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Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science

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Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Major

Clinical/medical laboratory science is a major that typically falls into the Health Professions category.

There are 330 programs available throughout the country that offer an associate’s degree in clinical laboratory science, 361 that offer a bachelor’s degree, and 56 that offer a master’s degree. There are also at least 2 schools in the nation where you can get your doctorate degree in the field.

Who Is Getting a Clinical Laboratory Science Degree?

This is a less frequently chosen major. Only 3,700 students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in clinical/medical laboratory science in 2017. The major attracts more women than men. About 74% of the recent graduates in this field are female.

Racial Distribution

At the countrywide level, the racial distribution of clinical laboratory science majors is as follows:

  • Asian: 12.5%
  • Black or African American: 10.3%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 10.8%
  • White: 57.2%
  • Non-Resident Alien: 2.8%
  • Other Races: 6.4%
Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Majors Ethnic Diversity Statistics

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in clinical laboratory science. About 2.8% of those graduating in 2017 were international students. The most popular countries sending clinical laboratory science majors to the U.S. are Saudi Arabia, Nepal and China.

What Will You Learn as a Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Major?

An O*NET survey asked people with careers related to clinical laboratory science to rate how important certain subject areas were to their job. The following are some of the results of that survey. Importance was rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Clinical Laboratory Science Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

Important Knowledge Areas for Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Majors

Skills for Clinical Laboratory Science Majors

A major in clinical laboratory science prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:

Important Skills for Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Majors

Abilities for Clinical Laboratory Science Majors

As you progress with your clinical laboratory science degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:

Important Abilities for clinical laboratory science Majors

What Can You Do With a Clinical Laboratory Science Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with clinical laboratory science:

Careers Related to Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science
Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary

Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians



Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists



Health Specialties Professors



Medical Equipment Preparers



Histotechnologists and Histologic Technicians



Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technicians






Ophthalmic Medical Technologists



Health Technologists and Technicians



Surgical Technologists



Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Major Salary

Average salaries range from $36,000 to $49,000 for careers related to clinical laboratory science. This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.

To put that into context, the typical high school graduate makes between $29,000 and $57,000 a year. The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $44,000 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,000 and $120,000.

Average Salary for a Clinical Laboratory Science Major  ( 36000 to 49000 )
Average Salary for High School Graduate  ( 29000 to 57000 )
Average Salary with Bachelor's Degree  ( 44000 to 99000 )
Average Salary with Advanced Degree  ( 55000 to 120000 )

The area of the country you choose to work in will also affect your career and salary prospects. Getting a graduate degree may open up more options with higher salary potential.

Amount of Education Required for Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Major Jobs

Some careers associated with clinical laboratory science require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

Find out what the typical degree level is for clinical laboratory science careers below.

Education Levels for Careers Associated With Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science
Level of Education Percentage of Workers

Less Than a High School Diploma


High School Diploma or Equivalent


Post-Secondary Certificate


Some College Courses


Associate's Degree or Equivalent


Bachelor's Degree


Post-Baccalaureate Certificate


Master's Degree


Post-Master's Certificate


First Professional Degree


Doctoral Degree


Post-Doctoral Training


Online Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Programs

There are 361 colleges that offer a bachelor’s degree in clinical/medical laboratory science, with 27 of them offering at least some courses online.

Online learners must listen or watch video lectures, participate in group chats or forums, submit papers and assignments electronically, take tests, and meet deadlines.

Online learners benefit from being able to watch lectures remotely and complete coursework on their schedule, but they also take longer to graduate than average and are more likely to dropout.

Is a Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science Major Worth It?

The median salary for a clinical laboratory science grad is $38,000 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is -2% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $-18,200 after 20 years!

clinical/medical laboratory science salary compared to typical high school and college graduates over a 20 year period


Bureau of Labor Statistics
National Center for Education Statistics
O*NET Online
Image Credit: Staff Sgt. Jerilyn Quintanilla via License

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