How Much Does a Sonographer Make a Year?

By Jacqueline DeMarco · April 15, 2024 · 6 minute read

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How Much Does a Sonographer Make a Year?

The median annual pay for a sonographer is $78,210 annually for the most recent year studied, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Working as a sonographer is a great way to enter the medical field without having to pursue an expensive advanced degree. Typically, only an associate’s degree is needed to work as a sonographer, which can be obtained quickly and affordably.

Read on to learn more about how much a sonographer can earn and what it’s like to work as this kind of professional.

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What Are Sonographers?

A sonographer — also known as a diagnostic medical sonographer — uses sonography technology and tools to create images typically known as ultrasounds or sonograms. These images can give us a detailed look at organs and tissues within the body or of embryos and fetuses. There are many different types of sonographers who specialize in distinct areas of medicine, such as:

•   Abdominal sonographers

•   Breast sonographers

•   Cardiac sonographers (echocardiographers)

•   Musculoskeletal sonographers

•   Pediatric sonographers

•   Obstetric and gynecologic sonographers

•   Vascular technologists (vascular sonographers).

As briefly mentioned above, training for this career usually doesn’t involve medical school and its cost. Instead, diagnostic medical sonographers may obtain a bachelor’s degree, an associate’s degree, or perhaps a vocational school degree or hospital training program certificate. Some may be trained in the Armed Forces.

It’s also worth noting that working as a sonographer will likely involve a high degree of patient interaction. For this reason, it may not be a good job for introverts.

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How Much Do Starting Sonographers Make a Year?

Entry-level sonographers should expect their salary to be on the lower side until they gain more experience. The lowest 10% of earners make less than $61,430 per year.

However, the top 10% of earners working as sonographers make more than $107,730, meaning this is a career path that can lead to a job that pays $100,000 a year.

In addition to experience level, other aspects that can lead to competitive pay is your geographical location (big city vs. rural community) and whether the employer is a major hospital network, say, or a small, independent medical office.

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What is the Average Salary for a Sonographer?

Those who work full-time as a sonographer can expect to earn a median annual salary of $78,210. However, some sonographers choose to work part-time and are paid by the hour. In terms of how much a sonographer makes an hour, the median hourly pay for sonography work is $37.60 per hour.

Many factors can influence how much a sonographer earns and the state they work in is a major one. The following table illustrates how average sonographer salaries can vary significantly by state, with earnings shown from highest to lowest.

What is the Average Sonographer Salary by State for 2023

State Annual Salary Monthly Pay Weekly Pay Hourly Wage
New York $130,753 $10,896 $2,514 $62.86
Pennsylvania $119,728 $9,977 $2,302 $57.56
New Hampshire $117,077 $9,756 $2,251 $56.29
New Jersey $115,302 $9,608 $2,217 $55.43
Wyoming $114,058 $9,504 $2,193 $54.84
Washington $113,902 $9,491 $2,190 $54.76
Wisconsin $113,086 $9,423 $2,174 $54.37
Massachusetts $113,082 $9,423 $2,174 $54.37
Alaska $112,787 $9,398 $2,168 $54.22
Oregon $111,873 $9,322 $2,151 $53.79
Indiana $111,695 $9,307 $2,147 $53.70
North Dakota $111,668 $9,305 $2,147 $53.69
Hawaii $109,499 $9,124 $2,105 $52.64
Arizona $109,385 $9,115 $2,103 $52.59
New Mexico $108,705 $9,058 $2,090 $52.26
Colorado $107,986 $8,998 $2,076 $51.92
Minnesota $107,959 $8,996 $2,076 $51.90
Montana $107,737 $8,978 $2,071 $51.80
Nevada $106,643 $8,886 $2,050 $51.27
Alabama $106,391 $8,865 $2,045 $51.15
South Dakota $105,538 $8,794 $2,029 $50.74
Vermont $105,369 $8,780 $2,026 $50.66
Ohio $105,308 $8,775 $2,025 $50.63
Rhode Island $103,621 $8,635 $1,992 $49.82
Iowa $102,378 $8,531 $1,968 $49.22
Delaware $102,241 $8,520 $1,966 $49.15
Connecticut $102,051 $8,504 $1,962 $49.06
Virginia $101,059 $8,421 $1,943 $48.59
Mississippi $100,644 $8,387 $1,935 $48.39
Tennessee $100,545 $8,378 $1,933 $48.34
Utah $100,028 $8,335 $1,923 $48.09
Illinois $99,727 $8,310 $1,917 $47.95
Georgia $99,110 $8,259 $1,905 $47.65
Maryland $99,089 $8,257 $1,905 $47.64
California $98,791 $8,232 $1,899 $47.50
Nebraska $97,188 $8,099 $1,869 $46.73
Maine $96,740 $8,061 $1,860 $46.51
Missouri $96,025 $8,002 $1,846 $46.17
South Carolina $95,081 $7,923 $1,828 $45.71
Kansas $94,735 $7,894 $1,821 $45.55
Idaho $94,316 $7,859 $1,813 $45.34
Louisiana $94,256 $7,854 $1,812 $45.32
Oklahoma $94,119 $7,843 $1,809 $45.25
Texas $93,511 $7,792 $1,798 $44.96
North Carolina $93,119 $7,759 $1,790 $44.77
West Virginia $92,468 $7,705 $1,778 $44.46
Kentucky $89,668 $7,472 $1,724 $43.11
Michigan $89,461 $7,455 $1,720 $43.01
Florida $87,711 $7,309 $1,686 $42.17
Arkansas $85,099 $7,091 $1,636 $40.91

Source: ZipRecruiter

Sonographer Job Considerations for Pay & Benefits

If a sonographer chooses to work part-time, they may not gain access to the same suite of valuable employee benefits that full-time sonographers typically earn. While employee benefits can vary by employer, full-time sonographers can generally expect to receive healthcare coverage, paid time off, and retirement plans as a part of their overall compensation package.

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Pros and Cons of Sonographer Salary

One of the biggest pros associated with a sonographer’s salary is that they don’t have to take on expensive medical school debt — which can really eat into a worker’s monthly budget. An associate’s degree or a postsecondary certificate may be required but will cost less than pursuing other degree requirements commonly found in the medical field.

Regarding cons, some may find the salary doesn’t outweigh the hardships of the job. Many sonographers work nights and weekends and are on their feet for long periods of time.

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The Takeaway

Sonographers currently earn an average of $78,210 per year. They have a very valuable medical-service skill set, and demand for that skill is growing. It’s anticipated that job openings for this role will grow by 10% from 2022 to 2032, which is above the national average rate. As they navigate their careers, sonographers will likely want to make progress in their financial lives, with smart budgeting and saving.

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Can you make 100k a year as a sonographer?

It is possible to earn $100,000 or more each year as a sonographer. On average, sonographers in the state of New York earn $130,753 per year. Where someone lives, how many years of experience they have, and their specialty can all impact how much they earn.

Do people like being a sonographer?

Working as a sonographer is a great fit for anyone who finds the work interesting and who enjoys patient interaction. Because this role requires so much patient care throughout the day, it’s not the best fit for those who are antisocial.

Is it hard to get hired as a sonographer?

Around 9,600 openings for diagnostic medical sonographers are anticipated to be available each year. Because of this high demand, if someone has the right education and qualifications, they should be able to find work as a sonographer.

Photo credit: iStock/dusanpetkovic

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Non affiliation: SoFi isn’t affiliated with any of the companies highlighted in this article.


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