Vascular Sonography – Associate in Applied Science

A vascular sonographer is a highly skilled allied health professional who performs arterial and venous diagnostic procedures using high frequency sound waves. A vascular sonographer operates a variety of complex diagnostic and monitoring equipment, as well as numerous ancillary devices.

The vascular sonographer performs carotid duplex scanning, lower and upper extremity Doppler examinations, venous duplex scans, abdominal vascular exams, evaluates test results, monitors physiological states of the patient, conducts patient education, and maintains accurate records and protocols during and after procedures. A thorough understanding of hemodynamics and pathophysiology is required.

The vascular sonography program is an online program accredited by the Commission for Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) in the United States. It is a program leading to an Associate in Applied Science degree. The curriculum consists of integrated educational and clinical course work with a minimum of 1,152 supervised clinical hours with an approved clinical education affiliate.

The program is designed to prepare the student for employment in the field of vascular sonography. Vascular positions are located within hospitals, medical clinics, and other diagnostic imaging health institutions. Upon successful completion, students are eligible to apply for certification exams through the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography and, if successful, use the credentials RVT (Registered Vascular Technologist).

There are special admission requirements to the sonography programs, and it is the student’s responsibility to understand the requirements and adhere to them. Entry into a program is competitive and based on a “point system.” Point values are based on grades earned in prerequisite coursework and the interview process.

Applications are processed according to the following:
• Applications must be received by the Allied Health Office by May 31.
• Diagnostic Medical Sonography Admission Committee conducts consultations.
• Students are notified by mail of application consultation results.
• Accepted students begin fall semester.

General education prerequisites and related requirement courses must be completed before admission to the program.


Program Requirements

Minimum credits 70
Minimum cumulative GPA 2.0
Minimum grade in all courses 2.0
Minimum grade in BIO 132 OR BIO 253/254, HOC 130 AND MOA 120 3.0
Minimum Jackson College credits 15

GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS (21 credits)

GEO 1: Write clearly, concisely and intelligibly (3 credits)

Take the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
ENG 131 Writing Experience I 3 ENG 085 and ENG 091

This is an intensive writing course. Narrative and descriptive modes are stressed. Basic research strategies are introduced. An end-of-the-semester portfolio is required.

GEO 2: Speak clearly, concisely and intelligibly (3 credits)

Choose one of the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
COM 231 Communication Fundamentals 3 ENG 085, ENG 091

(FORMERLY SPH 231)

COM 240 Interpersonal Communication 3 ENG 085, ENG 091

(FORMERLY SPH 240) Students will learn to improve communication in one-on-one and small group situations. In this course, students will examine basic verbal and non-verbal elements affecting communication between individuals in family, peer group and work contexts. Specific units of discussion include intrapersonal perspective, conflict resolution, self-disclosure, message generation, intercultural messages and non-verbal communication.

GEO 3: Demonstrate computational skills and mathematical reasoning (4 credits)

Take the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
MAT 131 Intermediate Algebra 4 MAT 039*

(FORMERLY MTH 131) This course emphasizes simplifying expressions, solving equations, and graphing functions, including linear, quadratic, polynomial, rational, radical, exponential and logarithmic. Problem solving and mathematical modeling are integrated throughout. Appropriate technology includes a graphing calculator. The mathematics department recommends the prerequisite not be more than two years old. If the prerequisite is more than two years old the recommendation is the course placement assessment be taken or the prerequisite be retaken to ensure the success of the student.

GEO 4: Demonstrate scientific reasoning (4-8 credits)

Choose one of the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
BIO 132 Human Biology 4 ENG 085* and MAT 020* or higher

Students focus on the structure and function of the human body, the unity and diversity of life, the nature of scientific inquiry, and the principles and processes of evolution as well as contemporary issues that relate to biology. Course includes a laboratory component which focuses on human anatomy.

BIO 253 and 254 Human Anatomy and Physiology I & II 8

Human Anatomy and Physiology I
This is the first course of a two-semester course sequence in which students study the anatomy and physiology of the human body. The course includes introductions to basic chemistry, biology and histology and extends to the survey of the integumentary, skeletal, muscular and nervous systems. This course includes a laboratory component in which students are responsible for performing dissections and making original observations on dissected material. The laboratory experience culminates with the use of a plastinated human specimen for observation. A strong background in biology and/or chemistry is highly recommended.

