Diagnostic Medical Sonography Major

College of Health Sciences and Education

Degree BS, Diagnostic Medical Sonography

Options: BS (entry level); BS (post-certification)

Department Chair Sheryl E. Goss, MS, RT (R) (S), RDMS, RDCS, RVT, FSDMS

Faculty and Staff

Sheryl Goss, Assistant Professor of Diagnostic Medical Sonography, AAS, BS, MS College Misericordia

Karen Klimas, Assistant Professor of Diagnostic Medical Sonography, BS College Misericordia; MS Misericordia University

The Diagnostic Medical Sonography program is accredited by Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) 25400 U.S. Highway 19 North, Suite 158, Clearwater, FL 33763 through a comprehensive review by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS).

Diagnostic Medical Sonography is a specialized healthcare field requiring well-educated individuals who must engage themselves with compassion for others, strive for excellence in examination acquisition, and exhibit confidence as a member of the healthcare team. This program supports the university's mission reflecting the values and attitudes of mercy, service, justice, and hospitality. More specifically, the Diagnostic Medical Sonography faculty and staff believe and promote that each individual inherently possesses uniqueness and has a quest to stay abreast of current practices within the healthcare environment and their specialized practices to benefit themselves and the communities they serve.

Mission

Prepare sonographers to think critically, promote quality patient care, and stimulate curiosity for lifelong learning.

Philosophy

Diagnostic Medical Sonography is a specialized healthcare field requiring well-educated individuals who must engage themselves with compassion for others, strive for excellence in examination acquisition, and exhibit confidence as a member of the healthcare team. This program supports the university's mission reflecting the values and attitudes of mercy, service, justice, and hospitality. The Bachelor's degree provides a complimentary balance between professional education and liberal arts to enhance one’s own intellect, spirituality, creativity, and a global perspective on world culture supporting the Trinity of Learning. More specifically, the Diagnostic Medical Sonography faculty and staff believe and promote that each individual inherently possesses uniqueness and has a quest to stay abreast of current practices within the healthcare environment and their specialized practices to benefit themselves and the communities they serve.

Program Goals:

The goals of the BS program are designed to align with programmatic accreditation standards and the mission of the Department and the University.

  1. To prepare competent entry level general sonographers in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains.

    Cognitive domain

    a) Demonstrate knowledge of anatomical structures and sonographic appearances.

    b) Differentiate normal from abnormal sonographic findings through knowledge of physiology and pathophysiology.

    c) Apply clinical history to sonographic examination and findings.

    d) Demonstrate application of ultrasound physics and instrumentation to optimize sonographic images.

    e) Utilize research to enhance learning.

    Psychomotor domain

    a) Possess the technical skills to produce accurate sonographic images.

    b) Evaluate images for quality.

    c) Synthesize sonographic findings and tailor examination to provide all necessary information to interpreting physician.

    d) Develop competency to independently perform sonographic examinations in the general concentration.

    Affective Domain

    a) Communicate in a holistic manner to provide patient comfort and respect for cultural differences.

    b) Demonstrate ability to work independently as well as a team member.

    c) Demonstrate professional behavior to all through integrity, ethical decision making, and communication.

    d) Demonstrate written and oral communication to educate self and others.

  2. Apply knowledge and skills to succeed on national credential examinations.

    a) Score a 74% or higher on the program’s mock registry examinations.

    b) Succeed the first time in the three ARDMS certification examinations or ARRT Sonography examination.

  3. Participate in activities to prepare for lifelong learning.

    a) Complete and earn five continuing medical education credits.

    b) Volunteer for a University or community event.

  4. Understand global trends and issues in healthcare that may have impact on sonography practices.

    a) Demonstrate ability to locate and synthesize research to stay abreast of current trends in healthcare

    sonography education and practices.

    b) Compare and contrast domestic and international education and practices.

  5. Appreciate similarities and differences of individuals, professions, and cultures through a liberal arts curriculum.

    a) Discover the roles and responsibilities of various healthcare professions.

    b) Demonstrate respect for differences.

    c) Attend or participate in activities relating to the humanities, arts, science, and technology.

Policies

Policies specific to the sonography major are published in the DMS Program Policies and Procedures Student Handbook. Each student is expected to review the policies prior to entrance and reviewed in detail prior to start of the clinical education component.

Admission to Diagnostic Medical Sonography Major (entry level)

All applicants must follow the University application process. Applicants to the BS entry level are expected to have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 and a combined SAT score of 950 ( math and critical reading). Applicants are expected to have taken minimum 3 years of high school math to include algebra and 2 years of high school science all with a minimum grade of “C”. High school physics is recommended.

