Mandatory requirements

Applicants for this program are required to complete the School of Health and Public Safety entrance testing process as an admission requirement for this program by the set deadlines. Review admission requirements for more details.


The Diagnostic Medical Sonography program provides comprehensive knowledge and practice in ultrasound technology, a critical component of modern healthcare diagnostics.

It will equip you with the technical expertise and interpersonal skills necessary to assess and evaluate body organs and structures, which will assist physicians in the medical diagnosis and ongoing health management of patients.  

In this program, you will:  

  • learn the science behind high-frequency sound waves and their application in sonography and the instrumentation that produces ultrasound images 
  • assess and image fetal and gynecologic structures 
  • assess and image the intricacies of the heart 
  • assess and image the abdominal cavity, focusing on organs such as the liver, kidneys and pancreas 
  • assess and image the body’s circulatory system (arteries and veins) 
  • assess and image superficial tissues, including the thyroid gland and breast tissue 
  • develop skills to provide quality patient care, from bedside manner to handling sensitive situations 
  • get an in-depth understanding of the human body’s structure and function to enhance imaging 
  • learn to participate in medical research and maintain high standards of quality control in imaging 
  • master the performance of a variety of ultrasound scanning procedures with precision and care. 

You will get hands-on training and practical learning experiences in labs and clinical settings. Upon graduation, you will be prepared for a fulfilling career in diagnostic medical sonography in hospitals and community clinics. 

You will gain experience in sonography theory and techniques within clinical practice in patient care teams, enhancing collaborative skills vital in healthcare. 

If you seek a career combining technology with direct patient care, are detail-oriented, enjoy working with advanced technology, and have strong communication skills, this program will prepare you to enter the workforce as a diagnostic medical sonographer, making a difference in the lives of patients every day. 

Those in diagnostic medical sonography tend to be objective, methodical and innovative. 

You need:  

  • good health and upper body and shoulder strength 
  • physical dexterity to be able to use your hand, wrist, and arm for prolonged periods
  • strong hand-eye coordination 
  • communication and observation skills 
  • the ability to visualize in three dimensions 
  • extensive knowledge of anatomy and physiology 
  • to be comfortable with human blood and tissue
  • attention to detail 
  • critical thinking skills 
  • perseverance  
  • the ability to handle unpleasant situations and work under pressure 
  • teamwork skills 
  • to adhere to a high standard of medical ethics at all times.

You should enjoy working with all types of people, using technical equipment and compiling information. 

As a diagnostic medical sonographer, you may work in environments where a considerable amount of time is spent standing or sitting while performing tasks that may be repetitive. In this profession, you should observe safety precautions and ergonomics to reduce the risk of exposure and injury. Individuals with previous chronic or repetitive strain injuries have experienced re-injury or aggravation of these conditions in this program or as a sonographer.

All medical personnel should be comfortable assessing injuries, performing patient care procedures which may be sensitive, and wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) for extended periods. This includes exposure to latex and other disinfectant materials. 

You are strongly encouraged to refer to the ALIS website for career, learning, and employment information for diagnostic medical sonographers to ensure you can successfully meet the occupational requirements for the program and profession.

You will complete required clinical practicums and rotate through different clinical settings to achieve specific clinical objectives.

By completing all practicum rotations, you will specialize in Generalist Sonography. In addition, you will complete a practicum pathway within the program, in which you’ll specialize in either Adult Echocardiography or Vascular Sonography. You will be assigned your pathway selection before your first practicum.

You will practice all competencies associated with the practicum pathway you are assigned, though these competencies may not fully align with those detailed in your course outlines. Additionally, each competency associated with your practicum pathway will not necessarily be practiced consistently in all of your practicum rotations.

You will be assigned practicum placements with consideration given to your preference of location. However, due to limited availability in Calgary, it might be necessary for you to travel or relocate outside the city. Special considerations will not be accommodated.

In compliance with the practica agreements with our clinical partners, you will be required to provide specific documentation before you can participate in your practicum. Find out what requirements you need for this program. 

Some seats in this program are reserved for applicants currently residing in Saskatchewan to help meet the healthcare needs of that province.

