How to Become an Ultrasound Technician in South Dakota

If you are interested in becoming an ultrasound technician in South Dakota, then you will need an Associate Degree in Applied Science and become American Registry of Diagnostic (ARD) certified. In order to become an ultrasound technician, you will need to apply to an accredited program that offers courses specializing in ultrasound technician.

Each school will be different regarding the requirements needed to enter their program. Once you have found a school that is right for you, you will need to speak with an advisor to find out what prerequisites you may need and what forms need to be completed. Once you have completed your program, then you can apply to become ARD certified by completing an examination in Sonography Principles and Instrumentation. Most companies that are looking for an ultrasound technician are looking for someone who is ARD certified and has experience in the field.

At this time, there is one school in South Dakota that is offering an accredited program for ultrasound technology. Southeast Technical Institute (STI) is located in Sioux Falls and students who attend the Institute of Health Technology can earn an Associate of Applied Science degree. Before you are accepted, you must submit an STI application, official high school transcript/GED certificate, official college transcript(s), ACT scores, HOBET scores, drug screening, criminal background check, and complete the required prerequisites. Southeast Technical Institute also requires three non-related references to be submitted along with a work or volunteer experience form.

In this program, students will receive classroom and clinical training, plus preparedness to take the ARD certification. You can earn your degree in two years, then take your ARD exam to become a certified ultrasound technician.

At this time, research shows South Dakota is one of the lowest paying states for ultrasound technicians. The low wages are expected in South Dakota because of the vast amount of rural areas. The average yearly wages in 2012 for an ultrasound technician were approximately $53,000. The lowest paying location for ultrasound technicians is in the eastern part of the state with average annual wages of about $49,000. At this time, South Dakota ultrasound technicians are being paid about $17,000 less per year compared to the national average.

Ultrasound technicians use ultrasound equipment to conduct exams on patients. Ultrasound equipment sends out high-frequency sound waves that reflect off the internal body structures. The computer is able to take the reflected sound waves and create an image of internal tissues. Sonograms are used to diagnose cancer, heart disease, or monitor fetal development.

The tasks of ultrasound technicians include preparing patients for the ultrasound exam, explaining the procedure, gather patient history, use the ultrasound equipment to scan the area of the body that is under examination, analyze ultrasound data, save ultrasound images to the computer, and provide a summary of the test to physicians.

If you enjoy working with people and learning about the medical field, then an ultrasound technician is a great career. The annual wages are fantastic for a two year degree in Associate of Applied Science. If this is the career for you, then it is time to take the necessary steps to make your dreams come true!