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Start date

4 year(s) full-time


Program Code

One of the following:
SACE Stage 2 Physics
SACE Stage 2 Chemistry
SACE Stage 2 Biology
More info

Assumed Knowledge

2018: AUD$ 32,400 per annum (per 1.0 EFTSL)

English Language Requirements
  • IELTS total [6.5]
  • IELTS reading [6.5]
  • IELTS writing [6.5]
  • IELTS speaking [6.5]
  • IELTS listening [6.5]
Equivalent English qualifications (PDF)

International Admission by Country
See full entry requirements


Key features

  • Graduate with a highly regarded honours degree.
  • Gain the skills and knowledge needed to work as a accredited medical scientist in diagnostic pathology, forensics or research.
  • Choose to complete a research course or an extra clinical placement, depending on your interests.
  • Gain practical experience in on-campus, purpose-built laboratories.
  • Study a degree that is informed by our well above world-class research1.
  • Use this qualification as a pathway to further learning, including Masters by Research and doctoral studies.

1 2015 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA)



This degree prepares you for a career in all areas of pathology, with training in biochemistry, microbiology, immunology, molecular pathology, haematology and histopathology.

You will gain practical experience in our on-campus laboratories, and have the opportunity to practice these skills in real-world clinical settings when you complete industry experience across your third and fourth years. If you undertake the research course you will complete 13 weeks of clinical placement; if you undertake the Advanced Clinical Placement you will complete 26 weeks of clinical placement. This field placement can be completed in South Australia, interstate or overseas and will be offered in 13-week blocks.

The honours component of this degree focuses on research training, which will see you complete research preparation and project courses in your fourth year. 

What you'll need

All students in the Division of Health Sciences who undertake activities where interaction with patients/the public is required for their degree, such as field or clinical placements/visits and in University clinics and gyms, must obtain a current National Police Clearance and a Current National Criminal History Record Check (Child-Related Clearance) from the Department for Communities and Social Inclusion (DCSI). This certificate is valid for the duration of the program.

Why Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine (Honours)

Why this Degree

When you study this industry-relevant degree you will gain real experience in a clinical setting and will benefit from our state-of-the-art on-campus facilities, including specialised laboratories.

This qualification will set you apart from your competitors and will provide you with advanced knowledge of and skills in research methodology and research practice.

Real-world connections

Practical field placements are a great opportunity for you to begin to build your network of industry contacts – in fact, some of our students actually secure employment before they graduate as a result of the industry relationships built during this time.

You will also work alongside experienced researchers when you complete research preparation and project courses during your final year. This affiliation will provide you with exceptional learning and networking opportunities.

We host regular University-wide employee master classes and employment expos, and alumni events in Australia and overseas.


Your career

Medical scientists support clinicians in the diagnosis, management and treatment of disease, to conduct research into the causes and cures for disease, and to develop improved tests for disease detection.

You should be inquisitive and have an analytical mind, and you will need to have the ability to absorb, connect and integrate information from various sources.

Medical scientists use a range of intricate and sophisticated equipment, so a certain amount of manual dexterity is also needed to conduct laboratory work effectively.

Employment opportunities are diverse and you will be qualified to work in:

  • diagnostic pathology
  • histopathology
  • forensic science
  • immunology
  • virology
  • transfusion science
  • haematology
  • cytology
  • clinical biochemistry
  • medical microbiology
  • research
  • product manufacturing
  • public health and health management
  • veterinary medicine
  • research laboratoriesuniversities and other educational institution 

Most graduates (just over 90 per cent) secure work in the health sector, either with public pathology providers or for private laboratories.

As an honours students you may also choose to pursue a career in research - graduates with honours degrees are highly sought after by prospective employers, particularly within academia and research settings.

Professional accreditation and recognition

The program is fully accredited by the Australian Institute of Medical Scientists (AIMS), and graduates are entitled to Graduate Membership of the Australian Institute of Medical Scientists.

Graduates are eligible for membership of the Australasian Association of Clinical Biochemists (AACB).

Graduates are eligible for membership of the Australian Society for Microbiology (ASM).

Industry facts


To November 2020, healthcare and social assistance is projected to make the largest contribution to employment growth in Australia - an increase of 250,200 jobs1.

1Australian Government Department of Employment 2017


Healthcare and social assistance has been the primary provider of new jobs in the Australian labour market since the 1990s1.

1Australian Government Department of Employment 2017

What others are saying

My mother did this degree when she went to University and we’ve always had discussions about science and biology which really fuelled my passion to pursue this field.