Learn more about our interprovincial health training agreements.

Graduates of this program are eligible to write the Sonography Canada registry exams in:

  • Core (Physics), and
  • Generalist, and
  • Adult Echocardiography or Vascular, depending on the practicum pathway you completed within the program. 

In addition, graduates are eligible to write the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography exams. 

The Diagnostic Medical Sonography program delivered by SAIT is accredited by Accreditation Canada.

Our program administrators work closely with our Diagnostic Imaging Advisory Committee to ensure our curriculum continues to meet or exceed provincial and national accreditation standards. 

Upon successful completion of this program, you’ll be awarded a SAIT Diagnostic Medical Sonography diploma.

Download program info

Careers and opportunities

Each year, SAIT conducts a survey between February and April to determine the employment rate, salary and satisfaction of our newest SAIT alumni. 

people icon 100% graduate employment rate

salary icon $80,000 average starting salary

Find out more about our graduate employment statistics >

Our graduates may work in the following occupations. Some careers require additional experience and education.

Associated National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes: 32122, 32121, 32129.


Career counselling and support

Unsure which career path is for you? SAIT offers career planning services to help you decide your future.

You can also get started by taking our online career finder quiz, which can help you narrow down your search based on your current skills and interests.

Finally, you can also head to Alberta alis for various tools and resources, including additional quizzes and labour market information to help you narrow down a career path.


The Diagnostic Medical Sonography diploma requires 79.5 credits (27 courses) to complete.

The program spans 26 months, with seven semesters.

View classes by semester

Course Credits

Sectional Anatomy is the study of human anatomy in two-dimensions along multiple planes. Learners will use anatomical cross-sectional slices to investigate spatial relationships between anatomical structures in the body. Focus will be placed on identifying normal anatomy and spatial relationships of organs and structures specific to ultrasound studies.


This course provides an overview of the basic anatomy and physiology of the human body. While focusing on the functions, structures and processes of the different body systems you will learn about anatomical positions, cells, muscle fibers, bones and joints, the spinal cord, sensory receptors, hormones, the major organs and digestion. Other topics covered in this course include healing, immunity, aging, the body’s adaptive responses to sickness and disease, the menstrual cycle, and reproduction.


This course provides an introduction to ultrasound principles, instrumentation, and imaging techniques utilized in a diagnostic medical sonography lab. The learner will develop the basic skills of scanning that are necessary for the DMS lab courses and practical rotations.


Professional Practice 1 focuses on developing professional behaviour in a diagnostic imaging context. Lectures, classroom interactions and laboratory experiences are combined to demonstrate the skills required to ensure appropriate workplace relations, patient care, and to prepare learners for practicum.

  • HREL 201

Obstetrics and Gynecology Sonography 1 will review the anatomical components and related physiology of the female reproductive system, the pregnant uterus, and the embryo/fetus as they pertain to medical sonography. The principles and techniques of gynecological and obstetrical sonography will be introduced and accompanied by ultrasound scanning of the female pelvis in a lab setting. The recognition of normal gynecological and obstetrical sonograms will be covered in a classroom setting and reinforced in a lab setting.

  • ANPH 205
  • DMST 202
  • DMST 217
  • PHYS 216

Adult Echocardiography 1 reviews cardiac anatomy, cardiac physiology and hemodynamics. Combined with established theory, hands-on lab applications will be used to demonstrate correct scanning techniques and introduce proper interpretation and assessment of echocardiographic images.

  • ANPH 205
  • DMST 202
  • DMST 217
  • PHYS 216

Abdomen and Superficial Structures 1 provides a comprehensive assessment of structures in the abdominopelvic cavity focusing on normal anatomy, physiological processes, common sonographic presentations and an introduction to the fundamentals of pathological processes. The recognition of normal sonographic findings will be reinforced in a lab setting.

  • ANPH 205
  • DMST 202
  • DMST 217
  • PHYS 216
  • DMST 224

Vascular Sonography 1 will provide a review of the anatomy and physiology of the vascular system and related hemodynamics as they pertain to vascular sonography. Pathologies of the venous vascular system as well as the principles and techniques of vascular sonography are introduced and accompanied by ultrasound scanning sessions in a lab setting. The recognition of normal sonographic findings in vascular sonography will be emphasized and reinforced in a lab setting.

