Core competencies for a biomedical laboratory scientist - a Delphi study

Maria M. Stollenwerk, Anna Gustafsson, Gudrun Edgren, Petri Gudmundsson, Magnus Lindqvist, Tommy Eriksson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: After completing university education, biomedical laboratory scientists work in clinical laboratories, in biomedical research laboratories, in biotech, and in pharmaceutical companies. Laboratory diagnostics have undergone rapid development over the recent years, with the pace showing no signs of abatement. This rapid development challenges the competence of the staff and will most certainly influence the education of future staff. This study aimed to examine what was considered the necessary competencies needed to pursue a career as a biomedical laboratory scientist. METHODS: A modified Delphi technique was used, with the panel of experts expressing their views in a series of three questionnaire. Consensus was defined as the point which 75 % or more of the panel participants agreed that a particular competency was necessary. RESULTS: The study highlights the perceived importance of mostly generic competencies that relate to quality, quality assurance, and accuracy, as well as different aspects of safety, respect, trustworthiness (towards patients/clients and colleagues), and communication skills. The results also stress the significance of self-awareness and professionality. CONCLUSIONS: We identified important competencies for biomedical laboratory scientists. Together with complementary information from other sources, i.e., guidelines, laws, and scientific publications, the competencies identified can be used as learning outcomes in a competency-based education to provide students with all the competencies needed to work as professional biomedical laboratory scientists.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)476
Number of pages1
JournalBMC Medical Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Jun 20

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Biomedical Laboratory Science/Technology

Free keywords

  • Biomedical laboratory scientist degree
  • Biomedical laboratory scientists
  • Core competencies
  • Core curriculum
  • Delphi
  • Expert group
  • Student


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