Academic Programs FAQs
Diagnostic Medical Sonography FAQs
Who can I contact if I have questions?
You may contact the admissions office at (920) 433- 6650 or the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program director at (920) 433-6643
I have heard that sonographers often have hand or shoulder problems, is this a safe profession?
Sonography requires certain muscles be strong in your arm and shoulder. Many injuries and pain are due to excessive strain with poor ergonomic situations. Bellin College dedicates a class to strengthening muscles, preventing injuries, and providing proper ergonomic scanning techniques. The idea of proper ergonomics is required in all classes and scanning opportunities.
How do I apply?
You can apply for free on the Bellin College website: www.bellincollege.edu.
What is Bellin College looking for in a prospective student who applies to the Diagnostic Medical Sonography Program?
• An individual who is knowledgeable about sonography, from either research or observation.
• An individual who knows why they want to enter the profession.
• An enthusiastic, motivated student who maintains high standards for didactic and clinical performance.
• An individual who is strong in science
Is there a waiting list to get into the program?
We do not have a wait list for our program. Our program is competitive; we accept at least six students each year. We recommend getting your application checklist materials in early. Once you are accepted into Bellin College you have direct entry into your program.
How do I schedule my job-shadow experience?
You may shadow any sonography department. Contact your local hospital to set up job-shadow opportunities or Bellin Hospital. A four-hour job shadow experience is mandatory for all applications to be considered. Make sure you fill out and submit the job-shadow experience form.
What is the salary range for sonographers?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay is $62,250 per year or $30.07 per hour. This varies depending on geographic location and experience. The job market is expected to grow 24% over the next ten years.
What types of jobs are available for my career choice once I graduate?
There are many different types of sonography positions. Sonographers can work full-time, part-time, or as needed. These positions can be found in hospitals, clinics, imaging centers, vein clinics, and surgical centers. Employment can also be found at ultrasound travel companies, equipment vendors, and educational facilities. There are many job options available for graduates.
Am I able to practice once I graduate?
In order to be a licensed sonographer, you must pass the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) board exams. You will eligible to take your physics, abdomen, ob/gyn, and vascular boards. In order to practice in the field, you must take the physics board and one other board of your choice. We recommend you take all four boards prior to graduation.
When do classes meet?
Classes are scheduled Monday thru Friday between the hours of 8:00 am and 4:30 pm. Occasionally, a study session, clinical, or class period will be held in the evening or weekend.
Am I required to find my own clinical site?
No. Clinical sites will be provided for you by Bellin College. You will rotate between clinical sites every semester to gain exposure to all sonographic exams.
Master of Science in Nursing FAQs
What program tracks can I choose from?
Students may choose from full-time or part-time program tracks in the following areas:
• Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
• Nurse Educator (NE)
Both the FNP and NE tracks are available in full-time and part-time options, and offer a combination of online, face-to-face, and hybrid classes.
It’s been more than five years since I took a Health Assessment and/or Statistics course, what do I need to do?
You will need to take and successfully pass a baccalaureate level course in the needed prerequisite course(s). Health assessment must be completed through a nationally accredited BSN program. A baccalaureate level statistics course, that includes descriptive and inferential statistics, may be taken through any accredited program. Bellin College does offer some of these classes. Please contact the MSN Program office with any questions.
Can I be employed and go to school at the same time?
Part-time and full-time programs are available. The programs are designed with some flexibility with online and on-campus courses, however students will find it difficult to work full-time and attend graduate school full-time. Most FNP students find it is not possible to continue full-time employment when they begin their practicum courses due to the clinical time requirements. This is also true for part-time FNP students as the clinical time requirements increase towards the end of the program.
If I start full-time, can I switch to part-time?
It is encouraged that you prepare for full-time study and remain in your program, however sometimes that is not possible. Full-time students can reduce their plan to a part-time plan of study. Doing this will delay the prospective graduation date. However, due to prerequisite courses and course offerings, switching from part-time to full-time is very difficult and amended plans of study would be required.
Do I get to select my practicum sites?
All clinical placements are provided by the College. Students are not responsible for locating and securing practicum sites and preceptors. However, students may request a specific preceptor or practicum site and can work with the MSN Program Director.
Is financial aid available?
Limited financial aid is available, although the financial aid office at the college assists with loan processing. Information on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) can be found on the website at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/. The FAFSA must be on file for students to be considered for aid.
*We strongly encourage students to contact their employers for tuition assistance.
What does it take to get certified as a FNP after I complete my program?
The FNP curriculum prepares all graduates to meet the necessary requirements to take the Family Nursing Practitioner Certification Exam. The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANP-CP) are the two certifying bodies for FNPs. The process of applying for certification will be reviewed prior to your graduation.
What does it take to get certified as a Nurse Educator after I complete my program?
The NE curriculum prepares all graduates to meet the necessary requirements to take the Nurse Educator Certification Exam through the National League for Nursing (NLN). The process of applying for certification will be reviewed prior to your graduation.
What is the cost of the program?
As costs may change, please refer to our online information regarding Tuition and Fees for the most recent updates.
Do I need a DNP (Doctorate of Nursing Practice) to become a nurse practitioner?
No. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) has recommended that the DNP be the entry-level degree for all Advanced Practice Registered Nurses by 2015, however this is a recommendation, not a requirement. Many institutions continue to offer various NP programs at the MSN level.
Neither the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) nor the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANP-CP) require a DNP degree to be eligible for certification as a nurse practitioner. Currently, a MSN is the required degree to be a nurse practitioner.
Doctoral education (either PhD or DNP) may be desirable in the future for students for various reasons, but it is not required to practice as a certified FNP.
What is the application process for Bellin College MSN programs?
To apply, please submit the following:
• Bellin College of Nursing Graduate Admission Application
• Two Graduate Reference/Release Forms
• Nonrefundable $50 application fee
• Official copies of all post-high school (e.g. college/university)
• Goal Statement
• Resume or curriculum vita
• Wisconsin nursing license
• Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), if applicable