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About the Clinical Laboratory Scientist Training Program

The San Diego Clinical Laboratory Scientist Training Consortium Program (San Diego CLS Training Program) is a comprehensive 12 month full-time program of instruction in the field of clinical laboratory medicine and technology. In 2021, the program will commence in July. Trainees who successfully complete this training internship will be eligible to take the Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS) certification exam offered by the American Society of Clinical Pathologists (ASCP) Board of Certification and the California law exam offered by the California Department of Public Health, Laboratory Field Services (CDPH-LFS).

The San Diego CLS Training Program will provide both theoretical and practical applications of current and relevant clinical laboratory technologies. You will earn a Certificate from UC San Diego Extension; the program provides the professional component of training that prepares qualified laboratory practitioners for service to our profession and community. The goal of the program is to provide trainees with high quality professional training and academic instruction in the field of laboratory medicine to pass a nationally recognized certification examination, obtain state licensure, and meet employment needs of the California healthcare industry. At the conclusion of the program, the trainee will be expected to have achieved solid competency in all core disciplines of the clinical lab, as listed in the required courses matrix located in the "courses" menu below. In California, licensed CLS professionals are permitted to report clinical results of high complexity laboratory testing in addition to waived and moderate complexity testing.

Didactic lectures (approximately one day/week) are hosted by UC San Diego Health’s Center for Advanced Laboratory Medicine facility. Practical training (4 days/week) is gained through hands-on experiences in one of the consortium’s participating clinical laboratory systems of:

  • UC San Diego Health
  • Sharp Healthcare
  • El Centro Regional Medical Center
  • Palomar Health
  • We are currently focusing on training students with ties to the greater San Diego area, as our mission is to train quality Clinical Lab Scientists and retain them!
  • The San Diego CLS Training Program is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS; 5600 N. River Rd., Suite 720, Rosemont, IL 60018-5119). The sponsoring institution, UC San Diego Health was approved by the CDPH-LFS as a training program for Clinical Laboratory Scientists in 2004. Each of the participating affiliate programs of Sharp HealthCare have been approved by the State of California and NAACLS.M
  • The deadline for completion of coursework, grade posting and/or conferring of a degree on an official transcript is June 5th of each year. If you currently have coursework and/or a degree pending, please send a current UN-official transcript (and/or proof of enrollment for a single pending course) by the December 31st deadline.
  • Program Fee for all courses: $10,000 + $95 certificate fee. A structured quarterly payment plan may be available.
  • Candidates are encouraged to apply to the certificate program as early as possible.
  • The program will commence in July of each year.
  • A program fee will be assessed. Please refer to the Conditions for Admission tab and linked documents for more information.
  • Academic Requirements: Baccalaureate degree preferably in a biological science or related field. Required prerequisite courses include: Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry, Analytical Chemistry or Clinical Chemistry, Hematology, Immunology, Medical/Clinical Microbiology, Physics (including principles in light and electricity), college level mathematics (calculus and/or statistics/biostatistics). These requirements are inclusive of standards set by the California Department of Health, Laboratory Field Services division.
  • Health and Other Requirements, and Essential Function Requirements: For a complete list of specific academic, health/other, U.S. citizenship or permanent residency, and essential function requirements, please review Admission Requirements (pdf) for more information.
  • Final admission to the San Diego CLS Training Program is by application and interview only.
  • The U.S. postmarked deadline for submitting the program’s Application Form in consideration for acceptance for the cohort is December 31st of each year. Submission deadlines are strictly enforced.
  • Candidates should verify that they have completed the academic and other requirements including the ability to perform the Essential Functions listed in the Admission Requirements (pdf) before contacting the program for an application.
  • Refer to the Additional Certificate Information (pdf) for specific application requirement details.
  • Please apply for your CLS Trainee License and submit the license or proof of application by the December 31st deadline. If you are called back for an interview, you will be asked to forward an OFFICIAL Transcript from all academic institutions you have attended prior to your interview date.
  • Notification to candidates selected and offered a program interview will be made in February of each year. Interviews will be held in March.
  • The application period for our 2021-2022 cohort is closed.
Format: Hybrid

Contact
Department
Healthcare & Behavioral Sciences
Phone
858-657-5714
Email
clsprogram@ucsd.edu

Courses

Delivery Method
Show Legend
  • Live Online
  • In-Person
  • Online
  • Hybrid

By Application only

Not available for open enrollment

Advanced TopicsPATH-40009

Units: 2.00

TBD

The study of new and upcoming technologies such as immunogenetics, Flow Cytometry and/or Molecular Diagnostics. Study and learn laboratory techniques in new technologies such as: Immunogenetics th...

