Curriculum and Degree Options

A bachelor's degree in clinical laboratory science from KU provides a wealth of opportunities and unique flexibility in your career decisions.

Curriculum and Degree Options
male laboratory scientist working with equipment in the lab (photo)The degree in CLS at the University of Kansas is a 2+2 program: students take 2 years of specified liberal arts courses (biological science, chemistry, math and general education) followed by entry into the professional component of the program at the KU Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan. The degree consists of two concentrations – the clinical concentration (traditional) and the molecular biotechnology concentration. A student may choose either option or both. (Completing both concentrations will require approximately 1 additional semester).

Prerequisite Courses (first 2 years of study)

Professional Program (last 2 years of study, in KU's CLS program)
Until the second semester of the senior year, students in both concentrations take the same coursework. Also during the senior year, students will rotate through 14-22 weeks of practicum experience at several of the school’s many collaborating affiliates.

Clinical and Molecular Concentrations; Study Plans

Students are required to complete a minimum of 57 pre-requisite Credit Hours. The following suggested study plans detail the coursework required during the freshman and sophomore years and may be helpful in planning course work. Courses with similar content may be acceptable alternatives.

The professional program in CLS begins in the fifth semester of study (junior year). We offer a Clinical concentration and Molecular Biotechnology concentration – course work is identical until the eighth and final semester of study:

Successful completion of the clinical concentration, and the awarding of the baccalaureate degree, allows the student to sit for the national certification examination (American Society for Clinical Pathology, and upon passing the exam, be credentialed as an MLS(ASCP)cm.

Successful completion of the molecular biotechnology concentration, and the awarding of the baccalaureate degree, allows the student to sit for the national certification examination (American Society for Clinical Pathology, and upon passing the exam, be credentialed as an MB(ASCP)cm.

Categorical Concentration in Hematology, Chemistry, or Microbiology; Study Plans
A new course of study, categorical concentration, has been developed for science majors who already hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution and are currently working in a clinical laboratory in hematology, chemistry, or microbiology.

The Categorical Concentration course of study allows qualified individuals to complete the educational requirements for one specific area of clinical laboratory science. Curriculum options include clinical microbiology, hematology, and clinical chemistry. A second baccalaureate degree is NOT awarded to the student, but the courses taken appear on his or her official KU transcript.

Successful completion of one of the categorical concentrations allows the student to sit for the categorical certification examination in microbiology, hematology, or chemistry offered by the ASCP Board of Certification, and upon passing, be designated as either an H(ASCP)cm, M(ASCP)cm, C(ASCP)cm, depending on which exam is taken.

Online Courses in the KU CLS program

With our Online Courses, students can work independently while on clinical rotations – eliminating the need to travel to KUMC each day – during their last semester of study. The following courses in the professional program are currently offered on-line during the last semester of the professional year and run concurrently with corresponding practicums. These classes are only available to students enrolled in the CLS program at KU. Course credit hours in parentheses

CLS 640 Clinical Chemistry III (2)
CLS 642 Clinical Microbiology II (2)
CLS 644 Immunohematology II (2)
CLS 646 Hematology III (2)
CLS 648 Clinical Immunology (1) 

Students take online courses using the Blackboard learning management system.

Janet Hudzicki, PhD, MLS(ASCP)cm, SM, is chair of the admissions committee for the department. She may be contacted via email: with other questions you may have about the curriculum structure, etc.

Last modified: Sep 04, 2014

CLS students at KU are learning the intricacies of forensics from professionals in a local crime lab. Read

High school students skipped class for a day to visit The University of Kansas Hospital and learn about careers such as clinical laboratory science offered here. KCTV5 story

KU CLS faculty member Tiffany Pothapragada was named one of the American Society for Clinical Pathology's "40 Under 40." The program recognizes top pathologists and lab professionals under the age of 40 that are making an impact on the future of the pathology and laboratory sciences fields. More

Prospective Students
The priority deadline to apply to this program is December 15. Applications may be accepted after the deadline based on space available in the next class.

Learn about this program:
Program overview
Eligibility and requirements
Tuition and fees
KU Core Courses PDF document
How to apply

Graduates of KU's clinical laboratory science program have an average passing rate of 93% on the ASCP Board of Certification Exam.

See also:
Resources for Clinical Affiliates