Madeleine Jovanovich

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine

Madeleine Jovanovich

Madeleine Jovanovich

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine

I did a six month placement at SA Pathology’s Whyalla Laboratory and the first thing I noticed was how broad the work was. We were doing everything from basic blood testing to liver function, kidney function and transfusion analysis where we match blood products to patients.

Fiona Norris

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine

Fiona Norris

Fiona Norris

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine

My personal interests in biochemistry and genetics led me to study this degree. After completing placements at SA Pathology, I was lucky enough to gain full-time employment in the field of genetics and molecular pathology as a Medical Scientist and as an accredited parentage reporter.

Mike Attwell

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine
Employment: Medical Scientist, SA Pathology

UniSA_29122430B (2).jpg

Mike Attwell

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine
Employment: Medical Scientist, SA Pathology

What you'll learn

What you Learn

This honours degree prepares you for a career in all areas of pathology, with training in biochemistry, microbiology, immunology, molecular pathology, haematology and histopathology.

During your first two years you will study natural and biomedical sciences, and during the third and fourth years you will strengthen your knowledge through theoretical learning and practical experience.

You will learn the theory and develop the skills required to perform a range of diagnostic tests including cross-matching for blood transfusions, identifying the organisms that cause infections and food poisoning, screening for cancer cells and detecting genes responsible for disease conditions. You will also learn how to examine blood for any changes in its composition or function, and monitor levels of blood chemicals including sugar, electrolytes, pH, metabolites, toxins, drugs, hormones and proteins.

During the final two years you will embark on a valuable field placement – this placement is pivotal to your learning and will comprise of either 13 or 26 weeks of real-world experience in a clinical setting.

You will also be required to complete supervised scientific research during your final year. This research will be conducted in our on-campus laboratory or at an external laboratories.

Study hours

For each course you study, you will need to allocate time for various classes such as lectures, tutorials, workshops, seminars and practicals. Plus you will need additional hours to study in your own time to complete assignments, readings and projects and contribute to online discussion forums (independent study). So as a general rule, if you are studying full-time you would need to allocate 12 – 26 hours of study when at university and 14 – 28 hours of independent study per week.



Your studies will incorporate practical, professionally focused and research-based learning, so assessment types will vary. You can expect them to include:

  • quizzes
  • practicals
  • progressive tests
  • group assignments
  • practical reports

Global opportunities

Enrich your studies and your life – make overseas study part of your qualification. Australian and international students may have the option to do an exchange, short-term program or study tour overseas. We have links with universities worldwide. You can choose short-term or semester-long study from a range of universities and countries depending on your area of study and cultural interests.

Take a look at the global opportunities available.

Global opportunities


This is a four-year, professional degree with honours. 

The honours component includes a minimum of one year of advanced studies in research and professional practice. You will receive First Class, Second Class or Third Class Honours, depending on your performance.

During the honours preparation, you will undertake training courses in research methods and ethics. Within the honours thesis course, you will undertake a research project under the supervision of an experienced researcher and report on this project through a thesis and oral presentation.

You will graduate with industry experience and connections, and a higher level qualification than a bachelor degree. Your honours year will prepare you well for a career in industry or research.

What courses you'll study


Course name Area and cat no. Units Reference  
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Chemistry 100 CHEM 1006 4.5
Molecules to Tissues A BIOL 1007 4.5
Mathematics for Laboratory Sciences MATH 1039 4.5
Health and Society HLTH 1025 4.5
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Chemistry 101 CHEM 1007 4.5 Rule(s): 4
Molecules to Tissues B BIOL 1012 4.5 Rule(s): 4
Statistics for Laboratory Sciences MATH 1040 4.5
Professional Issues in Laboratory Medicine MEDI 1009 4.5
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Biochemistry BIOL 2014 4.5
Physiology BIOL 2035 4.5
Histology BIOL 2036 4.5
Microbiology BIOL 2051 4.5
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Immunology BIOL 2037 4.5 Rule(s): 4
Genetics BIOL 2016 4.5 Rule(s): 4
Pathophysiology MEDI 2003 4.5 Rule(s): 4
Essential Haematology MEDI 2005 4.5 Rule(s): 4
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Infectious Diseases MEDI 3003 4.5
Molecular Pathology BIOL 3006 4.5
Histotechnology MEDI 3002 4.5
Transfusion and Haemostasis MEDI 3012 4.5
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Clinical Practice A MEDI 3006 9 Note(s): 1,2,3,4 Rule(s): 2
Clinical Practice B MEDI 3007 9 Note(s): 1,2,3,4 Rule(s): 2
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Experimental Research Practice A MEDI 4014 9 Note(s): 1
Experimental Research Practice B MEDI 4015 9 Note(s): 1
Advanced Clinical Practice A MEDI 4012 9 Note(s): 1,2,3 Rule(s): 2
Advanced Clinical Practice B MEDI 4013 9 Note(s): 1,2,3 Rule(s): 2
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Specialised Microbiology MEDI 4006 4.5
Clinical Biochemistry MEDI 4001 4.5
Histopathology and Cytopathology MEDI 4005 4.5
Advanced Haematology MEDI 4004 4.5

