Medical Laboratory Science

Our program boasts a 98.8 percent pass rate on the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) Board of Certification exam since the program began in 1988.

The Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple Program in Medical Laboratory Science (MLS) is a one-year training program for students who have a bachelor's degree in the sciences (4+1) or who are currently enrolled in a clinical laboratory science, medical laboratory science or medical technology degree program (3+1). The mission of the program is to provide a quality, comprehensive education, to prepare skilled, competent laboratory scientists, meeting the needs of the institution and the profession.

Students who successfully complete all course work are awarded a certificate of completion from Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple. After receiving this certificate, students are eligible for the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) Board of Certification examination.

Course credits for students from the program's five affiliated universities are transferred to their university for credit toward a bachelor of science degree in medical technology, medical laboratory science or clinical laboratory science. Graduation from the program is not contingent upon passing any external certifying exam.

We accept 10 to 15 students each year.

  NAACLS benchmark 2019 - 2020 2020- 2021 2021 - 2022 3-year cumulative average
Certification Pass Rate 75% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Graduation Rate 70% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Employment Placement Rate 70% 100% 100% 100% 100%

Our program is affiliated with:

  • Louisiana Tech University
  • Midwestern State University
  • University of Texas
  • University of North Texas
  • St. Edwards University


The Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple Program in Medical Laboratory Science (MLS) is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS).

For more information on NAACLS, contact:

National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS)
5600 N. River Road
Suite 720
Rosemont, IL 60018-5119

Phone: 773.714.8880
Fax: 773.714.8886

About Medical Laboratory Science

Medical laboratory scientists play a vital role on the health care team, working with pathologists, scientists and clinicians to provide quality patient care. They are highly skilled professionals who perform tests to analyze blood, urine and other body fluids, helping physicians prevent, detect and treat disease and monitor therapy. In fact, it has been estimated that 60 to 70 percent of all critical decisions regarding a patient's diagnosis and treatment are based on laboratory test results.

Medical laboratory science is a rewarding, high tech career. The profession combines the rewards and challenges of both medicine and science. The opportunities for a certified medical laboratory scientist are varied and exciting.

Most medical laboratory scientists are employed by hospital or clinic laboratories, but others use their knowledge and skills in research, industry, physicians' office laboratories, sales, public health, computer operations, veterinary clinics, education, laboratory management or as self-employed consultants.

Tests performed by medical laboratory scientists vary from simple to complex, requiring skill, knowledge and problem-solving ability. Medical laboratory scientists must be able to identify disease-causing microorganisms, abnormalities in blood cells and blood chemistries and are also responsible for the operation and maintenance of complex instruments.

Employment and Salary

Graduates of medical laboratory science programs generally have no problem finding employment. Both full and part-time positions are available. Medical laboratory scientists are currently in high demand throughout the United States. Eighty-five percent of our graduates have reported obtaining a job within three months of graduation.

A 2022 survey by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the mean salary for medical laboratory scientists in Texas was $25.60/hr or $53,240/yr. Laboratory supervisors and administrative technologists can expect to make more. New graduates can expect to make less.


The program's curriculum not only provides the student with the fundamentals necessary for entry into the profession, but also provides the student with the knowledge and skills to function as a leader in an expansive and ever-changing profession.

The program is a one-year intensive course-of-study in all aspects of Medical Laboratory Science. The curriculum is divided into two phases. Classes begin at the end of August and graduation is usually the second week of August.

There are a number of reasons why you should choose the Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple Program in Medical Laboratory Science for your career preparation:

  • Quality education experience
  • Diverse patient population
  • Experience with a variety of diagnostic technologies
  • Advanced laboratories
  • Varied medical laboratory experiences
  • Dedicated program staff and faculty
  • One-on-one clinical instruction
  • Textbooks, education materials and supplies provided by the program
  • Dedicated classroom and student laboratory facilities

Phase I, lasting 17 weeks, prepares the student for clinical rotations by providing the necessary background information and basic skills for the clinical rotations (practicum). Phase I is didactic and includes lectures and student laboratory practice. Student-to-instructor ratio is 8:1 for lecture and student lab.

