How to Enroll in the Right Ultrasound Technician College near Prescott Valley Arizona
Once you have decided to pursue an ultrasound technician degree near Prescott Valley AZ, it’s time to begin the process of choosing a college. First, you have to find the right program that will furnish the proper education to become a qualified professional. And since some states do mandate that sonographers be either certified or licensed, depending on your residence you may also need to be prepared to pass a certification or licensing exam. So it’s very important that you research each college in order to evaluate and compare your options. But just where does one begin? Most students will start by searching for schools that are within commuting distance of their residences and then by comparing tuition. Naturally cost and location need to be considered when making a decision, but there are other important factors also. For example, if the ultrasound technician schools are accredited or if they offer internships. These and other qualifiers will be addressed more in detail later in this article. But first, let’s review what an ultrasound tech does and the credentials and online training options that are offered.
Ultrasound Tech Job Description
There are more than one acceptable titles for ultrasound techs (technicians). They are also called sonogram techs, diagnostic medical sonographers (or just sonographers) and ultrasound technologists. No matter what their title is, they all have the same primary job function, which is to perform diagnostic ultrasound techniques on patients. Although a number of techs practice as generalists there are specializations within the field, for instance in pediatrics and cardiology. Most work in Prescott Valley AZ clinics, hospitals, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. Common daily work functions of a sonogram tech may consist of:
- Preserving records of patient medical histories and specifics of each procedure
- Counseling patients by explaining the procedures and answering questions
- Readying the ultrasound machines for use and then cleaning and recalibrating them
- Transferring patients to treatment rooms and ensuring their comfort
- Using equipment while minimizing patient exposure to sound waves
- Assessing results and identifying need for further testing
Ultrasound techs must regularly assess the safety and performance of their machines. They also are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct as medical practitioners. In order to sustain that level of professionalism and remain current with medical knowledge, they are required to complete continuing education training on a regular basis.
Sonogram Tech Degrees Available
Ultrasound tech students have the option to acquire either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree will typically require around 18 months to 2 years to complete depending on the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at as long as 4 years to complete. Another alternative for individuals who have already earned a college degree is a post graduate certificate program. If you have earned a Bachelor’s Degree in any major or an Associate Degree in a relevant health field, you can instead choose a certificate program that will require only 12 to 18 months to complete. One thing to keep in mind is that the majority of ultrasound technician schools do have a clinical training element as part of their curriculum. It often may be satisfied by taking part in an internship program which many colleges sponsor through Prescott Valley AZ hospitals and clinics. After you have graduated from one of the certificate or degree programs, you will then need to comply with the certification or licensing prerequisites in Arizona or whatever state you elect to work in.
Online Sonogram Tech Classes
As earlier discussed, almost all sonogram technician colleges have a clinical component to their programs. So while you can obtain a certificate or degree online, a significant part of the training will be either conducted in an on-campus laboratory or at a sponsored off-campus facility. Clinical training can often be satisfied through an internship at a local Prescott Valley AZ outpatient clinic, hospital or family practice. However the rest of the training and classes can be attended online in your Prescott Valley home. This is especially beneficial for those individuals that keep working while earning their degrees. In addition online colleges are frequently more affordable than on-campus options. Costs for commuting and study materials may be reduced also. But just as with any ultrasound tech program you are looking at, make sure that the online school you choose is accredited. Among the most highly respected accrediting organizations is the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Accreditation is particularly crucial for licensing, certification and job placement (more on accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to attend classes away from the classroom in the comfort of your own home, then an online degree could be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Sonogram Tech Schools
Once you have determined the type of degree or certificate that you would like to earn, you can begin the process of evaluating and comparing ultrasound technician schools. You will first probably want to choose whether you would rather access classes online or commute to a school campus in the Prescott Valley AZ area. Naturally location will be significant if you decide on the latter, and the cost of tuition undoubtedly will be an important qualifier also. But there are additional factors that you should also take into consideration, for instance if the colleges are accredited and if they offer internships. So in order to carry out your due diligence so that you can arrive at your ultimate selection, following are several questions that you need ask each ultrasound tech school before deciding.