Human Anatomy and Physiology II
This is the second course of a two-semester course sequence in which students study the anatomy and physiology of the human body. The course includes the autonomic nervous system, sensory, motor, and integrative systems, special senses, endocrine system, cardiovascular systems, lymphatic system and immunity, respiratory systems, digestive system, metabolism and nutrition, urinary system and reproductive systems. This course includes a laboratory component in which students are responsible for performing dissections and making original observations on dissected material. The laboratory experience culminates with the use of a plastinated human specimen for observation. Because physiological processes are based on the principles of chemistry, prior chemistry coursework is strongly recommended for this course.

GEO 5: Understand human behavior and social systems, and the principles which govern them (4 credits)

Take the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
PSY 140 Introduction to Psychology 4 ENG 085* and ENG 090*

Overview of the field of psychology, including learning, development, emotion, motivation, personality, abnormal behavior and psychotherapy.

GEO 6: Understand aesthetic experience and artistic creativity (# credits)

Choose one of the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
ART 111 Art History: Prehistoric to 1400 3 ENG 085, ENG 091

This course is a survey of art history and aesthetics covering art and architecture from prehistoric times to 1400.

ART 112 Art History: Renaissance to Present 3 ENG 085*

This course is a survey of art history and aesthetics covering art from the Renaissance through the 20th century.

ENG 210 Introduction to Film 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Students are introduced to film as a visual art and to basic film terms and techniques, such as composition, movement, editing and sound. Readings in film history, genre, theory and criticism. Includes JC Winter Film Series.

ENG 246 Short Story & Novel 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Students are introduced to traditional and contemporary fictional genres. This course emphasizes understanding, appreciation and the critical analysis of narrative art. Selections for study are chosen from English and American literature as well as world literature in translation.

ENG 247 Poetry & Drama 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Students are introduced to lyric and dramatic genres. This course emphasizes understanding, appreciation and enjoyment of poetry and theatre as language performances and literary forms. Selections for study are chosen from English and American literature as well as world literature in translation.

ENG 249 African-American Literature 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Survey of the literature of African-American writers. Emphasis is on the major writers in narrative, poetry, fiction, essay and drama.

ENG 252 Shakespeare 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Students read representative plays and are introduced to the Elizabethan world. Course emphasizes developing understanding, appreciation and critical analysis skills.

ENG 254 Children’s Literature 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Students survey the various genres of children’s literature from a critical point of view. Course emphasizes developing student competency in oral reading and presentation of children’s literature.

ENG 255 American Literature-19th Century 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Students examine the development of a distinctive American literature and culture during the 19th century. Students read selections from many writers, with emphasis on major figures such as Hawthorne, Melville, Thoreau, Emerson, Poe, Dickinson, Whitman, Douglass and Jacobs.

ENG 256 American Literature-20th Century 3 ENG 085* and ENG 131

Students examine the literature and culture of America from 1890 to the present, with emphasis on the development of organic and post-modern writing in narrative, poetic and critical modes.

HUM 131 Cultural Connections 3 ENG 085 and ENG 091

This interdisciplinary course examines contemporary issues, their human and technological components, and their historical precedents through art, music, literature and philosophy.

MUS 131 Understanding Music 3 ENG 085*

Lecture and directed listening on the elements, forms and historic chronology of Western music.

THR 116 Introduction to Theatre 3 ENG 085*

Survey of Western theatre and drama. Appreciation of theatre through understanding of historical development and societal function. Theatre architecture, production, costuming and acting styles, and the artists who create them.

GEO 7: Understand and respect the diversity and interdependence of the world’s peoples and cultures

Program courses meet this requirement.

RELATED REQUIREMENTS (15 credits)

Take the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
DMS 100 Introduction to Diagnostic Imaging 3

Students are introduced to the radiologic sciences. Modalities discussed include X-rays, nuclear medicine, ultrasound, computerized tomgraphy (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and photon emission tomography (PET). Students learn indications for a variety of diagnostic studies, how they are evaluated and interpreted,correlations of multiple studies, and how to prepare the patient for the study.

