Solidify your skills in laboratory science with one of the 25 Best Online Bachelor’s in Clinical Research.
Whether you’ve been searching for the right moment to continue your education and add qualifications to your resume, or you’re looking for a new hands-on career path, a degree in clinical research is a solid choice for career advancement. As a student in health sciences, you will constantly be putting the skills you learn to practical use, both throughout your college education and beyond.
What Is a Bachelor’s in Clinical Research Degree?
Clinical research refers to a sector of the health science field in which technicians make key laboratory analyses. As a clinical research scientist, you will test new treatment therapies (such as medications and clinical devices) as part of their approval process. You will also study existing products in order to look for potential medium and long-term adverse effects.
Clinical researchers fall into the category of medical laboratory technicians, who are responsible for all of the daily testing in hospitals and clinics. They provide essential information in tissues, fluids, and cells needed for diagnosis. In fact, 70% of the decisions made by doctors are based on the results of laboratory testing.
How Much Can You Earn with a Bachelor’s in Clinical Research Degree?
A scientist with a bachelor’s in clinical research can work as an assistant, technician, researcher, or coordinator within a laboratory facility. This degree gives you access to positions in research facilities, biotechnology and public health laboratories, molecular diagnostics labs, industrial quality control facilities, and veterinary clinics.
The average laboratory technician makes over $53,000 annually, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. With the rapid advancement of knowledge in the field of laboratory medicine, there is a growing need for highly skilled clinical laboratory scientists both in public health and in private sectors. Jobs in the field are expected to grow 11% in the next ten years, which is much higher than the average career path.
What Is Required for a Bachelor’s in Clinical Research Degree?
The vast majority of programs require completion of some coursework and/or technical training in order to apply, although the specifics vary greatly by school. Some universities require completion of an entire associate degree, while others will accept transfer credits alone. Universities may also ask for standardized test scores, an application essay, and/or letters of recommendation.
Medical laboratory sciences is a very applied degree, meaning even if you take courses online, most programs will require time in a laboratory in order to graduate. Schools will occasionally accept prior laboratory experience towards degree completion, and many will allow you to work directly with your current place of employment during your clinicals. Some states require additional certifications or licensure in order to practice clinical research.
What Are the Best Online Bachelor’s in Clinical Research Degree?
OSR uses six data points: three school-wide and three program-specific. For school-wide, OSR uses Student Satisfaction, Admission Rates, and the number of programs the school offers online. For program-specific, OSR checks the Median Debt of graduates from that program, how many degrees are offered within that program’s umbrella department, and what percentage of students at that school graduated from that department.
The six statistics are displayed by each school. The sliding bar under each statistic represents how that school compares to other US institutions. “Not reported” means a school did not release that information to the US Department of Education. A more detailed description of the OSR process can be found on the methodology page.
The University of Texas Medical Branch
- Tuition: $6,095(in state) / $19,306(out of state)
- Tuition: 18,268
- Credit Hours: 60
- All incoming students must complete a background check
- July and December application deadlines
School WideStudent Satisfaction82%Admission RateNot ReportedPrograms offered online3
Program LevelMedian Debt$13,000Programs in Department2Popularity at School100.00%100%OSR Score
In 1937, the American Society of Clinical Pathologists approved the first clinical science program in the southwest at the University of Texas, and the university has been a leader in the field ever since. Now, each student enrolled in the program must participate in a rigorous preceptorship during their course of study. Each laboratory course within the BS in Clinical Science degree includes two three-day workshops on campus.
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
- Tuition: $5,983(in state) / $18,848(out of state)
- Tuition: $14,547
- Credit Hours: 132
- Specific scholarships available for health science students
- Students must have all Texas core courses completed prior to program entry
School WideStudent SatisfactionNot ReportedAdmission RateNot ReportedPrograms offered online4
Program LevelMedian Debt$12,500Programs in Department4Popularity at School100.00%98%OSR Score
The success of Texas Tech’s Bachelor of Science in Clinical Laboratory Science is evident from its board certification pass rate of 91%. The program offers Pre-Med and Pre-Physician Assistant specialization options for those looking to continue into graduate education. The school also offers a second degree certificate program, as well as a master’s in molecular science.
