Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant, Certificate

Caregiving members of the medical laboratory team. The full-time Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant Program is a comprehensive one-year (ten months), entry-level certificate in pre-analytic laboratory sciences.

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Check our current program availability.

CMLA Students in CHW

Program at a glance



Work experience

Clinical/fieldwork placement

Study options


Blended delivery

Open to International


Area of study

Health Sciences


10 months

Start this summer

One-time funding to support tuition incentives and $2000 in bursary funding available!

Contact Camosun Admission at 250-370-3550, the Program Leader at 250-370-4762 or attend an Info Session.
Scheduled Info Sessions

Technical expertise, analytical precision, and exceptional service

Start dates in May, September or January

Certified Medical Laboratory Assistants (CMLAs) are front-line healthcare workers responsible for collecting, handling and transporting samples used by physicians to diagnose medical conditions. As part of the Interdisciplinary Healthcare Team, Certified Medical Laboratory Assistants are valued for their careful attention to detail and compassionate treatment of patients and clients.

CMLA Students in Centre for Health and Wellness 2

HHS Student Handbook

Current information for School of Health and Human Services students and听CMLA program specific handbook sections.

Work in health care

The full-time Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant (CMLA) Program is a comprehensive 10-month entry-level certificate in pre-analytic laboratory sciences. This program prepares graduates for their role as integral members of the healthcare team by providing a broad foundation in laboratory science theory integrated with authentic simulation environments and workplace clinical practicums. Students learn to incorporate exemplary patient and client-centric behaviours while mastering the techniques of blood collection (phlebotomy), analytical sample collection and preparation, and perform electrocardiagrams.听

Applied learning

The program is on the Interurban Campus in the Alex & Jo Campbell Centre for Health and Wellness Building (CHW). The CHW opened in 2019 showcasing new applied learning spaces and simulated settings. The school offers the latest technology, equipment and even more learner-centred, interdisciplinary, and holistic education opportunities integrated to meet student needs.听The program currently offers a blended learning approach with online lectures and face to face labs that allow flexibility for local and distant student schedules and work life balance.

The program provides guaranteed practicums arranged with preferred employers such as Vancouver Island Health Authority and LifeLabs.听

In demand

Camosun's CMLA students are in听high demand!听Ageing populations with complex care needs, new testing services, and expanding scopes of practice require听laboratory professionals now. Our students are employed in their field of study immediately after graduation.听Most graduates begin with casual positions, transitioning into听regular employment within a year. Shifts may vary and you will be expected to work day, evening and night shifts.

Your career

As a Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant, you鈥檒l first find听employment as a phlebotomist, diagnostic assistant, technical assistant,听or in pre-analytical specimen preparation. Further professional opportunities for the CMLA exist in management, quality control and assurance, education, informatics, and research.

Indigenous Priority Seating

Indigenous Limited Priority Admissions

The School of Health & Human Services (HHS) offers Priority Seating for Indigenous students in all Health related programs.

Visit听Ey膿蕯 Sq葍鈥檒ewen - Centre for Indigenous Education & Community Connections (IECC)听for information on how to apply.听听

Any questions about the application process, please contact听hhsindigenoussupport@camosun.ca

The听Indigenous Limited Priority Admissions听process, approved by the Board of Governors, supported by the Education Council, and approved by the BC Human Rights Tribunal, welcomes applications from all qualified Indigenous applicants.

What you'll learn

Current students wanting information about your program, go to student planning in听.

Program outline

For more details, including courses, please see the program outline in the Academic Calendar.

Program outline

What to expect

The full-time Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant Program is a comprehensive one-year (ten months), entry-level certificate in pre-analytic laboratory sciences.

Flexible pathways for progression and a variety of approaches to educational delivery prepare you for clinical practicum opportunities in both hospital and community based laboratories throughout Vancouver Island. Course delivery includes traditional face-to-face and blended classroom instruction, practical simulation labs, teaching clinic integrations, technology-enhanced applied learning, and online courses.

You can expect to spend about one to three hours per day on homework, including weekends. Practicum placement locations are available throughout Vancouver Island. During your placement, you work four, 7-hour days, for up to seven weeks. You might be scheduled for days, evenings, or weekend shifts.

Academic Term 1

In your first term, you鈥檒l dive right into learning phlebotomy by actually performing venipuncture and capillary collections on your fellow classmates 鈥 and they on you! Using many of the skills you learn about workplace communication and patient management, you鈥檒l practice your new skills during labs in authentic simulation environments. During this term, you鈥檒l also have the opportunity to develop or strengthen your understanding of Indigenous people and learn more about their worldviews.

