Diagnostic Medical Sonography

  • Health, Public Safety & Human Services

Diagnostic medical sonographers are highly skilled health care professionals who assist physicians in collecting patient data in order to reach diagnostic decisions. Sonographers use specialized equipment to perform sonographic examinations and create images of areas inside the body.

Vaccine Requirements

All students are required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to entrance into the program in order to complete clinical requirements. Most clinical sites are not allowing exemption for students. Proof of other immunity and/or vaccination and a drug screen and criminal background check are also required and will be communicated to applicants when provisionally accepted into the program. If a student is accepted into the program and fails the criminal background check or drug screen and/or does not have the mandatory vaccinations, the student will be removed from the program.

What Will I Learn?

This degree is a seven-semester, full-time day program that provides both theoretical and clinical instruction in sonography at the JJC Main Campus, at hospitals and other health care organizations in the surrounding area. Up to 20 students are accepted into the program every fall. Most classes are offered face-to-face with the exception of two online courses (DMS 113 and DMS 120).

What is Unique About the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program? 

Joliet Junior College is proud to be one of only two CAAHEP-accredited DMS community college programs in the state of Illinois with three learning concentrations:

  • Abdomen-Extended
  • OB/GYN
  • Vascular Sonography

This in-demand program can lead to a great career with a median income of $75,920 (according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2020). 

Support for JJC Health Care Students

If you are a JJC health care program student and are seeking tutoring, financial assistance, advising or any other type of support, please visit the CASH Center in U-2012 for more information.

Sonography Admissions & Curriculum Information

What Degree / Certificate Will I Receive?

  • Degree Program Information (AAS) | Overview

    The Associate in Applied Science degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (AAS) program is designed to prepare individuals to enter the diagnostic medical sonography profession upon graduation. This degree is a seven-semester full-time day program that provides both theoretical and clinical instruction in sonography at JJC's Main Campus, and at hospitals and other health care organizations in the surrounding area. Up to twelve students are accepted into the program every fall. Most classes are offered face-to-face with the exception of two online courses (DMS 113 and DMS 120).

    Diagnostic medical sonographers are highly skilled professionals who provide patient services using diagnostic techniques under the supervision of a licensed doctor of medicine. Diagnostic medical sonographers use specialized equipment to create images of structures inside the human body and perform a variety of diagnostic sonographic examinations of the abdomen, pelvis, small parts, pregnancy, superficial structures, vascular studies and other procedures. Diagnostic medical sonographers assist physicians in collecting patient diagnosis data necessary to reach diagnostic decisions. This profession requires the sonographer to use critical judgment and the ability to provide appropriate health care services.

    The Diagnostic Medical Imaging Sonography Program at Joliet Junior College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs upon recommendation of the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS).

    For information about the eligibility to sit for the ARDMS examinations please visit: ARDMS and ARDMS Prerequisites.

    NOTE: Diagnostic Medical Sonography students of the AAS program must achieve a minimum grade of "C" in each of the Diagnostic Medical Sonography courses and all of the general education courses before they are eligible for graduation.


  • Degree Program Information (AAS) | Admissions Process

    The online Diagnostic Medical Sonography application for the AAS degree program is available May 1st - 31st for the opportunity to begin the program the following fall semester. If a student is not admitted to the program or chooses to defer acceptance, the student will need to re-apply the following year. No application will be kept on file after the start of classes.

    The Diagnostic Medical Sonography AAS degree program has special admission criteria and limited enrollment. Applications for the Diagnostic Medical Sonography degree program will be accepted by the Admissions Office in May for the following fall semester. Applicants are responsible for ensuring the requirements are met and all necessary documentation is on file. Only complete files will be considered.

    Students must be able to complete the following:

    Students who have met the above admissions criteria are free to apply to the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program in the month of May to enter the point ranking system. The application can be found only online in the month of May in MyJJC  under “Campus Events”.

