School of Health and Life Sciences

Diagnostic Medical Sonography

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Diagnostic Medical Sonographers are highly trained, in-demand professionals who use ultrasounds to produce and record images of important organs, masses and fetal images. This hands-on accredited program will allow you the opportunity to participate in clinical rotations in major Alberta hospitals. You’ll receive training on industry-standard equipment and get the opportunity to learn on the same technology you’ll use in your practicum placement – and career.

Sep 01, 2023

Quick Facts

Credential: Diploma

Diplomas are credit programs that take 2 to 3 years and lead to government approved and industry-recognized credentials.

Campus: Main

Any in-person components of your courses will be delivered at NAIT's Main Campus in Edmonton. View map

Delivery Options:

  • Both On-Campus and Virtual - Some of your coursework will be in-person, on campus and some will be done online.

Length: 2.5 Years

With a typical full-time course load, this program will take 2.5 Years to complete.

Open Studies: Available

This program has courses that are available for Open Studies. Open Studies allows you to explore credit courses without applying to a program. It is an opportunity to get a feel for school and what program you want to be in. View courses

International Students: Accepted

This program accepts international students, however, program availability may be limited. Check program availability for this term. This program also meets the eligibility for the Post-Graduation Work Permit program. Each student is responsible for maintaining their eligibility throughout their studies.

Grad Employment Rate

Employment rates are reported by NAIT alumni, are for information purposes, and do not guarantee future employment opportunities. Please note that data for newer programs may not be included within this report.

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Median Starting Salary

Salaries are reported by NAIT alumni, are for information purposes, and are not a guarantee of future income. Please note that data for newer programs may not be included within this report.

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Hands-on, industry-relevant training

By the end of the Sonography program, you’ll be confident with ultrasound imaging and skilled in obstetrics and gynecology, abdomen and superficial structure scanning and cardiac sonography and vascular studies.

Due to practicum placements, you can expect much of the program to be completed off campus, and may involve working evening and weekend shifts in hospitals and community care clinics.

The Sonography program has a heavy course load – you should expect 54 hours per week of in-class and out-of-class learning.Your clinical rotation will be comprised of 40-hour work weeks. Students receive theoretical and clinical training in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. A number of course hours are completed off campus and may involve working evenings and weekends. In addition to the more traditional lecture and laboratory settings, students also gain clinical experience in a variety of locations both on and off campus. Selected seminars and labs may be scheduled in the evenings and on weekends.

Students in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program work in labs equipped with state-of-the-art ultrasound equipment, including:

  • 2D ultrasound systems with Doppler
  • 3D/4D ultrasound systems 
  • dedicated echocardiography scanning systems 
  • portable point of care (emergency response) systems
  • physiological peripheral arterial testing systems 
  • simulators that can be programmed to display normal or abnormal cases for abdomen, obstetrics, gynecology,and cardiac
  • picture archiving computer systems

Program goals:

  • Foster an environment of clinical and academic excellence that prepares students to be competent, active members or leaders in the healthcare community.
  • Graduate students who possess competencies and behaviours required for entry-level sonographers in accordance with the prevailing competency profiles of Sonography Canada.
  • Provide an education experience that promotes a graduate's commitment for continued professional development.
  • Develop students' communication, critical thinking, problem solving and leadership skills.
  • Graduate students who demonstrate compassion and ethical, safe, quality health care to a diverse population. 
  • Provide a learning experience in which graduates will be highly satisfied.
  • Graduate students with whom employers will be highly satisfied. 

Students will have the opportunity to attain all the required skills in the Sonography Canada National Competency Profile (NCP). and complete the Sonography Canada Canadian Clinical Skills Assessments (CCSA) for the Generalist and Cardiac Sonographer during the program.

DMS Equipment

Open Studies Pathway

You now have an additional pathway to the School of Health and Life Sciences at NAIT. Complete one or more select Open Studies courses to be guaranteed a program entrance interview.

Alumni Profile: Kaylee Demkiw

Kaylee's training opened the door to a rewarding career in the leading edge, high-risk perinatal clinic at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton.

Pushing the limits of simulation training

NAIT's Simulation Centre re-creates the real world of health-care careers

Keeping it Real

From practicing on high-fidelity manikins to learning on the latest software, watch how NAIT students practice the best patient care.

