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3212.1 – Medical laboratory technicians

Medical laboratory technicians conduct routine medical laboratory tests and set up, clean and maintain medical laboratory equipment.

Profile

Example titles Help

  • Medical laboratory assistant
  • Medical laboratory technician
  • Phlebotomist
  • Phlebotomy aide

Main characteristics Help

  • General learning ability to perform and conduct routine laboratory tests and sample analyses used to diagnose and treat diseases
  • Form perception to take precise readings from laboratory instruments when conducting experiments and tests
  • Clerical perception to log patient samples and prepare them for testing
  • Motor co-ordination and Finger dexterity and Manual dexterity to clean and maintain medical laboratory equipment
  • Methodical interest in compiling information derived from blood, tissue and other samples collected from patients; and in collecting and receiving tissue samples from patients
  • Objective interest in setting up medical laboratory equipment; and in cleaning and maintaining laboratory
  • Innovative interest in assisting medical personnel to conduct laboratory tests and sample analyses

Aptitudes Help

One of five levels assigned for each factor, with levels representing normal curve distribution of the labour force:

G
General learning ability
V
Verbal ability
N
Numerical ability
S
Spatial perception
P
Form perception
Q
Clerical perception
K
Motor co-ordination
F
Finger dexterity
M
Manual dexterity

Levels legend
  1. The highest 10% of the working population
  2. Upper third, exclusive of the highest 10%
  3. Middle third of the working population
  4. Lowest third, exclusive of the lowest 10%
  5. Lowest 10% of the working population

An individual's overall capacity to learn the skills needed to perform job duties is based on his or her specific aptitudes for acquiring information and transforming it into action.

General learning ability G-3

Ability to 'catch on' or understand instructions and underlying principles; to reason and make judgments.

Verbal ability V-3

Ability to understand the meaning of words and the ideas associated with them, and to use them effectively; to comprehend language, to understand relationships between words and to understand the meaning of whole sentences and paragraphs; to present information or ideas clearly.

Numerical ability N-3

Ability to carry out arithmetical processes quickly and accurately.

Spatial perception S-4

Ability to think visually about geometric forms and comprehend the two dimensional representation of three dimensional objects; to recognize the relationships resulting from the movement of objects in space. May be used in such tasks as blueprint reading and in solving geometry problems. Frequently described as the ability to 'visualize' objects of two or three dimensions.

Form perception P-3

Ability to perceive pertinent detail in objects and in pictorial and graphic material; to make visual comparisons and discriminations and to see slight differences in shapes and shadings of figures and widths and lengths of lines.

Clerical perception Q-3

Ability to perceive pertinent detail in verbal or tabular material; to observe differences in copy, to proofread words and numbers, and to avoid perceptual errors in arithmetical computation.

Motor co-ordination K-3

Ability to co-ordinate eyes, hands and fingers rapidly and accurately when required to respond with precise movements.

Finger dexterity F-3

Ability to move the fingers and manipulate small objects with the fingers rapidly and/or accurately.

Manual dexterity M-3

Ability to move the hands easily and skillfully; to work with the hands in placing and turning motions.

Interests Help

Three of five descriptive factors, assigned in order of predominance and lower case rating indicating weaker representation:

D
Directive
I
Innovative
M
Methodical
O
Objective
S
Social

Methodical M

Methodical persons like to have clear rules and organized methods to guide their activities. They prefer working under the direction or supervision of others according to given instructions, or to be guided by established policies and procedures. Methodical persons like to work on one thing until it is completed. They enjoy following a set routine and prefer work that is free from the unexpected.

Objective O

Objective persons enjoy working with tools, equipment, instruments and machinery. They like to repair and/or fabricate things from various materials according to specifications and using established techniques. Objective persons are interested in finding out how things operate and how they are built.

Innovative i

Innovative persons like to explore things in depth and arrive at solutions to problems by experimenting. They are interested in initiating and creating different ways to solve questions and present information. They enjoy scientific subjects. Innovative persons prefer to be challenged with new and unexpected experiences. They adjust to change easily.

