Echocardiography programs are available at community colleges, technical schools, teaching hospitals and universities. An associate's degree program may prepare a graduate for entry-level employment.
Schools With Echocardiogram Technician Programs
At these schools, students can train to become echocardiogram technicians:
|College/University||Institution Type||Location||Degrees Offered||Tuition (2015-2016)*|
|Anne Arundel Community College||Arnold, MD||2-year, Public||Certificate||$4,464 in-district, $7,374 in-state, $12,024 out-of-state|
|City College of San Francisco||San Francisco, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate||$1,598 in-state, $7,554 out-of-state|
|College of DuPage||Glen Elyn, IL||2-year, Public||Certificate||$5,275 in-district, $10,885 in-state, $12,985 out-of-state|
|Columbus State Community College||Columbus, OH||2-year, Public||Certificate||$3,808 in-state, $8,430 out-of-state|
|Hudson Valley Community College||Troy, NY||2-year, Public||Certificate||$5,188 in-state, $13,388 out-of-state|
|Ivy Tech Community College||Indianapolis, IN||2-year, Public||Certificate||$4,115 in-state, $7,992 out-of-state|
|Joliet Junior College||Joliet, IL||2-year, Public||Certificate||$3,450 in-district, $10,508 in-state, $11,187 out-of-state|
|Lansing Community College||Lansing, MI||2-year, Public||Certificate||$3,020 in-district, $5,660 in-state, $8,300 out-of-state|
|Orange Coast College||Costa Mesa, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate||$1,184 in-state, $6,584 out-of-state|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics
School Selection Criteria
Here are some considerations for students in this field:
- Look for programs that allow them to focus their studies on echocardiography.
- Find out if the program is affiliated with regional hospitals and clinics, which can provide hands-on training and networking opportunities.
- Try to find information about the program's reputation, as well as the faculty and the school itself.
- Make sure you have completed the necessary prerequisites for admission, which can include college-level courses or previous observational experience.
Echocardiography Certificate Program
Schools that offer echocardiography degree programs may include the core courses in a shorter program which confers a certificate of completion. In some cases, college credit may be applied from the certificate program toward a degree. Programs typically provide practical experience through lab work and clinical practice using 4-D technology, noninvasive diagnostic techniques and echocardiographic analysis. Some programs have no prerequisites, though others may require applicants to have previous experience, a degree or professional credentials.
Associate Degree Programs in Echocardiography
Typically a 2-year program, courses are often designed to prepare a graduate for professional certification. Some schools offer an Associate of Applied Science degree, which is often considered a terminal degree, while others develop a curriculum that allows a graduate to transfer to a bachelor's degree program for advanced studies. Core courses introduce students to performance and monitoring of echocardiogram procedures, and students typically must complete one or more clinical rotations on-campus or at an affiliated medical center.
Bachelor of Science in Echocardiography
A bachelor's program often exposes students to basic echocardiography methods, but may also include specialized training in neonatal, pediatric and stress echocardiogram procedures. Some programs may include emerging technologies, such as speckle tracking and tissue Doppler imaging within the curriculum. These programs often require extensive clinical practicums and a research project.
There are multiple undergraduate-level options for aspiring echocardiogram technicians. Over the course of a program, students can expect to prepare for this job by taking medicine-focused courses and getting real-world training in the field.