Learn more about Pennsylvania’s sonography programs for 2023.
Using the power of sound waves, diagnostic medical sonographers (DMS) perform ultrasound imaging procedures on patients, which allows them to capture photos of their internal organs or vascular system. Referring physicians then use these images to diagnose and treat a wide range of conditions, as well as monitor the growth of a fetus.
If you’re considering pursuing a career as an ultrasound tech, the program is rigorous and competitive, but the job can be quite rewarding. The field of Sonography is seeing tremendous growth across the country in part because of the relatively high salary and shorter education and training period. Most starting positions require just an Associate Degree. In Pennsylvania, job growth is predicted to increase by 15% by 2028 (O*Net). We will explore these topics further below, as well as connect you with accredited ultrasound technician schools where you can receive the education you need to become a sonographer.
Connect with Educational Programs near You
CAAHEP Accredited Diagnostic Sonography Programs
There are many factors to consider when choosing a sonography program, but one of the most important is accreditation. For a program to be accredited means that it has been reviewed by an outside agency for the purpose of verifying the quality of the education and training.
The primary accrediting body for sonography programs is the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Graduating from a CAAHEP accredited Pennsylvania school is the most comprehensive and direct way students can qualify 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 Sonography Schools in Pennsylvania in 2023
Explore Pennsylvania’s 14 CAAHEP Accredited DMS Programs as of June 2022.
|Community College of Allegheny County – Boyce Campus Allegheny County Sonography Program
595 Beatty Road
Monroeville, PA 15146
|Students completing an Associate of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography at CCAC have a choice of three tracts: General sonography (which includes abdominal and Ob/Gyn sonography); Cardiac ultrasound; and Vascular ultrasound. All three tracts are CAAHEP accredited. They require between a minimum of 74 and 77 credits to complete.||Successful completion (C of better) of several 100 level math, science, and biology courses are required before admittance. It is also recommended that the applicant has job shadowed in an ultrasound department before applying. Full list of prerequistes can be found here: https://catalog.ccac.edu/content.php?catoid=7&navoid=947.
Students interested in applying should complete the USA assessment test prior to completing the required pre-coursework. More information can be found by calling the testing company at 972-564-3056.
|Program Website: Community College of Allegheny County – Boyce Campus.|
|Crozer-Chester Medical Center One Medical Center Blvd
Upland, PA 1901
|Students will either complete a bachelor’s degree or post-baccalaureate certificate from Widener or their home-institution. General education courses will be completed at Widener University, while coursework pertaining to DMS will be completed at Crozer-Chester Medical Center.||Full time attendance is required, with a five-semester time period given for DMS certificate completion. A grade of B is required in all classes in order to remain in the program. Re-admittance is not allowed.||
Contact the school’s Undergraduate Extended Learning department at firstname.lastname@example.org
Great Lakes Institute of Technology
|“Graduates of the Diagnostic Medical Sonographer (DMS) program who are professionally credentialed as a DMS through the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) will be accepted into the Bachelor of Science in Medical Imaging Sciences degree program at Clarion as a degree completion program. Such individuals will be awarded 60 block-style clinical credits by Clarion within the degree program and then must complete all other academic requirements at Clarion in order to be awarded the degree.”||The program at GLIT is intended for those with no background experience in sonography. A full list of requirements from GLIT can be found at https://glit.edu/admissions.||
Begin the online application process here.
Harrisburg Area Community College
|Students at HACC have the opportunity to earn an Associate of Science degree in General sonography. Successful completion of the program gives students the opportunity to sit for the SP&I, Abdomen, and Ob/Gyn sonography exams from the ARDMS and earn the RDMS credential.||Admissions criteria: HACC has created a downloadable PDF that with all the requirements.||
Applications are available from March 1st through April 15th of each year.
