All applications reviewed in their entirety

Requirements for Entry


Students who apply to the MLS Program will have their applications reviewed based on several academic factors. All applications are reviewed in their entirety and admission decisions are based on overall assessment of each applicant’s academic preparation and performance, experiences, and the primary and secondary factors.

Liberal Education Requirements

All students enrolled at the University of Minnesota are required to fulfill Liberal Education (LE) requirements. Transfer students can complete most LE requirements prior to entering the University by completing one of the following:

  1. The Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) – If you complete the MnTC at a participating school and then transfer to the UMN, you have completed the core, theme, and first-year writing portion of the University's liberal education requirements (you may still need to complete the writing intensive portion of the writing skills requirement). Such completion must be noted on the official transcript from your school.
  2. Associate of Arts (A.A.) degree – If you earn an A.A. degree at a MN community or technical college, you are considered to have completed a major portion of the LE requirements. Please work with your academic advisor to determine which requirements apply to you.
  3. Previous BS/BA degree Students - If you have already earned a BA or BS degree (or higher) from the University or another institution, you are exempt from Liberal Education requirements. Students will be required to successfully complete the Writing Intensive courses that are part of the MLS curriculum.
  4. Academic Affiliated Students – If you are applying to the MLS Program from one of our academic affiliates and intend to receive your degree from your home institution, you are required to meet the Liberal Education requirements of your home school and are exempt from the University's Liberal Education requirements. You are required to successfully complete the Writing Intensive courses that are part of the MLS curriculum.

Review the UMN Liberal Education requirements. All Liberal Education requirements must be complete before beginning Year 4 of the program.

Science Prerequisite Course Requirements

All students who intend to apply to the MLS Program must successfully complete the following science courses or the accepted equivalent courses, receiving a grade of C or higher. If you have received a grade of a C- or below, you must repeat the course and receive a satisfactory grade to be considered for admission. Please see the Transfer Guides below for course equivalencies from other institutions. 

Biology: 8 credits

  • BIOL 1009 - General Biology (4)
  • PHSL 3051 - Human Physiology (4)

Mathematics: 3-4 credits

  • MATH 1142 - Short Calculus (3) OR
  • MATH 1271 - Calculus I (4)

Statistics: 3-4 credits

  • STAT 3011 - Introduction to Statistical Analysis (4) OR
  • ESPY 3264 - Basic and Applied Statistics (3)

Chemistry: 14 credits

  • CHEM 1061 and CHEM 1065 - Chemical Principles I with Laboratory (4)
  • CHEM 1062 and CHEM 1066 - Chemistry Principles II with Laboratory (4)
  • CHEM 2301 - Organic Chemistry I (3)
  • CHEM 2302 - Organic Chemistry II (3)

Transfers Guides

Many prospective students come to the MLS program from colleges and universities in and around the state of Minnesota. To assist those students in preparing for admission, transfer guides have been developed for a number of institutions. These transfer guides list course requirements and their equivalent courses at your college or university. Please use these transfer guides to help you select the courses that will meet the program’s prerequisite course requirements.

If your institution is not listed, or the transfer guide for your school(s) does not list the courses you have taken, please send the following information to [email protected] for review:

  • Name of Institution where course was completed
  • Course Number and Name
  • Number of credit hours
  • Year and semester taken
  • Course description(s)
  • Syllabi (if available)

We are currently in the process of evaluating and updating our current transfer guides. Please see below for our current selection of transfer guides. 

Please click on the links below to access the transfer guides:

Foundation Science (Junior Year) Course Requirements

All students who intend to apply to the MLS Program for Year 4 admission must also successfully complete the following Foundation Science courses or the accepted equivalent courses by receiving a grade of C or higher. If you have received a grade below a C, you must repeat the course and receive a satisfactory grade to be considered for admission. Please see the Transfer Guides for course equivalencies from other institutions.

  • VBS 2032 OR MICB 3301 – Microbiology with laboratory (5)
  • GCD 3022 OR BIOL 4003 – Genetics (3)
  • BIOC 3021 – Biochemistry (3)
  • MLSP 5011W  – Professional Issues (2)
  • MLSP 5511 – Immunobiology (3)
  • MLSP 5311 – Laboratory Techniques (4)

Criteria for Admission

Primary Factors Considered for Admission: 

  • Minimum GPA Requirements
    • For the BS Degree or Certificate - 2.75; 3.0 is preferred
    • For the MMLS Degree 3.0; 3.2 is preferred
    • Prerequisite GPA – GPA of specific program requirements as above 
    • Overall Science and Math GPA – all physical science and math courses completed at the college level as above 
  • Number of repeated courses
  • Number of course withdrawals
  • Rating on the personal Interview
  • Performance on the Admissions Skills Assessment 

Secondary Factors Considered for Admission

Individual circumstances such as those listed below are also part of the overall assessment of each application and may factor into individual decisions. 

  • Work experience in medical or other laboratory setting
  • Rigor of your academic record
  • Number of semesters with full time enrollment including science laboratory courses
  • Military service
  • Knowledge of MLS profession
  • Advanced degrees

Suggested Plans of Study

Suggested Plan of Study for the BS degree and Certificate (Click for PDF Version):

This sample Plan of Study for the BS in MLS at the University of Minnesota is based strictly on courses necessary to prepare for the Professional (4) year in the MLS program without regard to individual student issues and is intended as a guide for the student’s academic plan.

