Medical Laboratory Science

Mount Mercy offers a four-year major leading to the Bachelor of Science degree in medical laboratory science. The first three years are spent at the institution completing rigorous curriculum requirements, core curriculum requirements, and electives to total 91 semester hours. The fourth year is spent in a 12-month internship at an affiliated hospital school of clinical laboratory science and technology approved by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). During this clinical year, a minimum of 32 hours of credit will be earned. An official transcript showing completion of the internship courses must be sent to the Registrar. Courses and grades will be evaluated and added to the student’s official Mount Mercy transcript. Upon satisfactory completion of this year, the BS degree will be awarded by Mount Mercy, and the graduate should then take the National Board examination required for registration as a medical technologist by the American Society of Clinical Pathologists.

Admission to the medical laboratory science program at Mount Mercy does not ensure admission to the fourth year internship at the affiliated hospital. Each hospital internship program may accept or reject applicants on the basis of scholarship, health, personality, suitability for the profession, and enrollment limitations. Most hospital internship programs require a minimum science GPA of 2.50. A criminal background check is required prior to the fourth year internship.

Mount Mercy is affiliated with the NAACLS-approved programs of clinical laboratory science and technology of Unity Point - St. Luke’s, Cedar Rapids and Mercy College of Health Sciences, Des Moines. Applicants who have completed a bachelor’s degree which included the required science and mathematics courses may intern at any NAACLS-approved hospital school. Students will need to consent to a criminal background check prior acceptance of internship.

MLS majors should, for example, be able to: recall the fundamentals of chemistry and biology needed to work as a licensed Medical Laboratory Specialist; explain the basic safety principles in handling chemicals; and understand the key techniques of data collection.

Career Opportunities

Hospitals, clinics, and medical laboratories are prime employers of medical technologists. See the Graduate section of this Catalog for more information on Graduate programs offered at Mount Mercy.


12-month internship program also required outside the major:


CH 111General Chemistry I4.5
CH 112General Chemistry II4.5
CH 211Organic Chemistry I4.5
CH 212Organic Chemistry II4.5
CH 251Analytical Chemistry5
CH 302Biochemistry5
Total Hours28


BI 125Foundations of Biology & Scientific Inquiry I3
BI 125LBiostatistics and Scientific Investigation I1.5
BI 126Foundations of Biology & Scientific Inquiry II4.5
BI 243Immunology3
BI 303Genetics4.5
BI 315General Microbiology4.5
BI 370Cell and Molecular Biology5
BI 374Integrated Physiology4.5
Total Hours30.5


MA 135Basic Statistics3


NU 113Medical Terminology1


PL 269Introduction to Ethics3

Academic Requirements

A grade of C or above (C- does not count) in all required courses and a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 in required science courses.