ARDMS Ultrasound Certification vs. Accredited Sonography Program

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Lauren in Anaheim, California

76 months ago

Hi, here is my current situation...
In the last 3 years, I have been interning in an outpatient medical clinic learning ultrasound. I have the clinical hours to take my ARDMS boards, I am certified for Abdomen and am about to take the OBGYN (RDMS) and Vascular (RVT) license test.

However, I have NOT graduated from an accredited sonography program. I have seen that most ultrasound tech positions require graduation from an accredited program... so my question is should I just take my tests and try to get a job or should I enroll in an accredited program?

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ckimpton0206 in Orange County, California

75 months ago

no all you have to do in your situation is work f/t for one year as a tech to become eligble to sit for your boards. look at the pre-reqs at www.adrms.org and see where you stand. If your not sure call them. they are really nice ...good luck dont waste any more $$ and your time in school.

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Parrish in Yorba Linda, California

74 months ago

I am thinking of attending a certificate program for Ultrasound. But I am having a second thought. Not really sure what to do.

Doing my research jobs with tittle of "Diagnostic Medical Sonographer" require you education at 2-year CAAHEP. As "Ultrasound Technologist", only required ARDMS.

Long run I would think the certificate route through career colleges instead of CAAHEP certified college may not be worth it.

Can you someone advise me? I want to make sure I am making the right decision.

Thank you
Parrish

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Sara in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

74 months ago

nic in Staten Island, New York said: What is your current education? Remember you must get your ardms to even get a job interview these days. No one wants an unregistered tech,don't let anyone tell you otherwise!!! So go where your sure to get registered stright away or you won't work & I'm not kidding!If doing the certificate program allows you to sit for the test find out how much work experience is necessary, some say 600 hrs or 8 mths after you graduate as long as your working.The trouble is you can't work w/o experience & you can't sit for the test w/o it either. Ask the career councelor of the schools this question & get their name. What schools were you thinking of go to? What state are you in? I hear Down state in NJ is a great program. I went to UDS in Iselin NJ now Stamford Brown & it was like boot camp.
Are you male or female? If you are male, you should not do general us. If you are female consider highrisk ob (specialize) Echo/vascular is my best advice to you.Go where the $$$ is. General is unforgiving & ultimately you'll wished you listened to me.I wish I has gotten advice but I had to learn the hard way.
If you do go to school for US, make sure you keep your life simple untill you graduate. No engagements, no babys, no life changes. You might think you can handle it & who knows maybe you can it's just not finding out you can't durring such an important time for study.Best of luck I think you'll love the field it's very rewarding but remember go for the $$$ because the responsibility is great so you might as well get payed for it.

This is good advice since I could not enter to the DMS in Keiser University because there is a long waiting list until 2012. They suggest me to go to the Vascular Ultrasound program instead which start in a few months.

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Mara in New York, New York

74 months ago

Also get the Davies books. 500 questions and answers. Great study aides. could not have passed physics without Davies! www.daviespublishing.com

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selim raj in Toronto, Ontario

74 months ago

Hi, I already pass the Physics. I need the general CV form to apply for abdomen. I will be highly appreciate if anyone help me to get it.Thanks.selimraj@yahoo.com

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Raiffe in Pompano Beach, Florida

73 months ago

Just to put this out there,passed physics & abd ARDMS.grad of Keiser College & still have not found a job.For the most part I'v been hearing we are looking for someone with a bit more exp.But thank you!!!

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Sono Tech in Brooklyn, New York

73 months ago

HI, I started to work the next day after I finished school, recently passed physics, to be honest, test was not hard, I expected more difficult questions, now i is time for AB. And is true, Davies really helped.

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ano in New York, New York

73 months ago

Sono Tech in Brooklyn, New York said: HI, I started to work the next day after I finished school, recently passed physics, to be honest, test was not hard, I expected more difficult questions, now i is time for AB. And is true, Davies really helped.

Hi,where did you study and when did you finish. I am going to an non- CAAHEP place and am worried about finding a job afterwards

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lutietz in New York, New York

73 months ago

Sono Tech in Brooklyn, New York said: I went to Sanford Brown Institute in NY and I finished in June '08

that is excellent then that you had a job so quickly. Was it from one of your internships?

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MIMI7 in JERSEY CITY, New Jersey

73 months ago

Sono Tech in Brooklyn, New York said: I went to Sanford Brown Institute in NY and I finished in June '08

Wow, that is great... How did u get a job so quickly?

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Sara in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

73 months ago

Raiffe in Pompano Beach, Florida said: Just to put this out there,passed physics & abd ARDMS.grad of Keiser College & still have not found a job.For the most part I'v been hearing we are looking for someone with a bit more exp.But thank you!!!

With this comment about Keiser University makes me think if I should go to Nova Southeastern University to take the core courses in Vascular Sonography.

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H in Salt Lake City, Utah

73 months ago

I went to an unacredited school and am about to take my physics exam followed by OB. I initially had a job at the place I interned at, that helped me out alot. Then we moved and by pure luck it seems I managed to be in the right place at the right time to land another job fairly quickly. It does not seem that the accredidation of your school is what matters most to employers, just your ardms. They put in the ads what they would ideally like, but apply anyway, they are putting in their top goal for a candidate, but usually will at least consider the applicant with less.

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julia in Toronto, Ontario

73 months ago

iam going to write abdomen exam if any one have previous question please send me thanks

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Shyanne in Piscataway, New Jersey

73 months ago

Iris in Brooklyn, New York said: Hi, I went to Sanford Brown Institute (NYC) yesterday. And they told since I have no exper. or Health background. I will not be able to start the SONO tech program. I will have to start by entering the Medical Assitant program and then switch over the Sono tech program. Is this correct???

Absolutely Not ,They just want your money! I went to that same school and they let me right in the Sono Program. I graduated in 2002 and I was never able to find a job because that school Sanford Brown in NYC IS NOT ACCREDITED BY THE CAAHEP(GO TO THE CAAHEP WEBSITE FOR A LIST OF ACCREDITED SCHOOLS)Every interview I went on asked if I was registered by the ARDMS(check this website too!)Ofcourse I wasn't. So I never got a job as an ultrasound tech.School cost $20,000 at that time and I am still paying off the student loan.I took the General Ultrasound Program My classmate took the Echo Program and she had the exact same problem.Read the fine print before you sign anything! Trust me If I would have known this it would have saved lots of money and time. Not to mention the studying required. It was a very vigorous course.
Be Careful!

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Katie frm nyc

73 months ago

I have been doing my research and a lot of it at that. If you live in nyc your best bet honestly is to go to Long Island University for the vascular sonography/technology program.
They are accredited by caahep & as soon as your done with ur schooling(12months) you can sit down to take the ardms exam. No problem!!! Trust me I have been rigorously trying to find out information ..correct info to go to the right school. They start in jan & aren't too expensive $20,000. I'm starting in Jan09 hope to see you there!! Gluck

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Katie frm nyc

73 months ago

& to be exact its the brooklyn campus of LIU.

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Katie frm nyc

73 months ago

I have called hospitals & have been asking them questions as well...LIJ was very helpful if you need more help feel free to email me @
Dsprincess@tmail.com
Anytime .

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Iris in Brooklyn, New York

73 months ago

WOW....really I was looking at the school too!...Please tell me more...but I wanted to do OB/GYN. Email at silvasteel@hotmail.com. Also, do you work? because most to the class are in the morning. And I have full time job :(

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Katie frm nyc

73 months ago

For EVERYONES KNOWLEDGE!!!

It is very important for the school you attend to be accredited by an agency approved by CHEA or the DOE.. one of these agencies being caahep. Its important bc it will allow you to take ur ardms exam right after graduation. Otherwise you will spend a yr or so doing clinical hrs that may not even be accepted by the ardms testing requirements. Therefore preventing you from becoming certified & finding work.

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Jenn

73 months ago

I went to West Coast Ultrasound in California for my sono program. They were able to place me at a really good extern sight!
Right after I finished my 1,000 hours, I moved to Austin, TX. At first I had a really hard time getting a job because the school wasn't CAAHEP, even though I did graduate with a lot of other accredidations. The only thing that saved me... to get a good job was my externship training! Everytime I went on an interview, they asked me the basic questions...CAAHEP, ARDMS? Finally, I begged my current employer to let me do a few scans for them. After they watched me, finally, I was hired.
Now that I've been working for a year, I'm getting ready to take the Vascular exam. I'm also kind-of freeking out. I heard it was really hard!
In TEXAS, they are not hiring new techs unless you are Vascular Certified!!!
What books do I need to study in order to pass? Are there any tutors in the Austin area willing to help. I will pay of course.
Thanks for any info.
Jenn - jennphillips000@yahoo.com

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MIMI7 in JERSEY CITY, New Jersey

73 months ago

Iris in Brooklyn, New York said: Hi, I went to Sanford Brown Institute (NYC) yesterday. And they told since I have no exper. or Health background. I will not be able to start the SONO tech program. I will have to start by entering the Medical Assitant program and then switch over the Sono tech program. Is this correct???

