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How do I get Lab Technician Training?

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  • Written By: Carol Francois
  • Edited By: J.T. Gale
  • Last Modified Date: 04 December 2016
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There generally are three places you can receive lab technician training: a community college, online schools, and on-the-job training. A lab technician can work in a variety of industries, ranging from health care to chemical processing. The skills taught in lab technician training programs include processing techniques, lab safety, written communication, and equipment use.

In addition to these general skills, training typically is provided in the subject matter as determined by the type of program. For example, a medical lab technician is trained in working with biological substances, while an electronic lab technician is trained in electronics. These skills usually are required to obtain and maintain employment as a lab technician in each specific field.

People who are interested in lab technician training usually are detail oriented, enjoy working independently, and are results oriented. There is very little interaction between the technician staff and the client, resulting in a work environment that is quiet, focused, and has few interruptions. People who enjoy social interaction will find this type of work frustrating and lacking in excitement.

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The most common way to acquire lab technician training is to attend a program offered through a community or career college. These programs widely are available and provide the skills necessary to complete the tasks of this position. The length of the program varies by subject, but they usually are one to two years in length. Many schools offer part- and full-time schedules to allow people who are working to upgrade their skills or make a career change.

Online lab technician training programs are offered over the Internet. Students access course materials, assignments, tests, quizzes, and lectures using the computer. These programs are offered by both dedicated online schools and by traditional colleges. It can be very important to check the accreditation status of the school before registering.

Take the time to review the course syllabus, program admission requirements, and certification provided upon successful completion. All lab technician programs should have a component that actually is completed in a physical laboratory using real equipment. Most online schools have classroom privileges at local colleges or universities, and can meet this requirement through evening or weekend classes.

Some of the more advanced lab technician training programs are offered by employers. The firm may arrange for on-site training of a specific piece of equipment, or the application of a new technique. These programs are available only to staff working as lab technicians, and may not provide any formal certification.

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