|Lackawanna College Sonography
501 Vine St
Scranton, PA 18509
|Lackawanna College has CAAHEP accredited programs in General, Vascular, and Cardiac sonography. Students can earn an Associate of Science degree in one of the disciplines over a two year period of full time attendance. Classes are required Monday through Friday, with mandatory Saturdays and Summer courses and clinicals.||A maximum of 20 students are accepted into the general program, and 25 for vascular and cardiac. Not all who apply are accepted.||Program website: https://www.lackawanna.edu/academics/allied-health-programs/sonography/|
301 Lake Street
Dallas, PA 18612
|Misericordia offers an 18-month DMS certificate geared towards adult and non-traditional learners. Courses are offered every other weekend with weekday clinical rotations. Instruction is supplemented with simulated lab experiences that are available in the daytime and evening hours. Graduates with receive a certificate of completion with allows them to sit for the ARDMS SP&I, abdominal, and ObGyn sonography exams.||Visit the program website for a full list of perquisites.||Program Website: https://www.misericordia.edu/diagnostic-medical-sonography|
|Mount Aloysius College Mount
7373 Admiral Peary Highway
Cresson, PA 16630
|Students at Mount Aloysius have the opportunity to pursue either an Associate’s degree or a Bachelor’s degree in DMS, depending on their career coals. The CAAHEP accredited Associate’s will prepare the ultrasound technician to sit for the ARDMS exams, with access to state of the art equipment and labs. The Bachelor’s program will build on the learned outcomes of the Associate’s, with the addition of the business and management side of medical imaging.||Program website: https://www.mtaloy.edu/academics/majors-programs/medical-imaging-ultrasonography/|
|Northampton Community College
Northamptom Sonography Program
3835 Green Pond Road
Bethlehem, PA 18020
|NCC offers an Associate in Applied Science in DMS degree to students who are then eligible to sit for the SP & I exam with the ARDMS. The program is designed for individuals looking to qualify for entry level ultrasound technician positions; a degree in allied health is not needed for acceptance into the program.||
Clinicals: There are approximately 1560 clinical hours required. Locations to complete the clinicals are throughout the Lehigh Valley, Poconos, Bucks County, and New Jersey.
The deadline for applying to the sonography program is February 1st of each year.
Program website: http://northampton.smartcatalogiq.com/2019-2020/College-Catalog/Academic-Programs/Health-Sciences-and-Social-Services/Diagnostic-Medical-Sonography-Associate-in-Applied-Science
|Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences
Pennsylvania College Sonography
850 Greenfield Road
Lancaster, PA 17601
|Pac College has a state of the art simulation facility for students to learn first-hand, real-world scanning skills. They offer a DMS Associate of Science degree, which is a two-year, 66 credit program. They also have a certificate program that is available to students who currently hold an associate’s degree or higher.||Prerequisites: Applicants must have completed several courses English, math, and science with a grace of C or better. Find a full list of requirements at https://www.pacollege.edu/admissions/requirements/.||Program website: https://www.pacollege.edu/academics/associate-degrees/diagnostic-medical-sonography-associate-degree/|
|Pittsburgh Career Institute
Pittsburgh Career Institute: Health Care Training
421 Seventh Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
|Earn your AAS at PCI and you’ll be prepared to take the SP&I exam from the ARDMS. Graduates will learn to perform ultrasounds on the abdomen, pelvis, pregnant female pelvis, and superficial structures, and will be equipped for entry-level sonography jobs. The program has been accredited by the CAAHEP for General sonography.||Admissions and requirements: PCI has provided a free, downloadable student handbook.||Program website: https://pci.edu/diagnostic-medical-sonography|
|Reading Hospital School of Health Sciences
1025 Old Wyomissing Rd
Reading, PA 19611
|This dual enrollment admission program offers students simultaneous enrollment in the hospital-based Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program offered at Reading Hospital School of Health Sciences and Alvernia University’s Associate of Science degree.||Completed applications must include all required transcripts, support materials, and standardized test scores, if applicable. After June 10, applications will be processed for the next class.||Program Website: https://reading.towerhealth.org/health-sciences/programs/diagnostic-medical-sonography/|
|South Hills School of Business and Technology
South Hills DMS Training
480 Waupelani Drive
State College, PA 16801
South Hills was first accredited by the CAAHEP in 2009. They currently offer three different accredited sonography programs: a 3-year Associate in Specialized Technology Degree Program; a 2-year Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Plus (DPP); and a 15-month Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional (DMP).