Areas of study include:

  • Bacteriology
  • Blood Bank
  • Body Fluids
  • Clinical Chemistry
  • Hematology/Hemostasis
  • Immunology
  • Molecular
  • Mycology/Virology/Parasitology

Total credit hours

30.7 with 577.5 contact hours

Phase II, lasting 32 weeks, encompasses the clinical rotations and two additional courses: Management & Education and Research & Clinical Correlations.

Clinical rotation courses include:

  • Blood Bank
  • Clinical Chemistry
  • Hematology/Hemostasis
  • Immunology
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular
  • Phlebotomy
  • Urinalysis

Students rotate at the Baylor Scott & White Health laboratories in Temple, Round Rock and Waco and at the program's clinical affiliate, Central Texas Veteran's Health Care System. The student-to-instructor ratio is 1:1 or 2:1 for clinical rotations. The clinical rotations and coursework prepare the student to be a competent, entry-level clinical laboratory scientist.

Total credit hours

31.8 with 1149 contact hours

The program offers a retraining option for certified clinical laboratory scientists who have been out of the profession for more than ten years and wish to re-enter the workforce. Eligibility and availability is at the discretion of the program. These individuals may update their knowledge and skills in the profession by taking the lecture/student laboratory courses during the first part of the curriculum, the clinical rotation courses in the second part of the curriculum or both phases of the curriculum.

Download Student Handbook

Each student is required to read the entire Student Handbook, sign the last page, and return it to the program staff no later than one week after beginning classes.

Our Faculty and Staff

The program staff includes the Medical Director, Program Director and Program Educator. More than 30 other highly qualified faculty members at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple and its clinical affiliates support and participate in the program's lecture, laboratory and rotation courses.

Instruction is provided by dedicated and knowledgeable laboratory professionals. Physicians, certified medical laboratory scientists and other laboratory professionals participate in lectures, student laboratories and one-on-one instruction at the bench. Many faculty members have national reputations and are active in laboratory-related professional organizations.

Michelle Rodriguez, MD

Laboratory Medical Director (CLIA)
Buda, Marble Falls, Temple and Temple West Campus Precision Diagnostics
Baylor Scott & White Medical Centers
Medical Director, Program in Medical Laboratory Science Baylor Scott & White Medical Center-Temple


BS, Nursing, University of Texas;
MD, University of Texas Medical School at Houston

Shelby Johnson, MIS, MLS (ASCP)CM

Program Director, Program in Medical Laboratory Science


BS, Medical Laboratory Science, University of North Texas; MIS, Information Systems, Texas A&M University of Central Texas

Instructional Areas

Introduction to medical laboratory science, clinical chemistry, immunohematology, immunology, body fluids, management & education and research & clinical correlations

Amy Hayford, MLS (ASCP) SM

Program Educator, Program in Medical Laboratory Science


BS, Medical Laboratory Science, Baylor University

Instructional Areas

Introduction to medical laboratory science, hematology/hemostasis, molecular, microbiology, mycology, parasitology, body fluids, management & education and research & clinical correlations

How to Apply

Deadline for application for January-December class is May 1. The interview date for the January class of 2024 is scheduled for June 6, 2023.
Deadline for application for the August-August class is December 1. The interview date for the August class of 2024 is scheduled for January 9, 2024.
Application forms can be emailed. Additional interview dates may become available if there are more than 16 qualified applicants. Admission to the program is competitive.

A maximum of 32 candidates are selected for an interview each year.

In addition to the application, candidates must submit all official transcripts and three recommendation forms. All recommendation forms must be received by the time of the interview. A letter of recommendation may be submitted in addition to, but not in place of, the required form. Two recommendation forms should be from academic sources; the remaining form should be from a professional source.

Transcripts do not have to include fall grades at the time of the initial application but must be received no later than the day of the interview.

Cost of Program

There is a $600 non-refundable administrative fee that is charged for the program. Books, course handbooks and personal protective equipment are provided at no cost.

Application and Skill Requirements

Candidates are selected for a personal interview based on the following criteria:

  • Bachelor's degree or college/university confirmation that a degree will be received upon completion of the program
  • Minimum grade point average of 2.75 (on a 4.0 scale) overall and 2.5 in the sciences; overall GPA and science GPA are based on all college course work, including both initial and repeated course grades. Any grade of D or below in a required course must be repeated.
  • Completion of the required prerequisite courses before the start of classes in August
  • All applicants selected for the program must submit to a background check and drug screen. Final acceptance is based on a negative screen for illegal drugs and nicotine and no criminal history.

In addition, international students must submit:

  • TOEFL scores
  • Course-by-course evaluation if submitting transcripts from any university outside of the U.S.

Biological Science 15-16 total hours (to include)
General Biology* or Anatomy & Physiology * 8
Microbiology * † 4
Immunology † 3-4
Chemistry 15-16 total hours (to include)
Inorganic* or Other Chemistry * 8
Organic Chemistry * † 4
Quantitative Chemistry * or Biochemistry 3-4
Mathematics 6 total hours (to include)
College Algebra or higher 3
Statistics 3
Recommended Electives 3 to 4 total hours
Genetics, Molecular Biology, Parasitology, Virology, Mycology, Instrumental Analysis, Physics, Computer Science, Management, Education or Technical Writing courses.
* Must include a laboratory section
† Must have been completed within the last seven years

In addition to fulfilling the academic requirements, students accepted into the program should also be able to:

  • Maneuver sufficiently to collect specimens and perform other laboratory tasks in a timely manner
  • Communicate effectively and professionally with peers, staff, faculty and patients
  • Read and comprehend words, numbers, charts and graphs
  • Demonstrate written and oral proficiency in the English language without assistance
  • Interpret reactions on slides, plates and in test tubes visually
  • Exhibit the manual dexterity necessary to collect blood samples, process specimens, operate laboratory instruments and computers and other aspects of laboratory testing that require hand-eye coordination
  • Meet the assigned schedule of didactic and clinical instructors, including transportation to all clinical sites
  • Carry or lift objects weighing up to 15 pounds
  • Work efficiently under stress to make sound judgments and complete all responsibilities
  • Work in an efficient, responsible and organized manner
  • Demonstrate ethical judgment, integrity and accountability in the clinical laboratory when dealing with others
  • Exercise cooperation, confidentiality and attentiveness at all times
  • Correlate, analyze, integrate and apply information in laboratory testing and management
  • Successfully complete exams and assignments independently
  • Follow verbal and written instructions to correctly perform laboratory procedures

Contact Us

Shelby Johnson
Director, Medical Laboratory Science
Phone: 254.215.9843

Program in Medical Laboratory Science
Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple
2401 S. 31st St.
Temple, TX 76508

Amy Hayford
Program Educator
Phone: 254.215.9835

Program in Medical Laboratory Science
Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple
2401 S. 31st St.
Temple, TX 76508

Working at Baylor Scott & White Health

Life in Temple

Temple uniquely offers a combination of access to big-city conveniences while maintaining a small-town atmosphere. Temple has also been ranked among the Top 20 Fastest Growing Cities in Texas and one of America's most affordable places of 2015.

Pathology Services

The clinical pathology and anatomic pathology laboratories at Baylor Scott & White Health provide comprehensive testing and diagnostics. Our labs are accredited and certified by several organizations, including: CLIA, CAP, AABB, FDA, ASHI and The Joint Commission.

Why Baylor Scott & White

As the largest not-for-profit health care system in Texas and one of the largest in the United States, Baylor Scott & White Health includes 48 hospitals, more than 900 patient care sites, more than 6,000 active physicians and more than 40,000 employees.

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