Enter the workforce with confidence

As a member of a health-care team, an ultrasound technologist (sonographer) uses a variety of hand-held scanning probes and imaging techniques in order to differentiate between technical artifacts and questionable clinical appearances from pathology. 

Diagnostic Medical Sonography is highly operator-dependent and requires a logical self-directed approach to scanning, on-the-spot critical thinking and good judgment.

For more information about career options, duties, working conditions and salaries, visit Alberta Occupational Profiles - Diagnostic Medical Sonographer 

Please refer to the Sonography Canada website to learn more about requirements for licensing/mandatory registration and declaration of conduct, which may include disclosure of information related to criminal convictions and professional misconduct or incompetence as well as any personal factors that could impact the ability to practice safely.

DMS Instructor

Post Graduation Affiliation

After successful completion of both the didactic and clinical components of the program, graduates are eligible to write the specific registration examinations set by Sonography Canada and/or the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) and become members of several professional diagnostic ultrasound associations.

Continuing your studies

Continuing Education is mandatory for this profession. Competence is maintained by taking a minimum number of continuing education credits every three years. Diagnostic Medical Sonography graduates are eligible for credit toward:

  • Bachelor of Technology (BTech), NAIT
  • Bachelor of  Science in Human Sciences, Athabasca University
  • Bachelor of Health Sciences, Thompson Rivers
  • Bachelor of Applied Management, University of New Brunswick
  • Please note: Post-secondary articulation agreements within Alberta are approved by the Alberta Council on Admissions and Transfer (ACAT). To view the details of specific agreements, please visit or contact
  • For questions regarding transfer agreements or to obtain a course description/outline that is no longer available on our website, please contact

Industry standard credentials

After successful completion of both the didactic and clinical components of the program, you will be  eligible to write the registration examinations set by Sonography Canada and American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS)

As a NAIT graduate, you will be eligible to become a member of a variety different professional diagnostic ultrasound associations.

Please note: Post-secondary articulation agreements within Alberta are approved by the Alberta Council on Admissions and Transfer (ACAT). To view the details of specific agreements, please visit or contact

DMS Instructor and Student

Courses and Advanced Credit

Current and recently admitted students can find information and updates about their program on their My Program page in the MyNAIT Portal. To monitor your course progress and the courses still needed to graduate, visit your Academic Progress Report.

Advanced Credit

You may apply for advanced credit once you have been accepted into the program. Advanced credit can be Transfer Credit (for completed post-secondary courses) or PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition).

Transfer Credit

In addition to the common guidelines outlined on the Transfer and Credit Options section, your program has other advanced credit requirements that are applied to each request including:

  • You must have completed the course or program no more than 5 year(s) ago unless a formalized articulation agreement is in place
  • You must have a minimum mark of C- in the course(s) or program

Read more about advanced credit or contact us about applying for credit for this program.


Expand each course below to see details about credits, requisites, scheduling, and more.

Tuition & Fees

Scholarships & Awards

The following scholarships and/or bursaries are available to you as a student in this program. To access your opportunities, visit the Student Portal.

Admission Requirements

Want to learn more about this program?

Thank you for your interest! We want to get you in contact with the right person to answer your questions. If you are a current or recently admitted student you can find program and course information as well as contact details for your program on the My Program page on the MyNAIT Portal.

General inquiries

Please contact the Student Service Centre for general inquiries such as:

  • Student application support
  • Program entrance requirements, tuition & fees, and how to apply
  • Program admissions process
  • Enrolment support
  • Student funding options
  • Fee and refund inquiries
  • General program and course withdrawal procedures
  • Navigating and MyNAITPortal

Contact Student Service Centre

Program-specific questions

Please fill out the form below if you have any program-specific questions relating to:

  • Program details
  • Work-integrated learning and cooperative education
  • Advance credit and Prior Learning Assessment & Recognition (PLAR)
  • Program and course withdrawal

The personal information on this form is being collected under the authority of the Post-secondary Learning Act and section 33(c) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIP). The information will be protected by the provisions of FOIP, and will be used for the purpose of registration and administration of the event. If you have any questions or concerns about the collection, use, security or disclosure of the personal information, please contact General Council at 780.471.7664 or

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