    1. Students must meet the following prerequisites prior to application. Please read carefully to ensure all steps have been completed.
      • Current application (under Health & Occupational Science Students) on file.
      • Must meet residency requirements as defined by Joliet Junior College. In-district students have first right of admission. Out of district students will be admitted if spaces are available.
      • High School transcript or high school equivalency (GED, HiSET, TASC) on file with the Admissions Office verifying completion.
      • All college transcripts (other than JJC) must be evaluated and placed on record prior to submission of your application for the program. This process can take up to four weeks. Transcripts must by submitted by March 1. Official college transcripts should be mailed to Joliet Junior College, Academic Credentials Office, 1215 Houbolt Road Joliet, IL 60431-8938. Students must complete a Transcript Evaluation Form in order to have their transcripts evaluated.
      • Completion of PHYS 100 (or PHYS 110), BIO 250 and MATH 131 (or MATH 128) with a grade of “C” or better by the end of the spring semester.
      • Minimum CUM GPA of 2.0 or above.
      • Completed Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS – current version)
      • All students are required to watch a mandatory sonography information session prior to applying to the program. A recorded information session is posted on the DMS webpage.
      • Compliance with the technical standards for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers as outlined below:
      • Lift more than 50 pounds, push, pull, bend and stoop routinely
      • Have full use of both hands, wrists and shoulders
      • Distinguish audible sounds
      • Adequately view sonograms, including color distinctions
      • Work standing on their feet 80% of the time
      • Interact compassionately and effectively with the sick or injured
      • Assist patients on and off examining tables
      • Communicate effectively with patients and other health care professionals
      • Organize and accurately perform the individual steps in a sonographic procedure in the proper sequence.
    2. Students who score 86 or above on the TEAS composite will be guaranteed admittance into the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program, contingent on the results of their background check and drug screening when an application to the program is completed and the above requirements (see #1) are met. In the event there are more students in the Guaranteed Admittance category than available seats, a ranking system will be used (see #3).
    3. Admissions to the Diagnostic Medical Sonography AAS Program will be determined by a point ranking system. Each eligible applicant will be given a number for anonymity by the admissions office. Applications will be sent to the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Admissions Committee to be scored and ranked by the following criteria:
      • GPA (calculated on courses required for the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program (weighted 25%).
      • Number of required general education classes completed (weighted 25%). TEAS composite (weighted 30%) and math (weighted 20%) scores. Qualified applicants will be required to take the ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills Test (TEAS). The fee for this test is paid by the applicant. The TEAS test needs to be completed by May 31. We encourage applicants to only take the exam one time per semester. If the TEAS test is taken multiple times in a semester, the committee will ONLY consider the score from the initial time it was taken during that semester. Please refer to the Testing Services web page under TEAS testing for more information. 
        • BIO 251 Human Anatomy and Physiology II, 4 credit hours
        • ENG 101 (or ENG 102) Rhetoric, 3 credit hours
        • PSYC 101 General Psychology, 3 credit hours
        • These additional general education courses are not required to be considered for admission, but they are required for completion of the AAS Degree. Taking these courses will add points to the applicant’s overall score. If these courses are not completed at the time of application, they must be completed prior to starting the Sonography courses in the fall. (Note: higher grades will earn more points.)

    4. Upon admission to the Diagnostic Medical Sonography AAS program, all students are required to have on file in the Department of Health and Public Services:
      • A current physical examination which includes specified immunization and required laboratory work.
      • A current American Heart Association Basic Life Support (BLS) Healthcare Provider CPR card.
      • Current criminal background check and drug screen.

    If granted admission, the applicant will be informed as to when these requirements must be completed. The applicant does not need to complete these requirements until notified.

    Important note: Mandatory information sessions are held throughout the semester. Please call the Student Advising Center at 815-280-2673 to make an appointment to assist you with your individual educational planning. For questions about the admissions process please call Kathleen Cartwright at 815-280-2429 or email kcartwri@jjc.edu. If you’ve completed placement testing or your college transcripts are already evaluated, please call Marlene Kircher at the Health and Public Services Department at 815-280-2658 or email mkircher@jjc.edu to schedule a 30-minute advising session with Elena Miller, the Sonography Coordinator/Advisor.

    Admitting criteria is subject to change. It is the applicant's responsibility to review the criteria on a regular basis.

    Log into the myJJC portal for the Recommended Course Guide to see semester by semester schedule. 

Important: Attend One of Our Live, Virtual Information Sessions

Info sessions are a mandatory first step for all sonography students. All sessions will take place online, via Microsoft Teams. No need to sign up in advance - just mark your calendar for the date you want to attend and join below.

About Our Program

  • Accreditation

    The Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program in the Abdominal-Extended, OB/GYN and Vascular learning concentrations at JJC is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs upon recommendation of the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRC-DMS).

    Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs logo

    Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP)9355 - 113th St. N, #7709
    Seminole, FL 33775

    Website: https://www.caahep.org

    Upon successful completion of the program, students will be qualified to take the abdomen, obstetrics/gynecology, Vascular Technology, and Sonography Principles and Instrumentation (SPI) examinations given by the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS).

  • Program Outcomes

    SPI – 100% 100% 100%
    ABDOMEN – 100%
    OB/GYN – 100%
    RVT – 100%

    Note: 2021 credential success rates are not available due to the addition of the new vascular semester to the DMS program. 

    Detailed information regarding the source of the placement and credential success rates is available upon request from the program coordinator, Elena Miller (815-280-2588 or emiller@jjc.edu). This information is updated annually as part of the accreditation reporting for the program.

Additional Information

  • What Are My Career Opportunities?

    Employment opportunities for DMS graduates are generally found in hospitals, outpatient medical centers, imaging centers and doctors’ offices. Additionally, some Diagnostic Medical Sonographers obtain higher degrees and become managers, educators or administrators.

    For information about the eligibility to sit for the ARDMS examinations please visit: ARDMS and ARDMS Prerequisites.

  • Sonography Volunteer Information

    Ultrasound Lab Volunteers Needed!

    The Sonography Program at JJC is looking for lab volunteers so students can practice their skills in abdominal and obstetric sonography. The sessions are not diagnostic and are performed by the sonography students under the direct or indirect supervision of the program coordinator. These training sessions provide a great opportunity for students to learn as well as for expectant mothers to bond with their babies. As a token of appreciation, pregnant volunteers will receive free pictures of their babies and have a chance to observe their babies under ultrasound. We really appreciate your willingness to help our students improve their scanning skills. Thank you so much for your consideration!

    Criteria for all volunteers:

    • You must be at least 18 years old
    • Commit approximately one hour of your time
    • Sign a consent and release of liability form before the session

    Additional pregnant volunteer criteria:

    • Obtain a written physician consent prior to the session.

    Consent forms for lab volunteers:

    1. General Exam Consent Form PDF
    2. OB Exam Consent Form PDF

    Contact Elena Miller, the Program Coordinator, to schedule your session.