Introduction to Medical Laboratory Scientists (MLS)

Medical laboratory scientists (MLS), also known as clinical laboratory scientists, play a crucial role in the diagnosis, treatment and management of patients. They are the third largest medical profession (after doctors & nurses). Medical laboratory scientists perform complex testing using sophisticated instruments to detect diseases and monitor treatment.

Approximately 70% of medical decisions, diagnosis, treatment and evaluations, are based on the interpretations of laboratory test results.

Medical laboratory scientists might isolate and identify an infectious organism that is causing a patient’s pneumonia or cross-match blood to be used in a transfusion. The laboratory testing they perform will show whether a diabetic patient’s glucose is normal or too high or they may perform testing on blood to detect and identify leukemia (cancer of blood cells). They interpret and analyze test results and then communicate the results to physicians or other healthcare providers for patient care.

Articles about MLS

Read the article on Forbes about the Most Meaningful College Majors

Medical laboratory science grads in Minnesota are well paid and sought after. Read an article in MinnPost

To find out more about careers that are available for MLS graduates, visit the Explore Health Careers web page.

Find out more about behind the scenes at a hospital lab, by reading this article on a US NEWS & WORLD REPORTS web site. 


'I am a Medical Laboratory Scientist' - 2:42


American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) 'Leading Edge' - 5:06


ASCLS Career Recruitment Video - 2:09