How to Become a Medical Laboratory Technologist in Ontario

Last Updated on December 13, 2022 by

The employment requirements for medical laboratory technologists in Canada include: a 2-3 year college program in medical laboratory technology and a period of supervised practical training; registration with the provincial regulatory body or college of medical laboratory technologists in the region of work.

Keep reading to learn more about how to become a medical lab technologist, medical laboratory technologist programs Ontario, post graduate diploma in medical laboratory science in Canada, medical laboratory technician course in canada for international students and medical laboratory technologist salary Ontario on Collegelearners.

Employment requirements

This is what you typically need for the job.Specialist physicians

  • A bachelor of science degree or In Quebec, completion of a college program and one year of pre-medicine university studies is usually required.
  • Graduation from an approved medical school and specific specialty training are required.
  • Completion of the certifying examinations of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and Licensing by the provincial or territorial licensing authority are required.

Specialists in clinical medicine

  • Four to five years of specialty residency training are required.
  • Two years of subspecialty training may also be required.

Specialists in laboratory medicine

  • Four to five years of specialty residency training are required.

Specialists in surgery

  • Five to six years of specialty residency training are required.
  • Two years of subspecialty training may also be required.

Professional certification and licensing

You might need to get a certification from a regulatory authority before you start working. Find out if this occupation is regulated in your province or territory.

LocationJob titleRegulationRegulatory body
AlbertaPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedCollege of Physicians & Surgeons of Alberta
British ColumbiaPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia
ManitobaPhysician (specialist)RegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba
New BrunswickPhysician/surgeonRegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of New Brunswick
Newfoundland and LabradorPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of Newfoundland & Labrador
Northwest TerritoriesPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedRegistrar, Professional Licensing, Department of Health and Social Services
Nova ScotiaPhysician (specialist)RegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia Suite 5005 – 7071 Bayers Road (Former Zellers location) Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada B3L 2C2
NunavutPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedRegistrar, Health Professions, Department of Health, Government of Nunavut
OntarioPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario
Prince Edward IslandPhysician (specilaist And Surgeon)RegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of Prince Edward Island
QuébecPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedCollège des médecins du Québec
SaskatchewanPhysician (specialist And Surgeon)RegulatedCollege of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan
YukonPhysician (specialist)RegulatedYukon Medical Council, Government of Yukon

Becoming a Physician
On September 1, 2020, Athabasca University (AU) entered into a valuable new partnership with Trinity School of Medicine (TMSU), giving AU learners interested in pursuing a M.D degree program a clear path to do so

With 90 credit hours in a concentration in the sciences earned through AU, learners are given preference admission into the program with Trinity School of Medicine. Learners gain a high quality education that meets the requirements of Canada and the United States of America for International Medical Schools, allowing learners to obtain residencies and physician licensure in the USA and Canada.

The TMSU website maintains current course requirements for all applicants into the M.D degree program. Discover why Canadians choose TMSU and the opportunities available by clicking here.

“This new partnership will help students from Athabasca University become practicing physicians. Together, we have developed a streamlined admissions process for students who meet the minimum required standards. Our partnership provides a clear path for Athabasca students to achieve a challenging goal. It also provides a unique opportunity for students to gain valuable hands-on global healthcare experience.” Trinity School of Medicine President and CEO Steve Wilson

Trinity School of Medicine, is a highly recognized and accredited, international medical school located on the beautiful island of St. Vincent. Trinity holds itself to a special responsibility to train highly skilled physicians and to instill in them a passion and dedication to the health and welfare of the communities they will serve.

In order to become a physician, you must complete a Medical Doctor (MD) degree program at an accredited university, followed by residency in family medicine or specialty post-graduate training. Completion of the qualifying examinations of the Medical Council of Canada and licensing by the provincial or territorial licensing authority is also a requirement for becoming a physician. The path to becoming a doctor requires a commitment of seven to nine or more years. Some medical schools require two to three years of pre-med while others may require a bachelor’s degree. After the MD degree, you may choose Family Practice (2 years minimum) or other medical specialties (at least 4 years) and will spend your time as a resident physician training for certification while being paid to care for patients.