Academic Term 2

In your second term, you鈥檒l delve deeper into technical laboratory skill development to further build your knowledge and develop your practice capabilities. You鈥檒l develop and enhance your teamwork and communication skills by participating in Interdisciplinary activities, expand your understanding of diagnostic science in laboratory pathophysiology and learn how to perform electrocardiograms鈥攁 required practice capability for Certified Medical Laboratory Assistants in British Columbia.

Academic Term 3

During your final term, you鈥檒l participate in a 7-week clinical practicum designed to ensure that you meet the BCSLS provincial and CSMLS national entry-to-practice requirements. You鈥檒l demonstrate your capabilities under the supervision of designated employees working as qualified Medical Laboratory Assistants and Technologists.

Note: Practicum availability depends on site capacity, training staff, and future job opportunities; we cannot guarantee exact locations of site placements on Vancouver Island.

Tuition and fees

Effective from September 1, 2024, to August 31, 2025

Estimated tuition

Tuition estimates are for the entire program

Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant, Certificate

$15,421 (domestic)
$21,477 (international)

Domestic tuition fees vary depending on the individual course fees for the classes you select.

For International students visit: International Tuition & Fees.

Student fees

In addition to tuition estimates, student fees are calculated based on your enrolment. Refer to:听Student Fees.

Financial assistance

You may need to find more than one source of funding to help pay for your education and living costs while attending college. Check out sources of money you don't need to pay back as well as those that need to be repaid.

Financial Aid & Awards

Curriculum & courses

Course list

Course name

Admission requirements

One of:

  • C+ in听English 12
  • C in听English 12 Camosun Alternative听听

One of:

  • C in听Anatomy and Physiology 12听听
  • C in听Anatomy and Physiology 12 Camosun Alternative

One of:

  • C+ in MOA 155
  • Completion of a Medical Terminology course consisting of a minimum of 60 hours with a letter grade of C+听or higher

And all of:

  • Grade 12 graduation or equivalent*
  • Completed
  • Attendance at a Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant Program and completion of the online questionnaire. An online option of the 听is available for anyone unable to attend in person.
  • Keyboarding 40 words per minute
  • 40 hours of volunteer work in a patient related environment
    • Camosun is waiving this 40 hours admission requirement听for the Fall 2024, Winter 2025 and Summer 2025 intakes

听*Grade 12 (High School) graduation is a condition of employment for the Hospital Employees Union (HEU) and the British Columbia Government Employees Union (BCGEU) approved Medical Laboratory Assistant, Technical Assistant, and Laboratory Assistant job descriptions common to both health authority and private employers in BC.

When you apply you will need to submit proof that you meet the program admission requirements listed above. Where a letter grade is specified, you must have proof of that grade or higher.

For more details, including courses, please see the program outline in the Academic Calendar: Loading...

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Missing admission requirements?

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Need help applying?

Find out more on How to Apply or speak to an Admissions Advisor.

Contact us

If you have admissions questions contact us today!

If you have questions about what you can expect to learn in your Health and Human Services classes contact听hhsinfo@camosun.ca

Faculty/staff profile

Brent Mekelburg

Dr. Brent Mekelburg

Chair, Allied Health and Technologies (AHT)

Alex & Jo Campbell Centre for Health and Wellness (CHW)

Faculty/staff profile

Alexandra Purdy

Alex Purdy

Program Leader, Certified Medical Laboratory Assistant (CMLA)

Alex & Jo Campbell Centre for Health and Wellness (CHW)

Faculty/staff profile

Jana Suraci

Jana Suraci

Faculty Curriculum Lead

Alex & Jo Campbell Centre for Health and Wellness (CHW)

Faculty/staff profile


Tania Pozney


250-370-3000 ext 1040
Alex & Jo Campbell Centre for Health and Wellness (CHW)

Faculty/staff profile

Lynelle Yutani

Lynelle Yutani

Instructor, Allied Health and Technologies (AHT)

Alex & Jo Campbell Centre for Health and Wellness (CHW)

CMLA Students in CHW

Learn more

For more details, including courses, please see the program outline in the Academic Calendar.听

Contact information

School of Health and Human Services

Campus location

Centre for Health and Wellness (CHW) 207

Location link

Interurban campus



Admissions questions