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Medical Laboratory Science

Degree: BS

Campus: Columbus

School: Health and Rehabilitation Sciences

The work of the medical laboratory scientist is so critical to the practice of modern medicine that it would be virtually impossible to provide good medical care without them. Medical laboratory scientists, also called clinical laboratory scientists, work in all areas of the medical laboratory, including blood banking, immunology, chemistry, hematology and microbiology. 

Admission to the medical laboratory science undergraduate professional program is based on a combination of overall academic achievement as well as academic performance in mathematics, chemistry and biological science courses. Students are required to have a minimum cumulative point-hour ratio (CPHR) of 2.5; however, the average CPHR of the class most recently admitted was 3.2.

Pre-professional course work

  • General biology (including lab component)
  • General chemistry (including lab component)
  • Organic chemistry and biochemistry 
  • Basic microbiology
  • Molecular genetics
  • Precalculus
  • Introduction to the Practice of Statistics

Not all courses listed above need to be completed before applying to the program. Learn more about prerequisites from the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (SHRS) Student Services Office, 614-292-1706, or at hrs.osu.edu/academics/undergraduate-programs/medical-laboratory-science.

Students in this program are part of a small cohort that takes courses together and receive individualized attention from faculty.

The undergraduate professional course work consists of at least four semesters of study. These semesters are made up almost entirely of medical laboratory science courses.

Tracks of study

The certification track is designed for individuals who wish to become nationally certified medical laboratory scientists and work in clinical laboratory positions upon graduation. In their final semester, certificate track students gain practical experience in the clinical laboratories of affiliated hospitals. Graduates of this track are eligible to sit for the national certifying examination. This track is limited to an enrollment of 25 per class.

The medical science (non-certification) track is a flexible program designed for individuals who wish to prepare for graduate school or post-baccalaureate professional programs such as medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry or law. Graduates of this track are not eligible to take the national certifying examination.

The MLT articulation track allows a medical laboratory technician to complete a bachelor’s degree in two years.

Students in the medical laboratory science major are encouraged to contact the Office of International Affairs to find study abroad experiences related to health care that can strengthen their applications to majors and graduate study programs.

In their final semester, certificate track students gain practical experience in the clinical laboratories of affiliated hospitals. The internship is comprised of rotations in each of the five primary disciplines of clinical laboratory science (chemistry, immunology, transfusion medicine, microbiology and hematology). Students work under the supervision of a practicing medical laboratory scientist to apply the theoretical knowledge and laboratory skills learned in the academic setting to the clinical setting. Students are assigned to clinical sites by the faculty of the medical laboratory science division.

Medical laboratory science students may apply to any of the Ohio State Scholars programs. Students in the Ohio State Scholars programs live together, attend classes together and have the opportunity to be a part of a close-knit community. 

The Health Sciences Scholars Program and the Dunn Sport and Wellness Scholars Program may be of particular interest to medical laboratory science students because they bring together students with interests in the many health programs offered at Ohio State.

Learn more about the Honors and Scholars Programs at honors-scholars.osu.edu.

Students in the medical laboratory science program are encouraged to participate in  research endeavors either independently or as part of the requirements for their program of study. Students may find paid research assistant positions related to their studies at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.
 

Students studying medical laboratory science can live in the Future Health Professionals Learning Community. Students may also be nominated by faculty to participate in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences Ambassadors program.

Most medical laboratory scientists work in hospital laboratories. Medical laboratory scientists can also work in many other areas, such as forensics, research, public health laboratories, pharmaceutical industries, medical sales, fertility clinics, environmental labs, doctors offices and information systems.

For the past five years, over 90 percent of medical laboratory science students have passed the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) Board of Registry certification exam on the first attempt.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wages of medical and clinical laboratory technologists were $60,520 in 2018. Additionally, many positions are offering sign-on bonuses ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.

The medical laboratory science field is projected to grow at about 14 percent between 2014 and 2024 with about 62,000 job openings.

Student Services Office
School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
206 Atwell Hall
453 W. 10th Ave.
Columbus, OH 43210
614-292-1706
hrsstudentservices@osumc.edu
hrs.osu.edu/academics/undergraduate-programs/medical-laboratory-science

A program scholarship is available to students entering their senior year of education. Third party scholarships are also available.

Interested in a career in health care?

Check out the Health Care Pathway to discover the many majors Ohio State offers that can lead to a health care career.