Generally, the acceptance to medical school is based on the following factors:

A high grade point average.
Successful completion of certain undergraduate courses. The required courses vary from one institution to another. In general, courses in Biology, Mathematics, Organic and Inorganic Chemistry, Biochemistry, Physics, and English are recommended. Some universities suggest studying Humanities and the Social Sciences in order to have a broad academic background. A well-rounded education helps develop desirable qualities in a physician such as an understanding of how society works and excellent communication skills.
Results of the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).
Extracurricular activities – especially those reflecting public or health-related service, volunteer work, and other evidence of your initiative.
Letters of recommendation.
Personal interviews with medical school admissions committees.
Nearly all pre-medical courses may be taken at Athabasca University. View a list of AU undergraduate courses.

The following is a list of individual AU undergraduate courses typically completed by AU students preparing for taking the MCAT or those trying to get into a medical school.

Suggested AU Courses:
BIOL204Principles of Biology I
BIOL205 or
Principles of Biology II
BIOL 235 or
BIOL 230
Human Anatomy and Physiology OR
Human Physiology
BIOL325Introductory Microbiology
CHEM217Chemical Principles I
CHEM218Chemical Principles II
CHEM301Introduction to Biochemistry
CHEM350Organic Chemistry I
CHEM360Organic Chemistry II
ENGL155Developing Writing Skills (for the MCAT essay)
ENGL255Introductory Composition (also for the MCAT essay)
PHYS200Introductory Physics I
PHYS201Introductory Physics II

Next Steps

  1. Research career information related to careers in medicine
    The following links contain information on duties, working conditions, skills, education, salary, employment prospects and opportunities. Search using key words such as physician or general practitioner. Research any specialization you might consider as part of your career:

Alberta Learning Information Services
Working in Canada
National Occupational Classification – Human Resources Canada

  1. Research medical school admission requirements
    Consult medical school admissions information for all the schools you would consider applying. This step is most important to ensure your application meets requirements and is competitive (also exceeds some requirements). Determine entrance requirements and details regarding transferring credit. Determine if your undergraduate course work must be completed as full-time studies. AU allows flexibility of part-time as well as full-time studies, but the medical schools may have a requirement for full-time studies.

Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC): U.S. and Canadian Medical Admission Offices
School Finder
Additional resources
There are several internet resources available to aid your research. Here are just a few to consider:

Alberta College of Family Physicians (ACFP)
Alberta Medical Association (AMA)
Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)
College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta (CPSA)
College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC)
College of Physicians & Surgeons of Ontario
Future Doctor
Medical Council of Canada (MCC)
Ontario College of Family Physicians
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC)
University of Toronto: Professional School-Medicine

  1. Contact an AU Counsellor
    A counsellor can provide you with more information on this particular career path and help you determine which AU program supports your goals. You can use the online appointment form to schedule a telephone appointment with a counsellor or call 1-800-788-9041.
  2. Become an AU Student.
    Once you complete these steps, you are ready to become an AU Student.
  3. Contact an Academic Advisor
    Once you have applied and selected an AU program of study, Academic Advisors help you select courses and develop a program plan. (For courses or programs at another institution, you must contact that institution direct for assistance.) Academic Advising Services are available by email, using their online form, by phone, 1 800 788 9041, or in person at one of our AU locations. For more information see Advising Services.

How to become a Pediatrician

A Pediatrician is a specially trained medical doctor who assists babies in managing physical, social and emotional challenges as early as the time they were born, until when they become teenagers. In other words, a Pediatrician helps kids to tackle emotional, physical and social differences.

This means that Pediatricians have a unique interest in children, so, if you desire to become one, you should start learning how to sing lullabies. Singing may be one of the things you would do as part of your routine with patients.

A renown Pediatrician at the University of Texas, Steven Abrams once explained that he enjoys his profession because “it is one of the few jobs where a doctor gets to hug his patients.”

