Learn to collect and prepare blood (phlebotomy) and other biological samples, perform electrocardiograms (ECG), and communicate effectively with patients and other health care providers.
What you will learn
Upon successful completion of this program, graduates will be able to:
- Practise safely, ethically and professionally as a Medical Laboratory Assistant (MLA).
- Integrate knowledge from the medical laboratory sciences to provide optimal medical laboratory services.
- Collect, handle and process specimens for analysis according to standard operating procedures in the medical laboratory.
- Use equipment applicable to the medical laboratory.
- Perform cardiac monitoring tests.
- Perform administrative functions to support the operation of the medical laboratory.
- Assist with quality assurance programs in the medical laboratory.
- Use effective interpersonal skills in the medical laboratory.
What to expect
The program is divided into two levels.
Level 1 is 20 weeks in length and is a combination of theory and practical skills. Instructional activities include lectures, assignments, audio-visual presentations, workshops, on-line activities, guest speakers and tours. Practical skills are developed and practised in a laboratory setting. Under the supervision of an instructor, students practise their blood collection and cardiac monitoring skills.
Upon successful completion of Level 1, students are assigned to a four-week practicum in a medical laboratory. The purpose of the practicum is to provide the students with an opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills in the workplace.
- Grade 12 graduation, or equivalent
- English Language Proficiency as demonstrated by one of the following:*
- English 12 with a minimum ‘B’ grade, or equivalent
- English Language Proficiency at an English 12 ‘B’ level
- English 12 with a minimum ‘B’ grade, or equivalent
Knowledge of biology demonstrated by one of the following:
Biology 12 with a minimum ‘C-’ grade, or equivalent
BIOL 0983 and BIOL 0993 both with a minimum ‘C-‘ grade, or equivalent
Certified five-minute keyboarding test with a minimum typing speed of 40 gross words per minute with a maximum of five errors
Criminal Record Check (CRC)
Students in this program are required to complete a CRC. The CRC must be completed according to VCC's Criminal Record Check instructions. Students whose CRC results indicate they pose a risk to vulnerable populations will not be able to complete the requirements of the program (e.g. practicums) or graduate.
Within six months of the start of the program, students must submit a negative TB skin test. If the TB skin test is positive, a negative TB chest x-ray is required.
An Immunization Record must be completed
Immunizations in the following are strongly recommended and in some case may be required for practicum placements: ?
Measles, Mumps & Rubella
Varicella (Chicken pox)
- COVID-19 Vaccination
- This program is available to Canadian citizens and permanent residents. See program options for international students at VCC International.
- Applicants who self-identify as Indigenous are strongly encouraged to connect with VCC’s Indigenous Education and Community Engagement team to learn more about VCC’s Indigenous Enrolment policy, application preparation/completion, program advising, and a range of other individualized services.
- Applicants must be 16 years of age or older or a graduate of a secondary school. (Some exceptions may apply.)
- Applicants must submit official transcripts and other documents as required by their course or program. Seats are offered to eligible applicants with completed applications, in order of application completion date (except for programs with competitive admissions). A complete application includes an application form, evidence of educational pre-requisites (e.g. transcripts), any required supporting documents (e.g. language proficiency, audition video), and the required deposit or fee payment. If you do not meet the requirements for the term applied, your application may be cancelled.
Missing prerequisites? Learn more about VCC's tuition-free academic upgrading or English as a Second Language (ESL) courses, or discover which university transfer options are right for you.
- Ability to perform fine motor skills
- Able to work well in stressful situations
- Excellent communication skills (written and oral)
- Ability to work well as a team member
- Excellent interpersonal skills
- Good health
Program general hours
Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with the exception of practicum experiences. Students will be advised of their practicum hours once registered and attending the program.
Prior learning assessment and recognition
Prior learning assessment and recognition is not available for this program.
|MLAB 1111||Professional Practice||3|
|MLAB 1112||Laboratory Fundamentals||2|
|MLAB 1113||Specimen Collection and Processing||6|
|MLAB 1114||Medical Laboratory Procedures||3|
|MLAB 1116||Human Relations Skills||1|
|MLAB 1117||Medical Laboratory Computer Applications||1|
|MLAB 1218||Laboratory Practicum||4|
This guide is intended as a general guideline only. The college reserves the right to make changes as appropriate.
* This information is intended as a guideline only. Program and course details are subject to change with the approval of VCC's Board of Governors.
Fees and other costs*
|Fee description||Fee Amount||Notes|
0 - 1
0 - 2
0 - 3
0 - 4
|Materials||387||not including textbooks|
|Medical & Dental||275|
|Program-specific extra fees||0|
Need help with tuition?
Explore your options for scholarships, grants, bursaries, and loans.
* Fees are approximate and subject to change with the approval of VCC's Board of Governors. Students are required to pay any applicable fee increases. Application and assessment fees are non-refundable. Tuition fees include a $300 non-refundable deposit.
Fees listed are for domestic students. For international programs, visit VCC International.
Any refunds are issued according to VCC's refund policy.
VCC Registrar's Office
1155 East Broadway
Vancouver, B.C., V5T 4V5