HI IRIS,

I WENT TO THE SANFORD BORWN SCHOOL IN NJ AND THEY TOLD ME THE SAME THING. I THINK IF YOU DO NOT HAVE YOUR BACHELOR'S DEGREE THAT IT IS CORRECT.

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Pat in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

73 months ago

I would definitely do the program if it helps.
It is best to discuss this with your future employer.

Much regards,
www.travellinesexpress.com

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Marlene in Selma, Ca in Parlier, California

73 months ago

Does anyone in the Fresno area know any hospital or imaging center that is currently accepting ultrasound externs? I have tried contacting several facilities but I have not had any luck. Please advise me if anyone has any tips or suggestions. Thanks!

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Marlene in Selma, Ca in Parlier, California

73 months ago

Does anyone in the Fresno CA area know any hospital or imaging center that is currently accepting ultrasound externs? I have tried contacting several facilities but I have not had any luck. Please advise me if anyone has any tips or suggestions. Thanks!

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sarah in Hemet, California

72 months ago

How much did our ultrasound school cost you?

Thanks

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Jenn

72 months ago

Hey! How have you been?

I think I the total is somewhere between 35k-40k. I know my loan payment is 18k, but I forget how much I got in grants and $ put out for tuition & books (by my parents). I had to do the MA program and that made the cost higher than it needed to be.

Have you taken any tests yet? I need to pass vascular and physics to get anywhere out here (TX). I am working full time without any certification, but I'm not getting the salary I should.

If you took the physics or even vascular...do you have any suggestions I should follow so I can study and/or pass?
I am open to any and all suggestions!

Tell me what you've been up to. How's your little girl? I would love to here from you! You can reach me at my email if you like.
jennphillips000@yahoo.com.

Talk to you soon,

Jenn

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Christina

72 months ago

This is my situation...I got accepted in to Sanfd Brown's ultrsound diagnosic's program in Iselin NJ. I'm supposed to start in June 09 but I'm hearing all these terrible stories about this school. I looked it up on the CAAHEP website and Iselin campus is accrediated. Did anyone go to that program can you give me some insight on what I'm getting myself into? Am I going to be able to sit down and take the boards right after I graduate and get a job?? PLEASE HELP!

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MIMI7 in JERSEY CITY, New Jersey

72 months ago

Christina said: This is my situation...I got accepted in to Sanfd Brown's ultrsound diagnosic's program in Iselin NJ. I'm supposed to start in June 09 but I'm hearing all these terrible stories about this school. I looked it up on the CAAHEP website and Iselin campus is accrediated. Did anyone go to that program can you give me some insight on what I'm getting myself into? Am I going to be able to sit down and take the boards right after I graduate and get a job?? PLEASE HELP!

Hi Christina,

I myself was thinking about going to Sanford Brown in Iselin, NJ. I went there to find out more information about the program, but I was told that I have to go for the Medical Assistant program first. For me to do that it will cost me like $50,000.00 or more, so I decided to look into other alternatives. Do you have a Bachelor's degree? Because if not you will also have to go for Medical Assistant first. Sanford Brown is Iselin is CAAHEP accredited and after graduation you will be able to sit right away for the ARDMS registry exam. If you have any further questiosn please send me a message.

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Christina

72 months ago

Yea but I got the 58 from college and passed the test to get in. They told me that I was accepted already so why would I need to go for the medical assisant program? In my situation your saying I'm going to need a bachelors degree to sit for the exam? Otherwise I need the 1 yr experience or something to take the boards?

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MIMI7 in JERSEY CITY, New Jersey

72 months ago

Christina said: Yea but I got the 58 from college and passed the test to get in. They told me that I was accepted already so why would I need to go for the medical assisant program? In my situation your saying I'm going to need a bachelors degree to sit for the exam? Otherwise I need the 1 yr experience or something to take the boards?

Hi Christina,

No as long as you meet their requirements to get into the program directly than you are good. I didn't meet those requirements, therefore I would have to go first for Medical Assistant. Being that the school is CAAHEP accredited you will be able to sit for the exam right away. What school did u go to to get the 58 college credits?

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Christina

72 months ago

I been going to the College of Staten Island for a few years now. What about you any college??

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joyce in Hollywood, Florida

72 months ago

Sara in Fort Lauderdale, Florida said: This is good advice since I could not enter to the DMS in Keiser University because there is a long waiting list until 2012. They suggest me to go to the Vascular Ultrasound program instead which start in a few months.

thank you,do you have your ardms?