You will likely get attached to these kids, mostly because you would have been in charge of their treatments even before they become aware of their environment or learn proper communication skills.

Equally, there is a good chance that you develop a good relationship with the parents of your patients since you would be giving regular updates on their child’s health. This would help them learn how to respond appropriately to the changes they notice in their children.

baby doctor 2 2How to become a Pediatrician

Duties of Pediatricians
Treating patients: As a Pediatrician, you will be helping patients regain normal health statuses on a regular basis. Their health challenges do not necessarily have to be complex though. Sometimes, it may just be fever treatments, and other times, it could measles or chicken pox. You will be responsible for taking down complaints in notes, recommending medical tests, interpreting the results, and recommending treatment procedures to your patients
Managing Chronic Illness: Being a Pediatrician, you will help your patients recover from diseases like diabetes. This does not mean you have to treat them directly, your tasks in this aspect may just be checking on them to ensure they are taking their medications as prescribed until they are fully cured. While helping them restore their health, you will also be responsible for informing your patients about new developments in their health status. And when there is need to bring in specialists, a pediatrician provides a recommendation.

Monitoring patients improvements and growth: Pediatricians are present right from the birth stage of children with health challenges until they become adolescents. This is why monitoring and documenting growth is an important aspect of the field. As a Pediatrician, you need to always see potential health problems and quickly address them before they become uncontrollable. A book for taking notes should always be with you whenever you meet with your patients. Pediatricians have to jot down patients’ changes in an appearance on a scheduled basis. This can be their height, weight, body size, and so on.
Giving health tips: Your duty as a Pediatrician goes beyond medical treatments. You equally have to recommend health tips like diet plans, good hygiene, and nutrition. Your patients will also need you to guide them on activities such as immunization, sports, feeding, and all other things that will help in improving or regulating their health statuses.

Communicating constantly with Patients and Parents: The line of communication has to always be open among you, your patients and their parents. Although it may not always be verbal communication as babies may not be able to express themselves verbally. Yet, you need to understand other non-verbal cues that they use, know when they need to be touched, played with and fed. It is not rocket science though, spending time with your patients will help you understand how they react to certain things. More importantly, you have to constantly talk to their parents about their treatment plans, results of tests, and updates on their health statuses. Your duty as a pediatrician involves answering any questions they have concerning their children’s health and keeping them calm and stable in cases of crisis.
Some other things to communicate include training them on how to handle the health challenges of their children when you are not around, enlightening them on proper diets for their kids, and making them understand their roles in the treatment process.

How to become a Pediatrician

Basic skills every Pediatrician should have
Like other health care professionals, a pediatrician needs skills such as:

Critical thinking abilities
Excellent communication skills
Problem-solving instincts
Good knowledge of children behavioral patterns: (You need to know what children want, the things they react to, and how they want to be treated)

Multitasking abilities: This is quite crucial due to the fact that you may have to attend to different age grades within a day. Your approach during sessions with toddlers will definitely be different from when you are meeting with teenagers.

On some occasions, you may have to see patients with social challenges in one hour, and those with physical disabilities in another.

Education for Pediatricians

Pursuing a career in Pediatrics requires many years of studying and training. Your most important goals should be: Becoming a licensed medical doctor and getting a certification in Pediatrics.

At first, you have to take an undergraduate course in medical science, spend another four years of training in a medical school, and then proceed on your residency or internship program.

The residency program is relative. That is the point where you get to specialize in pediatric tasks such as preventing diseases in children, diagnosing and treating babies with birth defects, and helping children develop and grow in the best way possible.

You should also read: Who are Optometrists?

Undergraduate studies
Your first three years of studies will help you learn the basics of medical sciences and prepare you for activities in medical school. Most courses will be centered on pre-medical programs but you may have to choose one of out of Biology, Chemistry, or Mathematics as another major field.

