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Technical Standards

The candidate for the B.S. Degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography must possess the intellectual ability to learn, integrate, analyze, and synthesize data. They must have functional use of the sense of vision, hearing, and equilibrium. Candidates must also have motor function capabilities to meet the demands of Diagnostic Medical Sonography education and the demand of patient care.

The Diagnostic Medical Sonography applicant must also possess the following capabilities, attributes and skills:

  • Observation
  • Communication
  • Motor Coordination and Strength
  • Intellectual
  • Behavioral and Social

1. Observation

The ability to observe is required for demonstrations and visual presentations in lectures and laboratories. The ability to discriminate the difference between shades of blacks, grays, and whites, and various color combinations that indicate blood flow and hemodynamics on both display devices and recorded images (film and paper) is critical for mastering scan interpretation. The student must also be able to observe patients accurately and completely, both at a distance and closely.

2. Communication

The Diagnostic Medical Imaging student must be able to communicate effectively via speech, reading, and writing. Students should be able to hear and observe clinical staff and patients in order to elicit information, perceive nonverbal communication, describe changes in mood, activity in posture, and recognize and respond to an emergency or urgent situation. In addition to patient and clinical staff communication, the student must be able to communicate orally and in writing with physicians, faculty, peers and other health care professionals.

The student must possess sufficient auditory perception, such as needed to receive communication from physicians and other allied health personnel and patients in routine and emergency situations.

3. Motor Coordination and Strength

A sonography student should possess the ability for gross and fine motor function, manual dexterity, and physical strength to:

  • Apply general care and emergency treatment to patients
  • Help lift patients who may be unable to move themselves from wheelchairs or beds to the examination table and vice versa (up to 10-25 times per day) lift and/or move objects or instruments (50 pounds or more routinely).
  • Push a patient in a wheelchair or stretcher weighing up to 750 lbs.
  • Manipulate ultrasound equipment, computers, and peripherals.
  • Push and maneuver all Ultrasound imaging equipment and during mobile procedures, manipulate ultrasound equipment along with patient equipment on the nursing unit.
  • Work in small, confined spaces that require stretching, reaching, bending, turning and lifting.
  • Use both right and left hands while using small hand-held transducers for extended periods of time. Perform keyboard functions, adjust small knobs, etc. with both hands.
  • Stand or sit for long periods of time (often over one hour) while performing sonographic examinations.
  • Organize and accurately perform the individual steps in a sonographic examination in the proper sequence.
  • See and function adequately in a semi-dark environment.

4. Distinguish Audible Sounds and Visual Images

An ultrasound student must be able to hear and distinguish differences in Doppler frequencies and to see and differentiate colors during color Doppler examinations. A DMS student must be able to think in three dimensions while using a two-dimensional imaging modality.

5. Intellectual

Students must demonstrate critical thinking skills. They must be able to question and evaluate logical arguments; to recognize and differentiate facts, assumptions and hidden assumptions; and to distinguish the pertinent from the irrelevant.

The student must also be able to comprehend multi-dimensional relationships and the spatial relationships of anatomic structures. The student must be able to think in three dimensions while using a two-dimensional imaging modality.

Students must be able to recognize problems, implement solutions and assess outcomes. They must seek out feedback and make constructive use of such feedback.

Students must be able to maintain professional conduct and appearance and maintain client confidentially and operate within the scope of practice.

Students are required to demonstrate a variety of computer skills. Students must have access to the internet and be able to perform internet searches, use email and be able to send and receive attachments. And have access to LIU’s teaching platform – Blackboard.

Students must also have the ability to be assertive, delegate responsibilities appropriately, and function as part of a medical team.

Students must have the capacity and willingness to recognize limitations of their skills, legal authority and authorization, and must be willing to seek appropriate supervision and direction.

6. Behavioral and Social Attributes

Students must have a serious commitment to learning. They must be able to self-assess, self-direct and self-correct.

Students must be emotionally healthy. Student must be able to use their intellectual ability and exercise good judgment.

Students must be able to develop mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with patients and colleagues.

Students must be able to tolerate physical and emotional stress while continuing to function effectively. Students must be able to identify sources of stress and then develop and employ appropriate and effective coping mechanisms. The student must also possess qualities of adaptability, flexibility, and be able to function in the face of uncertainty.

Students must possess high levels of empathy, motivation to serve, integrity, and a consciousness of social value.

Students must possess excellent interpersonal skills. They must be able to interact effectively with classmates, faculty, patients, family of patients, health care professionals and the community at large. They must be able to appropriately handle issues of cultural, ethnic and religious diversity.

Students must exhibit appropriate professional conduct and be a positive representative of the profession as a whole and the DMS program in particular.

Students must be able to provide professional and technical services in spite of the stresses of a heavy workload.

Students must be able to minimize ultrasound exposure to patients, self and others while being honest, compassionate, ethical and responsible.

Students must be able to develop, maintain, and demonstrate ethical behaviors with respect to coworkers, preceptors, faculty members, patients, the families of patients.

Long Island University’s Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program will attempt to develop creative ways of opening the Program to competitive, qualified individuals with disabilities. In doing so, however, the Program must maintain the integrity of the curriculum and preserve those elements deemed essential in the field of diagnostic medical sonography. The Program cannot compromise the health and safety of patients. An applicant or student who is unable to meet the minimum academic and technical standards is not qualified for the practice of the profession.