  • ANPH 205
  • DMST 202
  • DMST 217
  • PHYS 216

This course focuses on preparing learners for entry into clinical practicum. Lectures, on-line discussion, and classroom interactions are combined to convey the expectations and requirements for learners in their clinical practical.

  • MRAD 374

This course continues to focus on cardiac Doppler principles, cardiac Doppler imaging, and covers common pathologies such as valvular disease and heart failure seen in adult echocardiography. Pathologies will be discussed with a focus on the description of the disease, its clinical presentation, its typical and atypical sonographic appearance(s), its hemodynamic significance, the differential diagnosis or diagnoses involved, and the optimum scanning techniques in imaging the abnormality and its associated findings. The learning in this course is further refined by students’ hands-on laboratory and clinical practicum experiences in clinical settings where echocardiography is performed.

  • DMST 253

Obstetrics and Gynecology Sonography 2 covers common maternal diseases as well as intrapartum and postpartum events and conditions. The effects of these conditions on the fetus and the fetal environment will discussed. Recognition of these conditions will be covered in a classroom setting and reinforced in a lab setting.

  • DMST 244

Vascular Sonography 2 provides theory of anatomy and hemodynamics and the ultrasound assessment of the carotid arteries and intercranial vessels. The recognition of normal sonographic findings in vascular sonography will be reinforced in a lab setting.

  • DMST 265

This course provides a comprehensive assessment of superficial structures from a sonographic perspective. Focus is placed on normal anatomy and physiology as well as common disease processes with respect to sonographic presentation, etiology and relevant clinical findings. Sonographic assessment of the thyroid and breast using a breast phantom will be practiced in a lab setting.

  • DMST 254

Obstetrics and Gynecology Sonography 3 covers the common pathologies found in gynecology and obstetrical sonography. Focus is placed on the clinical presentation of diseases and congenital abnormalities and typical sonographic appearance used for diagnosis. This course material is reinforced in a lab setting using simulation as well as in a clinical practicum setting.


One of:

  • DMST 303
  • DMST 285

Abdomen and Superficial Structures 3 provides a comprehensive assessment of common pathologies found in the abdominopelvic cavity from a sonographic perspective. Focus is placed on etiology, common sonographic appearances and clinical presentations of the diseases. Sonographic assessment of the abdomen will be practiced in the lab setting.


One of:

  • DMST 313
  • DMST 295

This course covers common cardiac pathologies and the embryology of the heart, along with specific congenital heart diseases seen in the adult patient. Pathologies will be discussed with a focus on the description of the diseases, their clinical presentations, typical and atypical sonographic appearances, hemodynamic significance, and differential diagnoses. Optimum scanning techniques in imaging the abnormalities and their associated findings will also be covered. The learning in this course is further refined by students’ hands-on laboratory and clinical practicum experiences in clinical settings where echocardiography is performed.


One of:

  • DMST 325
  • DMST 283

This course provides the theory of ultrasound assessment of renal, mesenteric, upper and lower extremity vessels, and venipuncture. The theory of indirect testing methods (plethysmography) of peripheral veins and arteries, as well as the theory of the indirect test method of ankle-brachial index (ABI) measurement, will also be introduced.


One of:

  • DMST 335
  • DMST 293

This course provides a review of all theoretical materials covered in the specialty areas of abdomen and superficial structures, echocardiography, obstetrics and gynecology, and vascular sonography. The focus of this course is to prepare learners for the Diagnostic Medical Sonography (DMS) national registry exams.

  • PRCT 310

This course introduces the chain of infection, and methods to reduce the risk of transmission of microorganisms to healthcare providers and patients. Topics include immunization, routine practice, contact and droplet precautions, sterilization and disinfection, safety, and the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS).


This self-directed introductory course enables the learner to use and understand the medical terminology common to most allied health personnel. By learning prefixes, suffixes, and word roots, the learner will be able to build, use, and spell medical words that relate to body systems and body organization. Common abbreviations and symbols are also included.