Are the Sonogram Tech Colleges Accredited? A large number of ultrasound technician schools have earned some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. Even so, it’s still crucial to confirm that the school and program are accredited. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations in the field of sonography is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS). Programs receiving accreditation from the JRC-DMS have undergone a detailed assessment of their teachers and educational materials. If the school is online it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with guaranteeing a superior education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial aid and student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And numerous Prescott Valley AZ employers will only hire graduates of an accredited school for entry-level openings.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask if the sonogram tech schools you are assessing have relationships with Prescott Valley AZ clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to receive hands on training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a means to fulfill the clinical training requirement for the majority of programs. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Prescott Valley medical community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Help available? You will undoubtedly wish to hit the ground running after graduating, but finding that first job in a new field can be difficult without help. Ask if the ultrasound tech schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have large networks and great relationships with Arizona healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are highly regarded and sought after.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the school they decide on will have to be within driving distance of their Prescott Valley AZ residence. Individuals who have opted to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are reviewing what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the sonogram tech program also.
Does the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the ultrasound tech program you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Prescott Valley AZ area, verify that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in an Ultrasound Tech Program near Prescott Valley AZ?
If you are considering a Sonography Tech School near Prescott Valley Arizona, following is some interesting background information about the location of your new school campus.
Prescott Valley, Arizona
Prescott Valley is a town located in Yavapai County, Arizona, United States, about 8 miles east of Prescott, which it has surpassed in growth. Prescott Valley was the seventh fastest-growing place among all cities and towns in Arizona between 1990 and 2000, with a current population (October 2016) of about 45,500 residents.
The Walker party discovered gold along Lynx Creek in 1863. The Lynx Creek placers went on to produce a recorded 29,000 troy ounces (900 kg) of gold. Estimates of actual production range up to 80,000 troy ounces (2,500 kg), which would be worth about $108 million at 2017 prices.
Prescott Valley, formerly known as Lonesome Valley, was settled by ranchers in the 1880s, raising beef to supply the miners and new settlers. The Fain family, pioneer ranchers, still ranch in the valley.
Thomas Gibson Barlow-Massicks arrived in the area in the early 1890s and built the historic "castle" that still stands in Fain Park. Massicks had a hydraulic gold mining operation in Lynx Creek Canyon and built the company mining camp of Massicks, Arizona just east of his Victorian home, the castle. The fireplace with chimney just inside the castle's fence is all that remains of the Massicks store. Massicks accidentally shot himself and died in April 1899 at the age of 37. In the 1930s, there was a gold dredging operation, the Doodle Bug Diggings, farther east in Lynx Creek Canyon.
Find the Right Ultrasound Tech Education Prescott Valley AZ
Picking the ideal sonographer degree or certificate program is a crucial first step to initiating a rewarding new profession delivering diagnostic services to patients. Ultrasound technician colleges require that you have earned a high school diploma or a GED. Apart from meeting academic standards, you need to be in at least fairly good physical health, capable of standing for extended periods and able to routinely lift weights of 50 pounds or more, as is it frequently necessary to adjust patients and move heavy machinery. Other helpful skills include technical proficiency, the ability to keep levelheaded when faced with an angry or anxious patient and the ability to converse clearly and compassionately. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Ultrasound Tech Education. However, as we have covered in this post, there are multiple questions that you need to ask each college you are reviewing. This holds true whether you choose an online degree or travel to the school campus to attend classes. And by asking the right questions so that you can assess each program, you can narrow down your choices until you are left with the best school for your education. And with the right training, dedication and determination to succeed, you can realize your objective to practice as an sonographer in Prescott Valley AZ.
Other Ultrasound Locations in Arizona
Business Results 1 - 10 of 8