Transfer applications to the BS entry level will follow the University's transfer policies and will be considered based on clinical placement availability. All transfer transcripts are expected to have a minimum GPA of 2.75, all prerequisite courses with a “C’ or higher, and no more than one course indicating grade replacement. Prerequisite courses are Bio 121 and 122 (or Bio 211 and 212); Physics 117, 118 or 135; PHL core, University Writing Seminar, and Math core.

All internal transfer students interested in pursuing the BS DMS or certificate program must submit a letter of interest to the Chair of the DMS Department no later than November 15 of the year before the desired year for consideration. For example, for consideration for the cohort beginning in Fall 2017, the letter of interest is due no later than November 15, 2016.

Misericordia University reviews individual applications carefully, and the above stated standards should be seen only as general guidelines. The Director of Admissions and individual department chairs reserve the right to exercise discretion in any admissions decision.

Progression and Retention in the BS Sonography major

a. Students must be in compliance with the Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography Code of Ethics and University academic integrity.

b. Students must maintain an overall GPA of 2.75 during the Freshman and Sophomore years. After admission into the sonography core, the major GPA must meet a minimum of 2.5.

c. Successful completion of the Prerequisite courses with a “C’ or higher with no more than one course being grade replaced.

d. DMS coded courses in Junior and Senior year must be completed sequentially. All coded DMS courses in these five semesters must achieve a grade of 74% or higher to be retained in the program. A course grade of D or below will result in dismissal from the program. For consideration of readmission the following year, refer to department’s readmission policy located in DMS Program Policies and Procedures Student Handbook.

e. The student who has a GPA slightly below the 2.5, may be afforded one semester of being placed on probation if the student could meet the minimum GPA in the next semester through earning course grades above the minimum as specified above.

f. .Any student who is experiencing extenuating circumstances that may affect their progression in the program after the drop date should make an appointment with their advisor to determine whether an “I” should be taken. A student may withdraw later for medical reasons, supported by a written excuse from a physician, or for other serious circumstances, approved by the vice president of academic affairs in consultation with the course advisor. Due to the sequential nature of DMS courses, the student may not be able to re-enter into the program until the course is offered the next time.

Dismissal

Dismissal of the student from the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program will result if any one of the following occur:

1. The student commits a "serious" infraction of the code of ethics, or violates a program policy that states program immediate dismissal or has exhausted the code of conduct policy through verbal, written and dismissal due to violations of policies (refer to DMS Program Policies and Procedures Student Handbook). If a student is dismissed and files a grievance, they must follow the university policy on the grievance process. During this time, the student may not be able to attend sonography classes.

2. The student fails to meet the terms of program probation.

3. The student does not earn a grade of "C-" or above in all Diagnostic Medical Sonography courses (DMS coded courses).

4. The stipulated GPA (overall & in the major) is not met.

Clinical placement and clinical education

Background Clearance

Students must meet all clinical clearance requirements prior to start of Freshman year and repeated prior to start of sonography core courses in junior year. Transfer students will be required to complete clinical clearance requirements prior to starting the first semester at the University. In the event of a criminal history the student will be required to follow the national credentialing agency process for determining eligibility to apply for examinations.

Health Examination

Before student can begin the clinical experience, they must submit a health clearance form report each year they are enrolled in a clinical experience. A complete list of required exams and immunizations will be provided to all sonography majors in the spring of their sophomore year prior to start of sonography core in junior year. Students must have current health insurance. Students are responsible for the cost of the annual health examination, current health insurance and immunizations.

Placement

The sonography core courses are sequential and require completion of four semesters of clinical education by being placed at one or more of the program’s contracted clinical affiliates. While the program will strive to place students in clinical affiliates closer to their geographic regions, it is possible students may be placed up to a 90 minute radius from campus. This may require the student to secure housing in that geographic region with travel to campus for the weekend classes. Placements are determined by the Clinical Coordinator and Department Chair no later than end of the first fall semester of the sonography core with second rotation being determined no later than August 1 of the summer between junior and senior year. Clinical travel and expenses are in addition to tuition.

Program Fees

In addition to tuition, the student will be responsible for additional program fees to cover the cost of Trajecsys Clinical evaluation system, PACs image system, name tag, liability insurance, HIPAA online series, professional society membership, clinical supplies and simulation fee.

Program fees will be charged during the Junior year (Fall, Spring, and Summer terms), and the Senior year (Fall semester only).