Read our full interview with Program Director, Tricia Turner
Admissions and requirements: http://www.southhills.edu/programs/diagnostic-medical-sonography/
Application: Students apply online at http://www.southhills.edu/application/.
|Thomas Jefferson University DMS Program
901 Walnut St Suite 704
Philadelphia, PA 19107
|Thomas Jefferson University received their CAAHEP accreditation in 1986 for their General sonography program. They now offer bachelor’s degrees in general, vascular, and cardiac sonography. The stated mission of the program is “…to provide a comprehensive education preparing students for entry-level practice in Sonography as competent, caring members of the health care team, cultivating professionalism and life-long learning.“||Admissions and requirements: https://www.jefferson.edu/university/health-professions/departments/programs/health-sciences-programs/faqs.html||Program options: https://www.jefferson.edu/university/health-professions/departments/programs/health-sciences-programs/faqs.html.|
|Westmoreland County Community College
Westmoreland CC DMS
145 Pavilion Lane
Youngwood, PA 15697
|The accredited sonography program at Westmoreland is an Associate in Science degree. Graduates will be prepared to take the ARDMS certification exam and will be eligible for entry-level ultrasound technician jobs.||Program website: https://westmoreland.edu/academics/programs/diagnostic-medical-sonography.html||Application process: Applications must be submitted by January 12 for a Fall start.|
Dr. Traci Fox EdD, RT(R), RDMS, RVT, DMS professor at her alma mater, Thomas Jefferson University
Dr. Traci Fox EdD, RT(R), RDMS, RVT has been a sonographer for over 20 years, but she’s been intrigued by the sciences since grade school.
She is currently a full time Diagnostic Medical Sonography professor at her alma mater, Thomas Jefferson University where she earned her Bachelor and Masters of Science degrees. She later earned her Doctorate in Education from Drexel University. Learn more about the program at TJU in our interview with Dr. Fox.
Ultrasound Tech Certification Requirements in Pennsylvania
Currently, there are no licensure or certification requirements for diagnostic medical sonographers in Pennsylvania. However, receiving an ultrasound tech license can put you ahead of other job candidates since many employers prefer or require certification by the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS).
The ARDMS is an organization provides the most highly regarded certification to sonographers.The only way to earn their certification is by taking and passing their exam. Once you have met the ARDMS’ prerequisites, there are many testing locations where you can take the exam in Pennsylvania:
- 3123 W 12th St suite d, Erie, PA 16505
- 2 Penn Center Blvd # 109, Pittsburgh, PA 15276
- 95 W Beau St, Washington, PA 15301
- 1500 Ardmore Blvd, Pittsburgh, PA 15221
- 330 Montage Mountain Rd # 102, Moosic, PA 18507
- 4000 Crums Mill Rd #202, Harrisburg, PA 17112
- 801 E Park Dr # 101, Harrisburg, PA 17111
- 5100 Tilghman St # 30, Allentown, PA 18104
- 865 Easton Rd, Warrington, PA 18976
- 110 Gibraltar Rd # 227, Horsham, PA 19044
- 1777 Sentry Pkwy W Bldg 14, Suite 303, Blue Bell, PA 19422
- 150 S Warner Rd, King of Prussia, PA 19406
- 6055 N 5th St, Philadelphia, PA 19120
- 3 Bala Plaza # 300W, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004
- 1800 John F Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Additional Certification Information
Advice From a Graduate of Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences
Jessica Carlino, RDMS, RVT, is a diagnostic medical sonographer and registered vascular technician working in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
She is a graduate from the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program at Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences (PA College).
In Jessica’s interview, she shares her experience of studying sonography and working in the field at Lancaster General Health Physicians Surgical Group. She also offers advice on how to become a successful student and sonographer.
