Clinical Year Program (Senior Year)

The Clinical Year Program is the final (Senior) year of the baccalaureate degree in Medical Laboratory Sciences.  The Clinical Year Program is also open to qualified applicants who meet the pre-requisites, such as post-baccalaurate students and guest sutdents from affiliated colleges/universities (see Guest Student Senior Clinical Year Program).  For admissions requirements to the Clinical Year Program refer to Admissions & Applications.

The Clinical Year is comprised of 47 credits and is divided into two distinct sections: the didactic (lecture and student laboratory) portion and the practicum portion.  The Clinical Year always begins in the Fall.  Due to the highly structured, sequential nature of the Program, it cannot be started at any other time.  The curriculum for the Clinical Year follows:

Fall Semester (Didactic -- AU Campus)

Course Number Course Title CR
MLSC401 Clinical Year Seminar & Research Methodology 0
MLSC411 Hematology 3
MLSC421 Clinical Immunology & Molecular Diagnostics 2
MLSC431 Clinical Bacteriology 4
MLSC441 Immunohematology 3
MLSC451 Clinical Chemistry I 4
Total Credits: 16

Spring Semester

Course Number Course Title CR
First Session (Didactic -- AU campus)
MLSC400 Specimen Procurement & Processing -- Lecture & Lab 1
MLSC405 Clinical Year Seminar & Research Project 1
MLSC412 Hemostasis 1
MLSC432 Clinical Mycology & Parasitology 2
MLSC442 Transfusion Medicine 2
MLSC452 Clinical Chemistry II 2
MLSC461 Body Fluids 1
MLSC475 Medical Laboratory Management Concepts 2
Second Session (Practicum -- Clinical Sites)
MLSC433 Clinical Microbiology Practicum 4
Total Credits: 16

Summer Semester (Practicum -- Clinical sites)

Course Number Course Title CR
MLSC413  Hematology and Hemostasis Practicum 4
MLSC423 Clinical Immunology Practicum 1
MLSC443 Clinical Immunohematology Practicum 4
MLSC453 Clinical Chemistry Practicum 4
MLSC463 Body Fluids Practicum 1
MLSC493 Practicum Project 1
Total Credits: 15


The Didactic Portion, taught on the Berrien Springs campus, consists of lectures and student laboratories.  The duration of this portion of the Clinical Year Program is one and a half semesters: Fall Semester and half of Spring Semester.  The didactic portion typically begins at the end of August and concludes at the end of February.

The Practicum Portion of the Clinical Year is the culmination of a Medical Laboratory Scientist's undergraduate training.  It consists of practical hands-on experience where students work side by side with practicing laboratory professionals in patient healthcare at one of our affiliate hospitals or clinical laboratory sites, located across the United States (see the list of affiliated Clinical Sites below).  Since this is a learning and credit earning experience, regular tuition is due during the practicum.

The practicum portion of the Clinical Year follows the preparatory didactic portion and is 20 weeks long.  It typically starts at the beginning of March and ends the last Friday of July.  Advancement into the practicum portion is dependent on meeting the following criteria:

Requirements for Clinical Practicum Placement:

    • GPA:   Minimum GPA of 2.50
    • Recommendations:    Recomendation of the faculty
    • Transportation:    Must have available independent transportation to clinical practicum rotations.  (Public transportation is not available at all clinical sites and many sites will include rotations at another facility.)
    • Student Trainee License:    Must be willing to submit an application and pay fee for trainee license if required by the state where clinical practica experience is assigned.
    • Social Security Number:    Must have a United States Social Security Number.
    • Criminal Background Check:    Must provide an acceptable crimincal background check on the first day of classes of the Spring Semester of the Clinical Year.
    • Drug Screen:    Must provide an acceptable drug screen on the first day of classes of the Spring Semester of the Clinical Year.
    • Medical Clearance:    Must submit the "Statement of Medical Clearance" form signed by a health care provider on the first day of classes of the Spring Semester of the Clinical Year.
    • Immunizations:    Must submit the "Documentation of Immunizations/Immune Status" form signed by a health care provider on the first day of classes of the Spring Semester of the Clinical Year.

A very attractive feature of our Clinical Year Program is that the clinical site assignments are guaranteed for students who complete the didactic portion of the Program satisfactorily and meet the advancement criteria.

Clinical assignments are made in December, at the end of the Fall Semester.  Students rank clinical site preferences on a preference selection form provided by the MLS Department once the affiliated clinical sites indicate whether they will be accepting students.  Although students are not guaranteed their first choice, careful consideration is given to each student's preferences and granted whenever feasible.  Assignments also depend upon recommendations by the faculty and the educational coordinators of the clinical affiliates.  Following is a list of our affiliated clinical sites.  Note that not all clinical affiliates accept students each year.


Affiliated Clinical Sites Location
Adventist HealthCare Laboratories (Quest Diagnostics): Shady Grove Adventist Hospital Rockville, Maryland
Adventist HealthCare Laboratories (Quest Diagnostics): Washington Adventist Hospital Takoma Park, Maryland
Adventist Hinsdale Hospital Hinsdale, Illinois
Centura Laboratories at Porter Adventist Hospital Denver, Colorado
Eliza Coffee Memorial Hospital Florence, Alabama
Florida Hospital Heartland Medical Center Sebring, Florida
Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center Daytona Beach, Florida
Florida Hospital Orlando Orlando, Florida
Florida Hospital Tampa Tampa, Florida
Grandview Hospital and Medical Center Dayton, Ohio
Indiana University Health La Porte Hospital La Porte, Indiana
Lakeland Regional Health System St. Joseph, Michigan
Memorial Health Care Systems Chattanooga Chattanooga, Tennessee
Memorial of South Bend South Bend, Indiana
Shawnee Mission Medical Center Shawnee Mission, Kansas
South Bend Medical Foundation South Bend, Indiana
Texas Health Huguley Hospital Fort Worth, Texas


Upon successful completion of the didactic and practicum portion of the Clinical Year Program, students are eligible to write the United States national professional certification exam in order to work as a certified medical laboratory scientist.  The certification exam is offered by the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP).  Some states require a separate license in order to practice as a Medical Laboratory Scientist.