University of Nebraska Medical Center
- Tuition: $9,930(in state) / $28,020(out of state)
- Tuition: $11,935
- Credit Hours: 35
- Applicants must already have a minimum of 85 credits
- Providing distance education for over 100 years
School WideStudent Satisfaction59%Admission RateNot ReportedPrograms offered online3
Program LevelMedian DebtNot ReportedPrograms in Department3Popularity at School100.00%95%OSR Score
The University of Nebraska is another shining example of a degree advancement program, offering its Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science (BSMLS) completely online to qualified students. The degree program has two start dates, in the fall and in the spring. As a UN student, you will complete coursework independently, learning both theory and practical application through exercises/assignments, case studies, virtual laboratory simulations, and recorded lectures.
Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences20-Year ROI$1,073,575
- Tuition: $27,084(in state) / $27,084(out of state)
- Tuition: $26,916
- Credit Hours: 56
- Foundation for Health Informatics Professional Certificate offered
- Possibility to waive enrollment deposit
School WideStudent Satisfaction74%Admission Rate67%Programs offered online3
Program LevelMedian DebtNot ReportedPrograms in Department3Popularity at School100.00%94%OSR Score
This degree program is unique: although you graduate with a BS in Health Science, you will not take any core courses at Pennsylvania College. The degree provides general education classes to students who already possess specialized skills and qualifications in the field. Although not required for graduation, students who reside near the university can book access to the department’s state-of-the-art Clinic Simulator Lab.
Kettering College20-Year ROI$1,088,603
- Tuition: $12,408(in state) / $12,408(out of state)
- Tuition: $19,037
- Credit Hours: 34-37
- Participant in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement
- Approved by the Adventist Accrediting Association (AAA)
School WideStudent Satisfaction74%Admission Rate28%Programs offered online2
Program LevelMedian Debt$31,351Programs in Department2Popularity at School100.00%94%OSR Score
Kettering College’s BS in Health Science is the ideal option for students looking for a program that incorporates the spirit of Christian caring and service. As a KC student, you will receive high-quality, values-based education that covers a wide array of health topics, from advanced imaging to health management. If you’re looking to specialize your degree, you have the ability to declare an emphasis in your sector of choice.
Jefferson College of Health Sciences20-Year ROI$1,067,616
- Tuition: $25,400(in state) / $25,400(out of state)
- Tuition: $25,433
- Credit Hours: 120
- Applicants accepted on a rolling basis
- With continuous study, students usually graduate between two to three years
School WideStudent Satisfaction73%Admission Rate39%Programs offered online3
Program LevelMedian Debt$25,750Programs in Department3Popularity at School91.42%93%OSR Score
Although the BS in Health Services Management at Thomas Jefferson University doesn’t focus directly on research techniques, it equips its graduates with the skills needed for leadership within a clinical research facility. Students complete courses individually, with each class lasting approximately eight weeks. Some of the coursework incorporated into this degree includes: Leadership Theory and Ethical Practices, Survey of Health Services Delivery Systems, and Finding and Evaluating Statistical Data.
Siena Heights University20-Year ROI$833,916
- Tuition: $25,390(in state) / $25,390(out of state)
- Tuition: $19,526
- Credit Hours: 120
- Students must qualify with a minimum of 35 designated major credits
- Individual curriculum determined for each student
School WideStudent Satisfaction78%Admission Rate67%Programs offered online48
Program LevelMedian DebtNot ReportedPrograms in Department16Popularity at School29.76%93%OSR Score
If you already have the technical training but are looking to boost your educational credentials, the Bachelor of Applied Sciences from Siena Heights University may be the perfect match for you. Students who have already completed a certified training program, an applied associate degree, or who have work experience in a laboratory can apply to this “inverted” study program. Once their prior credits have been approved, students will complete their degree by fulfilling the remaining liberal arts, management, and humanities courses needed for a baccalaureate education.
