Mission & Philosophy
Department of Medical Laboratory Science (M.L.S.) Mission
The mission of the Department of Medical Laboratory Science is to educate laboratory professionals to meet the healthcare needs of the state, region, and nation. The Department is dedicated to providing students with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed as practicing professionals.
M.L.S. Department Philosophy
The philosophy of the Department of Medical Laboratory Science is to provide high quality laboratory science education to healthcare entities in North Dakota, the region, and nationally. The department strives to provide a cutting-edge learning environment that offers continuing education, certificate, undergraduate, and graduate programs which allow individuals to develop into leaders in the laboratory science field.
The University of North Dakota School of Medicine & Health Sciences (SMHS), Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Medical Laboratory Science (M.L.S.) and Histotechnician programs are committed to providing an educational program consistent with the standards outlined by the National Accrediting Agency for CLS (NAACLS) which is located at 5600 N River Rd, Suite 720, Rosemont, IL 60018.
M.L.S. Department Goals:
- To provide the student with the entry-level competencies needed to work in their field of study.
- To provide the student with adequate knowledge and background experience to quality for national certification examinations appropriate in the level of education.
- To provide instruction and evaluation based on identified competencies and content of the clinical discipline that is responsive to individual student needs.
- To encourage graduates to remain in the region by providing sufficient clinical experiences in state.
- To provide sufficient medical laboratory science and histotechnician professional to meet the needs of state, city, and rural communities.
- To increase the depth of learning in various major fields of laboratory sciences.
- To prepare graduates to work in both large and small clinical laboratories.
Serving the Profession
The HT program runs as a cooperative arrangement between UND and regional or national histology laboratories, allowing a laboratory to employ local qualified personnel to fill vacant positions. With distance education, employees/students are able to achieve certification and professional status in less than one year. Interested students may contact area histology laboratories to identify potential career opportunities in histology. UND may also facilitate mutually beneficial agreements between students and histology labs. Laboratories interested in training local candidates for their open HT positions, should contact UND.
- UND HT Program: delivery and testing of didactic online lecture materials, creation of performance evaluation materials including exams, and evaluating final microscopic slide assessment; facilitate HT Program courses and maintain quality in all education materials.
- Clinical site: affiliation agreement between the potential clinical site and UND must be in place before the student is accepted into the program. Clinical faculty: mentoring and supervision of students on the bench, evaluating psychomotor and affective performance, and oversight of didactic examinations.
- Student: mastering course objectives in cognitive, psychomotor and affective domains.
Tuition Fees & Financial Information
When a student is enrolled in the HT certificate program, within the Medical Laboratory Science Department, a specific tuition is assessed. Tuition and fees are located on UND Student Account Services website (see Medical Lab Science Undergraduate information).
Tuition Refund policy for the Histotechnician Program:
- 1-9 days 100%
- 10-27 days 75%
- 28-55 days 50%
- After 75 days 0%
Overview of the Histotechnology Profession
Histotechnicians (HT) are members of the laboratory team who prepare specimens for research or medical diagnosis by pathologists. They work to process tissues that have been sampled during a wide variety of medical procedures. Fine motor skills are used to cut the tissue into very thin slices, mount tissue onto microslides, and stain them with special dyes using laboratory instruments. These techniques make the specimen details visible to the pathologist under the microscope. Examination of tissue sections allows for the detection of disease and aids in directing the course of treatment for patients.
HTs frequently work under pressure to deliver results while a patient is in surgery. They work with fragile, delicate tissue specimens, laboratory instruments, knives, chemicals, and glass slides. A HT must value precision and be comfortable working with equipment and test processes that require careful monitoring. Traits of a successful HT include: hand eye coordination, a positive attitude, organizational skills, the ability to solve problems, and college-level knowledge in sciences.
Histotechnology professionals work in hospitals, for-profit laboratories, clinics, public health facilities, and industry. Additional opportunities may be available in research, education, veterinary pathology, marine biology, and forensic pathology.
According to a recent survey of laboratory professionals done by the ASCP, HTs are in high demand. Vacancy rates for HTs are approximately 8%. Many laboratories are having difficulties filling open HT positions. Earning potential for HTs averages over $50,000 annually.