Selecting an Ultrasound Technician Training Program Westbury New York
Now that you have made a decision to pursue an ultrasound technician degree near Westbury NY, it’s time to start the process of selecting a college. To begin with, you need to find the right program that will furnish the appropriate instruction to become a skilled professional. And because a number of states do require that sonographers be either certified or licensed, depending on your residence you may also need preparation to pass a licensing or certification examination. So it’s very important that you investigate each school in order to assess and compare your alternatives. But exactly where does one start? A number of students will start by searching for colleges that are within driving distance of their residences and then by comparing tuition. Naturally cost and location need to be considered when making a decision, but there are additional important factors as well. For instance, if the ultrasound technician schools are accredited or if they sponsor internships. These and additional qualifications will be covered more in depth later in this article. But to start with, let’s review what an ultrasound tech does and the credentials and online education programs that are offered.
Ultrasound Tech Occupation Description
There are more than one professional titles for ultrasound techs (technicians). They are also called ultrasound technologists, sonogram techs, and diagnostic medical sonographers (or just sonographers). No matter what their title is, they all have the same primary job description, which is to implement diagnostic ultrasound procedures on patients. Even though many work as generalists there are specialties within the profession, for instance in pediatrics and cardiology. Most work in Westbury NY hospitals, clinics, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. Typical daily work duties of a sonogram tech may involve:
- Preserving 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 cleaning and re-calibrating them
- Escorting patients to treatment rooms and making them comfortable
- Using equipment while limiting patient exposure to sound waves
- Reviewing the results and determining need for supplemental testing
Sonographers must routinely assess the performance and safety of their machines. They also must adhere to a high ethical standard and code of conduct as medical practitioners. So as to sustain that degree of professionalism and stay current with medical knowledge, they are mandated to enroll in continuing education training on an ongoing basis.
Sonogram Technician Degrees Offered
Ultrasound tech enrollees have the option to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree will usually involve around 18 months to 2 years to complete based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will require more time at up to 4 years to finalize. Another option for individuals who have previously 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 medical sector, you can instead choose a certificate program that will take only 12 to 18 months to finish. One thing to keep in mind is that most sonographer colleges do have a clinical training element as part of their course of study. It can often be fulfilled by participating in an internship program which many colleges set up through Westbury NY clinics and hospitals. Once you have graduated from any of the degree or certificate programs, you will then have to satisfy the licensing or certification requirements in New York or whichever state you choose to practice in.
Questions to Ask Ultrasound Technician Schools
After you have determined which degree or certificate that you would like to earn, you can begin the procedure of reviewing and comparing sonogram technician colleges. You will first probably want to decide whether you will access classes online or travel to a college campus in the Westbury NY area. Of course location will be critical if you select the latter, and the cost of tuition no doubt will be an initial qualification as well. But there are additional things that you should also take into account, for example if the programs are accredited and if they provide internship programs. So in order to complete your due diligence so that you can make your ultimate selection, following are a few questions that you need ask each ultrasound tech program before deciding.
Are the Sonogram Technician Schools Accredited? Most sonogram tech schools have earned some form of accreditation, whether regional or national. However, it’s still imperative to confirm that the school and program are accredited. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies in the field of sonography is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS). Schools receiving accreditation from the JRC-DMS have undergone an extensive review of their instructors and educational materials. If the program is online it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets online or distance learning. All accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. In addition to ensuring a superior education, accreditation will also help in securing financial assistance and student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited schools. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And numerous Westbury NY health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry-level openings.
Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the sonogram technician colleges you are reviewing have partnerships with Westbury NY clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to obtain practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a means to satisfy the practical training requirement for most programs. As a secondary benefit, they may help students and graduates form professional connections in the Westbury healthcare community and assist with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will undoubtedly want to hit the ground running after graduation, but getting that initial job in a new field can be difficult without assistance. Ask if the ultrasound tech programs you are assessing have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good sign that the schools have sizable networks and great relationships with New York healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their graduates are well regarded and sought after.
Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the school they select will have to be within driving distance of their Westbury NY home. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are looking at what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the sonogram technician program as well.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the ultrasound tech college you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Westbury NY area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family obligations.
Online Sonographer Programs
As previously mentioned, almost all sonogram tech colleges have a practical requirement to their programs. So although you can receive a certificate or degree online, a substantial portion of the training will be either held in an on campus lab or at a sponsored off-campus facility. Practical training can usually be satisfied through an internship at a local Westbury NY outpatient clinic, hospital or family practice. However the rest of the classes and training may be accessed online in your Westbury home. This is particularly beneficial for those students that continue working while obtaining their degrees. In addition online colleges are frequently less expensive than on-campus alternatives. Expenditures for study materials and commuting can be lessened also. But just as with any sonography school you are considering, check that the online program you enroll in is accredited. One of 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 learn away from the classroom in the convenience of your own home, then online classes may be the right option for you.
Considering Enrolling in an Ultrasound Tech School near Westbury NY?
If you are considering a Sonography Tech School in the Westbury New York area, following is some interesting history and background information about the location of your new school campus.
Westbury, New York
Westbury is a village in Nassau County, New York, United States. The population was 15,146 at the 2010 census. The Incorporated Village of Westbury is in the Town of North Hempstead. It is located about 18 miles (40 km) east of Manhattan.
Westbury's Jericho Turnpike, which provides connection to Mineola and Syosset as well as to the Long Island Expressway (or LIE), was once a trail used by the Massapequa Indians. As far back as the 17th century, it served as a divider between the early homesteads north of the Turnpike and the great plains to its south. Today, it serves as a state highway complex.
In 1657, Captain John Seaman purchased 12,000 acres (49 km2) from the Algonquian Tribe of the Massapequa Indians. In 1658, Richard Stites and his family built their homestead in this area. Theirs was the only family farm until an English Quaker, Edmond Titus, and his son Samuel, joined them and settled in an area of Hempstead Plains known to us today as the Village of Westbury. In 1675 Henry Willis, also an English Quaker, named the area "Westbury", after Westbury, Wiltshire, his hometown in England. Other Quaker families who were also seeking a place to freely express their religious beliefs joined the Tituses and Willises. The first Society of Friends meeting house was built in 1700. The early history of Westbury and that of the Friends are so interconnected that they are essentially the same.
Select the Right Ultrasound Tech School Westbury NY
Enrolling in the right ultrasound tech degree or certificate program is an important first step to commencing a gratifying new profession providing diagnostic services to patients. Sonographer schools require that you have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. Along with meeting academic requirements, you must be in at least reasonably good physical health, able to stand for prolonged durations with the ability to regularly lift weights of fifty pounds or more, as is it often necessary to adjust patients and move heavy machinery. Additional beneficial skills include technical proficiency, the ability to stay calm when faced with an anxious or angry patient and the ability to converse clearly and compassionately. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of questions that you should ask each program you are looking at. This holds true whether you enroll in an online degree or drive to the school campus to attend classes. And by asking the proper questions so that you can compare each program, you can narrow down your options until you are left with the best program for your education. And with the proper training, dedication and motivation to succeed, you can accomplish your goal to work as an ultrasound tech in Westbury NY.
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