Study medical laboratory science & explore a permanent residency pathway
Medical laboratory scientist is listed as an occupation that’s in demand in Australia. Follow these simple steps and you could gain permanent residency in Australia.
The role itself is ideal for those with an inquiring, methodical mind. This course is for people who are passionate about scientific research. Studying laboratory science will enable you to develop technical skills in diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of diseases.
- Preparation of tissue samples for microscopic examination
- Examination and analysis of samples to see the outcomes of microbial infections
- Analysis of body tissue samples to help in diagnosing and treating diseases
- Advising other medical professionals on test interpretation
- Setting up and maintaining ethical and safe laboratory environment.
How to apply for your visa as a medical laboratory scientist
1) In order to apply for these roles, you will need to complete a Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science or comparable relevant degree.
2) Apply for a temporary work visa
Apply for a temporary work visa called the 485 graduate visa once the degree is complete. This allows you to stay in Australia while you search for a job.
3) Skills assessment with AIMS
You will need to be assessed as competent by AIMS (The Australian Institute of Medical Scientists). This includes filling out an application form, fee of AU$900, IELTS report, qualification proof, academic transcripts, employment verification, and ID proof.
4) Apply for a relevant role
If you are planning to apply for employer sponsored roles, then you need to obtain employment before applying for a visa.
5) Apply for your visa
Note that these visas are points based, and the points will differ across the various visas. However, there are some general standards:
- 18-24 years old, 25 points
- 25-32 years old, 30 points
- 33-39 years old, 25 points
- 40-44 years old, 15 points
- 45-49 years old, 0 points
- English language proficiency
- Superior (IELTS score of 8 or more), 20 points
- Proficient (IELTS score of 7 or more), 10 points
- Competent (IELTS score of 6 or more), 0 points
- Employment skilled experience overseas
- 3 years, 5 points
- 5 years, 10 points
- 8 years, 15 points
- Employment skilled experience within Australia
- 1 year, 5 points
- 3 years, 10 points
- 5 years, 15 points
- 8 years, 20 points
- Your partners English level and qualifications help increase points
- The existence of an existing job offer will gain points
- Qualifications earned in Australia increase points.
You need a minimum of 60 points to apply, but you should be aiming for at least 65 points. Each visa type is slightly different, so use the Australian Government visa points calculator to find out specifics.
Visa types for medical laboratory scientist
Once you have your qualification, consider the following types that accept Medical Laboratory Scientist ANZSCO 234611:
- 189 Permanent visa, Skilled independent
This visa is points tested, and permanent. It requires you to be invited to apply. You must ensure you have the correct qualification and approval from AIMS. You can then submit an expression of interest via SkillSelect. The Australian Government will advise you once you have been invited, and you can apply for visa 189 after that.
- 190 permanent visa, State sponsored
- ACT, NT, SA, TAS, WA and some parts of VIC, NSW and QLD
This visa is permanent, and allows you to live and work in a specific part of Australia. Identify the region you wish to live in, and submit an expression of interest. The local government will advise you if you have been invited to apply for the visa, upon which you can submit your Visa 190 application.
- 491 Provisional visa, Regional skilled work
- ACT, NT, SA, TAS, WA and some parts of VIC, NSW and QLD
This visa is only temporary, for up to five years. You will only be able to work in the approved region that indicates an interest in you. Once you are qualified and has satisfied AIMS’ requirements, you can submit an indication of interest on SkillSelect. Once the local Government has indicated you’ve been accepted, you can apply for the visa.
How do you get a state nomination?
If the medical laboratory scientist occupation features on the state’s nominated occupation list, you can apply for a state skilled nomination. You must also meet the state’s guidelines for application, which differs across Australia. If you meet all requirement, you can lodge your application through SkillSelect. Nominate your preferred state and choose the subclass 190 or 491. Track your application online, and once approved, you will get an email advising you to apply for your visa.
Where can you study?
You can complete the Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science or comparable relevant degree at many different learning institutions across Australia. The AIMS accredited courses are as follows:
- Central Queensland University Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science (Honours)
- Charles Darwin University Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science
- Charles Sturt University Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science (Pathology)
- Curtin University Bachelor of Science (Laboratory Medicine)
- Griffith University Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science
- James Cook University Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science (Honours)
- Murdoch University Bachelor of Science/ Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine
- Queensland University of Technology Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science
- RMIT University Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Laboratory Medicine)
- University of South Australia Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine (Honours)
- University of Tasmania Bachelor of Laboratory Medicine
Most of these courses has minimum requirements for entry including:
- Secondary qualification, up to years 11 or 12 Australian equivalent, OR
- An existing Bachelor level qualification for two years with a minimum GPA of 4.0
- IELTS score of 6.0 at least
- Minimum health and security requirements
Future career prospects for medical laboratory scientists
It is predicted that this field will continue to experience strong future growth, with the predicted 13% growth from 2016 and 2026 already in realisation. Disease and illness are part of the human condition, and testing and identifying problems is important.
The role also offers specialisation as an IVF embryologist or pathology collector. Once you have the qualification and have begun work, there are also opportunities for on-the-job specialisation within a type of illness or disease, or a certain type of testing.
- As an IVF embryologist, you would be employed to perform diagnostic procedures as well as procedures like freezing eggs, assisting with IVF, and monitoring embryo development. There are also a range of tasks involved in diagnosis and treatment of infertility.
- A pathology collector / phlebotomist is involved in the collection, handling, transport and processing of blood samples. This includes collection of specimens using the correct equipment and understanding what could affect the test results.
The options for a Masters or a PhD in the medical field may be open to you after this Bachelors’ degree. Moving into the biomedical field creates opportunities with research within the university, for drug companies, or in public health.
Research involves evaluating medicines, discovering how compounds interact with disease-causing organisms and cells. Then, there is development of new drugs, and testing it to ensure the efficacy and safety. You would be working with a range of other specialist disciplines in biology, chemistry, engineering, medicine and informatics.
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