DMS 104 Introduction to Sonographic Instrumentation 3 ENG 085* and MAT 131* or higher, plus signed DMS fact sheet (EQV-DMSFS)

In this course students will learn the history and basic principles of static and real-time ultrasound machines. The instrumentation of A-mode and its conversion into the real time B-mode scanners will be explored. Laboratory assignments reinforce learning activities.

HOC 130 Introduction to Health Occupations 3

This course will provide the student with an overview of the health care field. Information that is covered serves as a solid foundation for all students in health sciences or health occupations, regardless of the particular health care profession they are interested in pursuing. Topics include: careers in health care, legal and ethical responsibilities, professionalism, interactions between and reaction of patients in normal and altered states, patient and personal safety and cultural diversity.

MOA 120 Medical Terminology 3 ENG 085*

A programmed learning word building system approach is used to teach basic medical terminology word roots, prefixes, suffixes, language origins, plural formation and grammar rules are studied. Emphasis is placed on word building, definitions, spelling, usage, pronunciation and acceptable medical abbreviations.

PHY 145 Introduction to Basic Physics 2 ENG 085 and MAT 020 or higher.

This course addresses the basic principles of classical physics specifically for the sonography program with a minimal amount of mathematics. The topics covered include motion, mechanics, energy, properties of matter, waves, heat, electricity and magnetism.

CORE REQUIREMENTS (34 credits)

Take the following:

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
DMS 107 Sonographic Orientation-Vascular 3

This course prepares sonography students for their clinical work-site experiences. Students will explore interpersonal relationship skills, ethical decision making, and a review of clinical technical skills as they relate to the on-site work experience. Students will learn basic cross-sectional anatomy as related to beginning sonographic scanning of the arterial and venous systems, of the extremities, neck and abdomen.

DMS 151 Peripheral Arterial I 3 BIO 132 or BIO 253

This course facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods for the peripheral arterial systems of the upper and lower extremities. Testing methods covered will include segmental pressures, color Doppler imaging (CDI) and duplex sonography.

DMS 152 Peripheral Arterial II 3 DMS 151

This course, a continuation of DMS 151, facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods for the peripheral arterial systems of the upper and lower extremities. Testing methods covered will include segmental pressures, color Doppler imaging (CDI) and duplex sonography. Abdominal vascular testing techniques will be included.

DMS 155 Peripheral Venous 3 BIO 132 or BIO 253

This course facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods for the peripheral venous systems of the upper and lower extremities. Venous hemodynamics and testing methods covered include all areas of color Doppler imaging (CDI), air and photo plethysmography.

DMS 161 Vascular Clinical I 4

In this course students receive 300-plus hours of supervised clinical experience in an approved vascular laboratory. This course provides hands-on experiences in basic color Doppler imaging (CDI), hemodynamics, segmental pressures and duplex sonography. Students are instructed and supervised by registered vascular technologists. Completion of clinical competencies is required to complete this course.

DMS 206 Sonographic Instrumentation 4

Students explore the mechanics of A-mode, B-mode, M-mode, Doppler, and real time equipment. Accessory equipment such as cameras, transducers, phased, annular and linear arrays, and all types of hard copy documentation instruments are investigated. Multiple methods of preventative maintenance and quality control are presented. Laboratory reinforces learning activities.

DMS 251 Cerebrovascular Imaging 3 BIO 132 or BIO 253

This course facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods and hemodynamics of the extracranial vessels of the head and neck. Testing methods covered include color Doppler imaging (CDI) and duplex sonography.

DMS 254 Transcranial Doppler Imaging and Capstone 3 DMS 251

This course will facilitate student learning of diagnostic testing methods and hemodynamics of the intracranial vessels. Testing methods covered will include: color Doppler imaging (CDI and duplex sonography). In this course a strong emphasis is placed on registry preparation and job placement. Topics include: testing tips and techniques (during weekly class sessions students will individually and on a team basis complete a 200 question mock registry using testing tips and techniques), and the process of developing a résumé and cover letter.

DMS 265 Vascular Clinical II 4

This course is a continuation of DMS 161. Students receive 300 plus hours of supervised clinical experience in an approved vascular laboratory. It also provides hands-on experiences in basic and advanced color Doppler imaging (CDI), hemodynamics, segmental pressures and duplex sonography. Students are instructed and supervised by registered vascular technologists. Completion of clinical competencies required to complete this course.

