Medical Laboratory Technologist

Medical Laboratory Technologist

Alt Names:  Medical Laboratory Technician, MLT, Clinical Laboratory Scientist, Clinical Laboratory Technician, CLT, Clinical Laboratory Technologist, Clinical Scientist

Career Description

Medical Lab Technologists work collectively with physicians and have the responsibility of collecting samples of tissue, bodily fluids (blood, urine, etc), as well as other substances in order to analyze and aid in diagnosis of patients.

Job Responsibilities

  • Collect samples from patients to be analyzed

  • Log data from medical tests into medical records and system

  • Operate sophisticated laboratory instruments such as microscopes, automated analyzers, etc

  • Set up and sanitize laboratory spaces

  • Collaborate with physicians for accuracy of data and samples

  • (technicians in this field have less complicated procedures than technologists and scientists)

Education & Training

  • Technicians in this profession need (min.) Associates degree or postsecondary school certificate from accredited school

  • Technologists and Scientists need (min.) bachelor’s degree from accredited school

Important Courses & Info:

  • Some courses are offered through hospital-based programs (this is usually during senior year or University or College)

Some courses that you may take:

  • Biology

  • Chemistry

  • Anatomy and Physiology

  • Biochemistry

  • Phlebotomy

License and/or Certification

  • Must pass Board of Certification exam

  • Licenses are required in some states

  • Certification is not required but most employers prefer to hire certified technologists and technicians


2010 Median pay: $46,680 per year; $22.44 per hour [Source: BLS.Gov]

Valuable Skills & Qualities

This career is good for people who are:

  • Self motivated

  • Knowledgeable

  • Patient

  • Not opposed to having flexible schedules

  • Consistent in work ethics

  • Have high ethical standards

Work Environment/ Setting

Transplant and donor centers, hospitals, law and forensic labs, clinics (including veterinary clinics), pharmaceutical or chemical laboratories, Biotech companies

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