Notes for the BS Degree and Certificate:

  1. The Liberal Education requirements chosen in this sample schedule were selected to fulfill requirements and credit load per semester.
  2. Students may choose any courses that fulfill the Liberal Education requirements for a University of Minnesota undergraduate degree.
  3. All science and Liberal Education courses must be completed no later than spring of Year 3.
  4. Due to the intensity of the MLS curriculum schedule, students are not allowed to enroll in any non-MLSP during Year 4.
  5. No part-time enrollment option is currently available for the Professional (Year 4) of the MLS Program.

Suggested Plan of Study for the MMLS Professional Masters Degree (Click for PDF Version)

Notes for the MMLS Professional Masters Degree:

  1. Liberal Education courses are waived due to the previous degree.
  2. All science and foundation courses must be completed prior to entering the professional year of the program.
  3. Due to the intensity of the MLS curriculum schedule, students are not allowed to enroll in any non-MLSP during the program.
  4. A part-time enrollment option is available after consultation with the faculty advisor.
  5. International Applicants: the MMLS Professional Masters Degree has been approved to accept international students on an F1 visa. Applicants with other visa types should contact [email protected] for further information on admission eligibility.

Terms and Conditions

When students apply they will need to acknowledge acceptance of the following Terms and Conditions for the Medical Laboratory Sciences (MLS) program. 

Technical standards

The Technical Standards are knowledge, skill, and attitude/behavioral requirements necessary for successful admission and continuance by students for the MLS program. They are also necessary to acquire or demonstrate competence in a discipline as complex as diagnostic laboratory medicine. The National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences ( requires that the Technical Standards (also called Essential Functions), required for admission to and continuance in the MLS program, be made available to prospective students and to the public.

Learn more about the technical standards

Honor code

Members of the MLS program are expected to engage in behavior that promotes the continuous development and improvement of student's academic experience. Honesty and integrity inside and outside the classroom are essential components of such an environment and imperative for all members of the community to incorporate into their scholastic pursuits.

Learn more about the honor code


According to Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, and policies and requirements Academic Health Sciences (AHS), all students (including international students) enrolled in AHS colleges must meet immunization requirements as a condition of enrollment. Student in the AHS must provide proof of the following immunizations and testing. Visit the Boynton Health website for specific requirements.

NOTE: Written documentation of immunization status is needed with a nurse or doctor's signature (include the clinic site). The completed form is submitted to Boynton Health upon admission.

Learn more about the immunization policy

Criminal background studies

All MLS students are required to complete an annual criminal background study during enrollment of the program. Completing the study is a requirement of Minnesota State Law and those who fail to cooperate with the request are not able to complete the clinical and/or fieldwork components of the degree program. It is the student’s responsibility to keep a copy of the criminal background study certificate.

Learn more about the background studies

Technology requirements

Due to the hybrid and online delivery format of all MLS courses, all students in the MLS program must have consistent and reliable access to a computer and the Internet. Students in the MLS program will need to maintain a minimum level of capacity and flexibility with computer equipment and other technological issues.

Learn more about technology requirements

Health insurance

All MLS students are required to have health insurance while they are attending/participating in all course work including clinical experience rotations. Students are often at locations other than on campus and out-of-classroom experiences put students at risk for infectious diseases such as influenza, hepatitis B, HIV, and other occupational health risks. AHS students will automatically be charged the Student Health Benefit Plan fee or can request a waiver to use other outside insurance. Regardless of which insurance plan they choose, students must never experience a gap in coverage while in the MLS Program.

Learn more about health insurance options at the U of M

Student Services Fee

Students enrolled in 6 or more credits for fall and spring semester or 3 or more credits for summer term must pay a student services fee in addition to tuition. This fee provides students with access to various campus resources and services. These include but are not limited to: University-sponsored Student Health Benefit Plan, Boynton Health, Student Conflict Resolution Center, Student Counseling Services, University Recreation & Wellness Center, and University Student Legal Services.

Students must review their University account (via MyU portal) each semester to ensure they have been assessed this fee to avoid interruption to these resources and services. If you are not being assessed the Student Services Fee automatically, you are required to complete the Student Services Fee Assessment Request form to be issued to the fee. Failure to comply could result in removal from course enrollment.

Learn more about the student services fee


Students in the Center for Allied Health Programs must comply with specific requirements within their program and within the health sciences (see the list of requirements below). Once students are admitted to their program they will receive instructions to meet compliance requirements and continue to meet them throughout the program.

Information and instructions about each item of compliance will be included in your Welcome Letter.

MLS Program Requirements

Lab Safety Training

These compliance requirements will be fullfilled with the lab safety officer during classes.

  • Bloodborne Pathogens
  • Chemical Hazard
  • Fire Safety
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Electrical Hazard
  • Material Safety Data Sheets
  • Decontamination
  • Biological & Infectious Waste
  • Chemical Waste
  • Respiratory Protection
  • Specific Pathogens (Salmonella, Influenza, Plague, Tuberculosis, Rabies, etc.)
  • Transport & Shipping
  • Radiation Safety
  • Sharps Safety
  • MLS Laboratory Safety Manual Review