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Histologic Technician (SOC CODE: 29-2011.03)

Job Description Overview

Prepare histologic slides from tissue sections for microscopic examination and diagnosis by pathologists. May assist in research studies.

Related Careers

  • Histotechnologists and Histologic Technicians
  • Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists

Sample Job Duties

  • Cut sections of body tissues for microscopic examination using microtomes.
  • Stain tissue specimens with dyes or other chemicals to make cell details visible under microscopes.
  • Mount tissue specimens on glass slides.
  • Embed tissue specimens into paraffin wax blocks or infiltrate tissue specimens with wax.
  • Examine slides under microscopes to ensure tissue preparation meets laboratory requirements.
  • Freeze tissue specimens.
  • Perform procedures associated with histochemistry to prepare specimens for immunofluorescence or microscopy.
  • Operate computerized laboratory equipment to dehydrate, decalcify, or microincinerate tissue samples.
  • Maintain laboratory equipment such as microscopes, mass spectrometers, microtomes, immunostainers, tissue processors, embedding centers, and water baths.
  • Supervise histology laboratory activities.

    What Classes Do I Need to Take?

    • Histologic Technician Training: AS Degree

      Natural Sciences Division
      Degree S1211

      This program provides on-campus and on-site technical training in the field of histotechnology, focusing on routine tissue sample preparation, special stains and techniques such as immunohistochemistry, and in situ hybridation. Training on campus will utilize samples routinely prepared in both clinical and research facilities. As part of their formal training, students of histotechnology will work through study guides provided by the American Society of Clinical Pathologists (ASCP) for its certification examination. Partnerships with local facilities will allow for work experience and internship sites, required for certification of histotechnology graduates, and will provide further training for those interested in research and/or careers in the private sector.

      This degree requires the completion of General Education coursework plus the following:

      Required Courses

      Course Prefix Course Name Units
      Choose one course from the following:3-5
      ANAT 10B
      Introductory Human Physiology
      ANAT 36
      Human Physiology
      MICR 26
      Introduction to Immunology
      ANAT 35Human Anatomy5
      Choose one course from the following:5
      CHEM 10
      Chemistry for Allied Health Majors
      CHEM 40
      Introduction to General Chemistry
      CHEM 50
      General Chemistry I
      CHEM 50H
      General Chemistry I - Honors
      HT 1Introduction to Histotechnology1
      HT 2Scientific Basics for Histotechnicians3
      HT 10Histology3
      HT 12Beginning Histotechniques5
      HT 14Advanced Histotechniques5
      HT 16Histochemistry and Immunohistochemistry4
      HT 17Work Experience in Histotechnology4
      MICR 1Principles of Microbiology4-5
      or MICR 22 Microbiology
      Total Units42-45
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