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MIMI7 in JERSEY CITY, New Jersey

72 months ago

Christina said: I been going to the College of Staten Island for a few years now. What about you any college??

I went to a technical/trade school for Computer Electronics technology. Graduated from it and received a diploma. I only have 32 credits, but being that they are in the comp electronic field they are not transferable into the ultrasound program. So for me it's starting from the bottom and working my way up. What did you take up?

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Christina

72 months ago

When I first started out liberal arts but I took my bio's and chemisty and all the science classes that I knew I would need to get into a ultrasound program. How can I be sure about the ARDMS exam that I will be able to take it? So many people posting comments were saying that after going to Sanford Brown they couldnt get a job becasue lack of experience is this true? Have you heard of anyone getting a good job after graduating from there?

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Delia

72 months ago

Yes, I graduated Sanford Brown and I am now taking my second registry. The more registries you have the better the pay. Everyone on this forum needs to understand that as far as Sanford Brown is concerned you need to have your BS and bio or chem credits. You do not have that you start the MA program fisrst. Which really makes no sense. As far as the ARDMS is concerned, as long as you have your bachelors, externship completed and school certificate you sit for the boards. It is very simple. Yes, Sanford Brown is not the greatest, but obviously the ARDMS does not care what school you went to as long as you qualify to sit for the boards under one of their Prereqs. Just read the ARDMS page and then find a school that suits you.
Good luck everyone.

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Christina

72 months ago

But that can't be true they told me I'm in the program already so I don't need to go for the medical assisting program. I'm basically in the ulrasound program starting June 09. But I dont have my bach I'm only a few classes away from my assocaites degree. If I dont have my bachlors then wat can I still sit for the ARDMS right after I finish the program?

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Delia in Rego Park, New York

72 months ago

Christina, this link shows you the ARDMS prereqs options: www.ardms.org/downloads/Prerequisite_Chart.pdf

this should help you find where you are or will be after school.

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MIMI7 in JERSEY CITY, New Jersey

72 months ago

Christina said: When I first started out liberal arts but I took my bio's and chemisty and all the science classes that I knew I would need to get into a ultrasound program. How can I be sure about the ARDMS exam that I will be able to take it? So many people posting comments were saying that after going to Sanford Brown they couldnt get a job becasue lack of experience is this true? Have you heard of anyone getting a good job after graduating from there?

Hi Christina,

After graduating from Sanford Brown is Iselin you will be able to sit right away for the ARDMS registry exam. You will not have to wait. You will not have to work for a year. You will be able to take it right away.The reason why because the program is CAAHEP accredited.

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Ohio Student in Warren, Ohio

72 months ago

Nowhere on ARDMS' prerequisite page does it state that CAAHEP-accredited schools are exempt from the additional 12 months of clinical experience outside of the education prgram.

See here: www.ardms.org/downloads/Prerequisite_Chart.pdf

So, how is it that Sanford Brown grads can sit for their exams immediately upon graduation? ARDMS says you cannot, so how could it be possible? Is there some fine print that is not printed here?

Perhaps there have been some changes made to the 2008 requirements......

Fill me in- I am terribly curious.

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Delia in New York, New York

72 months ago

Read the page carefully, the little annotations included. If you go to the bottom and read #3 it states as follows:
"Clinical ultrasound/vascular experience may be obtained one
of two ways; (1) being employed as a full-time ultrasound/vascular
sonographer in a clinical setting for 12 months, or (2) successfully
completing a formal, full-time ultrasound program that is
a minimum of 12 months in length and includes appropriate
clinical and didactic hours. Clinical diagnostic settings include
hospitals, clinics, and private practices. It is recommended that
an applicant be directly involved in a minimum of 800 diagnostic
cases during his/her clinical experience in each specialty area
for which he/she is applying."
The ARDMS takes into account your schooling and your externship. You need to keep track of your cases.

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Ohio Student in Warren, Ohio

72 months ago

Delia in New York, New York said: Read the page carefully, the little annotations included. If you go to the bottom and read #3 it states as follows:
"Clinical ultrasound/vascular experience may be obtained one
of two ways; (1) being employed as a full-time ultrasound/vascular
sonographer in a clinical setting for 12 months, or (2) successfully
completing a formal, full-time ultrasound program that is
a minimum of 12 months in length and includes appropriate
clinical and didactic hours. Clinical diagnostic settings include
hospitals, clinics, and private practices. It is recommended that
an applicant be directly involved in a minimum of 800 diagnostic
cases during his/her clinical experience in each specialty area
for which he/she is applying."
The ARDMS takes into account your schooling and your externship. You need to keep track of your cases.

