Clinical Laboratory & Nutritional Sciences

Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Medical Laboratory Science Option

About the Program

The Medical Laboratory Science option prepares students with lifelong career skills in laboratory science. Students receive an in-depth education in clinical chemistry, clinical hematology, clinical immunohematology (transfusion medicine), clinical immunology, and clinical microbiology. Lecture and laboratory courses in these areas are taught here at the University, followed by clinical internships in each area at hospital laboratories in Greater Boston, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire.

After completing their degree, students are qualified to sit for the Board of Certification examination for Medical Laboratory Scientists offered by the American Society of Clinical Pathology (ASCP). 

The academic program includes scientific and clinical knowledge using current methodology, instrumentation and techniques relevant to each area in laboratory medicine. Students can elect to enroll in the five-year BS/MS program and take courses in their senior year that will count toward the master's degree.

The Medical Laboratory Science option prepares entry-level Clinical Laboratory Scientists/Medical Technologists who are able to: 

  • Select and provide analytical and evaluative laboratory services based on scientific theory
  • Effectively assess the results of their efforts and 
  • Possess leadership skills of accountability, delegation, education, and supervision. 

This program is fully accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS), 5600 N. River Rd. Suite 720, Rosemont, IL 60018-5119, Phone: 847-939-3597 or 773-714-8880, e-mail: info@naacls.org, and the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences website. For the fourth time in a row, the Medical Laboratory Science option received a perfect score during its recent national accreditation cycle in 2010. 

The teaching faculty is doctorally prepared in various science disciplines and nationally certified with teaching, clinical and research experience. Many of the faculty are nationally recognized in their respective fields.

The program has recently upgraded its equipment and acquired state-of-the-art laboratory instrumentation for all of the student laboratories. Students receive further in-depth experience with laboratory instrumentation in their clinical internships. 

Clinical Placement Policy

In the unlikely event that there are more students than clinical rotation spots, placement will be dependent upon academic achievement (highest overall and science GPAs) and professional performance consistent with the Department of Clinical Laboratory and Nutritional Sciences Behavior Policy. If there are insufficient placements for all students, every effort will be made by the MLS Program Director to secure an alternate site. Students who cannot be placed on clinical rotation at the normally scheduled time will be assigned to the next available clinical site.

Career Opportunities

The Medical Laboratory Science program prepares students for a variety of careers in Laboratory Medicine. Nearly 100 percent of program graduates are successfully employed in all departments of various hospital laboratories, physician office laboratories, medical reference laboratories, the American Red Cross Blood Bank laboratories, public health laboratories as well as veterinary office laboratories.

Graduates also have obtained employment in various jobs as sales representatives, R&D scientists, clinical research associates, technical field representatives, regulatory affairs personnel, and quality control personnel in the biomedical device, biotechnology, health informatics and pharmaceutical industries. Graduates are also employed in research laboratories at various universities and medical schools in the Greater Boston area.

Finally, many graduates of this program have continued on to graduate school and received master's or Ph.D.s in various science disciplines such as biology, biotechnology, microbiology, biochemistry, nutrition, physical therapy, and clinical laboratory sciences. Others have earned master's of Education, master's of Business Administration (MBA) or Health Administration (MHA). Graduates have also gone to Veterinary School, Chiropractic School, Osteopathic School, Medical School or Physician and Pathologist Assistant's programs.

Degree Requirements

All students must complete a basic core of science courses in Anatomy and Physiology, Physiological Chemistry and Basic Clinical Microbiology. These courses, along with the General Education courses in Social Sciences and Arts and Humanities, must be completed prior to the junior year. The upper division (junior and senior) courses combine classroom and online teaching and learning. Specific courses include Hematology, Coagulation, Clinical Chemistry, Medical Bacteriology, Medical Mycology and Parasitology, Medical Virology/Serology, Clinical Immunology, Clinical Immunohematology, and Molecular Diagnostics.

The program requires a total of 120 credits and completion of the required courses leading to a Bachelor of Science in Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Medical Laboratory Science option.

Sample Course of Study (pdf)

For the latest course information please visit the UMass Lowell Online Academic Catalog.

Read additional information on this program.
Admissions

For information about the admissions process and standards please refer to the links provided:

  • Admissions Process
  • Admissions Standards
  • Admissions Transfer Students

    In the unlikely event that there are more students than clinical rotation spots, placement will be dependent upon academic achievement (highest overall and science GPAs) and professional performance consistent with the Department of Clinical Laboratory and Nutritional Sciences Behavior Policy. If there are insufficient placements for all students, every effort will be made by the MLS Program Director to secure an alternate site. Students who cannot be placed on clinical rotation at the normally scheduled time will be assigned to the next available clinical site.

Professional Science Masters Option

This degree option contains approximately 2/3 science and 1/3 business/communication courses and a 1 credit internship experience with reflective seminar.  

Science Courses
Students are required to take 5 Core Curriculum science courses and select an additional 3 science courses from a list of Department STEM Elective courses.

Business and Communication Courses
Students will select 2 courses from an approved list of PLUS Elective courses and are required to take 1 required PLUS course.

For more details about the program view the UMass Lowell Academic Catalog.

Professional Internship and Seminar
A Professional Internship is required for students in this program and is expected to be a minimum of 350 hours and have 3-6 month duration. The internship is designed to provide students with an opportunity to obtain real-world experience in business, government agencies, non-profit organizations or research laboratories. Internships or research project experiences will typically take place in Clinical, Pharmaceutical, Diagnostic, Biotechnological or Medical Device Companies or Institutions. Research experience can also be obtained at the University or other Research Centers. Given the number of full time faculty in the department, the University will assist the Department of Clinical Laboratory and Nutritional Sciences and the students with arranging corporate internships. To be eligible for the Professional Internship, students will be required to have 1) completed a minimum of 12.0 credits of STEM courses, 2) completed a minimum of 6.0 credits of PLUS courses, 3) attained an overall minimum GPA of 3.0 and 4) Department permission. Since most program students will have a scientific background and are in a scientific Master of Sciences Program, Professional Internships with a business will be most desirable. Consideration will be given for students that have previous or current professional employment experience, however, in these cases, a new project experience will be required that adds to the student’s current set of skills. All students will be required to submit a final written report and give oral presentation on their work at a Seminar. All post-internship students will participate in this seminar. All Professional Internships require department faculty supervision. Students should register for 36.770  during the final semester of internship participation.