Start Date
February

Duration
4 year(s) full-time

Mode
On-campus

Program Code
IHBL

SATAC Code
414491 (Internal)

Study as
Full-time or part-time

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

Assumed Knowledge
None

Entry Scores
2022 Guaranteed Entry
Year 12 (ATAR-based): 72.00
Year 12 (Grades-based): B,B,B
TAFE/RTO: DIP
View Guaranteed Entry Info
2021 Cut-Offs
Year 12 (ATAR-based):
- Internal: 70.55
TAFE/RTO: Dip
View full entry requirements

Degree overview

  • Learn how to diagnose and track the treatment of human disease and bring new discoveries to light.
  • Gain the skills and knowledge needed to work as a Medical Laboratory Scientist in diagnostic pathology or research.
  • Choose to complete a research course or an extra clinical placement, depending on your interests.
  • Benefit from a degree informed by well above world-class research in biochemistry and cell biology.1
  • Gain practical experience in on-campus, purpose-built laboratories.
  • Use this qualification as a pathway to further learning, including Masters by Research and doctoral studies.
  • Study the only degree in South Australia accredited by the Australian Institute of Medical Scientists (AIMS).

12018 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA).

Snapshot

Laboratory medicine students using campus laboratory facilities This is your chance to enter the exciting world of diagnostic pathology or research, to investigate the causes and cures for disease.

Through extensive practical experience and hands-on learning, you'll develop the skills to diagnose, manage and treat disease, and conduct research into causes and cures.

As a Medical Laboratory Scientist, your work will have a vital bearing on people's welfare, supporting clinicians in the diagnosis, management and treatment of disease. You’ll conduct research into causes and cures, and develop improved methods for disease detection.

What you'll need

You should be inquisitive and have an analytical mind, with the ability to absorb, connect and integrate information from various sources. Medical Laboratory Scientists use a range of intricate and sophisticated equipment, so a certain amount of manual dexterity is needed to conduct laboratory work effectively.

Students 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 demonstrate they meet mandatory pre-placement conditional requirements. These include criminal history clearance, a Working with Children Check and immunisation requirements. Please visit the Clinical Placement Unit for information on key requirements, and to access the full student checklists.

What you'll learn

Student testing in the campus laboratory

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’ll study natural and biomedical sciences, and during the third and fourth years you’ll strengthen your knowledge through clinical courses and practical experience.

You’ll 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’ll 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.

In your third year of study all students will complete 13 weeks of valuable field placements, which is more than what is required by industry to become an accredited Medical Laboratory Scientist with the Australian Institute of Medical and Clinical Scientists (AIMS). This can be completed in South Australia, interstate or overseas.

At the start of your honour’s year, you can choose to undertake Advanced Clinical Practice for 13 weeks or Experimental Research Practice for 13 weeks. In both options, you’ll work as part of a team in a diagnostic or research setting, learning how to manage specimens, perform tests and operate equipment.

You can gain an extra qualification and broaden your career prospects by completing a Diploma in Languages.

Degree structure

Course name Area and cat no. Units Reference  
FIRST YEAR
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Chemistry 100 CHEM 1006 4.5
Biology 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
Biology 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
SECOND YEAR
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
THIRD YEAR
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Infectious Diseases MEDI 3003 4.5
Chemical and 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
FOURTH YEAR
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
EITHER
Experimental Research Practice A MEDI 4014 9 Note(s): 1
AND
Experimental Research Practice B MEDI 4015 9 Note(s): 1
OR
Advanced Clinical Practice A MEDI 4012 9 Note(s): 1,2,3 Rule(s): 2
AND
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

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, as well as to 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. 

Assessment

Assessment

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. You may have the option to undertake an exchange, short-term program or study tour overseas while you study. We have links with universities worldwide, as well as a range of travel grants available to make going overseas much more accessible.

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

Honours

This is a four-year, professional degree with honours. You’ll have the option to choose from Advanced Clinical Practice or Experimental Research Practice as part of the honours component in the degree.

Your honours studies can be completed in SA pathology, private pathology, veterinary pathology or Forensic Science SA. Examples of previous honours projects include:

  • Neonatal exchange transfusion at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital: a review of current practice.
  • In-vitro inhibition of the glycolytic process: is a chemical or mechanical methodology superior in the diagnostic setting?
  • Flow cytometric assessment of minimal residual disease in B cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukaemia: a validation report.
  • Role of breast tissue preparation protocols and breast biomarker quantification in the diagnosis and treatment of a breast cancer patient.
  • A study into the optimization of DNA extraction for whole genome sequencing from Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

You’ll graduate with industry experience and connections, ready for a career in industry or research.

Why Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine (Honours)

Laboratory medicine student using campus laboratory facilities

Studying the only degree in SA accredited by the Australian Institute of Medical and Clinical Scientists (AIMS) will see you graduate with the knowledge and skills to excel in the world of laboratory science.

You’ll develop knowledge in the critical areas of haematology, transfusion science, clinical biochemistry, clinical microbiology, histopathology and cytopathology.

You’ll gain real industry experience in a clinical setting and will benefit from UniSA’s state-of-the-art on-campus facilities and laboratories, such as the $247m Bradley Building.

This qualification will set you apart from your peers and will provide you with advanced knowledge 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 secure employment before they graduate because of the industry relationships built during this time.

You’ll 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 alumni eventsemployee master classes and employment expos in Australia and overseas.

Rural health placement

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine student Fiona, shares her experience of her rural placement at SA Pathology in Whyalla, supported by UniSA’s Department of Rural Health.

UniSA Video

Career outcomes

Your career

In Australia, growth for Medical Laboratory Scientists has been on the rise with career prospects continuing to look very strong, with an expected 12,000 job openings over the next five years.1

As a Medical Laboratory Scientist, you'll support clinicians in the diagnosis, management, treatment of disease and develop improved tests for disease detection. You'll recommend possible treatments, monitor dosage and effects, as well as track the progress of patients.

Medical Laboratory Scientists are employed in a range of areas, including:

  • 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
  • universities and other educational institutions 
  • government policy.
Where can my interest in science take me?

View our guide on Science Careers for more information.

1Australian Government Department of Jobs and Small Business, 2023 Small Business Projections.

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

job-listings

Employment for Medical Laboratory Scientists is projected to increase by 2.9% by November 2025.

Australian Government Department of Employment, Occupational Employment Projections 2020

column-chart-growth

To November 2025, healthcare and social assistance is projected to make the largest contribution to employment growth in Australia – an increase of 249,500 jobs.

Australian Government Department of Employment, Occupational Employment Projections 2020

buildings-city

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

Australian Government Department of Employment, Occupational Employment Projections 2019

How to apply

Applying to study with us:

  • go to the top of this page and make note of the SATAC code, then click Apply
  • you will be redirected through to the SATAC website to continue your application

Alternative Pathways

Australian

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

International

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

Deferment

This degree is available for deferment. This option is made available by responding to your offer during the application process via the SATAC website. Applicants who receive an offer into a midyear degree are eligible to defer for six months.

Scholarships

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 scholarships page for more.

More scholarships

Your study experience and support

Our campuses are home to fantastic facilities including modern lecture theatres, libraries, workshops and laboratories, as well as spaces that simulate real work environments. But you’ll also discover that your journey at UniSA is about social experiences, healthy living and getting involved. You’ll find student sports and fitness facilities, community clinics, tech zones and chill-out spaces. 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 loads more.

Adelaide also has a variety of accommodation options to suit different requirements and budgets should you need, from dedicated student accommodation to private rentals. See our long-term accommodation pages or explore our student accommodation by urbanest on Bank Street in Adelaide’s lively cultural precinct, an ideal 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

Our student services provide you with all the support you need at university. We want you to succeed, and if you need help, we're here to assist. You can access a full range of support services, including:

  • academic counselling
  • personal counselling
  • social support services, including family support and nearby childcare
  • common rooms
  • prayer rooms
  • security officers
  • career services and mentoring
  • Wirringka Student Services, offering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students a supportive place to study
  • as well as services offered through our student association, USASA

When you become a UniSA student, you can also contact Campus Central for help with anything related to your degree. They will help you with your enrolment, ID cards, fees, timetables and more.

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

Your campus

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

Location This degree is delivered at the following campus.

Your study spaces

Histopathology and Haematology laboratory.jpg

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

  • Histopathology and haematology
  • Microbiology and immunology
  • Chemistry
  • Biochemistry 

Your program director

I am privileged to lead a degree focused on developing independent research skills for students to graduate ready to meet the challenges and diverse roles of their profession or for further postgraduate study. This is achieved within a supportive learning environment where students work with world-class researchers and facilities in their chosen area of discovery and innovation.

Dr Connie Caruso

Program Director

Enquire
Portrait image for Dr Connie Caruso
Portrait image for Dr Connie Caruso

Dr Connie Caruso

Program Director

Enquire

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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
Medical Scientist, SA Pathology

UniSA_29122430B (2).jpg

Mike Attwell

Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine
Medical Scientist, SA Pathology