The University of Tennessee-Health Science Center
- Tuition: $8,961(in state) / $27,989(out of state)
- Tuition: 22,370
- Credit Hours: 131
- Annual application deadline June 15th
- All Tennessee residents are guaranteed a scholarship
School WideStudent Satisfaction70%Admission RateNot ReportedPrograms offered online2
Program LevelMedian Debt$23,853Programs in Department2Popularity at School100.00%92%OSR Score
With over 50% of students receiving some form of scholarship, it’s clear that The University of Tennessee’s Health Science Center is invested in its students. In order to offer robust opportunities to its medical laboratory sciences students, the program maintains a direct relationship with over 20 clinic affiliates. UT’s MLS students are expected to be able to successfully meet the university’s technical standards, and reasonable accommodations can be made for those with disabilities.
- Tuition: $33,660
- Credit Hours: 120
- Program partnerships with military members and other institutions
- Completed coursework transferable for up to 113 credits
School WideStudent Satisfaction67%Admission RateNot ReportedPrograms offered online51
Program LevelMedian Debt$16,666Programs in Department8Popularity at School27.68%82%OSR Score
One of the main benefits of the BS in Health Science degree at Excelsior College is the significant flexibility within the program. As a health sciences student, you can transfer past general credits, technical training, and past certification training all towards your degree. The bachelor’s in health science has four predefined emphases, but you can also create your own.
Grand Canyon University20-Year ROI$1,049,692
- Tuition: $16,365(in state) / $16,365(out of state)
- Tuition: $21,403
- Credit Hours: 120
- Each individual course spans seven weeks
- Students can transfer up to 90 credits from qualifying institutions
School WideStudent Satisfaction69%Admission Rate67%Programs offered online37
Program LevelMedian Debt$22,916Programs in Department5Popularity at School59.27%82%OSR Score
Grand Canyon University offers a BS in General Health Science, providing overarching instruction in general health topics while allowing students to define their own specializations. The asynchronous nature of the courses mean they easily fit into your working schedule. GCU divided its program into four main domains: Patient Care, Leadership and Management, Risk Management and Ethics, and Trends and Issues.
Winston-Salem State University
- Tuition: $3,401(in state) / $13,648(out of state)
- Tuition: $10,951
- Credit Hours: 120
- Medical laboratory technician certification required for program acceptance
- Virtual Hospital program provides online training
School WideStudent Satisfaction75%Admission Rate67%Programs offered online5
Program LevelMedian Debt$18,125Programs in Department2Popularity at School53.52%81%OSR Score
The MLT to CLS distance learning degree at Winston-Salem State University is geared towards practical application, and its goal is to provide students with the proper training needed to head straight into the job market. At WSSU, your degree coursework will be broken up into two main sections: the Pre-Professional Phase (non-clinical) and the Professional Phase (clinical). WSSU seeks to be a leader of BIPOC in the medical field, and champions equity within patient care at all times.
Louisiana State University-Alexandria
- Tuition: $4,984(in state) / $4,984(out of state)
- Tuition: $7,682
- Credit Hours: 48
- No differentiation between online and in-person degree
- Individual advisor follows your entire education path
School WideStudent Satisfaction74%Admission Rate31%Programs offered online7
Program LevelMedian DebtNot ReportedPrograms in Department2Popularity at School29.17%80%OSR Score
Louisiana State University’s BS in Medical Laboratory Science program offers the perfect balance for online students, providing top-notch education while allowing students to adjust course schedules to their needs. Cutting-edge video conferencing and online technologies allow you to speak directly to your professors. LSU’s high-quality education doesn’t come at an inaccessible cost: by maximizing transfer credits, your degree could cost as little as $3,492.
Weber State University
- Tuition: $4,773(in state) / $14,321(out of state)
- Tuition: $10,951
- Credit Hours: 120
- Online students can receive credit for previous clinical laboratory experience
- Each student receives individual supervision from a clinical mentor
School WideStudent Satisfaction78%Admission RateNot ReportedPrograms offered online5
Program LevelMedian Debt$20,916Programs in Department5Popularity at School31.19%80%OSR Score
One of the main goals of Weber State University is to maximize accessibility to its BS in Medical Laboratory Science. Applying to the program costs only $30, with high school transcripts required exclusively for those with less than 30 completed college credits, and SAT/ACT scores are optional. GE courses for the MLS program can be completed either before the start date or simultaneously with degree coursework.
