Radiological technologists (RTs) and medical technologists (MTs) are legally allowed to work as sonographers performing medical ultrasound examination. Despite the total number, much fewer RTs work as sonographers than MTs. To explore the reason, we investigated educational programs, universities, and colleges for both specialties. First, we established five categories of sonographers' competency: 1) Anatomy for imaging diagnosis, 2) Diseases and diagnosis, 3) Imaging, 4) Structure and principle of the equipment, and 5) Evaluation of image quality, using competence reported by the International Society of Radiographers and Radiological Technologists (ISRRT) and diagnostic competency required of sonographers in Japan. Using these categories, we analyzed the content and total instruction time by lectures and seminars based on information written in the syllabi, and explored the differences in education related to sonographers' competency in both programs. "Anatomy for imaging diagnosis" was taught in 15 RT programs (93.8%), and 6 MT programs (31.6%). "Diseases and diagnosis" was taught in 13 RT programs (86.7%), and 8 MT programs (53.3%). "Imaging" was taught in 14 RT programs (100%), and 13 MT programs (76.5%). "Structure and principle of the equipment" was taught in 12 RT programs (85.7%), and 6 MT programs (31.6%). "Evaluation of image quality" was taught in 11 RT programs (84.6%), and 3 MT programs (15.0%). The average instruction time for RT was longer than for MT programs in all categories. RTs are educated and have a foundation to be sonographers at graduation, and may have the possibility to expand their career in this field.
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