How to Choose the Best Medical Laboratory Science Bachelor’s Degree

Choosing the right degree can be a pivotal moment in your educational journey, especially if you’re passionate about becoming a medical laboratory scientist (MLS). This decision shapes your future career trajectory and can significantly impact your professional development and job satisfaction.

As a medical laboratory technician (MLT), you already know the thrill of working in a dynamic environment, analyzing blood and tissue samples, and playing a critical role in patient care. Your work contributes directly to the diagnosis and treatment of diseases, and you are an essential part of the healthcare team. However, if you’re eager to take your career to the next level, an MLS degree can open doors to more fulfilling roles and higher pay.

With an MLS degree, you can transition into more advanced positions, such as laboratory supervisor, clinical laboratory manager, or even specialist roles in areas like molecular diagnostics or immunology. These roles not only offer greater responsibility and professional challenge but also come with the potential for higher salaries and better job security.

Additionally, an MLS degree provides a deeper understanding of complex laboratory techniques and the scientific principles underlying laboratory practices, enhancing your ability to contribute to cutting-edge medical research and innovations.

By pursuing further education, you are investing in your future, equipping yourself with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in a rapidly evolving field, and positioning yourself as a leader in medical laboratory science.

Consider an Online MLT-to-MLS Completer Degree

If advancing your career in laboratory science is your goal, exploring educational programs and certifications that elevate your qualifications is essential. An MLT-to-MLS completer program, such as the online Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science from the University of Cincinnati, can offer a comprehensive path forward.

This program is designed for those who already have a background in laboratory work and wish to gain the advanced skills and knowledge necessary to progress in the field. By transitioning from an MLT to an MLS, you can enhance your expertise, increase your job responsibilities, and potentially earn a higher salary.

7 Considerations When Selecting an Online MLS Degree Program

Making the right choice involves evaluating several factors to find the program that best fits your needs. Below are 7 key items to consider.

#1 Institutional Reputation and Program Longevity

Research the university’s history and its expertise in online education, as well as the program’s longevity. UC is a renowned public research university with a rich 200-year history of education, offering laboratory science programs for over 75 years, and over 20 years of online learning, ensuring a high-quality educational experience.

This long-standing commitment to education and innovation demonstrates the institution’s ability to adapt to the changing needs of students and the evolving demands of the healthcare industry.

#2 Direct Entry

Look for programs that allow direct entry from a two-year associate degree without requiring additional credits, like UC. Direct entry can save you time and money, enabling you to progress in your studies more efficiently. It also ensures that your previous education and experience are fully recognized, allowing you to build on the foundation you have already established.

#3 Real-World Coursework

Ensure the curriculum covers a broad range of relevant topics, from chemistry and microbiology to hematology, that align with your interests. UC’s program provides the technical and academic skills you need today to be a competent MLS and aligns with the competencies outlined by the American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science.

Real-world coursework not only enhances your theoretical understanding but also prepares you for practical challenges you may face in the workplace. By engaging in hands-on learning experiences, you can develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills that are essential for success in the medical laboratory field.

#4 Experienced Faculty

Investigate the backgrounds of the program’s instructors. UC boasts experienced professionals like Erin Rumpke, MS, MLS (ASCP)cm, and Gideon Labiner, MS, MLS(ASCP), who both hold key industry certifications and bring significant in-lab experience to their teaching. Experienced faculty members can provide valuable insights and mentorship, helping you to navigate your educational journey and career path. Their real-world experience ensures that the curriculum is relevant and up-to-date with current industry standards and practices.

#5 Field Experienced and Credits

As you compare schools, look for opportunities where the program takes you into the field. Opportunities for clinical rotations and life-experience credits can enhance your learning and potentially reduce course loads.

UC offers clinical experience options and assesses life-experience credits to help tailor your educational journey. Field experience allows you to apply your knowledge in real-world settings, gain practical skills, and build professional networks. These experiences are invaluable in preparing you for the demands of a career in medical laboratory science.

#6 Outcome Metrics

A smart way to measure the value of an online program is to find out what happens to graduates when they finish. Check the program’s certification, graduation, and placement rates.

UC graduates consistently perform above the national average on certification exams, underscoring our program’s effectiveness. High outcome metrics indicate that the program effectively prepares students for successful careers in medical laboratory science. By choosing a program with strong outcome metrics, you can be confident in your investment in your education and future.

View our certification, graduation, and placement rates.

#7 Student Support

Personalized support is crucial for online learning success. Make sure you identify any additional support a school provides to help ensure your success. UC provides dedicated advisors and student success coordinators to guide you from enrollment through graduation.

These support services can help you navigate the challenges of online learning, stay on track with your studies, and achieve your academic and career goals.

Benefits of an Online Completer Degree from UC

Online learning has become a key player in the global education landscape. Studying online offers unparalleled flexibility and accessibility, accommodating diverse student bodies across geographical boundaries. The University of Cincinnati’s online format is specifically designed to meet the needs of working professionals and students from various backgrounds, providing a quality education without the logistical challenges of on-campus attendance.

UC’s online medical laboratory science program offers several standout features:

  • Accreditation: Our program is NAACLS accredited, ensuring high-quality education.
  • 100% Online Availability: Unlike other programs that may require in-person attendance, UC’s program is entirely online, eliminating the need for travel and allowing students to learn from anywhere.
  • Accessibility Across the U.S. and Internationally: The program is open to qualified students nationwide and internationally, provided they meet the prerequisites.
  • 24/7 Course Material Access: The curriculum is available at all times and is taught by experts in medical laboratory science, ensuring that students can immediately apply what they learn.
  • Interactive Online Learning: Students interact with instructors and peers through modern communication and collaboration tools, fostering a supportive online community.
  • Flexible Completion Pace: Students can set their own pace for completing the program, with most finishing in just over two years.
  • Full Laboratory Science Degree Pathway: Your BS MLS opens the door to further education that can be completed entirely online — from the Master’s of Science in Medical Laboratory Science Leadership to the Doctorate of Clinical Laboratory Science.

Ready to Advance Your Career?

Transitioning from an MLT to an MLS is a significant step toward advancing your career in a vital field. With the increasing demand for disease management and intervention professionals, medical laboratory scientists play a crucial role in improving patient outcomes. UC’s online BS in Medical Laboratory Science program is designed to equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to excel.

As the healthcare industry continues to evolve, the demand for skilled medical laboratory scientists is expected to grow. By advancing your education and obtaining an MLS degree, you position yourself for better job opportunities, higher earning potential, and greater job security. The skills and knowledge you gain from an MLS program will enable you to take on more complex and specialized roles within the laboratory, contributing to the advancement of medical science and patient care.

If you’re ready to take the next step in your MLS journey, contact a program specialist at (833) 556-8611. Representatives are available Monday–Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET.

Alternatively, you can send a message to the team to get your questions answered about financial aid, start dates, and support for military students and their families.

Join the UC Bearcat family and start your journey toward a rewarding career in medical laboratory science today! By choosing the University of Cincinnati, you are investing in a future filled with opportunities for growth, innovation, and professional fulfillment. Whether you are seeking to advance in your current role or transition into a new career within the medical laboratory field, UC’s online MLS program provides the comprehensive education and support needed to achieve your goals. Embrace the possibilities that come with becoming a medical laboratory scientist and make a meaningful impact on the world of healthcare.

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