader in educating technically sound sonographers, the diagnostic medical sonography program emphasizes not only on the didactic aspect of learning, but also the practical, hands-on, clinical aspect.

Latest News

  • May 5, 2020

    Jessica Salamone, adjunct professor, College of Health Sciences and Technology.

    Jessica Salamone wins Outstanding Teaching Award for Non-Tenure-Track Faculty

    Jessica Salamone ’99 (biotechnology), an adjunct professor in the College of Health Sciences and Technology and director of Genetic Counseling and Cancer Risk Assessment at Elizabeth Wende Breast Care in Rochester, is the recipient of this year's Outstanding Teaching Award for Non-Tenure-Track Faculty.

  • February 14, 2020

    student practices ultrasound techniques on another student.

    Carestream Health donates $1.2 million in ultrasound equipment to RIT

    Carestream Health Inc. continues to support the education of sonographers at RIT through a new donation of ultrasound equipment valued at more than $1.2 million. This is the second donation Carestream has made during this academic year to RIT’s diagnostic medical sonography program, with a combined total exceeding $1.4 million.

  • February 13, 2020

    four people holding Golden Brick awards.

    Four RIT faculty and staff alumni acknowledged with the Golden Brick Award

    Michelle Magee ’05 MS, senior associate director for Employment Engagement in the Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education; Hamad Ghazle ’88, director of the diagnostic medical sonography program; Kerry Hughes ’03 MS, project and events manager for the Office of the Provost; and David Long ’16 Ph.D., director of RIT MAGIC Center, and were honored with the Golden Brick Award for going above and beyond their duties to volunteer or serve in leadership roles at RIT.