University of Wisconsin-La Crosse |


Expand page menu
Skip to page menu
  • What is a Clinical Laboratory Scientist?

    Clinical Laboratory Scientists (Medical Laboratory Scientists or Medical Technologists) are health-care professionals that provide a vital role in modern medicine. Clinical Laboratory Scientists are extensively educated in all aspects of laboratory medicine. They are responsible for providing accurate information to physicians so that they may:

    • diagnose, monitor and treat disease
    • monitor patient health
    • practice preventative medicine 

    CLS lab

    It is estimated that 70% of all medical decisions made by physicians are based on this vital information provided by Clinical Laboratory Scientists.  

    The work of a Clinical Laboratory Scientist involves a wide variety of responsibilities in several areas of laboratory medicine. Some of the tasks performed include:

    • identification of infectious agents such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites
    • analysis of blood to detect disorders such as leukemia, hemophilia and immunodeficiency
    • measuring the presence of antibodies in blood to indicate infection with agents like HIV
    • assuring the quality of blood for transfusions


    In addition to conducting the laboratory tests, the Clinical Laboratory Scientist:

    • assures the quality of test data
    • compares and selects appropriate laboratory methods and instruments
    • provides physicians with information on the validity and significance of test results
    • supervises other laboratory personnel


    If you enjoy the challenge of running clinical laboratory tests and being a vital part of a health care team committed to improving patient health and saving lives, a career in Clinical Laboratory Science may be for you!  

    Top 10 Reasons to Become a Clinical Laboratory Scientist

    10: Excellent starting salaries and job security
    9: Ability to work anywhere in the United States
    8: Large range of diverse job responsibilities
    7: Opportunity to perform state-of-the-art diagnostic laboratory procedures with sophisticated instrumentation
    6: Work in a laboratory where you use your mind to solve medical puzzles on a daily basis
    5: Excellent opportunities for advancement
    4: Acquire an excellent background for continuing education in graduate or medical school
    3: Fill a critical national need due to the current demand for Clinical Laboratory Scientists in the United States
    2: Be a vital member of a modern health care team that provides the majority of information used to diagnose and treat disease
    1: The opportunity to improve patient health and save lives as a result of your laboratory and problem-solving skills

    Check out our brochure!