It also says just after that, "The time frames in which the education and clinical requirements are met cannot overlap. Clinical experience earned to document the education requirement cannot also be used to support the clinical requirement".

I think that blows prereq 1 out of the water for SBC grads.

However, prereq 2 is worth noting, as I did above. But there are still inconsistencies even with that. SBI/SBC is just too risky.

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Delia in New York, New York

72 months ago

Yes, that is CHEA. You were asking Sanford Brown. Sanford Brown is usually prereq #3A.

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Cheryl in Mission Viejo, California

72 months ago

ARLENE MIRA in HUNTINGTON BEACH, California said: Hi Everyone in this forum! I'm thinking of enrolling for the dignostic medical sonographer course with PCI College located at Cerritos CA. They are NOT accredited with CAAHEP. I've tried the community college route but they have a long wait list. Plus even if I have an MBA from a US univ, they want me to take all these pre-reqs because I graduated in 2000. The pre-reqs will extend my schooling to approx. 3 years.

Do any of you know about PCI? Any graduates? They tell me I need 1 yr work experience after I graduate before I can take my ARDMS exam. How is your experience with the job market for someone not yet ARDMS certified? Can I get certified by ARDMS even if this program is not accredited. Really, really need your feedback!!!

Do not go to any school that does not have CAAHEP accredidation! The community college route is the best, however try Charles Drew in Los Angeles. I am pretty sure they have this approval. If you would like to e-mail me and discuss further I am a tech that attended a non accredited school.
Take Care

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Cheryl in Mission Viejo, California

72 months ago

Parrish in Yorba Linda, California said: I am thinking of attending a certificate program for Ultrasound. But I am having a second thought. Not really sure what to do.

Doing my research jobs with tittle of "Diagnostic Medical Sonographer" require you education at 2-year CAAHEP. As "Ultrasound Technologist", only required ARDMS.

Long run I would think the certificate route through career colleges instead of CAAHEP certified college may not be worth it.

Can you someone advise me? I want to make sure I am making the right decision.

Thank you
Parrish

Parrish, Only attend a school that is CAAHEP accredited! Many employers won't even hire you if your school does not have the accredidation. It is important.
If you want to discuss further, e-amil me I am a tech. Cheratk@cox.net

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Ohio Student in Warren, Ohio

72 months ago

Delia in New York, New York said: Yes, that is CHEA. You were asking Sanford Brown. Sanford Brown is usually prereq #3A.

Prereq 3A requires a bachelor's degree, so Sanford Brown alone could not possibly meet this requirement. I made mention of this in another forum. If you have a 4 year degree you'd be good as gold, but how many Sanford Brown alumni have bachelor's degrees? Not many, as it is not a requirement for entry into their DMS program. At least not at Cleveland's SBC. I know this, as I was accepted there (I did need 48 credits, however, but not a degree).

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Delia

72 months ago

Hence the word "usually". Not all SB graduates have a bachelor, but 80% of our class did. Therefore, we went under 3A.

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Ohio Student in Warren, Ohio

72 months ago

Delia said: Hence the word "usually". Not all SB graduates have a bachelor, but 80% of our class did. Therefore, we went under 3A.

So, what about the other 20% then? Were they mislead into believing they could sit for exams immediately upon graduation? Or did they qualify under some other prereq (such as #2, which seems the most feasible even though SBC only offers a diploma....)

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Ohio Student in Warren, Ohio

72 months ago

Delia in New York, New York said: Everyone was told where they stood at inititation which caused an uproar. One gentleman and two ladies quit the program that day, the rest continued on. I know of two who had registered and one who could not find a place to do her 12 months. Some of us keep in touch and are registered.

SB is by no means the ideal school. They need to have at least three newer books, and prepare the students properly for the ARDMS exams which are not a walk in the park. They need to worry less about making money and more about the students who pay them the money. Everyone should choose a school that suits them, and they are comfortable with. In my case, I had no choice and thank God it all went without a hitch.

Delia, thankyou- THANK YOU- for your honesty and detailed explanation. That made more sense than anyone else's description of what goes on once you begin the program.

I am currently pursuing sonography through a four-year program rather than having chosen SBC, and I am at peace with that decision.

I appreciate your candor- it is very necessary for those who are looking into Sanford Brown. Goodness knows they will not get this kind of honesty from their advisor. Take care!

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Delia in New York, New York

72 months ago

You are very welcome. The program cots a lot of money and the starting salary is not that high, but it gets better over the years. I graduated in Jan 2006 so things might have changed some but the basic idea is that you'd want to get a good education for the money spent. Good luck.

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