Diagnostic Medical Sonography Degree Programs


CAAHEP Accredited* Programs
Available at the State College Main Campus

What You Need to Know About Our Medical Sonography Degree Programs

A career in healthcare could take less time and less schooling than you think. The practice of sonography uses high-tech ultrasound equipment to assess and record images of the body with the aim of diagnosing illnesses, injuries, or medical conditions. With the Diagnostic Medical Sonography programs at South Hills School of Business & Technology, you can gain the skills to acquire quality images needed for proper diagnosis. In the clinical setting, you can work closely with physicians and other medical professionals to provide compassionate care. We offer three pathways to enroll in DMS:

  • Our Associate in Specialized Technology degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography, which can be completed in just 3 years and is geared toward those who have either no college credits or only a few college credits
  • Our Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Plus diploma program, which can be completed in 2 years and is designed for those who already have a degree in an area other than medical imaging
  • Our Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional diploma program, which can be completed in just 15 months and is an option for those who already have post-secondary training in a different medical imaging specialty, like radiologic technology

All three of our programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). We also offer you the chance to specialize in:

  • Abdominal Sonography: Readies students to work in a radiology department performing scans on various abdominal organs, as well as small parts — including, but not limited to, liver, kidneys, spleen, gallbladder and thyroid. Students prepare to sit for the Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer (RDMS- ab) credential.
  • Obstetrics/Gynecology Sonography: Readies students to work in a maternal/fetal medicine department that focuses on scanning the embryo/fetus throughout a pregnancy. Students prepare to sit for the Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer (RDMS- ob) credential.
  • Cardiac Sonography: Teaches students how to perform adult echocardiography and ultrasound techniques for the heart. Students prepare for the Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer (RDCS) or Registered Cardiac Sonographer (RCS) credentials.
  • Vascular Sonography: Teaches students about the vascular system (i.e., the arteries and veins in the heart, neck, abdomen, and extremities). Students prepare for the Registered Vascular Technologist (RVT) or Registered Vascular Sonographer (RVS) credentials.

Your hands-on education will include both classroom and lab work, as well as a clinical internship where you will get the opportunity to apply what you’ve learned from our experienced faculty in real-world settings. Previous internship locations have included:

  • The Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • Carilion Clinic
  • Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
  • Conemaugh Health System
  • Geisinger-Lewiston Hospital
  • Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital
  • Lehigh Valley Health Network
  • Mount Nittany Medical Center
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
 
 

Why You Should Choose South Hills

South Hills School of Business & Technology has been in the business of helping our students gain the specialized career skills they need for over 50 years. We know that we can help you, too. Here are just a few reasons why:

  • Internship opportunities— The DMS/DPP/DMP programs at South Hills include a six-month internship component where the students are immersed in the daily routine of a sonographer. The interns apply the knowledge and skill acquired at school directly to patients in need.
  • Small class sizes — It’s important to us that each of our students feels seen, both in what they need out of their education and what their goals are. It’s why we keep our class sizes small, so you can build a personal relationship with your teachers.
  • Experienced instructors and mentors — Our instructors are also experienced professionals who know what it takes to be successful in the job market. Sonography classes are taught by medical imaging specialists who have worked in the field and incorporate that experience into the curriculum.
  • Career and alumni services — South Hills is an education community, there for you from the day you enroll to graduation and for years afterward. We have a dedicated Career Services team to help ready you for finding and securing a job, as well as alumni services that can help support you as you advance in your career.
  • Financial aid and scholarships — Finances shouldn’t stand in the way of you being able to train for the career you want. South Hills offers a number of ways to help pay for your program for those who qualify. Grants, loans, and special funding for veterans are just some of the possibilities we can explore with you, and our Financial Aid team is available to help you navigate these options.

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Program Info Sheet

Diagnostic Medical Sonography

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In addition to our three-year associate in specialized technology (AST) program, the South Hills DMS program also offers the following diploma programs for individuals with previous education or credentials:

Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Plus (DPP)

This CAAHEP accredited* two-year (6 terms) diploma program is designed for applicants who already have a previous Bachelor’s degree in a field other than medical imaging. It includes coursework in anatomy, physiology, medical terminology, patient care, and medical imaging sciences.

Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional (DMP)

This CAAHEP accredited* 1.5-year (5 terms) diploma program is designed for applicants who already have a previous 2-year or 4-year degree in a medical imaging specialty such as radiologic technology or nuclear medicine technology. It requires a strong background in anatomy, physiology, medical terminology, patient care, and medical imaging sciences.

