How to Become a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer in Illinois. Explore medical imaging education and career opportunities near you.
Pursuing your education at one of the ultrasound technician schools in Illinois will help to put you in a position for a solid education combined with the ability to earn an above average salary. Job outlook is high as well. There were over 3,000 working sonographers in Illinois in 2019, and this number is expected to increase by 12.1% by 2026 (CareerOneStop). In addition, Illinois has the 5th highest level of employment for techs in the nation. We will go into each of these topics later, as well as connect you with accredited schools where you can receive the education you need to become a sonographer.
Take a moment to request information from a school of interest and speak with a representative to make sure that their programs align with your long-term career goals.
Connect with Educational Programs near You
CAAHEP Accredited Diagnostic Sonography Programs
A school or program becomes accredited once it has undergone rigorous review by an outside agency. This is a testament to the quality of the education that the institution provides. The primary accreditation body in sonography is the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). A school or program must meet the CAAHEP DMS Accreditation Standards and Guidelines by passing a series of program reviews, including a self-study review and a site visit, to become accredited.
The successful completion of a recognized Illinois DMS program is the most comprehensive and direct way students can earn eligibility to sit for the ARDMS Sonography Principles & Instrumentation (SPI) exam, as well as a specialty exam. Passing both of their exams will allow you to receive professional certification in diagnostic medical sonography.
If you’re currently enrolled in or have been accepted to a CAAHEP accredited program, you’re also eligible to apply for the UltrasoundSchoolsInfo semi-annual $1,000 scholarship. Click here to learn more.
Accredited Ultrasound Technician Schools in Illinois in 2020
The following ultrasound technician schools in Illinois have all been accredited by CAAHEP and offer degrees or certificates in diagnostic medical sonography as of August 2020:
|Institution Name||Location||Program Director||Programs|
|College of DuPage||425 Fawell Blvd
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137
|Melissa McKirdie BA, RDMS, RVT||General, Vascular|
|Harper College||1200 W Algonquin Rd
Palatine, IL 60067-7398
|Kelly Hamontree MS, RDCS||General, Cardiac|
|John A Logan College||700 Logan College Drive
Carterville, IL 62918
|Karen Kasban BA, RDCS||Cardiac|
|Joliet Junior College||1215 Houbolt Rd
Joliet, IL 60431
|Elena Miller MS, RDMS, RVT||General|
|Northwestern Memorial Hospital||541 N. Fairbanks Ct
Chicago, IL 60611
|Casey Clarke BSRT, RT(R), RDMS, RDCS||General|
|Rush University||600 S. Paulina St
Chicago, IL 60612
|Jacqueline Ortiz MA, RVT||Vascular|
|Southern Illinois University||1365 Douglas Drive
Carbondale, IL 62901
|Shannon Anderson MSEd, RDMS, RVT, RT(R)||General|
|Triton College||2000 Fifth Avenue
River Grove, IL 60171
|Debra Krukowski BS, RDMS, RT(R)||General|
Ultrasound Tech Certification Requirements in Illinois
The state of Illinois does not legally require certification to be an ultrasound technician. However, most employers prefer or require professional certification by the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS).
The only way to earn ARDMS certification is by taking and passing their exam. In order to qualify, you must meet their prerequisites. Once you have, you can take the exam at one of the various locations in Illinois:
- 425 N Martingale Rd #220, Schaumburg, IL 60173
- 1827 Walden Office Square Suite #540, Schaumburg, IL 60173
- 2301 22nd St, Oak Brook, IL 60523
- 3000 Professional Dr, Springfield, IL 62703
- 200 W Adams St # 1105, Chicago, IL 60606
- 111 E Wacker Dr #515, Chicago, IL 60601
- 4507 N Sterling Ave # 301, Peoria, IL 61615
- 103 Airway Dr, Marion, IL 62959
Additional Certification Information
How Much Do Ultrasound Techs Make in Illinois?
According the the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average annual salary for sonographers in Illinois is $75,420 in 2019,* which is right around the national average. Those at the top of their profession in the 90th percentile earned a mean annual salary of $100,970,* while those towards the bottom in the 10th percentile earned $52,380* a year in Illinois.
Where you work, your years of experience, and whether or not you are ARDMS certified all directly affect how much you can earn. For example, those who work in outpatient care centers earn more than their counterparts. In addition, an Associate’s Degree is required for entry-level sonography positions where you can earn a base wage, while receiving a Bachelor’s Degree will open you up to more high paying positions.
Location can greatly impact your salary. The following table shows how much ultrasound techs earn in different areas of Illinois:*
|Metropolitan Area||Mean Salary|
Medical Imaging Organizations
It’s common to find organizations designed to benefit the members in a specific profession. In sonography, there are national and state-level associations that may help you in a variety of ways. Networking opportunities, continuing medical education (CME) credits, and helping you stay current on the ever-changing technologies are some of the reasons why you may consider joining an organization. Most have annual membership fee requirements.
Below are a few of the organizations available to medical imagers in Illinois:
- Illinois State Society of Radiologic Technologists (ISSRT)
- Illinois Health and Hospital Association (IHA)
- Illinois Primary Healthcare Association
Ultrasound Technician Schools in Chicago
Chicago, sometimes referred to as “the city that works”, has a positive employment outlook. The Chicago/Naperville/Elgin metro area has the 3rd highest employment level in the country for ultrasound technicians (BLS, 2019). In addition, the average annual salary for registered sonographers in the Chicago area is $77,900.*
Pursuing your degree at a sonography school in Chicago should pay off with good employment opportunities, as health care has been identified as the third fastest growing industry in the city.
There are two CAAHEP accredited sonography programs in Chicago: Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Rush University.
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Individuals
It is estimated that almost 21% of individuals in the United States speak a language other than English at home, according the the US 2020 Census. As a result, the healthcare industry is concerned that Limited English Proficient (LEP) individuals, who are the fastest growing population in the country (US Department of Education), may not be receiving optimal health care in the US.
The 1.2 million citizens in Illinois who speak English as a 2nd or 3rd language may have difficulty understanding the information presented to them by their physician, nurse, or other healthcare provider. Healthcare providers who speak a second language may have increased job opportunities available to them because Illinois has traditionally been a destination-state for immigrants, and the demand for bilingual healthcare workers is increasing.
- Getting started
- Sonographer overview
- What makes a great sonographer
- Allied Health Careers & Education
- Other jobs in healthcare
*Conditions in your area may vary.