Clinical Lab Assistant

Clinical lab assistants perform the basic functions of laboratory work under the supervision of other laboratory professionals. Tasks include processing specimens, simple testing, reporting results, and performing data entry in a laboratory setting. Work settings include doctor’s offices, hospitals, research facilities, and industrial laboratories.

Career Opportunities

Clinical lab assistant is an entry-level position that typically does not require a credential. The Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook (2008-2009) predicts excellent job opportunities as openings for clinical lab assistants are projected to grow 14% between 2006 and 2016, faster than the average for all occupations.

Graduates of this Bellevue College certificate program should have a hiring advantage over applicants who have no training in laboratory work. Job seekers will also need English language skills.

The lab assistant job often serves as a stepping stone for further advancement in the healthcare field, and lab assistants who continue their education can move up in the laboratory or into other healthcare positions. Because of this upward mobility within the field, there are frequent openings for new entry-level applicants.

Nationally, pay generally ranges from $11.29 to $25.73 per hour with an average of $17.86, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment and Wages survey (May 2008). Pay varies by experience, employer, and locality.

For currently available jobs and pay information in Washington, visit

Certificate of Accomplishment

This certificate has a total of 45 credits and is usually completed in three (3) quarters. It prepares students for entry-level positions in clinical laboratory settings.

See the full Certificate of Accomplishment curriculum.


  • Acceptance to Bellevue College as a credit student
  • Basic computer skills and access to a computer with Internet access is highly recommended
  • Placement by assessment into ENGL& 101 for advanced classes


Foundation Courses
AHE 100 Introduction to Healthcare5 Cr.
AHE 110 Medical Terminology5 Cr.
AHE 120 Safety for Healthcare2 Cr.
AHE 130
- OR -
BIOL 108
Human Systems
- - -
Human Biology
5 Cr.
- - -
6 Cr.
AHE 140
- OR -
CMST 280
Professional Relations in Healthcare
- - -
Intercultural Communication

5 Cr.
HLTH 145 Wellness for Healthcare3 Cr.
Program Courses
AHEL 110 Introduction to Phlebotomy5 Cr.
AHEL 120 Introduction to Clinical Laboratory5 Cr.
AHEL 122 Advanced Clinical Laboratory5 Cr.
AHEL 128 Clinical Laboratory Externship5 Cr.


45 Cr.

Recommended Course Scheduling


Total: 17cr. or 18 cr.Total: 13 cr.Total: 10 cr.Total: 5 cr.

AHE 100 (5 cr.)
AHE 140 (5 credits)
- OR -
CMST 280 (5 cr.)

***AHEL 120 (5 cr.)

*****AHEL 128 (5 cr.)
AHE 110 (5 cr.)*HLTH 145 (3 cr.)****AHEL 122 (5 cr.)
AHE 120 (2 cr.)**AHEL 110 (5 cr.)
AHE 130 (5 cr.)
- OR -
BIOL 108 (6 cr.)
*HLTH 145 - This course is not currently offered during Summer quarter.
**AHEL 110 - Students must have all required immunizations completed and uploaded to their Certified Profile to receive an entry code for this course.
***AHEL 120 - No more than one quarter between completion of AHEL 110 and enrollment in AHEL 120.
****AHEL 122 - No more than one quarter between completion of AHEL 120 and enrollment in AHEL 122. This course is only offered during Spring and Fall quarters.
*****AHEL 128 - Students must complete all Clinical On-boarding paperwork to receive an entry code for this course. No more than one quarter between completion of AHEL 122 and enrollment in AHEL 128. This course is only offered during Summer and Winter quarters.