Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

What is a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer?

A diagnostic medical sonographer uses specialed equipment that utilizes sound waves to generate images of the body. This technology is commonly referred to as ultrasound, and you will often hear this career referred to as just a sonographer, or and ultrasound technician.

With the increase in need for ultrasound imaging as our population gets older the opportunity in this field is very good. In fact, the Bureau of Labor and Statistics expects this field to grow by 14% over the next ten year. And with a median salary of $72,510, this is a career anyone with an interest in the medical profession should consider.

And while you can find other jobs that require less schooling, you won’t need to spend a full 4-years getting a bachelor’s degree to get into this field. That said, most people will have an associate’s degree or some other certificate degree that takes at least 1-2 years to complete.

What is the Salary?

Salary Estimates

Median Salary

$72,510
$43,506
$72,510
$116,016

Regardless of where in the country you are looking for a job, Diagnostic Medical Sonographer’s tend to earn a good living relative to the national average.

You will find them consistently earning in the 6 figures in high cost-of-living areas of the country like California. But no matter where you end up, for a profession that you can start with relatively low upfront costs, it’s a great option to consider.

Related: Find a New Career at 40

Work Environment

Employment 2018

72,900

Employment 2028

87,100

Change

20%

Self-Employed

1%

There are multiple work environments you may find yourself in as a diagnostic medical sonographer with hospitals and general medical facilities being the most likely workplace. Other places you will find opportunities are at physician’s offices, diagnostic laboratories, outpatient care centers.

If you are looking for the highest paying of these options, you’ll want to focus on outpatient care centers. They have a mean annual wage of $93,060 which is significantly higher than the average across the entire spectrum of work environments.

What Education and Experience is Needed?

Education Level

Associate’s degree

Related work experience

None

On-the-job training

None

If decide you want to become a diagnostic medical sonographer, there are a few different paths you can take. The most common is to complete an associate’s degree and get certified following completion. Some sonographers will also get a bachelor’s degree, and in fewer cases all that is required is a certificate degree.

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Source: Bureau of Labor and Statistics

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