This course explores the concept of research for allied healthcare workers, and reviews elements of the research process. Research methodologies applicable to healthcare will be examined, with topics including forming a research question, designing research strategies, critical thinking, and analyzing research data.


One of:

  • DMST 217
  • PRCT 356

Physics 1 provides an overview of ultrasound instrumentation used in diagnostic medical sonography, furnishing an in-depth understanding of how sound interacts with human soft tissue. Physics principles are examined and skills required to operate ultrasound machines and optimize images necessary for performing a variety of ultrasound examinations are demonstrated.

  • PHYS 212

Physics 2 builds on the foundation of Physics 1 and provides the learner with an understanding of basic ultrasound instrumentation, including Doppler.

  • PHYS 216
  • PHYS 252

Physics 3 will provide learners with the fundamental principles regarding spectral and colour Doppler, harmonic imaging and the use of contrast agents in medical sonography. Risks of biological effects to the patient, ultrasound image quality, equipment maintenance and different imaging devices will also be covered.

  • PHYS 254

Clinical Practicum 1 is the first of three practicum placements in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. Learners are provided with the opportunity to rotate through specific clinical settings in order to achieve identified clinical objectives required for achieving entry level competencies as specified in the Sonography Canada Competency Profile.

  • DMST 276
  • DMST 315
  • DMST 326
  • DMST 333
  • DMST 343
  • PHYS 314

Clinical Practicum 2 is the second of three practical placements in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. Learners are provided with the opportunity to rotate through specific clinical settings in order to achieve identified clinical objectives required for achieving entry-level competencies as specified in the Sonography Canada National Competency Profile.


One of:

  • PRCT 265
  • PRCT 300

Clinical Practicum 3 is the third and final practicum placement in the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. Learners are provided with the opportunity to rotate through specific clinical settings in order to achieve identified clinical objectives required for achieving entry-level competencies as specified by the Sonography Canada National Competency Profile.

  • PRCT 310


You must attain a PGPA and/or a CGPA of 2.0 or better each semester and pass the prerequisite courses to progress through the program.

To qualify for graduation, you must pass all courses, attain a CGPA of 2.0 or better and complete course requirements within the prescribed timelines.

Review our grading and progression procedure >


Explore your options!

Some courses in this program are available through Open Studies. You can complete courses via Open Studies to get a head start on your education, reduce your course load once accepted into a credentialed program, or determine which career path best suits you before you fully commit. 

You may also take courses for general interest or personal and professional development.

Admission requirements

Applicants educated in Canada

Applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency and completion of the following courses or equivalents:

  • at least 75% in Math 30-1 or Math 30-2, and
  • at least 75% in English Language Arts 30-1, and
  • at least 75% in Biology 30, and
  • at least 75% in Physics 30.

You must also achieve at least 50% in the School of Health and Public Safety entrance tests.

SAIT accepts high school course equivalents for admission for applicants educated outside Alberta.

All applicants who were educated outside of Canada must demonstrate English language proficiency and provide proof they meet the program admission requirements with an international document assessment. Find accepted educational documents and assessment options

SAIT may also accept courses completed at certain international post-secondary institutions.


Academic Upgrading

Missing an admission requirement for this program? Upgrade your prior education to help you receive admission into one of SAIT's career programs.


English language proficiency

All applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency prior to admission, including students educated in Canada.

Transfer agreements

At SAIT, we evaluate post-secondary credit you have previously earned and apply it to your SAIT credential. Explore our formal transfer agreements available for this program.

We can evaluate your prior education, even if we don't have a formal agreement in place.

Submit a transfer credit application

The Province of Saskatchewan

Program name
Interprovincial Agreement
Available credits:

A select number of seats are reserved in this program for applicants who meet the program's admission requirements and are residents of Saskatchewan. 

The number of seats available is limited, but up to four more seats are reserved for Saskatchewan residents through interprovincial agreements.

Final selection recommendations may consider regional distribution in support of practicum sites.

Transfer options for graduates

Build on the knowledge you’ve learned at SAIT. The opportunity to advance your education at an accredited post-secondary institution may be available.

