About the Program

The Clinical Laboratory Science (CLS) program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is one of the premier CLS programs in the nation. We have a strong reputation in the educational and laboratory communities, and our graduates have a strong record of professional success.

The CLS program prepares professionals who are competent to perform and interpret laboratory tests, and to explain the appropriate use and meaning of laboratory tests to other health-care professionals and to patients. Graduates are qualified to take the Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS) examination from the American Society for Clinical Pathology Board of Certification (ASCP-BOC) and be certified as Medical Laboratory Scientists.

The CLS program consists of one year of lecture and student laboratory courses, followed by one year of clinical education courses completed in hospital and reference laboratories in North Carolina. The extensive time students spend in the clinical environment allows them to develop a high degree of technical and professional competency by the time they graduate from the program.

Outcomes

How do our graduates do on national certification exams?

The certification examination for graduates of the Clinical Laboratory Science program is the Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS) examination offered by the ASCP-Board of Certification. The pass rates in the first year after graduation for the past three classes are:

  • CLS Class of 2016: 100% Pass rate (National pass rate was 79%)
  • CLS Class of 2017: 100% Pass rate (National pass rate was 74%)
  • CLS Class of 2018: 100% Pass rate (National pass rate was 81%)

How successful were our graduates in getting jobs?

In the CLS Class of 2016, 93% of the graduates were employed within 6 months of graduation.  Most had jobs lined up before they graduated. Seven percent of the graduates pursued further education after graduation.
In the CLS Class of 2017. 93% of the graduates were employed within 6 months of graduation.  Most had jobs lined up before they graduated. Seven percent of the graduates pursued further education after graduation.

In the CLS Class of 2018, 91% of the graduates were employed within 6 months of graduation.  Most had jobs lined up before they graduated. Information was not available for nine percent of the graduates.

What about graduation rates?

For the CLS Classes of  2017, 2018, and 2019 an average of 98% of the students who entered the final year of the program completed the program and graduated.

“Getting my degree in clinical laboratory science from UNC has been the best decision of my educational career thus far, and an experience I would not trade for anything. I feel that no other degree or program would have prepared me for such a successful transition into the workplace as much as the CLS program did. The foundation of knowledge that I have now as a result of the rigorous curriculum and hands on experience during rotations has given me confidence in my ability to contribute meaningfully to my profession.”
– Aaron Sermons