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h > ACADEMICS & DEGREE PROGRAMS > Academic Departments & Programs > Medical Laboratory Sciences > About Our Department

Medical Laboratory Science: About Our Department

History

The Armstrong State University Medical Laboratory Science Program was established in April 1982. In September 1982, the first class was accepted for enrollment into a "2 + 2" curriculum. In April 1985, the program was granted full accreditation for 5 years (1985-1990) by the Committee on Allied Health Education and Accreditation (CAHEA) of the American Medical Association (AMA). The program received continuing accreditation by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS) for four consecutive periods of seven years (1990-1997, 1997-2004, 2004-2011, and 2011-2018).


Mission Statement

The Department of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Sciences, as part of the College of Health Professions at Armstrong State University, exists to educate students, and to provide our culturally diverse communities with competent, team-oriented, and compassionate healthcare professionals.


Accreditation

The Medical Laboratory Science Program at Armstrong State University is accredited by:
National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences
5600 N. River Rd. Suite 720
Rosemont, IL 60018-5119
Telephone: (773)714-8880
FAX: (773)714-8886
email: info@naacls.org
Website: http://www.naacls.org


Professional Student Organizations

The Medical Laboratory Science Club promotes social and intellectual fellowship among its members, encourages research, development of professionalism, and to raise the prestige of medical technologists. It is open to all Medical Laboratory Science and Associate of Science Medical Laboratory Science Students. Fees: $5.00 per semester. Read the Med Laboratory Science Club Constitution & Bylaws.

The American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science (ASCLS) provides dynamic leadership and vigorously promotes all aspects of clinical laboratory science practice, education and management to ensure excellent, accessible cost-effective laboratory services for the consumers of health care. Student membership is open to persons enrolled in a structured program of training or academic instruction in clinical laboratory science, or to full-time graduate students in related science area. National Dues: $25.00, State Dues: $2.00.

You can apply for ASCP Student Associate Membership if you intend to meet the ASCP Board of Registry eligibility requirements for certification and you have been accepted or are currently enrolled in a regionally accredited college/university science program or a laboratory science program approved by an appropriate accrediting agency. You can be an ASCP Student Associate member until you become certified by the ASCP Board of Registry and eligible for ASCP Associate membership or 5 years from the date of application, whichever occurs first. This application must be signed by your program director. Annual Dues: Free.


Alumni

Graduates from this program are currently working or have worked in a wide range of organizations:


Career Information

What Is A Clinical Laboratory Science Professional?

Clinical laboratory scientists, often called medical scientists, are vital healthcare detectives, uncovering and providing laboratory information from laboratory analyses that assist physicians in patient diagnosis and treatment, as well as in disease monitoring or prevention (maintenance of health). We use sophisticated biomedical instrumentation and technology, computers, and methods requiring manual dexterity to perform laboratory testing on blood and body fluids. Laboratory testing encompasses such disciplines as clinical chemistry, hematology, immunology, immunohematology, microbiology, and molecular biology. Clinical laboratory science professionals generate accurate laboratory data that are needed to aid in detecting cancer, heart attacks, diabetes, infectious mononucleosis, and identification of bacteria or viruses that cause infections, as well as in detecting drugs of abuse. In addition, we monitor testing quality and consult with other members of the healthcare team.

The clinical laboratory science profession has more than one career track based on level of education: clinical laboratory technician (2 years) and clinical laboratory scientist (4 to 5 years). Clinical laboratory scientists are competent in the collection, processing and analysis of biological specimens, the performance of lab procedures, the maintenance of instruments, and relating lab findings to common diseases/conditions. Clinical laboratory scientists have a more extensive theoretical knowledge base. Therefore they not only perform laboratory procedures including very sophisticated analyses, but also evaluate/interpret the results, integrate data, problem solve, consult, conduct research and develop new test methods.

Essential Functions

In order to participate in a clinical laboratory science educational program, students must be able to comply with program-designated essential functions, or request reasonable accommodations to execute these essential functions. Requirements include a sound intellect; good motor skills: eye-hand coordination and dexterity; effective communication skills; visual acuity to perform macroscopic and microscopic analyses, or read procedures, graphs, etc.; professional skills such as the ability to work independently, manage time efficiently, to comprehend, analyze and synthesize various materials, as well as to hold sound psychological health and stability.

Educational Requirements

A solid foundation in high school biology, chemistry, and math usually provides the groundwork for clinical laboratory science education.
Clinical laboratory scientists complete a baccalaureate degree program that includes courses in chemistry, biological sciences, microbiology, mathematics, statistics, and specialized courses devoted to knowledge and skills used in the clinical laboratory. Many programs also offer or require courses in management, education, and computer applications. An integrated university based program provides professional coursework prior to a shorter clinical experience, e.g. 5 to 6 months. Such a program usually is found in a major university or academic medical center.

Accreditation of clinical laboratory science or technician programs by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences ensures that the programs maintain high educational standards (visit www.naacls.org for a list of accredited programs and contact information). Upon completion of a clinical laboratory science, graduates are eligible for national certification as a clinical laboratory scientist, CLS, by exams offered by the National Credentialing Agency for Laboratory Personnel (NCA).

Job Outlook/Salaries

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the US Department of Labor reported that the demand for medical technologists (also known as medical laboratory scientists) would exceed the supply of new graduates.
Quick Facts: Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians

2016 Median Pay $50,930 per year 
$24.48 per hour
Typical Entry-Level Education See How to Become One
Work Experience in a Related Occupation None
On-the-job Training  None
Number of Jobs, 2016 335,700
Job Outlook, 2016-26 13% (Faster than average)
Employment Change, 2016-26 42,700