George Washington University20-Year ROI$1,376,291
- Tuition: $51,274(in state) / $51,274(out of state)
- Tuition: $38,100
- Credit Hours: 60
- Online access to many campus resources
- Degree completed in approximately two years
School WideStudent Satisfaction74%Admission Rate41%Programs offered online8
Program LevelMedian DebtNot ReportedPrograms in Department5Popularity at School26.23%78%OSR Score
George Washington University is known for its prestigious programs across the board, and its online bachelor’s in clinical research administration is no different. Many online courses within the program have a smaller student to instructor ratio than its on-campus classes, and students graduate with a diploma identical to their in-person counterparts. Students are able to explore topics such as drug and device development, clinical trial framework, and protocol data management.
- Tuition: $6,382(in state) / $20,778(out of state)
- Tuition: $13,112
- Credit Hours: 121
- Graduates are eligible to sit for the national MLS exam
- Students with prior laboratory experience can receive up to eight credits
School WideStudent Satisfaction77%Admission Rate75%Programs offered online5
Program LevelMedian DebtNot ReportedPrograms in Department5Popularity at School31.12%78%OSR Score
The Bachelor of Science in Clinical Laboratory Science from Augusta University is ideal for those seeking a continuous education, as students can move directly into their online master’s program after graduating. Through this program, students receive training in state-of-the-art technology, such as molecular testing probes and automated chemistry and hematology analyzers. Online program applications are due annually by June 1st.
National University20-Year ROI$1,183,483
- Tuition: $13,032(in state) / $13,032(out of state)
- Tuition: $13,112
- Credit Hours: 121
- 175,000 alumni worldwide
- Four-week classes
School WideStudent Satisfaction71%Admission RateNot ReportedPrograms offered online46
Program LevelMedian Debt$30,906Programs in Department6Popularity at School26.93%74%OSR Score
National University has over 20 campuses throughout the state of California and Nevada, so even distance learners will have access to program tools and technology. The BS in Clinical Laboratory Science program includes the academic prerequisites for a California Department of Health trainee application. Applications are accepted year-round on a rolling basis, with classes starting monthly.
Old Dominion University
- Tuition: $6,630(in state) / $23,955(out of state)
- Tuition: $15,917
- Credit Hours: 120
- Active duty military students quality for a discount on tuition fees
- Medical laboratory technicians do not need formal clinical rotations to graduate
School WideStudent Satisfaction75%Admission Rate86%Programs offered online19
Program LevelMedian Debt$18,750Programs in Department5Popularity at School18.16%72%OSR Score
The Medical Library Science degree at Old Dominion University participates in guaranteed admissions: applicants with the right qualifications can transfer directly into the program. ODU automatically considers all applicants with a GPA over 3.5 for merit-based scholarships. The online MLS program is self-guided, with coursework completed at your own pace, and exams can be taken within a range of dates for maximum flexibility.
Auburn University at Montgomery
- Tuition: $7,320(in state) / $16,440(out of state)
- Tuition: $12,807
- Credit Hours: 65
- Board of Certification passed by 96% of program graduates
- One of only two undergraduate programs of its kind in Alabama
School WideStudent Satisfaction76%Admission Rate83%Programs offered online3
Program LevelMedian Debt$15,000Programs in Department2Popularity at School26.21%71%OSR Score
The medical and clinical laboratory sciences degree at Auburn University exemplifies innovative and advanced curriculum through its online instruction. Championing “first rate laboratory education through instruction, research, and service,” 100% of AUM CLS students earn jobs after graduation. The program accepts applications March through June each year.
Ferris State University
- Tuition: $11,564(in state) / $18,570(out of state)
- Tuition: $13,351
- Credit Hours: 127-129
- Designated student associations for MLT students
- Students must complete the coursework within five years
School WideStudent Satisfaction72%Admission Rate74%Programs offered online14
Program LevelMedian Debt$27,250Programs in Department5Popularity at School18.68%68%OSR Score
Whether you’re just delving into the field of clinical research or already have some experience in a lab setting, Ferris State University’s medical laboratory science degree is an excellent option. One of the main goals at FSU is to create well-rounded technicians with a strong foundation in ethics and correct professional practices. Those pursuing the MLS degree at FSU will be required to complete competencies in Diversity, Collaboration and Culture.