I have twenty years’ experience in diagnostic haematology and research laboratories, and I work closely with industry to coordinate clinical placement for students. I teach haematology and transfusion medicine within the Laboratory Medicine degree and conduct research in the field of haemostasis. I really enjoy being a part of producing the medical scientists of the future.

Dr Brian Dale

Program Director

Portrait image for Dr Brian Dale
Portrait image for Dr Brian Dale

Dr Brian Dale

Program Director



Every year, over 2,500 UniSA students are supported in their studies through scholarships and grants worth millions of dollars. Check out the scholarships below. One of them may be perfect for you. Visit our scholarship search page for more.

Your campus

We have six campuses in metropolitan and regional areas, each with advanced facilities including modern lecture theatres, libraries, laboratories, and areas that simulate real work environments.

Adelaide - City East campus

City East boasts impressive facilities such as purpose-built facilities, health clinics and a fitness centre, open to students and the public. It’s right in the heart of the CBD and adjacent to bustling Rundle Street, with some of Adelaide’s best dining and shopping experiences. Explore City East >

Your study spaces

As a laboratory medicine student you will have access to on-campus purpose-built laboratories including:

  • Histopathology and haematology
  • Microbiology and immunology
  • Biochemistry and molecular biology
Your study spaces

Your study experience

As a student at the University of South Australia you will have unique access to work placement opportunities, overseas study tours and exchanges, networking events, internships, guest speakers and more.

Our campuses are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities including modern lecture theatres, libraries, workshops, laboratories, and areas that simulate real work environments. These are all supported by the latest technologies and a 24/7 online learning platform. We have health services on campus, gymnasiums, technology zones and great student lounges. You will also have access to a range of community clinics, which provide professional and cost effective services in areas of health, law and psychology. There are campus sport activities to keep you active, and if you are keen to explore the social side of university life, there are movies, cooking demonstrations, parties and lots more.

Adelaide has a variety of accommodation options to suit different requirements and budgets. Options include dedicated student accommodation or private rentals. See our long-term accommodation pages for plenty of options. If you need somewhere to live, our new student accommodation by urbanest is on Bank Street in Adelaide’s lively cultural precinct, a perfect location for students. It is within easy reach of UniSA’s city and metropolitan campuses, Rundle Mall shopping, the Central Market, Chinatown, and the West End’s vibrant nightlife. It is also across the road from the Adelaide train station, and on bus and tram routes.

Student services

Student services

International Student Services will make your life at university easier. We want you to be successful, and if you need help we will be there to assist. Support services include:

  • careers advice
  • help with student visas and health cover
  • personal counselling
  • academic counselling
  • fees and finance help
  • common rooms
  • prayer rooms
  • security officers
  • services offered through our student association, USASA
  • accommodation services 

We also offer study support from our Learning Advisers. You can work with them face-to-face or online. They are here to help you develop academically and professionally during your studies. They also offer help with the English language. When you become a UniSA student you can contact Campus Central for help with anything related to your degree. They will help you with your enrolment, ID cards, fees, timetables and any other questions you might have.

24/7 digital environment

Our learnonline facilities include a personal learning environment with virtual classrooms, lecture recordings, emails, learning support, administration, library access and results. The environment is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so you can tailor your learning to your life. We are continually investing in innovative digital technologies for a high-quality student learning experience.

Student services

How to apply

How to apply for international students will give you helpful information about the application process at the University of South Australia. When you are ready, apply through our International Application System. If you would like to talk to someone near you about studying at the University of South Australia, we have agents all over the world who can assist you. Find an Education Agent in your country.

Alternative Pathways


There are other pathways you can follow to study this degree, including:


There are other pathways you can follow to study this degree, including:

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