TrainingThere are a variety of ways a person can become a sonographer. Some of the most popular methods include taking classes at vocational schools, completing a community college degree program and learning the skill while enlisted in the armed forces. Currently, there are more than 100 accredited sonographer programs in the United States, with some offering degrees in medical technology. Vocational school programs often are the quickest to complete, usually taking no more than one year to complete.
Becoming CertifiedTo become certified as a sonographer, it's necessary to pass an exam. Although it's not a requirement that sonographers be licensed in the state in which they are employed, having certification gives a sonographer additional credibility and can make a difference when seeking employment. The most recognized organization in charge of certifying sonographers is the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers, also known as ARDMS. Requiring students to pass both a general and specialty exam, the organization is well-respected within the medical profession. The specialty exam that must be passed involves the area of the body the student specialized in during their studies, such as the abdomen.
Conferences and Specialty TrainingFor those who are interested in advancing their knowledge, there are numerous educational conferences and training opportunities available. By attending medical conferences, sonographers will be able to stay aware of the latest developments in the world of sonography. Many colleges and schools offer conferences to current and former students, making it easier to attend these meetings. Additional training classes are always being held, and are often sponsored by local hospitals. For a person who is working at the hospital, this offers invaluable training in such areas as vascular technology and cardiac technology. For those wanting to do their best while preparing for the future, these conferences and training are invaluable not only to the beginning sonographer, but also those with several years experience.
Sonographers who desire to be the best in their field take advantage of every opportunity to learn something new. Whether learning about a new piece of equipment or a new way to do a procedure, they are always being asked to face a difficult challenge and overcome it with ease. Well-respected throughout the medical field, sonographers can take the most difficult situation and handle it with professionalism and compassion.