Program Highlights

Here's what you can expect to encounter in your education and career as a Medical Laboratory Assistant:
  • Clinical and Administrative Practices
  • Blood Collection
  • Specimen Processing and Accessioning
  • Basic Diagnostic Laboratory Procedures
  • Electrocardiography
  • Quality Control
  • Infection Control
  • Medical Terminology

Start your Application Now

Fill out the form below and one of our Admissions Advisors will contact you to begin your application for the Medical Lab Assistant program, and answer any questions you have.

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Medical Laboratory Assistant (MLA): What do MLAs do?

In partnership with Calgary Laboratory Services (CLS), this full-time program prepares graduates for work in hospitals, patient service centers, and clinical laboratories. Alberta Business & Educational Services’ (ABES) Medical Lab Assistant course will help you become fully qualified.
What is the benefit of our CLS partnership?

Our partnership with CLS for the Medical Lab Assistant program means that students have the opportunity to form a professional relationship with CLS—the largest employer for MLAs in Calgary and the surrounding areas. Our MLA students also receive these direct benefits:

  • CLS interviews and selects students for the program. You will have a working relationship with CLS from the beginning.
  • CLS employees help train students while they are at ABES. ABES brings in CLS employees to provide training in technical areas during the classroom portion of training. ABES’ onsite lab uses all CLS equipment and trains students to CLS’ Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) standards to help better prepare you for practicum and employment. Our students complete a 5-week practicum with CLS in either a community or hospital setting.
  • The CLS Occupational Health and Safety Department screens students and offers them any vaccinations requisite for their practicum and employment. CLS will help you prepare for employment any way that they can.

Career Opportunities

Find a MLA career in the following fields and locations:

  • Diagnostic Laboratory
  • Hospital

Potential Salary

$44,324-$55,067*
$23.79 / Hour Median

Based on experience and employer.

*2021 data from ca.talent.com

5 Week Practicum Placement and Connections to CLS

In 2004, Calgary Laboratory Services approached Alberta Business & Educational Services (ABES), and requested we run the Medical Lab Assistant program in Calgary in order to solve a shortage of MLAs in the industry.
As a result of successfully addressing their issues, we have remained partners ever since. This relationship has been very advantageous for our students, because it allows our program to grow with the times, and to develop the most current techniques and skillsets necessary for success in the field. During your education, you have the opportunity to form a professional relationship with CLS—the largest employer for MLAs in Calgary and the surrounding areas.

Start your Application Now.

Fill out the form below and one of our Admissions Advisors will contact you to begin your application for the Medical Lab Assistant program, and answer any questions you have.

Please fill in required fields *

Video Testimonials

The Medical Laboratory Assistant program at ABES College helped Shae discover a fulfilling career path and find a job she loves.

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What Our Students Have to Say

Trust the Process

Studying at ABES College has been one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life. The instructors and staff are a top-rate as they want their students to do well and they are very supportive in every step of the way. I am very thankful for all the staff of ABES College as they have been a part of my successful journey and I wouldn't achieve what I have achieved without the caring environment. One piece of advice I would like to give to future students is "just trust the process!"

Angelyn P.

Great School

ABES College is a great school! If you want a career in health care this is the place to go. They have a great reputation with CLS and Alberta Health Services. They will give you everything you need to start in health care down to scrubs to wear. I would recommend anyone to take a program here. The staff and teachers really care about students. They will help you reach your goals.

Vicky B. 


Read More MLA Testimonials

What is the Job Outlook for Medical Lab Assistants in Calgary?

Great news for Future MLAs:

There are plenty of opportunities for steady, high-paying positions available both now and in the future.

According to Alberta Labour, MLA positions will grow 3.6% through 2023. Increased demand for MLAs has also come about due to COVID-19, and many current MLAs reaching retirement age.

In other words, if you’ve been searching for a career that will allow you to work in a professional lab setting in the health care industry… or if you’re just ready to finally earn the kind of salary you deserve… becoming a MLA is a fantastic way to earn more money in a meaningful and respected career space.

Can I Qualify for Financial Aid?

Yes! More than 95% of applicants qualify for financial aid.

Many applicants—such as those with children, those who didn’t work last year, and those who recently arrived in Canada—will qualify for free grants automatically, and even those with a high income will usually qualify for some aid.

In short: if you’re worried about the cost of the program, schedule a time to chat with an Admissions Advisor. They can help give you a better idea of how much financial aid you will qualify for.

Learn More About Financial Options

The ABES College Difference

What Makes ABES Different from Other Schools?

We stand out from other schools for 3 big reasons:
  • As a small, privately owned school, ABES guarantees hands-on training for every student.
  •  Unlike other schools, all our programs offer practicum in the Calgary area—making it easier for you to stay local. (Many students get their first job offer while they’re still on practicum)
  • Finally, we stand out for our extensive connections in the medical community. Thanks to our relationships with local healthcare facilities and other prominent employers, our graduates have an easy road to employment.