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Eligibility and Requirements

female CLS student at microscope (photo)

To be considered for admission into KU's clinical laboratory science program, the following are required.

Completed Prerequisite Course Work

Prior to entering the program students must complete two years of undergraduate college course work including a total of 57 semester credit hours. Please see the complete list of prerequisite courses for details.

Science and math prerequisite courses will only be accepted if they have been taken within the six years prior to the submission of the application for admission to the program.

Students need to demonstrate the ability to handle full academic course loads (more than 12 credit hours per semester) during their enrollment in prerequisite course work.

All laboratory components of required chemistry and biology courses must be completed in a physical laboratory on campus. Virtual simulation or off-site laboratory courses are not accepted.

Grade Point Average

An overall grade point average (GPA) of 2.70 on a 4.00 scale is required. The GPA of all science courses taken must also be 2.7 on a 4.0 scale. In addition, student transcripts must document an individual course grade of no less than "C" on each biology, chemistry, and math prerequisite course. All grades (including courses that were repeated) will be used in the calculation of GPA.

Health and Physical Requirements

Good physical and mental health are essential. Physical or other disabilities are evaluated on a case-by-case basis by the program and by the Equal Employment Opportunity Office at KU Medical Center. Please review the program's technical standards for details. Physical examinations are required prior to the time of registration for classes.

Background Check

The Joint Commission requires all incoming students to provide KU with a background check report. This one-time fee must be paid directly to the company performing the background investigation. Students will be asked to provide information and make the payment after official acceptance to the program. For more information, please see the School of Health Professions background check instructions.


Students in this program are required to have a computer that meets the minimum software and hardware requirements.

Shadow Experience

Applicants are required to participate in a shadowing activity to ensure they are fully aware of the type of work performed by medical laboratory scientists. Shadowing involves observing the operations of a medical laboratory, the job duties and responsibilities of the various personnel, and becoming aware of the level of professionalism needed to function in this career.

Applicants may fulfill this requirement in one of several ways:

  • Successfully complete courses CLS 210 or BIOL 210 on the University of Kansas Lawrence campus. This one-credit-hour elective provides an overview of the profession and includes a tour of a hospital clinical laboratory.
  • Have recent experience working in a clinical laboratory as a laboratory assistant or similar position where exposure to the day-to-day operations of the laboratory is part of the job description. Applicants using this means of completing the shadowing requirement may need to provide documentation of job duties.
  • Contact a hospital laboratory and ask to spend some time observing specimen processing, workflow, phlebotomy, and other laboratory procedures. A minimum of two hours are to be scheduled, covering as many aspects of the laboratory as possible. There is no maximum time limit. Applicants should be aware that they may need to participate in some preparatory training (confidentiality; safety, etc.) prior to being allowed to shadow in a lab. These requirements will vary based on the institution selected for the shadowing experience.

International Students

An applicant is considered an international student if he or she requires a visa, or currently resides in the U.S. with non-immigrant status, or currently resides in the U.S. while applying for permanent residency. Additional requirements and documentation, such as proof of English language proficiency, are required for international students to become eligible for KU programs. Please review the information for international students before applying.

International students must have international transcripts evaluated by a transcript evaluation service that will provide a course-by-course evaluation of their degree including a grade equivalency and credit-hour equivalency. This is needed to facilitate the transfer of specific courses into the degree requirements of the clinical laboratory science degree program.

English Language Requirements

Students in clinical laboratory science are required to have strong command of the English language, both to ensure success during their education and also to be properly prepared for employment after graduation.

Special requirements apply to any student that is not a citizen of one of the following countries where English is the native language, or have earned a bachelor's degree (or higher) from an institution in one of them: United States, Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, or English-speaking provinces in Canada.

Applicants who have become U.S. citizens, but are not from one of the countries indicated above, must verify English language competence as described below.

To verify English language requirements have been met, official exam results from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) must have been obtained within the two years prior to application:

  • Internet-based TOEFL minimum requirements: At least 23 or higher on the reading and listening sections; a score of 5.0 or 23 or higher on the writing section; a score of 26 or higher on the speaking section.

  • IELTS minimum requirements: Overall band score of 7.5 and no part score lower than 7.0.

  • Official documentation means that test scores must be sent directly from the administering agency to KU Medical Center. ETS school code for KUMC is 6895. Failure to submit official documentation will delay the admission process.

IMPORTANT: Before beginning an application, please contact a KU advisor in clinical laboratory science to review prerequisite courses. Failure to contact an advisor could result in a delay in starting the program if missing prerequisite courses are discovered or if certain courses already taken are not transferable to the University of Kansas. Contact information

Jan Hudzicki, Ph.D., is chair of the admissions committee for the program. Please contact her at for advising or questions about application requirements.

The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University's programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access,, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785) 864-6414, 711 TTY.

Last modified: Oct 21, 2020

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
Clinical affiliate sites

For advising on the KU Lawrence campus, please contact Robin Merritt at the KU Undergraduate Advising Center or visit third floor Summerfield Hall.

Students from other institutions: please provide your information online to schedule an advising session.