CareerPathways

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does the program take?
Volunteer State Community College offers a 13-month, four-semester certificate program in Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Applicants must already have completed a two-year accredited program in a patient care field or have a bachelors degree.
How much do Diagnostic Medical Sonographers earn?
Newly graduated entry-level sonographers who have not passed their national boards can expect to receive about $20 to $25 an hour in full-time positions. Experienced sonographers can earn $35 an hour or more.
Are national exams mandatory?
The state of Tennessee does not yet mandate sonographers pass national board exams, though several other states require them. Many facilities in Middle Tennessee, however, want only registered sonographers on staff are giving their unregistered sonographers, new and old alike, deadlines for passing their boards to continue employment. As an incentive, many facilities offer raises of $1.50 an hour or more after successful exam completion.
Do I need math?
Yes. Applicants must already have completed college Algebra and college Physics.
Is admission automatic if I am interested?
No. Admission is very competitive, and up to 12 students are admitted each year. The program begins each July.

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