Medical School
Progressing to a medical school is the only way to become a certified medical practitioner. It usually takes another three to four years to complete your studies at this stage. Teachings will be centered on courses such as pharmacology, Psychology, anatomy, biochemistry, medical ethics, and pathology.

Towards the end of your studies in medical school, you will be introduced to clinical training where you will engage in more practical exercises than theoretical ones.

As soon as you are through with medical school, the next stage of your career is enrolling for a residency program in a health care center. This is where you will have the room to handle real-life medical conditions while being supervised by experts in your field. Your residency years will give you the opportunity to pay attention to pediatrics as a distinct field in medical sciences. It may take you some years to complete this stage of your career but every minute will be worth it.

Apart from the fact that you will be paid for your services, this is where you can actually have the first-hand experience with children who have medical conditions.

The next stage of your career growth is becoming a licensed medical practitioner. For this to happen, you must have sat for the licensing examination coordinated either by your country of origin or that which you studied in.

For instance, in the United States, you will have to sit for the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) before you can freely practice pediatrics at the professional level.

However, some countries accept licenses given in other countries.

Professional Certificate
There are quite a good number of certifications you can add to your qualifications. The truth is, a certification validates your knowledge in the field and quickly increases your chances of landing your ideal job.

The American Board of Pediatrics, (ABP) is a widely accepted certification for Pediatrics in the United States. Apart from undergoing training for three years with the ABP board, you must have gone through all the stages of career development I mentioned above to qualify for the certification.

Countries usually have most preferred certification programs. In whichever country you decide to kick-start your career as a pediatrician, ensure that the institution issuing your certificate is widely accepted.

How to become a Pediatrician

Specializations in Pediatrics
Pediatrics may be a specialization in Medial sciences, it remains a broad field with other areas of specializations within it. As much as you can practice pediatrics at the primary care level where your duties cut across all the sub-categories, you can also specialize in the one(s) you find most fascinating in the following.

Neonatal Care: This specialization focuses on providing health care for babies whose weights are considered to be low at birth. Neonatal pediatricians are specialists in treating premature births, congenital heart diseases in babies, breathing difficulties at birth, genetic syndromes, and other disorders.

Adolescent Paediatrics: As a Pediatrician, you can choose to specialize in taking care of patients between the age of 12 and 21, although, it is possible to extend the care to when your patient is 24. Adolescent Paediatricians treat conditions like diabetes, chronic headaches, asthma, substance abuse, Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and, sometimes, depression.

Critical pediatrics: As an expert in this field, your duties will include treating liver failure, neurological disorders, lung and heart diseases, and extended infections in children.

Emergency Pediatrics: This specialization focuses on emergency situations involving kids. For instance, asthma attacks, pneumonia, poisoning, trauma, and injury in children are treated by Emergency Pediatricians.

Cardiologic Pediatrics: This specialization particularly focuses on caring for newborn babies with heart diseases caused by genetic syndromes.

Endocrinology Pediatricians: In this field, your duties will include treating children who are not growing at normal rates, children with diabetic conditions, thyroid diseases and other hormonal disorders.

Other fields of specialization in Paediatrics are –

Gastroenterology (Pediatrics): Pays attention to food allergies, bowel disease.
Paediatric Pulmonology: Specialist in lung diseases.
Nephrology (Pediatrics): Deals with kidney diseases, kidney failure and kidney stones in children.
Pediatric Rheumatology: Treats joint/muscle disorders.
Pediatric Oncology: Specializes in treating cancers in children, leukemia, blood cell disorders, and anemia.
Occupational Therapy also shares some striking similarities with Pediatrics.

Job Outlook for Pediatricians
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics has revealed that in no distant time, there would be a 10% growth rate in employment for pediatricians. This report is an indication that Pediatricians get employed faster than experts in many other occupations.

Again, as a specialist in pediatrics, your work schedule will be flexible, you get to assign the time for consultations, pick convenient meeting points, and also work in shifts. Most Pediatricians are able to have a work-life balance.

So, fret not. As much as your work schedules may seem tight, there would be times to rest and live life just the way you want.