Data, people, and things Help

Data

0
Synthesizing
1
Co-ordinating
2
Analyzing
3
Compiling
4
Computing
5
Copying
6
Comparing
7
N/A
8
Not Significant

People

0
Mentoring
1
Negotiating
2
Instructing - Consulting
3
Supervising
4
Diverting
5
Persuading
6
Speaking - Signaling
7
Serving - Assisting
8
Not significant

Things

0
Setting up
1
Precision working
2
Controlling
3
Driving - Operating
4
Operating - Manipulating
5
Tending
6
Feeding - Offbearing
7
Handling
8
Not significant
Data Compiling 3

Accumulating information usually recorded physically but which may be stored mentally; gathering, collating and classifying information about data, people and things; frequently reporting and/or carrying out a prescribed action in relation to the information.

People Assisting 7

Attending to the needs and requests of people or animals or the expressed and implicit wishes of people; helping and supporting other workers in the performance of tasks.

Things Setting up 0

Adjusting machines or equipment by replacing or altering tools, jigs, fixtures and attachments to prepare them for operation, change performance or restore proper functioning if they break down.

Physical activities Help

V - Vision

1
Close visual acuity
2
Near vision
3
Near and far vision
4
Total visual field

H - Hearing

1
Limited
2
Verbal interaction
3
Other sound discrimination

L - Limb co-ordination

0
Not relevant
1
Upper limb co-ordination
2
Multiple limb co-ordination

C - Colour discrimination

0
Not relevant
1
Relevant

B - Body position

1
Sitting
2
Standing and/or walking
3
Sitting, standing, walking
4
Other body positions

S - Strength

1
Limited
2
Light
3
Medium
4
Heavy
Vision Close visual acuity V-1

The use of sight in the work performed. The levels are organized in terms of the visual field involved in the performance of the work.

1 - Close visual acuity

Some or all work activities are performed close to the worker. The scope of the visual field is confined and requires close attention to detail.

Occupations where one or more of the Main Duties require close visual acuity are coded at this level. Other Main Duties in the unit group may involve other types of vision – for example, Near and far vision (3) or Total visual field (4).

Examples:

  • assembling micro-circuit boards
  • machining to close tolerances
  • cutting gems
  • performing surgical procedures
Colour discrimination Relevant C-1

The use of colour descrimination to identify, distinguish and match colours and different shades of the same colours.

1 - Relevant

Colour discrimination is relevant in the performance of the work.

Examples:

  • observing signals while operating vehicles
  • installing, testing and repairing electrical wiring
  • restoring and conserving museum and art gallery artifacts
  • designing, constructing and repairing dentures
Hearing Limited H-1

The use of hearing in the work performed. The levels are organized in terms of the type of auditory discrimination involved in the performance of the work.

1 - Limited

Hearing is limited to short and/or infrequent verbal interactions in order to perform the work.

Examples:

  • typing and proofreading correspondence
  • cutting and trimming meat, poultry and fish according to customers' orders
  • carrying linen to and from laundry areas and running errands
  • assisting mine workers in constructing underground installations
Body position Sitting, standing, walking B-3

Primary type of posture or body movement involved in performing the work. These postures or body movements range from simple to complex and from sedentary to mobile.

3 - Sitting, standing, walking

This level involves work activities in combinations and varying degrees of Sitting (1) and Standing and/or walking (2).

Examples:

  • teaching students through lectures, discussions, audio-visual presentations and field studies
  • assessing land values for taxation purposes
  • ensuring that systems and equipment are operating efficiently on job sites
  • supervising and co-ordinating the activities of workers who cut or stitch fabric, fur or leather garments
Limb co-ordination Upper limb co-ordination L-1

The use of limbs in performing work.

1 - Upper limb co-ordination

Work activities involve co-ordination of upper limbs.

Examples:

  • keyboarding
  • performing maintenance services such as oil changes, lubrications and tune-ups
  • operating video cameras
  • instructing students in sign language
Strength Limited S-1

The use of strength in the handling of loads such as pulling, pushing, lifting and/or moving objects during the work performed.

1 - Limited

Work activities involve handling loads up to 5 kg.

