Follow these five steps to become a certified medical technologist.
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If you’re interested in becoming a medical technologist, also called a clinical laboratory scientist, you’ll need to complete specific education and clinical requirements. Once you’ve completed these steps, you’ll be eligible to take the national certifying examination to become a certified medical technologist. Read on to learn more about how to become a medical technologist in 5 steps.
Step One: Research
The first step to becoming a medical technologist is to research the field and learn what the job requires. Although many of the duties of a medical technologist are similar to those of a laboratory technician, there are some important differences. medical technologists generally have more responsibility and independence than laboratory technicians, and they often specialize in one area of diagnostic testing. For example, some medical technologists work in blood banks, while others may specialize in microbiology or immunology.
In order to become a medical technologist, you will need at least a bachelor’s degree in medical technology or a related field. Many employers also require certification from the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) or another professional organization. To qualify for certification, you must pass an examination that tests your knowledge of medical technology.
Once you have researched the field and learned what is required to become a medical technologist, you can begin taking steps to achieve your goal.
Step Two: Prerequisites
Before you can apply to a medical technology program, you’ll need to complete some prerequisite coursework. While the specific classes required will vary depending on the program, you’ll typically need to complete classes in chemistry, biology, and math. Some programs will also require physics or other science courses. You can usually complete these prerequisite classes at a community college or through online courses. Once you’ve completed all of the prerequisite coursework, you’ll be one step closer to becoming a medical technologist.
Step Three: Certification
There are a few ways to certify as a medical technologist. The most common is to become certified through the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP). To do this, you’ll need to have graduated from an accredited MT program and have completed an ASCP-approved clinical internship. Once you’ve met these requirements, you can take the ASCP Board of Certification (BOC) exam.
Step Four: Job Hunting
You’ve completed your medical technology program and have your certification in hand. Now it’s time to find a job! The fourth step in becoming a medical technologist is to begin your job search.
The most important thing to remember during your job search is that your resume is key. Make sure that you have a strong, well-written resume that highlights your skills and experience in the field of medical technology. You should also tailor your resume to each individual job that you apply for, so that it emphasizes the skills and experience that are most relevant to that particular position.
In addition to tailoring your resume, make sure that you prepare for each interview by doing some research on the company beforehand and practicing your answers to common interview questions. During the interview, be sure to dress professionally and exude confidence—this will show potential employers that you are serious about the job and are confident in your abilities as a medical technologist.
Finally, don’t forget to follow up after each interview with a thank-you note expressing your interest in the position. This will help distinguish you from other candidates and show potential employers that you are eager and enthusiastic about the opportunity to work for their organization.
Step Five: Continuing Education
The job outlook for medical technologists is expected to be good. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment for medical technologists will grow by 13 percent from 2018 to 2028, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. An aging population and advances in medical technology will continue to drive demand for workers in this field.