How much is a Pediatrician’s Salary?
In the United States, a certified Pediatrician’s Salary starts from $98,474 on a yearly basis. However, many experienced Pediatricians earn as much as $200, 330.

This implies that the average salary in the field is about $147,543 annually. Source: Payscale.


The lowest income you can earn as a Pediatrician in Canada is $61,776. Although, experienced experts in the field earn about $350,000. On average, Pediatricians earn $234,100. Source: Nuevoo.

United Kingdom

Entry level Pediatricians in the UK have an estimated income of £80,000 annually. But as they grow and gain more professional experience, their income increases to £160,000. Generally, many Pediatricians earn an annual income of £105,000 over there. Source: Gapmedics

In all, your employer, and your years of experience, will determine how much you can earn. For instance, a Pediatrician who works as a consultant in a public health facility would most likely earn more than an entry-level pediatrician in a community clinic.

As I mentioned earlier, professional and academic certifications are huge determinants in the quality of jobs you can secure.

how to become a Pediatrician

Where do Pediatricians work?
Being a caregiver who specializes in children’s health, A Pediatrician is mostly in demand in health facilities.

Nonetheless, organizations and institutions that constantly interact with infants, toddlers, adolescents, and teenagers are a big-time employer of Pediatricians too.

Some typical workplaces are:

Health Clinics
Government-owned Health Facilities.
Health Consultancy firms.
Military Cantonments, among others.
Most Popular Pediatricians
Pediatricians may not be as popular as surgeons, yet, there is a countless number of successful Paediatricians. These set of experts have contributed towards making the field distinctive, relevant and crucial to medical science in general.

Here are some renowned Paediatricians –

Jim Sears: Jim Sears is a United States-trained Paediatrician. He has once been an Emmy award nominee and has been a co-host on the popular TV show, The Doctors.
Pedro Rossello: Born, raised, and trained in Puerto Rico, Pedro is a renowned Paediatrician and politician. He ruled the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico between 1993 and 2001 as its seventh Governor.
Thomas Berry Brazelton: Berry Brazelton is a United States based pediatric scientist and famous author. His theory, The Brazelton Neonatal Behavioral Assessment Scale is still being adopted in many pediatric hospitals around the world. Berry has over two hundred scholarly articles to his name and has authored a total of twenty-four books. Some refer to Berry as being the most influential Pediatrician in America after Benjamin Spock. Berry equally hosts the TV program, What Every Baby Knows.
Best Universities to Study Pediatrics.
Like I mentioned earlier, you must have enrolled as a medical scientist before you can then decide to specialize in Paediatrics at the later stages of your education and training (Masters/Ph.D.). There are a good number of universities where Pediatrics takes a high percentage of their course work.

Below are Universities with dedicated, accredited Paediatrics departments.

1) The University of Pennsylvania, United States of America.

Department: Department of Pediatrics
Courses: Pediatrics Residency Program, Pediatric Fellowships. Continuing Medical Education, Adolescence Medicine.
Duration: 1- 4 years
Study Option: Full-time
Level: Postgraduate Studies
2) University of Alberta, Canada.

Faculty/Department: Medicine and Dentistry/ Pediatrics
Course: Master of Science in Pediatrics
Duration: 18 Months
Study Option: Full-time
Level: Postgraduate Studies.
3) Stanford University, Canada.

Department: Pediatrics
Course: Pediatric Residency, Pediatric Fellowship.
Duration: 1- 4 years
Study Option: Full-time
Level: Postgraduate Studies
4) University of Plymouth, United Kingdom

Department: School of Health Professions
Course: MSc Advanced Professional Practice in Paediatric Dietetics
Duration: 1 year
Study Option: Full-time (Part-time option is also available)
Level: Postgraduate

Registration Requirements for Internationally Educated Medical Laboratory Technologists

To practise as a regulated health professional in Ontario, you must be a member of your profession’s regulatory college and hold a certificate of registration. Regulated health professionals are required by law to deliver competent, ethical and professional services, and are accountable to the public through their respective colleges.

