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Online Master’s Degree in Ultrasound

Ultrasound technology uses high-frequency sound waves to provide an image of body tissue. While ultrasounds are most often thought of during pregnancy they also have many other diagnostic uses in healthcare. A masters degree in ultrasound is a good fit for current sonographers who would like to transition into teaching at the college level, or for those who would like to expand their knowledge base in diagnostic medical ultrasound. While these types of master’s degrees are commonly offered in a traditional, campus-based format, there is increased interest in accredited online masters programs in ultrasound in which didactic course work takes place online, and lab and clinical work takes place on campus or nearby healthcare settings. Traditional or online masters programs in ultrasound take about two years to complete, although program length will vary by university, how many classes a student takes per semester or term, and if the student is required to complete prerequisites before beginning the program.

Classes for an Online Masters Degree in Ultrasound

A master degree in ultrasound often requires the completion of courses in advanced vascular, cardiac, and general ultrasound techniques. While theory and research in ultrasound is addressed, the primary focus is still on standard and advanced ultrasound techniques. Students also complete classes that build their skills in clinical leadership. A few classes you may encounter in a traditional or online masters degree program in ultrasound include:

  • Ultrasound Physics
  • Advanced Anatomy and Physiology for Health Professions
  • Abdominal Sonometry
  • Adult Cardiac Ultrasound
  • OB/GYN Ultrasound

The best online masters degree programs in ultrasound always incorporate campus-based lab work. These opportunities allow students to sharpen their skills in various ultrasound techniques and learn from experienced professionals in the field. Nearly all programs require a clinical externship in which a student must complete supervised training in the field and report to a clinical coordinator.

A Career as a Graduate with an Online Masters Degree in Ultrasound

The most common careers for those with master’s degrees in ultrasound include diagnostic medical sonographers and related technologists, as well as ultrasound educators. An associate or bachelor’s degree is all that is required to enter the field of diagnostic medical sonography, although some states require licensure and most employers prefer to hire sonographers who are professionally certified, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). However, individuals may choose master’s programs to qualify for better jobs or to transition into teaching. Diagnostic medical sonographers can expect good job prospects well into the future, as employment in the field is projected to grow 44% between 2010 and 2020, according to the BLS.

Employment of postsecondary teachers is expected to grow by 17% from 2010 to 2020. Community colleges and trade and technical schools often hire individuals with master’s degrees and significant experience in the field to teach in their diagnostic medical sonography programs. Healthcare professionals who are passionate about ultrasound technology may find teaching the next generation of sonographers rewarding and a welcome change of pace after working in ultrasound for many years.

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