Clinical Laboratory Sciences

Essential Functions

The medical laboratory scientist must possess scientific curiosity and good judgment. Patience and thoroughness are necessary to perform test with precision. However, when necessary, the medical laboratory scientist must be able to work quickly without sacrificing precision. Also important to the scientist are an interest in technical instrumentation, manual dexterity, the ability to concentrate and normal eyesight. The scientist must possess communication and interpersonal skills to interact with patients and other member of the health care team.

  • Manual Dexterity and Fine Motor Skills
  • Mobility
  • Vision
  • Hearing
  • Communication
  • Intellectual
  • Behavioral

Manual Dexterity and Fine Motor Skills

  1. Maneuver equipment to safely collect valid laboratory specimens from patients
  2. Control laboratory equipment (i.e. pipettes, inoculating loops, test tubes) and adjust instruments to perform laboratory procedures
  3. Use a computer keyboard to operate laboratory instruments and to calculate, record, evaluate and transmit laboratory information


  1. Move freely and safely about a laboratory
  2. Reach laboratory bench tops and shelves, patients lying in hospital beds or patients seated in specimen collection chairs
  3. Perform moderately taxing continuous physical work, often requiring prolonged sitting, over several hours use a computer keyboard to operate laboratory instruments and to calculate, record, evaluate and transmit laboratory information


  1. Observe laboratory demonstrations in which biological specimens (i.e. body fluids, culture materials) are analyzed for their biochemical, hematological, cytologic, immunologic and microbiological components
  2. Characterize the color, odor, clarity and viscosity of biological specimens, reagents or chemical reaction products
  3. Operate a clinical grade binocular microscope to discriminate among fine structural and color differences of microscopic specimens, to include hue, shading and intensity
  4. Read and comprehend text, numbers and graphs displayed in print and on a video monitor


  1. ability to adapt with assistive devices as needed in order to communicate understandably in English (i.e. phone receivers, hearing aid, etc.)


  1. Ability to verbally communicate understandably in English
  2. Ability to communicate effectively in the written form of English
  3. Ability to read, comprehend and follow directions printed in English


  1. Possess the following intellectual skills: comprehension, measurement, mathematical calculation, reasoning, integration, analysis, comparison, self-expression and critical thinking


  1. Provide technical and professional services while working within stresses of time constraints, emergency demands, ambiguous test ordering, ambivalent test interpretation, unpleasant biological specimens and distracting environment
  2. Be willing to adapt to technical change
  3. Recognize potentially hazardous materials, equipment and situation and follow safety procedures in order to minimize risk to patients, self and nearby individuals
  4. Support and promote activities of fellow students and other health care professionals
  5. Exhibit honesty, compassion, ethical and responsible behaviors to include:
    1. being forthright about errors or uncertainty
    2. being able to critically evaluate self-performance
    3. being able to accept constructive criticism
    4. seeking professionally and personally enriching activities

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