The College of Medical Laboratory Technologists of Ontario (CMLTO) is the regulatory body for medical laboratory technology (MLT) practice in Ontario. The CMLTO exists so that, in Ontario, the public’s right to quality medical laboratory services is protected by providing self-regulation and leadership to the practice of medical laboratory technologists. Further, the CMLTO exists to ensure such services are provided by ethical and competent practitioners to maximize health outcomes.

Ontario Registration Requirements

To practice medical laboratory technology in Ontario, internationally educated medical laboratory technologists (MLTs) must hold a Certificate of Registration and meet the requirements set out by the CMLTO. To become eligible for the Certificate of Registration, internationally educated medical laboratory technologists (MLTs) must meet the following registration requirements:

  1. Show proof of graduation from a program assessed as equivalent to a Canadian MLT program. This assessment must be made via the Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science (CSMLS) Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) process.
  2. Show proof of reasonable fluency in English or French.
  3. Show proof of Canadian citizenship, Permanent Residency or authorization to practise medical laboratory technology in Canada.
  4. Successfully complete the Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science (CSMLS) National Certification Examination.
  5. Satisfy one of the following educational and training requirements:
    • Within the 3 years preceding the application, show active engagement in the practice of medical laboratory technology, which may include time spent as a student, or in the teaching of medical laboratory technology, that demonstrates, in the opinion of the Registration Committee, that he or she could meet the current standards of practice in Ontario; or
    • Within the 3 years preceding the application, show successful completion of a refresher course in the relevant specialties in laboratory science approved by the Registration Committee.

What to expect from a career as a Medical Laboratory Technician or Technologist

Laboratory science is an important component of the medical industry. Professional laboratory technicians and technologists run diagnostic tests on tissue, blood and body fluid samples that can be used to aid in diagnosis or monitor medical conditions. Laboratory studies programs at Ontario colleges provide students with training in detecting and identifying diseases and infections, chemical analysis of samples, checking for blood transfusion compatibility and much more, preparing them for careers in the medical industry.

If you’re interested in starting a medical career and want to learn more about laboratory studies careers, here’s what you need to know.

Laboratory Studies Courses

Laboratory studies programs typically fall into one of these three categories:

  • Medical Laboratory Assistant / Technician. Medical laboratory assistant and technician training focuses on the pre-analysis components of medical lab work. Assistants and technicians are responsible for collecting and processing samples and specimens, performing ECGs and participating in limited sample testing.
  • Medical Laboratory Science. Three-year medical laboratory science programs prepare students for careers as medical laboratory technologists. Technologists are responsible for conducting diagnostic tests on blood, tissue, body fluids and other specimens to help detect and monitor medical conditions. Subject matter for medical laboratory courses includes a broad array of science and mathematics disciplines, as well as medical courses such as histotechnology, hematology, specimen preparation and more.
  • Chemical Laboratory and Science Laboratory Technology. Chemical and science laboratory programs train students to perform physical, microbiological and chemical analysis. Advanced science courses such as organic chemistry, macrobiology, bacteriology and more are coupled with laboratory practice and procedure courses to prepare students for work in chemical, research or educational labs.

General Laboratory Studies Program Requirements

Ontario college laboratory studies programs typically require an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent, which includes a grade 12 English credit. Additional academic requirements will vary by program, but will likely include a variety of senior math and science credits.

Laboratory Studies Jobs and Salaries

Whether you graduate as a laboratory assistant, technician or technologist, career opportunities will exist in a variety of disciplines, from research and development to medical diagnostics, and in a number of different facilities, from hospital, clinic or research labs to government agencies and consulting firms.

Salaries in laboratory studies jobs will depend on your particular role. Technologists are at the higher end of the pay scale, with an average starting salary of $50,000 a year. Technicians and assistants will see salaries between $30,000 and $35,000 a year to start.