Curriculum and Plan of Study

First Year

Fall (16 credits)

BIO 121:Human Structure & Function I (4 cr) OR

BIO 211: Anatomy and Physiology I (4 cr)

Math Core Group A course

University Writing Seminar

Core

Core

Spring (17 credits)

BIO 122:Human Structure & Function I (4 cr) OR

BIO 212: Anatomy and Physiology I (4 cr)

PHY 117: Introduction to Physics I (4 cr) OR

PHY 135: Introduction to Physical Science (4 cr)

SOC 101: Comparative Sociology

Core

Free Elective

Second Year

Fall (15 credits)

DMS 101: Intro to Sonography (2 cr)

MI 106: Medical Terminology (1 cr)

PSY 123: Introduction to Psychology

Core

Core

Core

Spring (15 credits)

DMS 340: Pathophysiology for Healthcare

MTH 115: Basic Statistics I

Core

Core

Free Elective

Summer (1 cr)

DMS 112: Patient Care (1 cr)

Third Year

Fall (13 credits)

DMS 102: Intro to Sonography Lab (1 cr)

DMS 107: Ultrasound Physics

DMS 111: Sonography Cross Sectional Anatomy

PSY 232: Research Methods, or SWK 232: Research Methods

Free Elective

Spring (14 credits)

DMS 117: Abdominal Sonography

DMS 122: Pelvic Sonography

DMS 127: High Resolution Sonography

DMS 130: Clinc I (2 cr)

Core

Summer (10 cr)

DMS 150: Obstetrical Sonography

DMS 265: Intro to Vascular Sonography

DMS 181: Clinical Sonography II (4 cr)

Fourth Year

Fall (12 credits)

DMS 155: Fetal and Neonatal Anomalics

DMS 305: Intermediate Vascular

DMS 287: Journal and Cases Study (1 cr)

DMS 277: Interventional Sonography (1 cr)

DMS 271: Clinical Sonography III (4 cr)

Spring (12 credits)

DMS 307: Pathology and Clinical Integration

DMS 282: Issues in Sonography (1 cr)

DMS 281: Clinical Sonography IV (2 cr)

DMS 420: Current Trends and Practices

DMS Major Elective

Two writing intensive courses are also required. Please see the Core Curriculum section of the catalog for all core requirements.

Admission to Diagnostic Medical Sonography Major (post-certification)

The post-certification baccalaureate degree is administered under the Expressway model in which RDMS or ARRT(S) credentialed sonographers can complete the degree in a time frame most suited for their personal schedules. All courses are offered in the on-line format with exception of Anatomy and Physiology I and II which would be required to be completed prior to admission or after admission at a regionally accredited college or university approved by the department chair in conjunction with the Office of the Registrar.

Dependent on the number of credits the student needs to complete the degree and number of credits the individual desires to take per semester will determine the timeframe for completion of the degree.

Average time for completion is 24 -36 months.

For admission to the Diagnostic Medical Sonography baccalaureate degree program, the applicant must meet at least one of the following requirements:

  • Possess the credential of Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonography (RDMS) awarded by the American Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) in at least one specialty (abdominal or obstetrics/gynecology).
  • Possess the American Registry for Radiologic Technology Sonography credential (ARRT) (S).
  • Enroll in the university's DMS certificate program and during the last session, can request consideration to continue to complete the bachelor degree program. Admission would occur once the graduate earned the RDMS or ARRT(S) credential.

Applicant can complete an Expressway application for admission to the university through the Part-time Undergraduate and Graduate Admissions office by calling 570-674-6451 or can apply online at https://www.misericordia.edu/apply

Sonographers interested in pursuing the BS/MSOM must also complete and submit a formal on-line part-time & Graduate application for the Master of Science Degree in Organization Management. As required of the application for MS OM, a 500 word essay denoting personal & professional goals to be achieved through completion of dual graduate and undergraduate courses and degree must be submitted. To be enrolled in this track, the applicant must be awarded a provisional acceptance into the MS degree with formal admission occurring after completion of the undergraduate bachelor degree.

Credit evaluation

It is recognized sonographers possess diverse educational backgrounds to include on-the-job training, hospital based programs, certificate programs, or associate degree programs. Thus, the design of the major is to evaluate each applicant on an individual basis and create a plan of study for them based upon current credentials possessed and previous post-secondary credits earned. A maximum of 43 credits may be awarded for professional credential credits (PCC) dependent on the possession of ARDMS credentialing specialties in abdominal or obstetrical sonography.

Transcript review of all previous college level courses for determination of credit equivalency will be assessed by the Office of the Registrar.

A minimum of 30 credits must be taken at Misericordia University to earn the baccalaureate degree.

