How to Select the Right Ultrasound Tech School near Lake Havasu City Arizona
Now that you have made a decision to obtain an ultrasound technician degree near Lake Havasu City AZ, it’s time to start the process of choosing a school. To begin with, you need to find the ideal program that will provide the appropriate training to become a qualified professional. And since a number of states do mandate that sonographers be either licensed or certified, depending on where you will practice you may also need to be prepared to pass a licensing or certification exam. So it’s extremely important that you investigate each school so that you can assess and compare your alternatives. But just where does one begin? Most prospective students will start by searching for colleges that are within commuting distance of their residences and then by comparing tuition. Certainly location and cost should be considered when arriving at a decision, but there are additional significant factors also. For example, if the ultrasound technician schools are accredited or if they provide internships. These and additional qualifiers will be discussed more in detail later in this article. But first, let’s discuss what a sonogram tech does and the degrees and online education options that are available.
Sonogram Tech Occupation Summary
There are several professional titles for ultrasound techs (technicians). They are also referred to as ultrasound technologists, sonogram techs, and diagnostic medical sonographers (or just sonographers). Regardless of name, they all have the same basic job description, which is to implement diagnostic ultrasound procedures on patients. Even though a number of techs practice as generalists there are specializations within the profession, for instance in cardiology and pediatrics. The majority work in Lake Havasu City AZ hospitals, clinics, outpatient diagnostic imaging centers and even private practices. Common daily job duties of an ultrasound technician may include:
- Maintaining records of patient case histories and specifics of each procedure
- Counseling patients by explaining the procedures and answering questions
- Readying the ultrasound machines for testing and then sterilizing and recalibrating them
- Transferring patients to treatment rooms and ensuring their comfort
- Operating equipment while minimizing patient exposure to sound waves
- Reviewing the results and identifying necessity for supplemental testing
Sonographers must frequently gauge the performance and safety of their equipment. They also are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct as health practitioners. In order to sustain that level of professionalism and remain current with medical knowledge, they are mandated to complete continuing education programs on a regular basis.
Ultrasound Tech Degrees Offered
Sonogram technician students have the choice to acquire either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree will usually take about 18 months to 2 years to accomplish dependent on the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will require more time at up to 4 years to finalize. Another option for those who have previously received a college degree is a post graduate certificate program. If you have received a Bachelor’s Degree in any major or an Associate Degree in a relevant medical sector, you can enroll in a certificate program that will take only 12 to 18 months to complete. Something to keep in mind is that the majority of sonographer schools do have a practical training element as part of their course of study. It can often be fulfilled by taking part in an internship program which numerous schools organize with Lake Havasu City AZ hospitals and clinics. After you have graduated from one of the certificate or degree programs, you will then need to fulfill the licensing or certification requirements in Arizona or whichever state you elect to practice in.
Online Sonogram Tech Degrees
As previously mentioned, nearly all ultrasound tech schools have a clinical component to their programs. So although you can receive a certificate or degree online, a substantial part of the training will be either conducted in an on-campus lab or at an approved off-campus facility. Practical training can typically be fulfilled by means of an internship at a local Lake Havasu City AZ outpatient clinic, hospital or private practice. However the balance of the training and classes may be attended online in your Lake Havasu City home. This is particularly beneficial for those individuals that keep working while earning their degrees. Plus online programs are often less costly than on-campus options. Expenses for commuting and study materials may be lessened also. But similarly as with any sonographer program you are looking at, make sure that the online school you enroll in is accredited. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies is the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Accreditation is especially important for certification, licensing and job placement (more on accreditation later). So if you are disciplined enough to attend classes outside of the classroom in the convenience of your own home, then an online degree may be the ideal choice for you.
Points to Ask Sonography Colleges
When you have decided on the type of certificate or degree that you would like to obtain, you can start the procedure of evaluating and comparing sonogram technician schools. You will first probably want to decide whether you would rather access classes online or travel to a college campus in the Lake Havasu City AZ area. Naturally location will be important if you select the latter, and the price of tuition undoubtedly will be an initial qualifier as well. But there are other variables that you should also take into account, such as if the colleges are accredited and if they offer internships. Therefore in order to carry out your due diligence so that you can arrive at your final selection, following are a few questions that you may want to ask each sonographer school before deciding.