Ontario Colleges Offering Laboratory Studies Programs

Use the left-column navigation to refine your search by College, Program Availability, Program Start Date and more, or see the table below for a complete list of laboratory studies programs at Ontario colleges.

Medical laboratory technologists (MLTs) are one of Ontario’s regulated health professions. To practice in Ontario, MLTs must meet strict requirements established by their regulator – the College of Medical Laboratory Technologists of Ontario (CMLTO).

Learn about:

the education required (knowledge and clinical work)
application for registration and annual registration fees
the varied and rewarding careers available to MLTs
the importance of being a regulated health professional for the sake of public protection.
As of March 13, 2020

The CMLTO is unable to accommodate unscheduled or ‘drop-in’ visitors until further notice. Signage is posted on the office door with relevant phone and email contact information.

Applicants for registration should not make unscheduled or unannounced visits to the CMLTO office to drop off documents without having made prior arrangements. The CMLTO cannot guarantee that staff will be available to accept documents during office hours.

Career Opportunities

Medical Laboratory Technologists are the fourth largest group of health care professionals in Ontario, and their career outlook is very positive due to an impending national shortage of MLTs.

While most Medical Laboratory Technologists work in hospitals and private laboratories, MLTs also find challenging employment in other areas. From sales and marketing, Laboratory Information Systems, Technical support to public health laboratories and infection control, the MLT’s analytical, scientific and technical skills are a valuable asset.
Other career options include: Consulting,
Sales & Marketing, Research & Product Development, Supervision/Administration/Management, Laboratory Information Systems, Education, Public Health/Infection Control, Technical Support,Quality Assurance/Total Quality Improvement,Canadian Blood Services

Program Overview

Centennial College’s Medical Laboratory Technician program will immerse you in the exciting and rewarding world of the medical laboratory, which offers a unique combination of technical employment and the satisfaction of working with a diverse client population.

The program’s curriculum is based on the national (CSMLS) and provincial (OSMT) standards of practice for entry-level medical laboratory assistants/technicians (MLA/T). As such, it will focus on ensuring you become proficient in blood sample collection, performing ECGs, using laboratory equipment and medical terminology. Along the way, you’ll also develop the professional attitude and demeanour for close patient contact as excellent communication and good interpersonal skills are essential.

The theoretical and practical portions of this Centennial College program will be completed within a year. The third and final semester will be a clinical internship field placement that will offer real-world experience. The compressed delivery format makes the Medical Laboratory Technician program an ideal choice if you wish to quickly enter the workforce.

An MLA/T works under the direction of a medical laboratory technologist and assists in various clinical laboratory procedures. His or her duties include specimen collection, performing ECGs, positioning Holter monitors and processing specimens. With the MLA/T’s role expanding, there are opportunities for employment in clinics, private laboratories and hospital laboratories as well as in government, research and veterinary laboratories.

Please note:

  • Applicants must demonstrate language proficiency for admission.
  • A current criminal background check, including a vulnerable section screening, will be required prior to field placement.
  • Your health must be such that you can successfully cope with the program of instruction and the clinical placement experience and meet the health requirements of clinical placement settings.
  • Clinical placement may be located outside of Toronto.

Exam Eligibility

First-Time Examination Candidates
Initial Eligibility There are two ways to become initially eligible to write the Exam:

  1. EQual™ Accredited* Canadian Medical Laboratory Educational Program Candidate To be eligible to write the Exam, candidates must have successfully completed all EQual™ accredited Canadian medical laboratory educational program (referred to as “Educational Program” herein) requirements:

a minimum of two (2) weeks before the Exam date; or
within the past twelve (12) months of graduation, never having previously registered for the same Exam.
*This includes educational programs that are listed as “Accredited”, “Accredited with Condition”, or “Registered” on the Accreditation Canada website.

  1. Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Candidate To be eligible to write the Exam, candidates must have successfully completed the CSMLS Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) process. They must have received an “Eligibility Statement to the CSMLS Certification Examination”. This statement must be valid (not expired) for the Exam date to which they are applying.

