Cellular pathology learning opportunities
How do I become a biomedical scientist?
Modern pathology and biomedical science laboratory work involves complex and diverse investigations that require an in-depth scientific knowledge of anatomy, physiology and pathology. Like many other professions a biomedical scientist will need to complete a suitable degree course. University entry qualifications usually include 'A' Level biology and chemistry and GCSE mathematics or equivalent.
Biomedical science degree courses accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science are designed specifically for the profession.
BSc honours biomedical science degrees are designed to give you basic scientific knowledge and training. Most honours degree courses are full time, with some having a placement year (sandwich course) to gain practical experience of working in a laboratory. Part-time options are also available.
Co-terminus degrees co-ordinate and deliver the education and laboratory training for graduation and eligibility for registration (see below) to be simultaneous. Practical training is delivered by placements within local laboratories as part of the degree.
What happens next?
Professional registration. On successful completion of an honours degree, a graduate will require a minimum of a year in service training to become registered with the Health Professions Council - a requirement to practice using the title 'biomedical scientist'. The practical experience needed for registration is often incorporated into sandwich degree honours courses and, increasingly, three year co-terminus degree courses (see above).
Biomedical scientists then go on to specialise in one of the following laboratory disciplines:
- Cellular pathology
- Clinical chemistry
- Medical microbiology
- Transfusion science
As their careers progress, biomedical scientists can move into research, training and education, advanced and specialised roles, product development and commerce.