A standard thought when looking at sonography careers is “what is the average ultrasound technician salary?” Well, the answer does depend on a number of variables. Those include work experience, what state you work in, and your level of sonography training.
We are going to take a common sense look at the most important factors that actually determine how much an ultrasound tech makes or can make in a real world sense, and cover the latest official government data and statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics website otherwise known as bls.gov. The next decade looks tremendous for sonographers with a growth rate of 39%! That is more than double the national average!
What is the Median Ultrasound Technician Salary?
To answer that question is its most simple form, according to the latest report on onetonline.org, the median annual salary in the United States for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers or Ultrasound technicians was $66,410 in the year 2013.
But remember, the attainable, actual salary you can really expect to earn in the sonography field will depend on your individual factors, circumstances and situation.
What Influences an Ultrasound Tech Salary?
Below are the key factors that play a role in what you can make as a sonographer in today’s job market:
- Individual Work Experience
- Your Level of Training and Education
- Your Location
Lets now look at each one in detail.
Sonography is no different that most professions, the more job or work experience you have as a working ultrasound technician, the more money you usually make. The main reasons for this are employer trust (which they will pay for with a higher salary), having more years to get step increases in pay and have more time to switch employers and take advantage of the pay increases that it provides.
Level of Training and Education
In many cases, the more credentials you carry or training you have completed as an ultrasound technician, the higher salary you can command. It is common that employers will demand a degree from a CAAHEP-accredited program and ultrasound certification from the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS), so be ready for that. But it could put you on the higher-end of the pay scale.
Examples of these include:
- Master’s Degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography
- Bachelor’s Degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography
- Associate’s Degree in Diagnostic Ultrasound
Where you Live
It is always shocking to hear the different wages made in different states. Ultrasound techs in California make more than ultrasound techs in Arkansas or New Mexico. Commonly, sonographers who work and live in the Western and Northeastern United States tend to earn more money than other parts of the nation.
But, this increase pay rarely keeps up with the cost of living in those states. So, it is reasonable to say the Arkansas ultrasound tech may make less but has potential to save a lot more due to the cheaper cost of living in Arkansas.
Click to See Ultrasound Technician Salary by State
|State Abbr.||Median Salary (2013)||Rank for Cost of Living|
Maximize Your Ultrasound Technician Salary Potential
Now you know all of the factors that have the greatest effect on an ultrasound technician salary. You may also see that there’s a few other things you may do to give your earning potential a boost. Relocating to the right state is a tough one but can be life changing financially, and gaining work experience is just a matter of time. So that leaves with the option to pursue additional sonography specialization or training to earn a higher pay as an ultrasound technician. Graduating from an accredited ultrasound technician school and then follow the steps we have laid out and you will be ready to go!