Upcoming Start Dates:
Typically Offered:

Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Chemistry/UrinalysisPATH-40010

Units: 10.00

TBD

The study of protein and chemical constituents present in blood and body fluids, their analytical methods of measurement, and correlation of clinical laboratory data with the diagnosis and treatment o...

Upcoming Start Dates:
Typically Offered:

Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Hematology/CoagulationPATH-40011

Units: 6.00

TBD

The study and performance of tests related to the enumeration and identification of the cellular elements of blood and body fluids, primarily red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Includ...

Upcoming Start Dates:
Typically Offered:

Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Immunology/SerologyPATH-40012

Units: 2.00

TBD

The study of the immune system and tests used to identify its disorders; and the practical application of immunological principles and methodologies to aid in the diagnosis of infections and autoimmun...

Upcoming Start Dates:
Typically Offered:

Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Laboratory OperationsPATH-40013

Units: 1.00

TBD

The study of the laboratory s role in conforming to regulatory and accrediting agencies requirements, with particular emphasis on laboratory operations and management, and overall quality. The study...

Upcoming Start Dates:
Typically Offered:

Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Microbiology/ParasitologyPATH-40014

Units: 8.00

TBD

The study, detection and identification of bacteria and mycobacteria of clinical significance using culture and isolation, direct and stained smears, biochemical, microscopic, molecular, and automated...

Upcoming Start Dates:
Typically Offered:

Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Transfusion MedicinePATH-40015

Units: 4.00

TBD

The study of blood group serology as it applies to the preparation and provision of blood products in transfusion therapy; to include donor collection, component preparation, pre-transfusion testing a...

Upcoming Start Dates:
Typically Offered:

Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Download PDF

Graduation Success Rate of Students

ASCP Exam Pass Rate Number of Examinees Passed 1st Time Pass rate
       
2010-2021 122 122 100%

Job Placement

The program does not guarantee job placement of graduates; however, all graduates achieved a 100% rate in obtaining a well-compensated career as Clinical Laboratory Scientists. The majority of our students receive multiple career offers prior to graduation.

Note for Veterans

Click here to learn about veteran's education benefits. To clarify how your benefits will work at UC San Diego Extension, contact us at unex-veterans@ucsd.edu.

Next Steps Experience

Connect your classroom education with real-world knowledge through a Next Step Experience. The program is specially designed to allow students to gain experience by working closely with instructors and/or peers on real-world projects. Didactic lectures and practical training at one of the consortium’s participating clinical laboratories provide valuable hands-on experience.

Address

San Diego Clinical Laboratory Scientist Training Program
UC San Diego Clinical Laboratories
9300 Campus Point Dr. #7320
La Jolla, CA 92037-1300

Frequently Asked Questions

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Questions or clarification?

For Frequently Asked Questions and other important information, please click the PDF's at the right side of this page under "Related Documents."

Advisory Board

Ana Dowey, CLS(ASCP), M.S., Ed.D.

Lab Administration - CLS Education Program Coordinator

UC San Diego Health - Clinical Laboratories

Robert Fitzgerald, PhD

Program Clinical Advisor

UC San Diego Health - Clinical Laboratories

Peggy Kollars, MS, MT (ASCP)

Site coordinator

Sharp Memorial, Sharp Grossmont Hospital, Sharp Chula Vista

Judie Nocera, CLS (ASCP), MA, CHC

Program Director, CLS Training Cons. & Bus Mgr UCSDH ClinLab

UC San Diego Health - Clinical Laboratories

Sharon Reed, MD

Advisor & Program/Advisory Committee. Director of Clinical

Microbiology Laboratory; UC San Diego Health

Charles Rhoades, CLS

Acting Chief of Ambulatory Services

El Centro Regional Medical Center

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This certificate requires an application before taking any courses. There will be a $0 fee to apply to this program. Students will also be required to pay a $95 certificate fee upon enrollment into the program after acceptance. View the complete Certificate Registration and Candidacy Guidelines.