Prior learning assessment

Education received through non-credit bearing mechanisms or success of a credentialing exam other than abdominal and/or obstetrics will be evaluated through the university's Prior Learning Assessment policies administered through CACE. Applicants that desire to challenge a BS major course may request consideration through the PLA process for the course desired for consideration of demonstration of knowledge. There is a fee for each course assessed and accepted as successfully meeting the course objectives.

Tuition

Expressway tuition credit rate is applied for courses taken as part of the on-line Expressway course offerings or taken at one of the Expressway campuses. If a student chooses to enroll in a course offered on the main campus, the tuition is at the part-time undergraduate rate. For students enrolled in the dual BS/MS track, the 12 credits of OM graduate level course work will be charged at the part-time undergraduate rate. For students accepted into the graduate program, the 24 credits taken at the graduate level to earn the OM degree will be charged at the part-time graduate level credit rate.

Retention

Students enrolled in the BS degree must maintain active national certification status and a minimum overall GPA of 2.5. For students enrolled in the BS DMS/MS OM track a minimum GPA of 3.0 is required at time of completion of the bachelor degree.

Graduation requirements

The student must complete all degree requirements including fulfillment of a University Writing Seminar course (151), two writing intensive courses and technical competency requirements. Refer to the university catalog for general graduation requirements.

Courses required for completion

The following is a list of all the courses required for completion of the degree. Based upon the credits earned through prior education evaluation, it is likely several of the courses may be fulfilled.

Specific Degree Requirements (all must be satisfied)

Core

 

Credits

Fine Arts

Core Courses

6

PHL 100

Introduction to Philosophy

3

PHL

Core

3

MTH

Math Bank 1 Course

3

MTH 115

Statistics

3

Behavioral Sciences

Core Courses

6

Natural Science

Core Course

3

HIS /POL

Core Courses

6

ENG 151

University Writing Seminar

3

ENG

Core Course

3

RLS 104

World Religions

3

RLS

Core Course

3

SWK 232

Research Methods (or OM 515, for those in BS/MS track)

3

BIO 211

Anatomy and Physiology I (serves as Natural Science lab core)

4

BIO 212

Anatomy and Physiology II

4

DMS 288 (3 credits) OR DMS 277, 282 and 287 (3 credits total)

Focused Sonography

3

DMS 420

Current Trends and Practices

3

Free Electives**

 

9

**For BS/MS dual credential, OM courses satisfy the free elective requirement

Sonography Certificate Courses (completed or satisfied via credentialing prior to beginning BS program)

DMS 101

Introduction to Sonography

2

DMS 102

Introduction to Sonography Lab

1

DMS 107

Ultrasound Physics and Instrumentation

3

DMS 111

Sonographic Cross Sectional Anatomy

3

DMS 117

Abdominal Sonography / lab

3

DMS 122

Pelvic Sonography / Lab

3

DMS 127

High Resolution Sonography

3

DMS 150

Obstetrical Sonography

6

DMS 155

Fetal and Neonatal Anomalies

3

DMS 297

Sonographic Registry Review

3

DMS 130

Clinical Sonography I

2

DMS 181

Clinical Sonography II

4

DMS 271

Clinical Sonography III

4

DMS 281

Clinical Sonography IV

2

Sonography Major Elective Courses

Students in the general track complete 11 credits from the menu below.

Students in the social science track complete 8 credits from the menu below.

Students in the BS/MS track complete either 8 or 11 from the menu below (as determined at time of admission).

DMS 265

Introduction to Vascular Sonography

3

DMS 310

Breast Sonography

2

DMS 320

Advanced Vascular Sonography

3

DMS 330

Advanced Fetal and Pediatric Sonography

3

DMS 340

Pathophysiology for Healthcare

3

DMS 413

Cooperative Education

1-4

DMS 430

Independent Study

2

DMS 472

Sonography Clinical Externship

2-5

Social Science Track Courses

15 credits from the menu below

HCM 101

Introduction to Health Systems

3

SOC 122

Social Problems

3

SOC 221

Cultural Minorities

3

SOC 321

The Family

3

SWK 352

Adaptive Behavior

3

CWS 393

Child Welfare Law

3

ADC 340A

Chemical Addiction and Dependency

3

PSY 275

Child and Adolescent Psychology

3

BS/MS Track Courses

12 credits, as listed below:

BUS 205 or 206

Macroeconomics or Microeconomics

3

OM Core Courses

See Organizational Management Program

9

For dual credentialed students, the OM courses listed above satisfy the core free elective requirement.