Clinical Laboratory Schools and Colleges in the U.S.
Clinical laboratory, or medical technology, personnel perform tests that help doctors diagnose and treat illnesses. They work in laboratory settings and use problem-solving and analytic skills. This article highlights what students should look for when deciding on a clinical laboratory school.
How to Select a Clinical Laboratory School
Clinical laboratory jobs include technicians and technologists, and they are distinguishable by their duties and education level. A clinical laboratory technologist conducts more complex procedures and tests than a technician does, and therefore has different educational requirements. Students should know what kind of position they want before choosing a clinical laboratory school because it determines the degree they need.
An associate's degree or certificate is sufficient for technicians, and a bachelor's degree is the minimum requirement for many technologist jobs. A graduate degree is needed for supervisory or directive positions in clinical laboratories. Many colleges and universities offer programs in clinical laboratory science or medical technology.
When choosing a clinical laboratory school, students should look for programs that include clinical rotations. This component gives students hands-on experience and allows them to get a feel for the work before entering the industry. With this in mind, students may find it beneficial to attend a school that has its own university hospital, or a school near a hospital that offers internships. For students who want to specialize in an area, such as phlebotomy, they need to make sure it's highlighted in the program.
Students should also consider curricula that meet certification requirements, since many employers prefer to hire certified clinical laboratory technicians and technologists. Certification is available through a number of professional associations, including the American Medical Technologists. General course topics should include chemistry, microbiology, immunology and hematology. Graduate programs are research-intensive and have clinical practicums.
Largest Clinical Laboratory Schools by Student Enrollment
|College/University||Student Population||Institution Type|
|Arizona State University||67,082||4-year, Public|
|Ohio State University-Main Campus||53,715||4-year, Public|
|University of Minnesota-Twin Cities||51,140||4-year, Public|
|University of Central Florida||50,121||4-year, Public|
|The University of Texas at Austin||49,984||4-year, Public|
|Michigan State University||46,510||4-year, Public|
|University of South Florida||46,189||4-year, Public|
|University of Wisconsin-Madison||41,620||4-year, Public|
|Purdue University-Main Campus||41,433||4-year, Public|
|University of Washington-Seattle Campus||39,675||4-year, Public|
|University of Arizona||38,057||4-year, Public|
|University of Houston||36,104||4-year, Public|
|Rutgers University-New Brunswick||36,041||4-year, Public|
|University of North Texas||34,830||4-year, Public|
|Brigham Young University||34,244||4-year, Private not-for-profit|
|Virginia Commonwealth University||32,044||4-year, Public|
|Wayne State University||31,024||4-year, Public|
|George Mason Univeristy||30,613||4-year, Public|
|The University of Tennessee||30,410||4-year, Public|
|Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis||30,300||4-year, Public|
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