DMS 266 Vascular Clinical III 4

This course is a continuation of DMS 265. Students receive 300 hours of supervised clinical experience in an approved vascular laboratory. It also provides hands-on experiences in advanced color Doppler imaging (CDI), hemodynamics, segmental pressures and duplex sonography. Students are instructed and supervised by registered vascular technologists. Completion of clinical competencies is required to complete this course.

Sample Course Map

The following is a sample course map for informational purposes and will not suit every student’s situation. A detailed, individualized course map will be created when a student meets with their Student Success Navigator.

SEMESTER 1

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
DMS 100 Introduction to Diagnostic Imaging 3

Students are introduced to the radiologic sciences. Modalities discussed include X-rays, nuclear medicine, ultrasound, computerized tomgraphy (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and photon emission tomography (PET). Students learn indications for a variety of diagnostic studies, how they are evaluated and interpreted,correlations of multiple studies, and how to prepare the patient for the study.

DMS 108 Essentials of Sonography 3

This course will address the high priorities in the health care field such as good character, strong work ethic and professional traits and behaviors that apply to all health care workers. Affective domain, as well as the ability to process and understand physical relationships among objects, will be assessed through scanning exercises.

ENG 131 Writing Experience I 3 ENG 085 and ENG 091

This is an intensive writing course. Narrative and descriptive modes are stressed. Basic research strategies are introduced. An end-of-the-semester portfolio is required.

MAT 131 Intermediate Algebra 4 MAT 039*

(FORMERLY MTH 131) This course emphasizes simplifying expressions, solving equations, and graphing functions, including linear, quadratic, polynomial, rational, radical, exponential and logarithmic. Problem solving and mathematical modeling are integrated throughout. Appropriate technology includes a graphing calculator. The mathematics department recommends the prerequisite not be more than two years old. If the prerequisite is more than two years old the recommendation is the course placement assessment be taken or the prerequisite be retaken to ensure the success of the student.

SEM 140 Seminar in Life Pathways 3

Seminar in Life Pathways is a gateway course to Jackson College. This course is designed to help all students develop the skills, inner qualities and external behaviors needed to take charge of their academic and career success. Students will be guided through an extensive process in making career choices and selecting an academic program of study at Jackson College and beyond. With the exception of second-admit programs, SEM 140 is required of all students.

SEMESTER 2

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
HOC 130 Introduction to Health Occupations 3

This course will provide the student with an overview of the health care field. Information that is covered serves as a solid foundation for all students in health sciences or health occupations, regardless of the particular health care profession they are interested in pursuing. Topics include: careers in health care, legal and ethical responsibilities, professionalism, interactions between and reaction of patients in normal and altered states, patient and personal safety and cultural diversity.

HUM 131 Cultural Connections 3 ENG 085 and ENG 091

This interdisciplinary course examines contemporary issues, their human and technological components, and their historical precedents through art, music, literature and philosophy.

MOA 120 Medical Terminology 3 ENG 085*

A programmed learning word building system approach is used to teach basic medical terminology word roots, prefixes, suffixes, language origins, plural formation and grammar rules are studied. Emphasis is placed on word building, definitions, spelling, usage, pronunciation and acceptable medical abbreviations.

PHY 145 Introduction to Basic Physics 2 ENG 085 and MAT 020 or higher.

This course addresses the basic principles of classical physics specifically for the sonography program with a minimal amount of mathematics. The topics covered include motion, mechanics, energy, properties of matter, waves, heat, electricity and magnetism.

PSY 140 Introduction to Psychology 4 ENG 085* and ENG 090*

Overview of the field of psychology, including learning, development, emotion, motivation, personality, abnormal behavior and psychotherapy.

SEMESTER 3

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
BIO 132 Human Biology 4 ENG 085* and MAT 020* or higher

Students focus on the structure and function of the human body, the unity and diversity of life, the nature of scientific inquiry, and the principles and processes of evolution as well as contemporary issues that relate to biology. Course includes a laboratory component which focuses on human anatomy.