* The DMS, DPP, & DMP programs for General, Cardiac, and Vascular Sonography are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP, 9355 - 113th St. N, #7709, Seminole, FL 33775, 727-210-2350, mail@caahep.org) upon recommendation of the Joint Review Commission for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS).

Complete Course Lists

Diagnostic Medical Sonography Course List

Diagnostic Medical Sonography Course List for 2020-21

TermCourse #Course NameCreditsClock Hours
Term 1MD102Anatomy & Physiology I5.560
MD103Anatomy & Physiology I Lab0.510
GE117Applied Algebra460
PD120Professional Development for DMS112
MD108Medical Terminology I336
Totals:14178
Term 2MD106Anatomy & Physiology II5.560
MD107Anatomy & Physiology II Lab0.510
GE230Applied Algebra II460
MD109Medical Terminology II336
Totals:13166
Term 3DS251Applied Physics for DMS4.560
DS255Applied Physics for DMS Lab0.510
HI102Pathophysiology5.560
GE260Statistical Applications336
Totals:13.5166
Term 4GE207Applied Psychology in Health Care336
GE186Business English Essentials460
DM208Introduction to Medical Imaging2.536
MG119Management Essentials230
GE213Oral Business Communications224
Totals:13.5186
Term 5DM211Cross Sectional Anatomy for Sonography1.524
DM212Embryology for the Sonographer2.536
DM213Law and Ethics in Sonography2.536
DM209Patient Care2.536
DM214Principles of Sonography2.536
DM240Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation I2.536
Totals:14204
Term 6DM236Abdominal Pathophysiology I336
DM237Abdominal Pathophysiology I Lab120
DM215Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation II3.548
Cardiac Elective Grouping OR11148
General Elective Grouping OR(11)-148
Vascular Elective Grouping(11)-148
Totals:18.5252
Cardiac Elective Grouping
DS257Cardiac Pathophysiology I336
DM228Cardiac Pathophysiology I Lab120
DS275Echocardiography I336
DM226Echocardiography I Lab120
DM230Principles of Cardiovascular Technology336
Totals:11148
General Elective Grouping
DM218Clinical Obstetrics336
DS283Gynecologic Ultrasound336
DM216Gynecologic Ultrasound Lab120
DS290Obstetric Ultrasound 336
DM217Obstetric Ultrasound Lab120
Totals:11148
Vascular Elective Grouping
DM230Principles of Cardiovascular Technology336
DS268Vascular Pathophysiology336
DM229Vascular Pathophysiology Lab120
DS282Vascular Technology I336
DM227Vascular Technology I Lab120
11148
Term 7Cardiac Elective Grouping OR17.5244
General Elective Grouping OR(17.5)-244
Vascular Elective Grouping(17.5)-244
Totals:17.5244
Cardiac Elective Grouping
DM246Cardiac Pathophysiology II336
DM231Cardiac Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM247Echocardiography II336
DM233Echocardiography II Lab120
DM235Echocardiography Special Topics4.560
DM249Principles of Vascular Sonography336
DM220Principles of Vascular Sonography Lab236
Totals:17.5244
General Elective Grouping
DM238Abdominal Pathophysiology II336
DM239Abdominal Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM248Obstetric and Gynecologic Ultrasound II336
DM221Obstetric and Gynecologic Ultrasound II Lab120
DM249Principles of Vascular Sonography336
DM220Principles of Vascular Sonography Lab236
DM222Ultrasound of the Thyroid, Breast, & Super. Structures4.560
Totals:17.5244
Vascular Elective Grouping
DM238Abdominal Pathophysiology II336
DM239Abdominal Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM222Ultrasound of the Thyroid, Breast, & Super. Structures4.560
DM250Vascular Technology II336
DM234Vascular Technology II Lab236
DM251Vascular Ultrasound Special Topics336
DM232Vascular Ultrasound Special Topics Lab120
Totals:17.5244
Term 8DM252Clinical Internship I14.5435
DM224Professional Development for the Sonographer I118
Totals:15.5453
Term 9DM253Clinical Internship II14.5435
DM225Professional Development for the Sonographer II118
Totals:15.5453
DMS PROGRAM TOTAL CREDITSDMS PROGRAM TOTAL HOURS
135.0 Credits2,302 Clock Hours
Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Plus Course List

Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Plus Course List for 2020-21