🔗 Visit Transfer Alberta search tool for a full list of transfer opportunities within the province.

Available intakes

Fall 2024

Start dates:

Domestic students: Closed
  • Application deadline: Dec. 1, 2023 (March 31, 2024 for SK applicants)


2024/25 tuition and fees

The following costs are effective as of July 1, 2024.

Domestic students

The estimated total cost of tuition and fees for domestic students is based on the recommended course load per year. 
Year Number of semesters Tuition fees Additional fees Total per year
1 2.5* $8,475 $1,913 $10,388
2 2** $7,119 $1,589 $8,708
3 1 $2,373 $979 $3,352
Total cost:

*.5 indicates a combination of full-time semester(s) and part-time semester(s) in the same academic year. In many cases, you'll complete your practicum during this part-time semester. Part-time students are those taking less than nine (9) course credits in a semester.

** The second year of this program is broken up into three semesters, with semesters five and six focused on clinical practicum. Practicum-only semesters are considered part-time studies based on credit load. The two part-time semesters are equivalent to one full-time semester. You are not eligible for the UPass during your practicum semesters.

Books, supplies, and uniforms are approximately $2,700 for the first year, $600 for the second year, and $500 for the final semester.

This is a bring-your-own-device program with a standard computer hardware and software requirement. See the specific requirements on our computers and laptops page. A laptop (non-Android) or Apple tablet is required, and a phone is not a suitable alternative.

Find your booklist on the SAIT Bookstore’s website. Booklists are created by semester and available approximately two weeks before classes begin.

Required uniforms and personal protective equipment (PPE)

The industry-approved PPE you’ll need will be discussed during your first few days of classes. 

Additional fees

  • A fee is associated with obtaining a police information check, including a vulnerable sector check, payable to the police or the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).
  • You must have your immunizations reviewed by the SAIT Health Clinic. There is a $75 charge to review vaccine history. Any vaccines you need to be administered will result in additional charges.
  • A fee of approximately $50 to $100 is associated with an electronic student permit checking submission required for clinical practicum placements, payable to Synergy Gateway through the Verified software platform.
  • A fee is associated with the CompTracker application used in this program.
  • You are responsible for additional expenses related to your practicum, including pre-practicum requirements and relocation costs to practicum sites outside of Calgary.
  • Sonography Canada certification exam fees are approximately $1,525. Sonography Canada association dues are $175 per year, with the option to purchase professional liability insurance.

Financial aid

Paying for your education may feel overwhelming, but we have resources and programs that can help, including information about payment options, student loans, grants and scholarships.

Application process

Applicants must meet or exceed a score of 50% in the School of Health and Public Safety entrance testing process as an admission requirement for this program by the set deadlines. 

These deadlines may be different than the typical application closing dates.

Learn more about the entrance testing process >

Ready to apply?

Follow our step-by-step guide to submitting a successful application.

Learn how to apply

Communication during admission

Email is the primary source of communication during the admission process. Ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications. 

We recommend you add domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages. 


Begin your application

Apply now using the online application portal. 

Ensure you have a valid Visa or Mastercard to pay the non-refundable application fee of $120 for domestic applicants or $150 for international applicants. 

Information sessions

Prepare for a strong start in your chosen program or get the details you need to decide your future path.

Our expert staff and faculty are ready to answer your questions and provide information about the following:

  • What sets SAIT apart
  • An introduction to the program and area of study
  • Admission requirements
  • Future career paths
  • Information on the earning potential and graduate employment rates.

Contact us

School of Health and Public Safety Advising

a view of the moutains and stream in between

Oki, Âba wathtech, Danit'ada, Tawnshi, Hello.

SAIT is located on the traditional territories of the Niitsitapi (Blackfoot) and the people of Treaty 7 which includes the Siksika, the Piikani, the Kainai, the Tsuut’ina and the Îyârhe Nakoda of Bearspaw, Chiniki and Goodstoney.

We are situated in an area the Blackfoot tribes traditionally called Moh’kinsstis, where the Bow River meets the Elbow River. We now call it the city of Calgary, which is also home to the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3.