Professional Overview for Medical Laboratory Science Majors
Medical Laboratory Science is related to the prevention, diagnosis, and therapy of disease through the understanding, application, and performance of clinical laboratory analyses. It combines the challenges of medicine, the basic sciences of biology and chemistry, and the clinical sciences into a very satisfying professional career. The major clinical sciences within the field are medical microbiology, clinical chemistry, hematology, immunohematology, and molecular diagnostics.
Medical laboratory scientists function as detectives, investigating and determining the causes of diseases. They perform routine and complex analyses, utilizing the latest in biomedical instrumentation and molecular diagnostic techniques. They are responsible for the accuracy of their results and are expected to correlate interdependent test results and physiological conditions. Their work may include supervision and teaching.
The profession of Medical Laboratory Science is dynamic, continually changing to reflect scientific and medical discoveries. Due to their educational background, graduates enjoy a wide range of career opportunities. Many medical laboratory scientists are employed in hospital and private laboratories where they utilize their expertise in such sophisticated areas as andrology/embryology, bone marrow transplantation, cancer research, forensic toxicology, molecular diagnostic testing, and HLA tissue typing to name a few. Others work chiefly in health agencies, industrial medical or biomedical laboratories, pharmaceutical companies, research laboratories, forensic laboratories, and veterinary clinics.
The B.S. degree in Medical Laboratory Science includes courses in basic sciences, liberal arts and clinical sciences, and off-campus clinical experiences in a variety of hospital and private laboratory affiliates. The hands-on laboratory activities, experienced by students on campus and at the 26 clinical affiliates, give students the competence needed to gain employment immediately upon graduation. Our graduates are eligible for the national certification examination and, traditionally, perform exceptionally well.
The Medical Laboratory Science major also functions as a pre-professional curriculum, for those interested in medical school, and is excellent preparation for graduate study for physician assistant. The major provides a basis for graduate study in medical laboratory science or related areas such as clinical chemistry, immunology, molecular biology, toxicology, forensic sciences, management, or medical laboratory science education.