If you are not currently residing in Canada, please read more information for Non-Residents of Canada.

All Candidates who are deemed eligible to challenge the Medical Laboratory Technology exam are also eligible to challenge the Medical Laboratory Assistant exam.

Recent Graduate
If you are a recent graduate that has successfully completed an accredited education program, you will be eligible to challenge the certification examination within the next twelve months.

We will contact your educational institution on your behalf to verify that you have completed the program requirements. If we are unable to verify program completion, you will be required to provide to us one of the following at your own cost:

a notarized copy of certificate and/or transcript confirming successful completion of an accredited training program; or
a verification of successful program completion (transcript and/or diploma) to be sent to the CSMLS directly from your educational institution
Not a Recent Graduate
If you have completed your MLT program more than twelve months ago, then you are not eligible to write the certification exam. You will need to apply for a prior learning assessment (PLA) first.

The PLA will determine if you are eligible to challenge the exam based on your education, clinical training and experience. Learn more about the Prior Learning Assessment process.

Please note that you can apply for the exam before you are eligible (Accredited MLT training program completed or learning plan requirements completed), but we must receive verification that your accredited MLT training program or learning plan has been successfully completed BEFORE the exam date. Please contact the Administrator, Certification & PLA at [email protected] to verify eligibility requirements have been met.

Non-Residents of Canada
If you are a non-resident of Canada and we have declared you eligible for the CSMLS Certification exam, you will need to:

Send in your application by mail or fax (you cannot apply online)
Pay the non-resident exam fee
You are considered a non-resident of Canada if you:

normally, customarily, or routinely live in another country and are not considered a resident of Canada; or
do not have significant residential ties in Canada; and
you live outside Canada throughout the tax year; or
you stay in Canada for less than 183 days in the tax year.
You will not be allowed to write the exam if you include false information on your exam application form. This includes providing a false address to avoid paying non-resident exam fees.

You may be asked to provide proof of residency or a copy of a current tax form or alternative document proving Canadian residency.

Applied for Exam but Not Eligible
If you apply for the exam but are not eligible, you will be refunded your exam fees minus the administrative fee. Students who have not completed their MLT/MLA program will be refunded all of their exam fees.

Registering for Your Exam – After an Unsuccessful Attempt
If you were not successful on your last exam attempt and you are eligible to write the certification exam again, you will be automatically provided with an application form, directions and an alternate application deadline. You must follow the provided directions fully to be eligible for the next exam attempt. You will be required to apply and pay for your next exam attempt by mail, email or fax only.

You are expected to come to the next available exam session. If you do not apply by the deadline date provided you will not be able to write the next exam and you will lose this attempt. A loss of an exam attempt is considered a fail.

If you were not successful on your last/previous exam attempt and you have been informed that you need to complete a Learning Plan, you cannot register for the next exam. Visit the Learning Plans page for more information.

Registering for Your Exam – After Completing a Learning Plan
After you complete your Learning Plan and the CSMLS receives all of your transcripts and documents showing completion of this plan, your file will be reviewed for exam eligibility. The review of your file can take four to six weeks. If your Learning Plan has been deemed complete you will be issued an eligibility statement for the next available exam. This next available exam will be a date where registration has not yet opened so that you can apply without paying a late fee and to provide you time to prepare for the exam.

Do not register for the exam unless you have received an Eligibility Statement indicating that you are eligible to write the exam. The Eligibility Statement will include the exam date that you can write the exam on. If you apply to write the exam without an Eligibility Statement, your exam fees will be refunded minus the administration fee.

Exam Attempt Policy
Candidates have three attempts at the certification exam as set by the Professional Standards Council policy, which took effect January 1, 2014.

After two consecutive attempts, an exam candidate must complete a Learning Plan based on the outcome of the two previous examinations, before attempting their third and final attempt at the certification exam.

Candidates exceeding three exam attempts are no longer eligible to challenge the exam and must complete a full-time Medical Laboratory Technology or Assistant program to become eligible again to take the CSMLS certification exam.


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