“Successful sonography students should have a strong work ethic and understand how to communicate with others. Sonography is a challenging program, and is a constantly changing profession.”– Jessica Carlino, RDMS, RVT, graduate of Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences
How Much do Ultrasound Techs Make in Pennsylvania?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS 2020), the mean annual salary for sonographers in Pennsylvania is $68,490. In addition, those in the top 90th percentile made a mean annual salary of $92,010, while those in the bottom 10th percentile earned up to $50,050 a year. Conditions in your area may vary.
|Metropolitan Area||2020 Mean Salary|
Pennsylvania Sonography Scholarships
Pursuing your education can be an expensive endeavor, and scholarships can help offset some of the costs for those who qualify. Along with potential financial aid, scholarships can be used to help pay for tuition, books, and sometimes living expenses. Learn more by visiting our Financial Aid center.
A few examples of Pennsylvania sonography scholarships are listed below. The application and other details can be found by visiting the individual scholarship’s website that you’re interested in pursuing.
|Scholarship||Award Amount||Eligibility Requirements||How to Apply|
|Ultrasound Schools Info||$1,000||Semi-annual, non-renewable scholarship awarded to an aspiring sonographer currently enrolled in a CAAHEP accredited diagnostic medical sonography program.||Ultrasound Schools Info
Attn: Scholarship Committee
PO Box 3026
Bellingham, WA 98227
|Pennsylvania State Grant Program||Varies||Needs-based award for high school graduates attending an approved program.||Scholarship Committee
|NAAAP Philadelphia||$1,000||Asian or Asian-Americans attending a greater-Philadelphia accredited college.||Scholarship Committee
P.O. Box 473
Philadelphia, PA 19105
|M. Verna Butterer Educational Trust||$14,000||Applicant must be at least a 2-year resident of Bucks County, PA, and demonstrate financial need.||M. Verna Butterer Educational Trust
P.O. Box 273
Fountainville, PA 18923
Advice From the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences
Emily Long, part of the communications team at Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences in Lancaster, PA, enjoys writing about current trends in health care and helping students get the information they need to land a job in their desired career field.
“Applying for your first job as a sonographer can seem daunting. But there are lots of great ways to start enhancing your resume before you even graduate. Applying a few of the suggestions discussed here can help you get ahead of the curve.” In this article she talks about how to build your resume while still in school to help you land your dream job upon graduation.
Medical Imaging Organizations in Pennsylvania
Belonging to a society or organization within your chosen field has many benefits. Networking with your peers, staying up to date on new technologies and procedures, and remaining current with continuing medical education (CME) requirements can all come from membership with these organizations.
Some examples of medical imaging societies in Pennsylvania are listed below:
- Pennsylvania Radiological Society
- Pennsylvania Society of Radiologic Technologists
- The Hospital Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania
- Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
Click here for more information regarding ultrasound societies and organizations.
City Spotlight: Philadelphia, PA
In 2014, Thomas Jefferson University was awarded “Best Radiologic Technologist Training Program” by the RSNA. The Jefferson School of Health Professions Department offers a Bachelor’s and Master’s program in Medical Imaging & Radiation Sciences where students can choose from a variety of modalities to specialize in, such as nucelar medicine, cardiac, vascular, and general sonography. TJU is just one of several schools in Philadelphia that offers training to aspiring ultrasound technicians and other medical imagers.
There were around 1,500 sonographers working in Philadelphia in 2020 who made an average of $72,620 a year. In addition, job growth state wide is predicted to increase by 15% within the next 6 years (O*Net).
Ultrasound Programs in Nearby States
Keep Exploring! Find Other Articles & Interviews Below.
- Sonography Student Resource Center
- Sonography Career Paths
- 7 Female Pioneers in Medical Imaging
- Ultrasound Technician Degree Options
- Find an Ultrasound Technician Program Near You
- How to Pay for Sonography School
- Anatomy & Physiology: A Student’s Perspective
- Time Management Tips for Sonographers
- What to Know About Selecting an Ultrasound School
- Tips on Preparing a Successful Sonography Schools Application
- Expectation vs Reality – What’s it Like to be a Sonographer?
- Diagnostic Sonographer Overview
- What Makes a Great Sonographer?
- Allied Health Careers & Education
- Explore Additional Healthcare Career Options