Are the Ultrasound Tech Programs Accredited? The majority of ultrasound tech schools have obtained some type of accreditation, whether national or regional. Nevertheless, it’s still crucial to confirm that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly regarded accrediting agencies in the field of sonography is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS). Programs earning accreditation from the JRC-DMS have gone through an extensive review of their instructors and educational materials. If the college is online it might also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. All accrediting organizations should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. In addition to ensuring a quality education, accreditation will also help in getting financial assistance and student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Lake Havasu City AZ health facilities will only hire graduates of an accredited program for entry-level jobs.
Are Internships Offered? Ask if the ultrasound tech colleges you are reviewing have relationships with Lake Havasu City AZ clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a way to fulfill the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Lake Havasu City healthcare community and assist with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will undoubtedly want to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that first job in a new field can be challenging without support. Ask if the ultrasound tech programs you are assessing have job placement programs and what their placement rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good sign that the schools have sizable networks and good relationships with Arizona healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are well regarded and sought after.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the college they pick will have to be within commuting distance of their Lake Havasu City AZ home. Students who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the sonogram tech program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the ultrasound tech school you finally choose can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Lake Havasu City AZ area, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in an Ultrasound Tech Program near Lake Havasu City AZ?
If you are considering a Sonography Tech School near Lake Havasu City Arizona, following is some interesting background information about the location of your new school campus.
Lake Havasu City, Arizona
Lake Havasu City is a city in Mohave County, Arizona, United States. According to 2010 census, the population of the city was 52,527 people. It is served by Lake Havasu City Airport. Lake Havasu City is geographically isolated from the other cities in Mohave County and is the southernmost community of the Las Vegas–Henderson, NV–AZ combined statistical area.
The community first started as an Army Air Corps rest camp, called "Site Six". during World War II on the shores of Lake Havasu. In 1958, American businessman Robert P. McCulloch purchased 3,353 acres (13.57 km2) of property on the east side of the lake along Pittsburgh Point, the peninsula that eventually would be transformed into "the Island".
After four years of planning, McCulloch Properties acquired another 13,000 acres of federal land in the surrounding area. Lake Havasu City was established on September 30, 1963, by a resolution of the Mohave County Board of Supervisors as the Lake Havasu Irrigation and Drainage District, making it a legal entity. (The act is referenced in resolution #63-12-1.) The city was incorporated in 1978.
London Bridge crosses a narrow channel that leads from Lake Havasu (a segment of the Colorado River) to Thompson Bay (also on the river). Hoping to attract tourists and prospective buyers of residential lots, McCulloch bought it for US$2.5 million from the City of London when the bridge was replaced in 1968. The bridge was disassembled on contract with Sundt Construction, Tucson, Arizona, and the marked stones were shipped to Lake Havasu City and reassembled by Sundt for another US$7 million. The construction took three years to complete.
Find the Right Ultrasound Diagnostic School Lake Havasu City AZ
Enrolling in the ideal ultrasound technician certificate or degree program is a crucial first step to commencing a gratifying new profession delivering diagnostic services to patients. Sonographer programs require that you have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. Along with satisfying academic standards, you must be in at least reasonably good physical health, capable of standing for extended durations with the ability to routinely lift weights of fifty pounds or more, as is it often necessary to adjust patients and move heavy machines. Other beneficial skills include technical proficiency, the ability to remain collected when faced with an angry or anxious patient and the ability to communicate clearly and compassionately. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Ultrasound Diagnostic School. However, as we have discussed in this post, there are several questions that you need to ask each school you are reviewing. This is true whether you choose an online program or travel to the college campus to attend classes. And by asking the proper questions so that you can assess each program, you can narrow down your choices until you are left with the best program for your education. And with the right training, dedication and determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal to practice as an ultrasound technologist in Lake Havasu City AZ.
Other Ultrasound Locations in Arizona
Business Results 1 - 10 of 6