MLT/Phlebotomy Admissions Policies

The Medical Laboratory Technician is an essential member of the health care team, providing laboratory tests used in the diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of disease, and the maintenance of health.

This program is designed to give students both theoretical knowledge and practical experience in a variety of laboratory procedures. Students in the program spend the final six months of the second year rotating through clinical laboratories of area hospitals. During this period, the program calendar will differ from the academic calendar. Students accepted into the program must remain in sequence and complete all courses on schedule.

This Medical Laboratory Technician program is licensed by the State of Tennessee Department of Health Medical Laboratory Board-Facilities Health Related Boards and is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences, 5600 N. River Road, Suite 720, Rosemont, IL, 60018, 773-714-8880. Program graduates are eligible to take national certification examinations and make application for Tennessee licensure as medical laboratory technicians. Historically, the MLT graduates of this program pass the examination at a rate of greater than 70%.

The Medical Lab Technician clinical sites: Methodist University Hospital, American Esoteric Hospital, LeBonheur Children’s Hospital, Baptist Memorial Hospital, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Baptist Women’s Hospital, Methodist Health Care System, and Lifeblood.

Admission Requirements

To be eligible for consideration for admission to the program, the applicant must have:

  • Degree admission status at Southwest
  • Have completed all required learning support courses.
  • Completed the following prerequisite courses with a minimum grade of “C”:
  • A cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher
  • Have submitted the following materials to the Admissions Office by the established deadline: July 1 (fall semester admission); or November 1 (spring semester admission):
    • Application for Special Admission Programs
    • Official transcript(s) of all college work attempted and/or completed at college(s) or university(ies) other than Southwest (mailed directly from releasing institution)

Advanced Standing Admission

Students who have completed all of the prescribed first year courses except MLAB 1301  may be considered for admission to the program, with advanced standing, depending upon availability of space. Advanced standing applicants must fulfill the regular program admission requirements. Admission is competitive, with preference given to students who exceed the minimum requirements.

Selection Criteria

The MLT Admissions Committee ranks applicants according to the following criteria:

  • College-level GPA X 2 (40%)
  • Required prerequisite course GPA X 2 (40%)
  • Interview¬† (20%)

Retention Policy

In order to retain a position in the program, the student must:

  • Meet the Technical Standards for the Medical Laboratory Technician Program.
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0.
  • Earn a minimum grade of “C” in all MLT courses required for the degree. If a student makes a “D”  grade in a single MLT course, the student will be dismissed from the program and may apply for readmission. The student must request readmission by submitting the Application for Special Admission Programs. Only one readmission to the Medical Laboratory Technician program is permitted. If the student earns two “D” grades in MLT courses, whether different courses or the same course, the student is dismissed with no possibility of readmission. If the student earns an “F” grade in one MLT course, the student is dismissed with no possibility of readmission.
  • Remain in the prescribed MLT full-time course sequence once admitted to the MLT program.
  • Within 30 days prior to enrollment in the MLT Clinical Assignment course, the student must submit the Medical Statement showing freedom from communicable disease and fitness to perform duties related to clinical assignment. The adequacy of the Medical Statement shall be determined by the clinical affiliate. Additionally, the student shall satisfy the immunization requirements of each clinical affiliate.
  • Within 30 days prior to enrollment in the MLT Clinical Assignment course, the student shall submit a urine drug screen performed by the TBR provider that is negative for all tested substances.
  • Within 30 days prior to enrollment in the MLT Clinical Assignment, the student shall produce a criminal background check performed by the TBR provider, the results of which are found to be acceptable to each clinical affiliate. Fingerprinting of the student may be required by a clinical affiliate for their review and approval. The costs of all reports and testing shall be paid by the student.

Malpractice Insurance

Students are required to purchase malpractice insurance when registering for initial Clinical Assignment.

