Learn about what our Medical Laboratory Science program offers

What is a medical laboratory scientist?

Medical laboratory scientists (formerly known as medical technologists) are laboratory professionals who are part of the medical team of specialists who work together to determine the presence, extent or absence of disease. They perform a full range of laboratory tests from simple blood screens to more complex tests to detect diseases like cancer, coronary artery disease and diabetes. More information on the Medical Laboratory Science profession.


What can I do with a degree in medical laboratory science?

A degree in medical laboratory science (MLS) is extremely versatile. While most graduates from the certification track opt to work in hospital settings, more students are branching out into other arenas such as industry, sales, research, fertility clinics, information systems, forensics, environmental health, public health and education. The Medical Science track (and some certification track) students are pursuing advanced degrees in medicine, dentistry, nursing and others. Ohio State offers four curriculum tracks that tailor to different goals.

What if I am a certified medical laboratory technician (MLT)?

Certified MLTs can apply to the MLT articulation track. This track provides MLTs with the opportunity to obtain a bachelor's degree and an advanced clinical laboratory science education as part of their requirements to become eligible for the MLS certification exam.

What are my options if I already have a B.S. degree and want to become eligible for ASCP national MLS certification?

There are three options for baccalaureate degree holders. The first two options are undergraduate and will take two years of full time enrollment to complete.

Option 1 is to complete only the professional MLS curriculum and earn a “Certificate of Study” that will combine with your previous B.S. to make you ASCP eligible. Please check with ASCP to make sure your B.S. degree will meet the guidelines set forth by the ASCP Board of Registry (BOR).

Option 2 is to earn a second B.S. degree in medical laboratory sciences. For this option you would need to meet all general education curriculum requirements of The Ohio State University in addition to completing the MLS curriculum. For some students (depending on your existing credits) this may be completed in the same two-year timeframe, but not always.

Option 3 is to apply to our Coordinated Graduate Track and earn ASCP eligibility after two years and an M.S. degree after three years of full time enrollment.

If I already have a degree in medical laboratory science can I just complete a clinical internship at OSU?

No, we reserve all of our clinical internship placement spots for students who enroll in and complete our certification programs.

Where do I apply?

Our application process is done through the Professional Admissions office. Please visit their website or contact them with questions about transcript evaluation, the actual application, fees, language tests, etc.

How do I know if my credits will transfer to OSU and meet the prerequisite course requirements for admission?

The Professional Admissions office offers free transfer credit evaluations for interested students and these can be completed by making an in-person appointment with their office counselor or by submitting an online form available on their website. In some cases they may advise you to have the courses further evaluated by the department that offers the course in question. The Medical Laboratory Science department does not perform any transcript review or evaluations.

How competitive is the admissions process?

For our certification and coordinated graduate tracks, on average we accept approximately 60 percent of our applicants each year. For the MLT Articulation and Medical Science tracks we typically will accept all applicants who meet all of our admissions requirements.

Can the program be completed part time?

Yes we do allow students to be enrolled part time, which will add an additional academic year to your timeline. For most students it will take three years to complete the MLS professional curriculum on a part-time basis. Three academic years is the maximum length of time students working toward certification can take to complete the MLS curriculum.

Do you offer evening or online courses?

No the Medical Laboratory Science program offers daytime, weekday, in person courses only on OSU’s main campus.

What are the typical class sizes?

Our lecture courses may have 30-50 students in them while our lab courses will have 20-30.

Will I be guaranteed placement for clinical internship?

Yes, we guarantee clinical internship placement although they may not be in Columbus. Students can perform the clinical internship only at facilities that have a signed affiliate agreement with The Ohio State University. Students are assigned to clinical sites by the faculty of the Medical Laboratory Science Division. Preliminary site assignments are made spring of the first year of the program. Final site assignments are made autumn of the second year of the program. Students are not guaranteed placement at local or commutable sites. Students must be prepared for the possibility of relocation for this six-week period.

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