Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon

Essential Functions

To be successful in the MLT program and become employable, the student must be able to perform essential functions expected of the MLT (see list below). Please contact the MLT Program regarding questions or concerns about these requirements.

Part I – Physical Functions

Physical ability to sit, stand and move freely about the laboratory

Full disclosure of disabilities is necessary if unable to perform duties; reasonable accommodations may be provided.

  • Stand and/or sit for prolonged periods
  • Perform moderately active, continuous physical work
  • Reach overhead, bend forward and stoop
  • May be required to lift, move and carry up to 50 pounds (location dependent)
  • May be required to push, pull equipment on carts over 25 pounds
Manual Dexterity and hand-eye coordination to efficiently, accurately and safely operate laboratory equipment
  • Accurate keyboard operation (familiarity with computers recommended)
  • Rapid hand-eye coordination
  • Precisely maneuver small items and instruments

(Examples: turn dials, press keypads, move switches on laboratory instruments; use rubber bulb to draw liquid into a marked pipette, using a gloved finger to control release of that liquid to within 1 mm of a fixed point on the pipette; isolate bacteria by smoothly manipulating an inoculating loop over the surface of an agar culture plate without tearing the surface of the agar.)

Visual Abilities to accurately perform and interpret laboratory tests
  • Correctable vision to read size 8 font print
  • Distinguish colors
  • Distinguish shades
  • Accurate depth perception

(Examples: read calibration lines on pipettes and laboratory instruments that are 1 mm apart; distinguish between solutions that are clear, opaque, or particulate in test tubes and on glass slides; identify stained and unstained cellular components in the range of 1 mm using a binocular bright-field microscope; differentiate color reactions.)

Hearing abilities to respond to patients and co-workers and to hear instrument alarms
  • Hear a range of tones
  • Hear and distinguish normal speaking voice

Part II - Academic & Interpersonal Functions

Communication skills to safely and accurately perform tests and communicate with others
  • Communicate with patients, co-workers and other healthcare professionals
  • Comprehend and accurately follow verbal and written directions
  • Appropriate telephone and electronic mail skills

(Examples: clear and audible speaking voice to communicate on the telephone and in person to coworkers, physicians and patients; ability to understand and follow verbal and written directions.)

Analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Possess aptitude to integrate theory and to correlate data
  • Recognize and solve problems
  • Perform mathematical calculations

(Examples: possess computational skills needed for laboratory math calculations such as conversion of milliliters to microliters.)

Technical Aptitude
  • Operate and maintain precision instruments
  • Accurately perform complex or technical procedures
Emotional Stability
  • Readily adjusts to change
  • Able to work in stressful situations/setting without compromising professionalism, integrity or quality of work
  • Employs intellect and exercises appropriate judgment
  • Accountable for actions
Interpersonal Skills
  • Team player
  • Positive response to instruction and supervision
Professional Attributes
  • Dependable
  • Carefully adheres to program and affiliate policies
  • Appears professional in dress and demeanor