Northern Michigan University
- Tuition: $9,786(in state) / $15,408(out of state)
- Tuition: $14,243
- Credit Hours: 126
- Coursework can be completed on your own time
- Workplace leadership minor available for students
School WideStudent Satisfaction76%Admission Rate74%Programs offered online5
Program LevelMedian Debt$24,125Programs in Department2Popularity at School17.99%67%OSR Score
The MLS degree at Northern Michigan University is designed for career-oriented students, and is completed in collaboration with your current laboratory job. Following the suggested timeline, you can complete online coursework with this NMU degree in only two years. When applying, make sure to submit the NMU attestation form verifying two certified years of medical laboratory technician experience.
University of North Carolina Wilmington
- Tuition: $4,443(in state) / $18,508(out of state)
- Tuition: $17,771
- Credit Hours: 124-126
- Only 60 students are granted acceptance into the program annually
- Unique MentorCR program with trained technicians available to students
School WideStudent Satisfaction76%Admission Rate67%Programs offered online6
Program LevelMedian Debt$25,000Programs in Department2Popularity at School13.93%67%OSR Score
University of North Carolina Wilmington’s clinical research program is an overarching degree program that covers aspects of the field such as drug development and pre-approval human clinical trials. UNCW specifies that its BS in Clinical Research is not a laboratory-based program, although it does require two semesters of field internships. If you’re looking to apply to this degree, you must first complete all requirements within the pre-clinical research track.
University of Cincinnati-Main Campus
- Tuition: $9,322(in state) / $24,656(out of state)
- Tuition: $20,085
- Credit Hours: 134-135
- Program requires proctored exams at a verified testing center
- Average student completes the program in two and a half years
School WideStudent Satisfaction74%Admission Rate76%Programs offered online9
Program LevelMedian Debt$27,311Programs in Department3Popularity at School18.84%66%OSR Score
The BS in Medical Laboratory Science at the University of Cincinnati places significant importance on preparing graduates to immediately join the workforce. In addition to standard course work, students must complete a combination of training in HIPAA Privacy Introductions, OSHA Hazardous Communications, and OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens in order to continue matriculation. CU accepts students for both fall and spring start dates.
- Tuition: $6,676(in state) / $16,734(out of state)
- Tuition: $8,850
- Credit Hours: 120-122
- Each course accepts a maximum of just 25 students
- 100% of students receive secure jobs after graduating
School WideStudent Satisfaction77%Admission Rate90%Programs offered online4
Program LevelMedian DebtNot ReportedPrograms in Department2Popularity at School21.95%66%OSR Score
At Marshall University, applications for the BS in Medical Laboratory Science are accepted throughout the year. To maximize your chance of acceptance, however, you’re encouraged to apply before the two major enrollment periods in the fall and spring. Nationally accredited by the NAACLS, students who graduate from Marshall University’s program are prepared to either jump into the career track of their choice or to continue their learning through an advanced degree.
University of North Dakota
- Tuition: $6,946(in state) / $18,546(out of state)
- Tuition: $15,374
- Credit Hours: 126
- One of the first degrees in medical laboratory science in the nation
- Over 70 clinical affiliates covering 15 states
School WideStudent Satisfaction73%Admission Rate83%Programs offered online13
Program LevelMedian Debt$25,000Programs in Department2Popularity at School14.62%63%OSR Score
The medical laboratory science degree at University of North Dakota has a national appeal, crossing multiple state lines in its course offerings. The program includes exchanges with similar higher education institutions in Wisconsin, the Dakotas, Minnesota, Montana, and Arizona, as well as a partnership with the Mayo Clinic. This Bachelor of Science degree can be completed in five variations, each with different outcomes and pathways of study.
South Dakota State University
- Tuition: $7,191(in state) / $10,439(out of state)
- Tuition: $18,253
- Credit Hours: 120
- Innovative technology with electronic laboratory simulations
- Must have approval from current laboratory position
School WideStudent Satisfaction73%Admission Rate91%Programs offered online8
Program LevelMedian Debt$27,625Programs in Department2Popularity at School22.87%63%OSR Score
SDSU receives national attention through its accelerated Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science program. This competitive degree is taught virtually in collaboration with students’ current field position. Materials for the course are offered to students through the Desire2Learn online course management system.