Readmission Policy

Students withdrawing from the program or dismissed for academic reasons may be considered for readmission under current admission policy, based on space availability. The Admission Committee will review the student’s transcript to identify courses to be retaken. Due to the rapid change of technology in the field of laboratory medicine, no more than two years may elapse between completion of any MLT second year didactic course and the beginning of the clinical assignment courses. Students desiring readmission must submit a written request to the MLT Program director 30 days prior to the first day of registration for that term.

Program Costs

In addition to tuition and lab fees, students may have additional costs ranging from $400 to $800 to include uniforms, duty shoes, physical examinations, laboratory tests, immunizations, graduation, certification and licensure fees.

Technical Standards for Medical Laboratory Technician and Laboratory Phlebotomy Technician Programs

Technical standards are the essential nonacademic requirements of the program that a student must be able to master to participate successfully in the MLT or LPT programs and become employable. Applicants for these programs must possess the following list of technical abilities and skills. If you are not sure that you will be able to meet these technical standards, please consult with the Program Coordinator of Medical Laboratory Technology for further information and to discuss individual situations.

Any student with special needs who is requesting reasonable accommodations or assistive technology may do so through the Office of Student Disability Services.

  • Speech: Ability to verbally communicate understandably in English.
  • Hearing: Ability to understand English when spoken in person or via the telephone.
  • Vision: Natural or corrected to 20/20, ability to distinguish red, yellow, and blue colors, distinguish clear from cloudy, and distinguish objects in the range of 1 micron through the microscope.
  • Mobility: Ability to maneuver in the laboratory, around instruments, in confined spaces, and in patient rooms. Movement includes utilizing shoulders, arms, and neck; bending; twisting the body; standing; reaching and grasping overhead, in front of the body, and down.
  • Fine Motor Control: Ability to manipulate small objects with fingertips or control adaptive devices.
  • Coordination: Eye/hand and eye/hand/foot coordination.
  • Reasoning: Ability to deal with abstract and concrete variables, define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions. Ability to interpret instructions furnished in oral, written, diagrammatic, or schedule form. Ability to deal with problems from standard situations. Ability to carry out detailed but uninvolved written or oral instructions. Ability to carry out one- or two-step instructions.
  • Mathematics: Ability to add, subtract, multiply and divide whole numbers and fractions, calculate time, use metric system for measurements, calculate percentages, solve for one variable, set up and solve ratio and proportion problems, interpret simple statistical data.
  • Reading: Ability to comprehend simple instructions or notations from a log book, ability to comprehend newspapers, manuals, journals, instructions in use and maintenance of equipment, safety rules and procedures and drawings.
  • Writing: Ability to compose English sentences containing subject, verb, and object; complete notations in a log book, complete job applications, prepare business letters, write reports using prescribed format and conforming to rules of punctuation, spelling, grammar, diction and style.
  • Perception: Ability to perceive pertinent detail in objects or in pictorial or graphic material; to make visual comparisons and discrimination’s and see slight differences in shapes and shadings of figures, and widths and lengths of line; to comprehend forms in space and understand relationships of plane and solid objects; the ability to visualize objects of two or three dimensions.
  • Clerical: Ability to perceive pertinent detail in verbal or tabular material; to observe differences in copy; to proofread words and numbers; and to avoid perceptual errors in arithmetic computation.
  • Data: Ability to synthesize, coordinate, analyze, compile, compute, copy, and compare data standards for Medical Lab/Phlebotomy Technicians.
  • Personal Traits: Ability to comprehend and follow instruction; perform simple and repetitive tasks; maintain a work pace appropriate to a given work load; relate to other people beyond giving and receiving instructions; perform complex or varied tasks; make generalizations, evaluations or decisions without immediate supervision; accept and carry out responsibility for directions, control and planning.
  • Environmental: Ability to work indoors, be around moving machinery; factors: fumes, gases, odors, irritating particles, possible exposure to toxic or caustic chemicals, blood and body fluids, noise, radiation or electrical energy, vibration; work in confined spaces, use a computer monitor; work alone, with others, or around others.
  • Safety Equipment Required to Wear: Safety glasses, face mask/shield, protective clothing, protective gloves.