Examples:

  • examining and analyzing financial information
  • selling insurance to clients
  • conducting economic and technical feasibility studies
  • administering and marking written tests

Environmental conditions Help

Location

L1
Regulated inside climate
L2
Unregulated inside climate
L3
Outside
L4
In a vehicle or cab

Hazards

H1
Dangerous chemical substances
H2
Biological agents
H3
Equipment, machinery, tools
H4
Electricity
H5
Radiation
H6
Flying particles, falling objects
H7
Fire, steam, hot surfaces
H8
Dangerous locations

Discomforts

D1
Noise
D2
Vibration
D3
Odours
D4
Non-toxic dusts
D5
Wetness
Discomforts Odours D3

Work conditions that create disturbances but are not hazardous. In general, these conditions create discomfort, but are not direct sources of injury. In extreme instances, however, these conditions might cause injury.

D3 - Odours

The presence of noxious, intense or prolonged odours in the work environment.

Examples:

  • cooking meals
  • colouring, waving and styling hair
  • preserving and sanitizing human remains
  • using industrial cleaning solutions
  • preparing standard cuts of meat, poultry and fish products for sale
Hazards Biological agents H2

Potential hazards to which the worker may be exposed. The codes provide an indication of the type(s) of hazard(s) most likely to be present in the workplace environment. They are not a measure of frequency, duration or degree of exposure to hazards, but an indication of the presence or absence of a particular hazard in the work environment.

H2 - Biological agents

Exposure to infectious bacteria and viruses as a result of indirect contact with, or direct handling of, infectious materials or micro-organisms that may cause illness.

Examples:

  • treating sick animals
  • providing nursing care
  • investigating outbreaks of food and environment-related diseases and poisonings
  • conducting microbiological tests and laboratory analyses
Hazards Radiation H5

Potential hazards to which the worker may be exposed. The codes provide an indication of the type(s) of hazard(s) most likely to be present in the workplace environment. They are not a measure of frequency, duration or degree of exposure to hazards, but an indication of the presence or absence of a particular hazard in the work environment.

H5 - Radiation

Exposure to ionizing radiation such as X-rays and radioactive substances or non-ionizing radiation such as radio frequencies and infrared, ultraviolet or visible light that may affect health adversely.

Examples:

  • taking dental X-rays
  • preparing and administering radioactive drugs
  • operating welding equipment (ultraviolet)
  • controlling the flow of air traffic using radar monitors, radio and other equipment (radio frequencies)
  • conducting atmospheric research (visible laser light)
  • creating glass objects (infrared)
Location Regulated inside climate L1

The work performed is carried out indoors in a regulated environment, indoors in an unregulated environment, outdoors or in a vehicle. In many occupations, the Main Duties may be performed in more than one location. Therefore, a group may have more than one Location code, for example:

  • firefighting and fire prevention duties
  • maintenance of interior/exterior of buildings
  • managing operations and paperwork of farms

L1 - Regulated inside climate

A normal controlled environment such as an office, hospital or school.

Employment requirements Help

Education/training Help

1
No formal education or training requirements
2
Some high school education and/or on the job training or experience
3
High school
4
Course work, training, workshops and/or experience related to the occupation
5
Apprenticeship, specialized training, vocational school training
6
College, technical school (certificate, diploma)
7
Undergraduate degree
8
Post-graduate or professional degree
+
Additional requirement beyond education and training
R
Regulated requirement(s)
4, 5, 6
  • Medical laboratory technicians/assistants require completion of a college certificate program in medical laboratory science.
  • Certification by the Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science is usually required by employers for medical laboratory technicians/assistants.
  • Combined laboratory and X-ray technicians require completion of a combined laboratory X-ray technology program.

Workplaces/employers Help

  • Clinics
  • Government research laboratories
  • Hospitals
  • Medical laboratories
  • Post-secondary educational institutions
  • Research institutions

Exclusions Help

Remarks Help

  • For this occupation, Hazards H5(Radiation) may also apply

Breakdown summary

Broad occupational category
3 - Health occupations
Skill level
B - Occupations usually require college education, specialized training or apprenticeship training
Major group
32 - Technical occupations in health
Minor group
321 - Medical technologists and technicians (except dental health)
Unit group
3212 - Medical laboratory technicians and pathologists' assistants
Version
2016
Date modified: