CSMLS Analyzes and Seeks to Address Competency Gaps of Internationally Educated Medical Laboratory Technologists

September 16, 2010

 HAMILTON, September 16, 2010 - A recent project by the Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science (CSMLS) examined challenges that internationally educated medical laboratory technologists (IEMLTs) may have in their attempt to enhance their skills, advance to the certification examination and ultimately become certified to work as a medical laboratory technologist in Canada.

CSMLS has recently started testing for the national certification examination based on a new competency profile which contains explicit expectations in regards to patient safety, interprofessional communication, teamwork, and professionalism. Anecdotal and published information indicates that IEMLTs are experiencing difficulties successfully integrating into the Canadian workforce. This project, funded by the Government of Ontario, analyzed the competency gaps of internationally educated medical laboratory technologists as they relate to the new competency profile.

In a written report of its findings, CSMLS highlights the financial challenges IEMLTs face as new Canadians. These challenges are compounded by the cost of resource materials needed to bridge competency gaps and prepare IEMLTs to sit the certification examination.

As a result of the analysis, the CSMLS developed a resource guide which, in addition to pointing IEMLTs to existing CSMLS materials and textbooks, included readily accessible online tutorials as a low-cost alternative for some of the more expensive learning resources. This will help meet their upgrading needs and hopefully assist in their successful challenge of the certification examination. The resource guide may additionally be useful to educational institutions to guide their development of further educational resources.

The findings of this project demonstrated that these resources, although of significant value to IEMLTs, are not sufficient to meet all of their learning needs, especially in the areas of social interaction skills, interpersonal communication, networking and workplace experience. The findings confirm the need for structured bridging programs in assisting IEMLTs to gain these skills.

For a copy of the report, click here.

To view the resource guide, click here.

The Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science (CSMLS) is the national certifying body for medical laboratory technologists and medical laboratory assistants, and the national professional society for Canada's medical laboratory professionals. Incorporated in 1937 as the Canadian Society of Laboratory Technologists, the society has over 14,000 members in Canada and in countries around the world.


For more information about CSMLS or interview requests, please contact:

Michelle Squarciotta
Director of Marketing, Communications & Membership

Indigenous Land Acknowledgement : We respectfully acknowledge the CSMLS office, located in Hamilton, Ontario, is situated upon the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, the Mississauga Nation, Anishinaabe Peoples, and the Neutral Peoples. This land is covered by the Dish With One Spoon wampum, which is a treaty between the Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe to share and care for the resources around the Great Lakes. We further acknowledge that this land is covered by the Between the Lakes Treaty No. 3, 1792, between the Crown and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.


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