TermCourse #Course NameCreditsClock Hours
Term 1MD102Anatomy & Physiology I5.560
MD103Anatomy & Physiology I Lab0.510
DS251Applied Physics for DMS4.560
DS255Applied Physics for DMS Lab0.510
DM208Introduction to Medical Imaging2.536
MD108Medical Terminology I336
DM209Patient Care2.536
Totals:19248
Term 2MD106Anatomy & Physiology II5.560
MD107Anatomy & Physiology II Lab0.510
DM211Cross Sectional Anatomy for Sonography1.524
DM212Embryology for the Sonographer2.536
DM213Law and Ethics in Sonography2.536
MD109Medical Terminology II336
DM214Principles of Sonography2.536
DM210Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation I3.548
Totals:21.5286
Term 3DM236Abdominal Pathophysiology I336
DM237Abdominal Pathophysiology I Lab120
DM215Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation II3.548
Cardiac Elective Grouping OR11148
General Elective Grouping OR(11)(148)
Vascular Elective Grouping(11)(148)
Totals:18.5252
Cardiac Elective Grouping
DS257Cardiac Pathophysiology I336
DM228Cardiac Pathophysiology I Lab120
DS275Echocardiography I 336
DM226Echocardiography I Lab120
DM230Principles of Cardiovascular Technology336
11148
General Elective Grouping
DM218Clinical Obstetrics336
DS283Gynecologic Ultrasound336
DM216Gynecologic Ultrasound Lab120
DS290Obstetric Ultrasound 336
DM217Obstetric Ultrasound Lab120
11148
Vascular Elective Grouping
DM230Principles of Cardiovascular Technology336
DS268Vascular Pathophysiology336
DM229Vascular Pathophysiology Lab120
DS282Vascular Technology I336
DM227Vascular Technology I Lab120
11148
Term 4Cardiac Elective Grouping OR17.5244
General Elective Grouping OR(17.5)(244)
Vascular Elective Grouping(17.5)(244)
Totals:17.5244
Cardiac Elective Grouping
DM246Cardiac Pathophysiology II336
DM231Cardiac Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM247Echocardiography II336
DM233Echocardiography II Lab120
DM235Echocardiography Special Topics4.560
DM249Principles of Vascular Sonography336
DM220Principles of Vascular Sonography Lab236
17.5244
General Elective Grouping
DM238Abdominal Pathophysiology II336
DM239Abdominal Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM248Obstetric and Gynecologic Ultrasound II336
DM221Obstetric and Gynecologic Ultrasound II Lab120
DM249Principles of Vascular Sonography336
DM220Principles of Vascular Sonography Lab236
DM222Ultrasound of the Thyroid, Breast, & Super. Structures4.560
17.5244
Vascular Elective Grouping
DM238Abdominal Pathophysiology II336
DM239Abdominal Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM222Ultrasound of the Thyroid, Breast, & Super. Structures4.560
DM250Vascular Technology II336
DM234Vascular Technology II Lab236
DM251Vascular Ultrasound Special Topics336
DM232Vascular Ultrasound Special Topics Lab120
17.5244
Term 5DM252Clinical Internship I14.5435
DM224Professional Development for the Sonographer I118
Totals:15.5453
Term 6DM253Clinical Internship II14.5435
DM225Professional Development for the Sonographer II118
Totals:15.5453
DPP PROGRAM TOTAL CREDITSDPP PROGRAM TOTAL HOURS
107.5 Credits1,936 Clock Hours
Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Course List

Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Course List for 2020-21

TermCourse #Course NameCreditsClock Hours
Term 1DM211Cross Sectional Anatomy for Sonography1.524
Winter 20-21DM212Embryology for the Sonographer2.536
DM213Law and Ethics in Sonography2.536
DM209Patient Care2.536
DM214Principles of Sonography2.536
DM210Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation I3.548
Totals:15216
Term 2DM236Abdominal Pathophysiology I336
Spring 2021DM237Abdominal Pathophysiology I Lab120
DM215Ultrasound Physics & Instrumentation II3.548
Cardiac Elective Grouping OR11148
General Elective Grouping OR(11)(148)
Vascular Elective Grouping(11)(148)
Totals:18.5252
Cardiac Elective Grouping
DS257Cardiac Pathophysiology I336
DM228Cardiac Pathophysiology I Lab120
DS275Echocardiography I 336
DM226Echocardiography I Lab120
DM230Principles of Cardiovascular Technology336
11148
General Elective Grouping
DM218Clinical Obstetrics336
DS283Gynecologic Ultrasound336
DM216Gynecologic Ultrasound Lab120
DS290Obstetric Ultrasound 336
DM217Obstetric Ultrasound Lab120
11148
Vascular Elective Grouping
DM230Principles of Cardiovascular Technology336
DS268Vascular Pathophysiology336
DM229Vascular Pathophysiology Lab120
DS282Vascular Technology I336
DM227Vascular Technology I Lab120
11148
Term 3Cardiac Elective Grouping OR17.5244
Fall 2021General Elective Grouping OR(17.5)(244)
Vascular Elective Grouping(17.5)(244)
Totals:17.5244
Cardiac Elective Grouping
DM246Cardiac Pathophysiology II336
DM231Cardiac Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM247Echocardiography II336
DM233Echocardiography II Lab120
DM235Echocardiography Special Topics4.560
DM249Principles of Vascular Sonography336
DM220Principles of Vascular Sonography Lab236
17.5244
General Elective Grouping
DM238Abdominal Pathophysiology II336
DM239Abdominal Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM248Obstetric and Gynecologic Ultrasound II336
DM221Obstetric and Gynecologic Ultrasound II Lab120
DM249Principles of Vascular Sonography336
DM220Principles of Vascular Sonography Lab236
DM222Ultrasound of the Thyroid, Breast, & Super. Structures4.560
17.5244
Vascular Elective Grouping
DM238Abdominal Pathophysiology II336
DM239Abdominal Pathophysiology II Lab120
DM222Ultrasound of the Thyroid, Breast, & Super. Structures4.560
DM250Vascular Technology II336
DM234Vascular Technology II Lab236
DM251Vascular Ultrasound Special Topics336
DM232Vascular Ultrasound Special Topics Lab120
17.5244
Term 4DM252Clinical Internship I14.5435
Winter 21-22DM224Professional Development for the Sonographer I118
Totals:15.5453
Term 5DM253Clinical Internship II14.5435
Spring 2022DM225Professional Development for the Sonographer II118
Totals:15.5453
DMP PROGRAM TOTAL CREDITSDMP PROGRAM TOTAL HOURS
82.0 Credits1,618 Clock Hours

The Outlook for Diagnostic Medical Sonography Jobs and Careers

Like many areas of the healthcare field, employment for medical sonographers is expected to see major growth over the next several years. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that jobs for diagnostic medical sonographers will grow by 14%, much faster than the average for all occupations. There is also strong earnings potential, as well.

Careers in Diagnostic Medical Sonography


With three years of hands-on training and strong skillsets, our graduates are prepared for a variety of career options, including:


The Diagnostic Medical Sonography internship is completed during the final two terms of the program. The internship continues uninterrupted for 2 consecutive terms, thus allowing for a continuous 24-week internship experience. Clinical training begins in January of each year which occurs during the Winter and Spring terms at South Hills. We have placed interns at locations including:


South Hills Diagnostic Medical Sonography graduates are highly respected in the field and sought-after for their training, professional attitudes, and knowledge. Some of the many locations employing our graduates include:

Meet the Faculty

Tricia Turner, BS, RDMS, RVT

Program Director
State College Main Campus


Tricia's Biography

Stephanie R. Wilson, BS, RDMS, RVT, FSVU

Assistant Program Director / Vascular Track Coordinator
State College Main Campus


Stephanie's Biography

Beth Lampe, BS, RDMS, RDCS (AE, PE)

Cardiac Track Coordinator
State College Main Campus


Beth's Biography

Elizabeth Ladrido, BS, RDMS, RVT

General Track Coordinator
State College Main Campus


Liz's Biography

Gregory Tressler, RT(R), RDMS

Instructor
State College Main Campus


Greg's Biography

Stacy Walgrove, BS, RDMS

OB/GYN Program Coordinator
State College Main Campus


Stacy's Biography

DMS Graduates Can Earn a Bachelor’s Degree Online!

South Hills students graduating with the Associate in Specialized Technology Degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography are eligible to articulate into the Bachelor of Science program in Applied Health Sciences at Pennsylvania College of Technology (PCT). PCT is an accredited college offering Bachelor's and Master's degree programs in a variety of disciplines. All courses required for the degree completion are available online. Go to our Articulation Agreements page or visit www.pct.edu for more information.

