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Sonography Degree Programs in Palm Springs, CA with Course Info

The Palm Springs, CA, area has a couple of schools that offer sonography courses within roughly 50 miles of downtown. Learn about the program options, requirements and admission policies at the colleges to make an informed education decision.

Palm Springs Sonography Schools

There are a couple of schools in the Palm Springs, California, area that have programs in sonography, also called diagnostic medical sonography (DMS). To find out what training in this allied health field involves, look over the clinical experiences and courses required in two colleges' programs. This article also includes a table of statistics for comparison of the institutions.

  • Loma Linda University, a Christian school located in its namesake city, is the option with the smallest student population and the most diverse sonography certificate programs. The university, situated about 50 miles from central Palm Springs, offers training that focuses on cardiac sonography, general sonography and vascular technology.
  • Located around 38 miles from downtown Palm Springs, Mt. San Jacinto Community College is the only school in the area with an associate's degree in DMS.

Comparison of Schools

Cost is often a major factor in choosing a college, and the difference in tuition rates between the profiled schools amounts to well over $25,000. To get specifics on not only costs but also other areas like student enrollment and campus settings, check out the table below.

Loma Linda University Mt. San Jacinto College
School Type 4-year, private not-for-profit 2-year, public
Total Enrollment (2014) 1,189* 14,580*
Campus Setting Large suburb Midsize suburb
Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2015-2016) $29,520* $1,386 in-state; $7,656 out-of-state*
% of Undergraduate Students Receiving Financial Aid (2014) 52%* 80%*
Acceptance Rate (2014) N/A - School doesn't admit full-time, first-time students N/A - Open admission
Retention Rate (2014) N/A 68% full-time*
Graduation Rate for Students Who Began in 2008 N/A 24%*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

Loma Linda University

To enroll in the sonography programs offered at this school, students need to have already completed an associate's or bachelor's degree program. Allied health program graduates are also accepted. In addition, students must be CPR-certified and complete 8 hours of sonography observation. Prerequisite courses include college algebra, anatomy, physiology, health care fundamentals, basic physics and medical terminology.

In addition to classroom-based training, sonography students are required to complete clinical work at affiliated health care facilities. The sonography certificate programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

Cardiac Sonography Certificate

This 12-month program was created for individuals who are interested in taking the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography's (ARDMS) certification exam to become a Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer. Students learn about echocardiography equipment and scanning techniques, as well as the basics of anatomy and common diseases related to the heart. In addition, a course on Christian health care perspectives and ethics is required. Graduates are prepared to perform diagnostic scans of the heart and cardiac systems.

Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Vascular Technology Certificate

This 2-year program prepares graduates to take the ARDMS Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer and Registered Vascular Sonographer certification exams. Students are trained to perform ultrasound screenings in gynecological and obstetric areas, and to apply medical imaging techniques to other organs as well, such as the pancreas, liver, spleen and gallbladder. Courses also cover ultrasound physics and instrumentation, neurosonography and Christian health care ethics.

Mt. San Jacinto College

Students interested in this school's sonography program must pass prerequisite courses in human physiology and anatomy, algebra, physics and communications. Sonography theoretical concepts are taught in the classroom and clinical work provides participants with professional skills development. This school's program is accredited by CAAHEP and after graduating from the program and completing a year of related work, students qualify to take the ARDMS certification exams.

Associate of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography

Participants must complete 60 semester units plus 24 semester units of general education courses. Courses include related medical terminology, ultrasound physics and instrumentation, DMS fundamentals, pathophysiology, sectional imaging, ultrasound pathology and patient care techniques. Students must also pass courses in abdomen, obstretric/gynecology and vascular scanning. Before graduation, 25 semester units of clinical experience must be completed. This degree is not transferable to a 4-year university.

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