COM 231 Communication Fundamentals 3 ENG 085, ENG 091

(FORMERLY SPH 231)

DMS 104 Introduction to Sonographic Instrumentation 3 ENG 085* and MAT 131* or higher, plus signed DMS fact sheet (EQV-DMSFS)

In this course students will learn the history and basic principles of static and real-time ultrasound machines. The instrumentation of A-mode and its conversion into the real time B-mode scanners will be explored. Laboratory assignments reinforce learning activities.

SEMESTER 4

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
DMS 107 Sonographic Orientation-Vascular 3

This course prepares sonography students for their clinical work-site experiences. Students will explore interpersonal relationship skills, ethical decision making, and a review of clinical technical skills as they relate to the on-site work experience. Students will learn basic cross-sectional anatomy as related to beginning sonographic scanning of the arterial and venous systems, of the extremities, neck and abdomen.

DMS 155 Peripheral Venous 3 BIO 132 or BIO 253

This course facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods for the peripheral venous systems of the upper and lower extremities. Venous hemodynamics and testing methods covered include all areas of color Doppler imaging (CDI), air and photo plethysmography.

DMS 161 Vascular Clinical I 4

In this course students receive 300-plus hours of supervised clinical experience in an approved vascular laboratory. This course provides hands-on experiences in basic color Doppler imaging (CDI), hemodynamics, segmental pressures and duplex sonography. Students are instructed and supervised by registered vascular technologists. Completion of clinical competencies is required to complete this course.

DMS 198 Introduction to Vascular Clinical 5

This course prepares sonography students for their clinical work-site experiences. Students will review clinical technical skills as they relate to the on-site work experience. Students will learn sonographic scanning of their program discipline with the outcome of a basic level competency. Admission to the vascular sonography program required to register for this course.

SEMESTER 5

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
DMS 151 Peripheral Arterial I 3 BIO 132 or BIO 253

This course facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods for the peripheral arterial systems of the upper and lower extremities. Testing methods covered will include segmental pressures, color Doppler imaging (CDI) and duplex sonography.

DMS 206 Sonographic Instrumentation 4

Students explore the mechanics of A-mode, B-mode, M-mode, Doppler, and real time equipment. Accessory equipment such as cameras, transducers, phased, annular and linear arrays, and all types of hard copy documentation instruments are investigated. Multiple methods of preventative maintenance and quality control are presented. Laboratory reinforces learning activities.

DMS 251 Cerebrovascular Imaging 3 BIO 132 or BIO 253

This course facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods and hemodynamics of the extracranial vessels of the head and neck. Testing methods covered include color Doppler imaging (CDI) and duplex sonography.

DMS 265 Vascular Clinical II 4

This course is a continuation of DMS 161. Students receive 300 plus hours of supervised clinical experience in an approved vascular laboratory. It also provides hands-on experiences in basic and advanced color Doppler imaging (CDI), hemodynamics, segmental pressures and duplex sonography. Students are instructed and supervised by registered vascular technologists. Completion of clinical competencies required to complete this course.

SEMESTER 6

Course # Course Name Credits Prerequisites Notes
DMS 152 Peripheral Arterial II 3 DMS 151

This course, a continuation of DMS 151, facilitates student learning of diagnostic testing methods for the peripheral arterial systems of the upper and lower extremities. Testing methods covered will include segmental pressures, color Doppler imaging (CDI) and duplex sonography. Abdominal vascular testing techniques will be included.

DMS 254 Transcranial Doppler Imaging and Capstone 3 DMS 251

This course will facilitate student learning of diagnostic testing methods and hemodynamics of the intracranial vessels. Testing methods covered will include: color Doppler imaging (CDI and duplex sonography). In this course a strong emphasis is placed on registry preparation and job placement. Topics include: testing tips and techniques (during weekly class sessions students will individually and on a team basis complete a 200 question mock registry using testing tips and techniques), and the process of developing a résumé and cover letter.

DMS 266 Vascular Clinical III 4

This course is a continuation of DMS 265. Students receive 300 hours of supervised clinical experience in an approved vascular laboratory. It also provides hands-on experiences in advanced color Doppler imaging (CDI), hemodynamics, segmental pressures and duplex sonography. Students are instructed and supervised by registered vascular technologists. Completion of clinical competencies is required to complete this course.