CAAHEP Annual Survey — Diagnostic Medical Sonography Outcome Statistics

Specialty Track (DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (AB, OB) Vascular Cardiac
Retention 92% 75% 100%
Job Placement 83% 100% 83%
Credential (passing rates for board examination) Abd 67% | OB 57% 83% 78%

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated in 2021. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Specialty Track (includes DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (ABD, OB/GYN) Vascular Cardiac
Retention 100% 100% 100%
Job Placement 67% 70% 90%
Credential status (passing rates for board examination) Abdomen 78% | OB/GYN 86% 89% 89%

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated in 2020. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Specialty Track (includes DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (ABD, OB/GYN) Vascular Cardiac
* Retention * 91% * 100% * 83%
Job Placement 80% 89% 90%
Credential status (passing rates for board examination) Abdomen 88% | OB/GYN 100% 89% 90%

* As of 2019, reporting has changed from attrition to retention.

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated June 2019. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Specialty Track (includes DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (ABD, OB/GYN) Vascular Cardiac
* Retention * 93% * 100% * 100%
Job Placement 79% ** 33% 91%
Credential status (passing rates for board examination) Abdomen 77% | OB/GYN 100% 100% 80%

* As of 2019, reporting has changed from attrition to retention.

** Sample size less than 10 causing results to be statistically unreliable.

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated June 2018. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Specialty Track (includes DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (ABD, OB/GYN) Vascular Cardiac
Attrition 0% * 33% 7%
Job Placement 85% 100% 77%
Credential status (passing rates for board examination) Abdomen 90% | OB/GYN 100% 100% 82%

* Sample size less than 10 causing results to be statistically unreliable.

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated June 2017. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Specialty Track (includes DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (ABD, OB/GYN) Vascular Cardiac
Attrition 12% 38% 0%
Job Placement 93% 100% 90%
Credential status (passing rates for board examination) Abdomen 100% | OB/GYN 89% 100% 71%

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated June 2016. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Specialty Track (includes DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (ABD, OB/GYN) Vascular Cardiac
Attrition 0% 14% 8%
Job Placement 87% 100% 100%
Credential status (passing rates for board examination) 94.5% 100% 100%

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated June 2015. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Specialty Track (includes DMS, DPP and DMP graduates): General (ABD, OB/GYN) Vascular Cardiac
Attrition 30% 0% 33%
Job Placement 79% 100% 100%
Credential status (passing rates for board examination) Abdomen 100% | OB/GYN 100% 100% 100%

The CAAHEP Annual Survey outcome statistics are based on the students who graduated June 2014. The job placement rate includes graduates hired for jobs within their field and related fields, and were hired within 9 months of completion. The graduates are tracked via graduate and employer surveys.

Program Advisory Committee

State College Main Campus
Member NameJob TitleCompany
Medical Advisors
Dr. Anthony CardellCardiologistMt. Nittany Physician’s Group
Dr. Jason FraginCardiologistPenn State Hershey Medical Group
Dr. Jacob AlexanderRadiologistMt. Nittany Medical Center
Dr. Gregory WeimerRadiologist/InstructorPenn State Hershey
Dr. Robert AtnipVascular SurgeonThe Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
 
Community Members
Amanda Bornais, BS, RVTClinical Program CoordinatorThe Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
Sal LaRusso, MEd.Chief Sonographer/Senior Instructor RadiologyThe Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
Robin Calderwood, RDMS, RDCS, RVTSonographerMt. Nittany Physician’s Group
Jon Downs, PhDDirector of Educational AlternativesState College Area School District
Aubrey RybyinskiSonographer Navix Diagnostix
Katherine McNittNutritionistGraduate Student, Pennsylvania State University
Rich MeyersSenior Research AssociateApplied Research Laboratory Pennsylvania State University
 
South Hills Alumni
Adam Wood, RDMSLead Research Echo TechnologistPinnacle Health
Renee Orlandi, RVTVascular SonographerPinnacle Health
Pam Keebler, RDCSCardiac SonographerCarillion Clinic Roanoke Virginia
Susan Albright, RDMSGeneral SonographerConemaugh Health System

Get Started on Your Diagnostic Medical Sonography Career at South Hills

If you’ve been considering a move to the healthcare and medical imaging field, now is a good time to reach out to South Hills School of Business & Technology. Contact us today to learn more about our Associate of Specialized Technology degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography — or one of our convenient DMS diploma programs — and we can walk you through everything South Hills has to offer.

Ready to enroll in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program?

Apply Now >>