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Sonographers And Ultrasound Technologists Are In Demand In Calgary

Sonographers And Ultrasound Technologists Are In Demand In Calgary

According to the Government of Canada Job bank, Job opportunities for Medical Sonographers are good in Alberta over the next 3 years. Note that the current 2019-2021 employment prospects were published in December 2019 based on information available at that time. The distribution of full-time and part-time workers in this occupation is:

  • Full-time workers: 81% 
  • Part-time workers: 19% 

Diagnostic Medical Sonographers aka Medical Sonographer, Sonographer, Ultrasound Technologist

Diagnostic medical sonographers use ultrasound equipment to produce and record images of body organs, masses and fetuses.


Diagnostic medical sonographers work as part of a health care team. The team may include doctors, nurses and other medical technologists. Ultrasound is used to:

  • monitor pregnancies
  • help diagnose internal health issues (such as heart, vascular, abdominal and pelvic disorders)
  • assist in some medical procedures (such as amniocentesis, venography and biopsies).

In general, they:

  • review and combine information (from patient history, physical exams and supporting clinical data) to help with diagnoses
  • produce, review and assess ultrasound images to aid in diagnoses
  • report initial findings (both oral and written) to doctors (sonologists).

Working Conditions

Diagnostic medical sonographers may do shift work, including some evenings and weekends. They may also be on call.

Sonographers often work with patients who are anxious. They assist patients on and off examining tables. They may experience unpleasant sights and odours, and medically stressful situations. Working in awkward positions can cause repetitive strain injuries.

Skills & Abilities 

Medical sonographers need to have:

  • good health
  • upper body and shoulder strength
  • hand-eye coordination
  • communication and observation skills
  • the ability to visualize in three dimensions
  • extensive knowledge in anatomy and physiology
  • attention to detail
  • critical thinking skills
  • perseverance
  • self-direction
  • the ability to handle unpleasant situations and to work under pressure
  • teamwork skills
  • the ability to maintain a high standard of medical ethics at all times.

They should enjoy:

  • working with people
  • using technical equipment
  • compiling information.

Education Requirements 

The following schools offer programs and courses that meet this occupation’s educational requirements. Other eligible programs and courses may be available.

Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

Southern Alberta Institute of Technology

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

British Columbia Institute of Technology

MCG Career College - Calgary


Certification Requirements 

In 2016 the Health Professions Act [pdf] was amended to include sonographers under the Alberta College of Medical Diagnostic and Therapeutic Technologists (ACMDTT). Regulations are being developed and it is expected sonography will become a regulated profession in the near future.

Upon becoming regulated, all sonographers must be approved by ACMDTT to work in the profession and should use the diagnostic medical sonographer title or DMS credential. Sonographers who wish to use the CRGS®, CRCS®, or CRVS® credentials must be members in good standing of Sonography Canada.


Employment And Advancement

Ultrasound does not expose patients to known hazards (such as ionizing radiation). As a result, its use in medicine is growing rapidly. Ultrasound is used in:

  • internal medicine (abdomen and superficial structures)
  • obstetrics and gynecology
  • ophthalmology
  • cardiology
  • neurology
  • vascular studies
  • muscular studies
  • pediatrics.

Most diagnostic medical sonographers work in hospitals or private clinics.

In Alberta, 93% of people employed as medical sonographers work in the Health Care and Social Assistance [pdf] industry.

The employment outlook [pdf] in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events that affect overall employment (especially in the Health Care and Social Assistance industry)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities that come up when people leave existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities that come up when new positions are created)
  • size of the occupation.

Wage & Salary

For information about current collective agreements in the public and not-for-profit sectors, see the Health Sciences Association of Alberta (HSAA) website.



Checkout the latest jobs for Sonographers in Calgary here: