Histotechnology is the study of the chemical makeup of tissue from animals and humans and the preparation of those specimens for pathology examination. Histotechnologists work with pathologists in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, laboratories and research facilities, assisting with research, examination and microscopic slide presentations.
Admission requirements vary, with some schools calling for a bachelor's degree and others accepting high school graduates who have some college courses under their belt. A post-baccalaureate certificate program takes about a year to complete. Classes teach prospective histotechnologists about the proper handling of slides and specimens while looking at problem solving and providing a basic understanding of science, mathematics and computer science via lectures, assignments and laboratory exercises.
Certificates in Histotechnology
The histotechnology curriculum combines science, mathematics and pathology topics. Students will learn basic procedures in the field through classroom lectures and apply those concepts in laboratory assignments. Courses include:
- Organic chemistry
- Laboratory management
- Tissue processing
- Cellular and molecular biology
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Certified histotechnologists may find employment in crime labs, research laboratories, pharmaceutical companies and dermatology offices, among other settings. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for all medical and clinical lab technologists was $60,520 in 2015. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov) states that the job market for these technologists is expected to rise 14% from 2014 to 2024.
Continuing Education Information
Following completion of the certificate program, budding histotechnologists may apply for national certification examinations. Several professional organizations offer certification, including the American Society for Clinical Pathology and American Medical Technologists. Advancement may be sought with a graduate degree in a related field.
Certificate programs in histotechnology provide training to students interested in pathology and the scientific principles and lab procedures associated with it. These programs can prepare students for careers in various laboratory and medical settings as well as national certification and more advanced degree programs.