Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Cardiovascular Sonography

In WCUI’s Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Cardiovascular Sonography program, students learn to perform cardiac and vascular ultrasounds, using high-frequency sound waves to assist doctors in diagnosing heart health. The bachelor’s degree provides a more in-depth journey into vascular sonography, structural heart disease, and congenital heart disease (CHD) along with other protocols for cardiovascular sonographers. Advanced vascular and CHD courses will give students a stronger knowledge in these topics and set them apart from other sonographers once they enter the field. With a WCUI Cardiovascular Sonography degree, students will take part in assessing vital heart health, essential to preventative medicine. You can complete the program in as few as 36 months and will become eligible for relevant CCI and ARDMS registries upon graduation.

WHAT YOU’LL LEARN

Through classroom lectures and hands-on experience, including an externship, students in our Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Cardiovascular Sonography program will learn:

  • Advanced vascular sonography
  • Diseases of the heart including structural heart disease and adult congenital heart disease
  • Preventive and screening protocols
  • Electrocardiography (EKG)
  • Diagnostic evaluation of adult congenital heart defects
  • The role of cardiovascular sonographers in special cardiac imaging procedures
  • Ethics and professionalism
  • How to solve mathematical and computational problems
  • How to relate anatomy and physiology to the field of diagnostic cardiovascular sonography

PREPARE FOR YOUR CAREER IN CVS (ECHO)

Our Cardiovascular Sonography Bachelor of Science Degree program will prepare you for entry-level careers as a cardiovascular sonographer. In addition, WCUI has many resources that will help you become eligible for relevant registries upon graduation. To learn more about the registries associated with the Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Cardiovascular Sonography program see our WCUI Pathway to Registry graphic *

  • Cardiac Credentialing International – cci-online.org
  • American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography – ARDMS.org

*These registries are independent organizations and the prerequisites for eligibility can change at any time without WCUI’s knowledge or consent. This document is meant to be a guide only and all students should review the registry’s website for the most up-to-date information.

ONLINE PROGRAMS

Due to COVID-19, WCUI wants to ensure your education journey doesn’t miss a beat, and for that reason, we are now bringing our engaging classrooms and labs directly to your home. Online learning, virtual labs, and simulation are now available so you can continue your ultrasound and MRI education online. Connect With Us

ECHO Student

TAKE THE NEXT STEP

Are you ready to advance your career by advancing your education? Find the information you need to apply to the WCUI School of Medical Imaging on our Admissions Page or connect with our admissions team by clicking the button below and they’ll help walk you through the process.

BS ECHO Course DescriptionsRequest Info CVS Pathway

Frequently Asked Questions About the Cardiovascular Sonography Programs

What do cardiovascular sonographers do?

  • Evaluate the heart, collaborate with cardiologists, nurses, practitioners to help diagnose and treat heart and vascular conditions
  • They do this by applying an ultrasound transducer to the chest of their patient to create diagnostic ultrasound images and videos of the different parts of the heart. These images are created through ultrasound waves which are non-invasive and do not utilize radiation

What is it like as a cardiovascular sonographer?

  • Being a cardiovascular sonographer can be very rewarding as the images and videos you create can help diagnose often life-threatening cardiac abnormalities. You help save lives!
  • Pediatric cardiovascular sonographers help children with congenital heart disease problems. The ultrasound images they create will help physicians determine patient care to help children move onto live normal lives.
  • Cardiac Sonographers can also help identify early congenital anomalies during pregnancy to help avoid any adverse outcomes and plan for earlier heart interventions.
  • In all, cardiovascular sonographers can work with a wide variety of patients from babies in the womb to adults!

Cardiovascular Sonographers should be:

  • Professional
    • Heart disease and complications of the heart is a very serious part of healthcare. The heart is a critical organ and many patients, and their families could be worried and scared. Early detection and diagnosis are essential in helping people live healthier lives. A cardiovascular sonographer professional is part of an integral healthcare team of physicians, nurses and surgeons passionately dedicated to diagnosing, managing and treat patients with cardiovascular disease.
  • Detailed
    • Everything you scan matters. You need to know why you’re creating these images in order to get the patient’s health on the right track. The images you take impact a person’s life.
  • Calm
    • This field is fast-paced and can get stressful. You will need to be calm and collected around patients and with your team
  • Have Great Hand-Eye Coordination
    • Sonographers have to use their hands and eyes in unison to scan! Cardiac Sonographers have to move the ultrasound transducer around on the patient while looking up at the image you’re creating on the ultrasound machine’s screen.
    • Physical demands – lift, pull push ultrasound equipment
  • Good Problem Solvers
    • Cardiac sonographers often scan on their own and must use critical thinking and problem-solving skills. If you’re having trouble getting the image your physician or radiologist needs, you have to problem solve quickly during your patient’s appointment.

Demand and Growth for Cardiovascular Sonographers

  • Heart and Vascular disease are among the top issues in the United States! Heart disease remains the #1 cause of death worldwide in the latest annual Statistical Update from the American Heart Association
    • The increased prevalence of diabetes, obesity, and our growing population of elderly all of whom are more susceptible to heart disease combined with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, cardiovascular sonographers are needed now more than ever to help provide ultrasound images that will allow doctors to provide early prevention and treatment to heart and vascular patients.
    • In California, the projected growth in employment for cardiovascular sonographers is 16%,
    • In Arizona, the projected employment growth is for cardiovascular sonographers is 40%
    • WCUI’s current employment rate for Bachelor of Science Cardiovascular Sonography Graduates is 92%!

Employment rate is based on the cohort of students starting between 10/2015 and 9/2016 at our Los Angeles and Phoenix campus. Individual campus rates can be found in our full 2021 ACCSC Annual Report: www.wcui.edu/consumer-information/


Sources: *State of California EDD https://www.labormarketinfo.edd.ca.gov/data/employment-projections.html “Projected growth” represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2018-2028).

**Arizona Commerce Authority https://www.azcommerce.com/oeo/labor-market/employment-projections/ “Projected growth” represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2020-2030)

Why Should I Consider a Bachelor’s Degree in Cardiovascular Sonography?

  • More Knowledge – The bachelor’s degree provides a more in-depth journey into vascular sonography, structural heart disease, and congenital heart disease (CHD) along with other protocols for cardiovascular sonographers.
  • Stand Out In The Field – Advanced vascular and CHD courses will give students a stronger knowledge in these topics and set them apart from other sonographers once they enter the field.
  • Become A Registered Sonographer – Graduates are eligible to sit immediately for their ARDMS exam and the ARDMS exam fee is included in the cost of the program. See our Pathways to Registry for Bachelor Cardiovascular Sonographers to see the registry exams you’re eligible to take and which exam fees are included in the program cost

Where do Cardiac Sonographers work?

  • Academic Hospitals
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Emergency Departments
  • Trauma Centers
  • Children’s Hospitals
  • Community Hospitals
  • Outpatient Clinics
  • Physician Offices
  • Research/Design
  • Clinical Applications/Sales Specialists
  • Teachers
  • Registry / Travelers

Cardiovascular Sonographers Perform Exams:

  • At bedside
  • Mobile units
  • Operating rooms
  • Interventional suites
  • Pediatric units
  • Fetal Heart/OB maternal fetal medicine
  • Congenital heart Clinics/hospitals
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Hospitals o Specialty Clinics

Cardiovascular Registry Certification

  • Cardiovascular sonographers can become registered by taking and passing the following registry certification exams. WCUI strongly recommends obtaining certifications to provide you the best knowledge and opportunities when entering the sonography field. WCUI provides registry reviews and a dedicated registry manager to help you prepare to take and pass your registry exams. See our Pathways to Registry to see which exam fees are included in the WCUI program cost.
    • SPI: Physics through the ARDMS (American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers)
    • RDCS: Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer through the ARDMS (American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers)
    • ARDMS (AE) Adult Echo: through the ARDMS (American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers)
    • ARDMS (PE) Pediatric Echo: through the ARDMS (American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers)
    • RVT: Registered Vascular Technologist through the ARDMS (American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers)
    • CCT: through National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT)
    • RCS: through CCI (Cardiovascular Credentialing International)
    • ARRT (S): through American Registry of Radiologic Technologists

Join Our Upcoming Information Sessions with the WCUI Academic Dean of Sonography, who can help answer your questions about the field of Cardiovascular Sonography and your future career!

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