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Cardiac Sonography Certificate

The application window for the certificate in Cardiac Sonography is October 1 to
February 1 for the 2017 school year.

 Program Resources

About the Cardiac Sonography Profession

Cardiac sonographers, or echocardiographers, use non-invasive cardiovascular technology equipment to assist in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with heart and blood vessel conditions. The ideal candidate for this career has excellent communication skills in order to convey scientific information to doctors, as well as a good bedside manner for dealing with patients.

 What is required of a Cardiac Sonographer?

Cardiac sonographers perform echocardiograms, or ultrasound imaging, to evaluate different aspects of the heart, such as chamber size, valve function and blood flow. They review patient files and must be familiar with basic cardiac conditions in order to recognize and identify any abnormalities. 

While cardiac sonographers do not themselves diagnose patients, they work with physicians in doing so or may assist in other diagnostic procedures. Other duties may include scheduling appointments, explaining procedures to patients and maintaining ultrasound equipment.

How to Begin

Review our website, brochures, and FAQs in detail to determine if you will pursue a Bachelor's in Diagnostic Medical Sonography or a Certificate in Cardiac Sonography. Many questions you may have can be answered from our online information. 

Step 1:  Review the website

Step 2: Contact Terri Mosley, program coordinator, to have your unofficial transcripts reviewed.

Step 3:   Schedule career observation only if you will complete the courses and prerequisites by May of the year you plan to begin the program.

Certificate of Cardiac Sonography

The Certificate in Cardiac Sonography is a 12-month program. Coursework and clinical time in this program involves more in depth concentrated study of assessment of the heart. It includes extensive study of the heart hemodynamics, normal anatomy, disease processes, and patient treatment.  The Cardiac Sonography program begins each Fall. This program prepares students to sit for the board exam and RDCS credentialing exam.  All students are required to take and pass the ARDMS Standard Physics and Instrumentation (SPI) exam before completion of the program.   This program does require a previous associate/bachelors degree in any field.

When to Apply

The application window for the certificate in cardiac sonography is October 1 to
February 1 for the 2018 school year.

Program Accreditation

The Loma Linda University Diagnostic Medical Sonography program has been fully accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Medical Sonography (JRCDMS) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) in general sonography and vascular and echocardiography since October 7,1985. Loma Linda University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

To contact the JRCDMS:

Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs
25400 U.S. Highway 19 North, Suite 158
Clearwater, FL 33763
Phone: 727-210-2350
Fax: 727-210-2354

In addition, our vascular lab here at Loma Linda University Medical Center was awarded the Accreditation of Vascular Labs (ICAVL) in 1993 and our cardiac labs are also accredited by ICAEL.

Program Outcomes

Academic Calendar

The program, in general, follows the Loma Linda University Quarterly academic terms. The program begins each June.  Please refer to the Academic Calendar since the actual dates change yearly.

Costs and Fees

Refer to SAHP Tuition Rates

The estimated cost of the program is updated yearly based on the University's tuition and fees, which are subject to change (usually summer quarter). Tuition rates above do not reflect books, uniforms and supplies, living and transportation costs. Additional fees apply.  A University quarterly fee is charged, as well as a quarterly copying fee of $40 for sonography students.

Program Expectations

The Certificate in Cardiac Sonography Program is rigorous.  Students should expect to give full-time attention to this demanding program.  Students in the past have needed to adjust their personal schedules to make this program a priority.  Students should also plan to drive to their clinical affiliates, which are assigned to each student after the program begins.  Students are expected to be responsible, accountable, and dependable as well as behave and communicate with high professional standards. Attendance in all classes and clinical rotations is expected.  Students are also expected to be able to perform the essential job functions throughout the program and on into the profession.

What Makes Us Unique

  • No waiting list. Every applicant is reviewed each year on an individual basis.
  • Comprehensive and compassionate instruction in the classroom and clinical setting.
  • Students gain valuable diversity in their experiences through multiple clinical rotations.
  • Students receive more hands on clinical experience than other comparable programs.
  • Graduates are competent in a broader range of exams than comparable programs.
  • Diligent students often obtain the ARDMS credentials prior to program completion.
  • Alumni are employed at the majority of our clinical sites, providing care and guidance.
  • Graduates are more prepared and requested for employment in all levels of health care.

Our Mission

The Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program at Loma Linda University, School of Allied Health Professions, provides a quality educational experience focused on the whole person. The program prepares students to take the national board exam, become entry-level sonographers, and be equipped with the knowledge, skills, values, attitudes, and behaviors appropriate for providing excellent patient care and working on a health care team.

Our Vision

Our vision is to be known by our students, alumni, clinical instructors, faculty, professional community, and staff as the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program of choice. Additionally, we want the program experience to be known as "a close family" that is exciting, challenging, and transforming.

Our Values

We will accomplish our mission and vision by setting and achieving high standards of excellence in professional behavior, academic and clinical education, customer service, and collaborative success, while living by the Loma Linda University values of excellence, integrity, compassion, self-control, humility, freedom, and justice

Goals and Student Learning Outcomes

While in the Program, students will demonstrate clinical competence by performing ultrasound exams of diagnostic quality, and applying patient care and appropriate practices for all procedures. Students will communicate effectively by being able to clearly explain ultrasound procedures to patients and often family members, effectively communicate and work with the healthcare team, and demonstrate appropriate communication to diverse populations. Students will develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills so that they can appropriately adjust procedures, and critique images to determine diagnostic acceptability. Students will demonstrate the values and professional development, model professional behavior, and examine the core values and reflect on personal application. Students will also apply knowledge in interdisciplinary situations.

Essential Job Functions

The essential job functions of a sonographer require certain physical, mental, & emotional attributes.  Physical demands include lifting; carrying; bending; manipulation of equipment; patient assistance; walking and prolonged standing; the ability to read; and the ability to communicate effectively.  Mental, emotional, and affective demands include: critical decision making, interaction with patients of different ages and health conditions, maintaining patient confidentiality, ability to work under pressure, ability to repeat previously learned information, and interacting appropriately.  Students must maintain essential job functions throughout the program.  A complete list of essential job functions will be made available during the interview process.

Eligibility for ARDMS Credential

Eligibility for the ARDMS credentialing exam may be affected if the applicant has a prior felony or misdemeanor conviction. Prior to applying to this program the applicant should contact the ARDMS at 800-862-7367 to determine if eligibility will be granted.

Other Requirements

Applicants are required to complete a background check and possess a current Health Care Provider CPR card offered by the American Heart Association. To remain in the program students must maintain a 2.5 GPA, pass three program milestones, pass a mock board exam, and adhere to the Program’s professional code of conduct. Students at some clinical sites may need a drug test.

Loma Linda University: Educating Radiology Professionals

Loma Linda University offers a number of programs in the medical imaging field. Besides Medical Radiography, we offer programs in Computed Tomography, Imaging Informatics (online), Cardiac Electrophysiology, Magnetic Resonance, Nuclear Medicine, Sonography, Radiation Therapy, and Dosimetry.  We also offer an online Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Radiation Sciences, a Bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Administration, and an online Radiologist Assistant Master’s degree program.

Contact Us

Marie DeLange, Sonography Program Director

Marie DeLange, Program Director
mdelange@llu.edu
studyradsci@llu.edu 
llu.edu/sonography
(909) 558-4931 Department Office
(909) 558-7965 Fax