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Become A Cytotechnologist

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Working As A Cytotechnologist

  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Getting Information
  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others
  • Unpleasant/Hazardous Environment

  • Make Decisions

  • $57,813

    Average Salary

What Does A Cytotechnologist Do

A Cytotechnologist evaluates specimens on glass slides using microscopes. They analyze fluid and tissue specimens for microscopic cellular abnormalities, such as bacterial and viral infections.

How To Become A Cytotechnologist

Physicians and surgeons have demanding education and training requirements. Almost all physicians complete at least 4 years of undergraduate school, 4 years of medical school, and, depending on their specialty, 3 to 7 years in internship and residency programs.


Most applicants to medical school have at least a bachelor's degree, and many have advanced degrees. Although no specific major is required, all students must complete undergraduate work in biology, chemistry, physics, math, and English. Students also take courses in the humanities and social sciences. In addition, some students volunteer at local hospitals or clinics to gain experience in a healthcare setting.

Medical schools are highly competitive. Most applicants must submit transcripts, scores from the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), and letters of recommendation. Schools also consider an applicant’s personality, leadership qualities, and participation in extracurricular activities. Most schools require applicants to interview with members of the admissions committee.

A few medical schools offer combined undergraduate and medical school programs that last 6 or 7 years.

Students spend most of the first 2 years of medical school in laboratories and classrooms, taking courses such as anatomy, biochemistry, pharmacology, psychology, medical ethics, and the laws governing medicine. They also gain practical skills, learning to take medical histories, examine patients, and diagnose illnesses.

During their last 2 years, medical students work with patients under the supervision of experienced physicians in hospitals and clinics. Through rotations in internal medicine, family practice, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, and surgery, they gain experience in diagnosing and treating illnesses in a variety of areas.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Physicians and surgeons need to be excellent communicators. They must be able to communicate effectively with their patients and other healthcare support staff.

Compassion. Physicians and surgeons deal with patients who are sick or injured and may be in extreme pain or distress. Physicians and surgeons must be able to treat patients and their families with compassion and understanding.

Detail oriented. Physicians and surgeons must ensure that patients are receiving appropriate treatment and medications. They must also monitor and record various pieces of information related to patient care.

Dexterity. Physicians and surgeons must be good at working with their hands. They may work with very precise and sometimes sharp tools, and mistakes can have serious consequences.

Leadership skills. Physicians who work in their own practice need to be effective leaders. They must be able to manage a staff of other professionals to run their practice.

Organizational skills. Some physicians own their own practice. Strong organizational skills, including good recordkeeping, are critical in both medical and business settings.

Patience. Physicians and surgeons may work for long periods with patients who need special attention. Persons who fear medical treatment may require more patience.

Physical stamina. Physicians and surgeons should be comfortable performing physical tasks, such as lifting or turning disabled patients. Surgeons may spend a great deal of time bending over patients during surgery.

Problem-solving skills. Physicians and surgeons need to evaluate patients’ symptoms and administer the appropriate treatments. They need to do this quickly if a patient’s life is threatened.


After medical school, almost all graduates enter a residency program in their specialty of interest. A residency usually takes place in a hospital and varies in duration, generally lasting from 3 to 7 years, depending on the specialty.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

All states require physicians and surgeons to be licensed; requirements vary by state. To qualify for a license, candidates must graduate from an accredited medical school and complete residency training in their specialty.

All physicians and surgeons also must pass a standardized national licensure exam. M.D.s take the U.S. Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE). D.O.s take the Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination (COMLEX-USA). For specific state information about licensing, contact your state’s medical board. 

Certification is not required for physicians and surgeons; however, it may increase their employment opportunities. M.D.s and D.O.s seeking board certification in a specialty may spend up to 7 years in residency training; the length of time varies with the specialty. To become board certified, candidates must complete a residency program and pass a specialty certification exam from the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), or the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS).

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Cytotechnologist jobs

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Cytotechnologist Demographics


  • Female

  • Male

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Asian

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • Portuguese

  • Chinese

  • Ukrainian

  • Igbo

  • French

  • Belarusian

  • Russian

  • Polish

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Cytotechnologist Education


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Real Cytotechnologist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Cytotechnologist Sutter West Bay Hospitals San Francisco, CA Feb 01, 2010 $91,724
Cytotechnologist Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings Monrovia, CA Oct 28, 2013 $74,506 -
Cytotechnologist Sunrise Medical Laboratories Hicksville, NY Sep 21, 2012 $74,000
Cytotechnologist Westcliff Medical Laboratories Monrovia, CA Aug 01, 2010 $72,557
Cytotechnologist Clincal Laboratory Services, Inc. Hicksville, NY Oct 01, 2012 $72,488
Cytotechnologist Sunrise Medical Laboratories Hauppauge, NY Oct 01, 2009 $68,640
Cytotechnologist Greater Baltimore Medical Center Towson, MD Jun 03, 2014 $66,784
Cytotechnologist Legacy Health System Portland, OR Mar 30, 2011 $66,450
Cytotechnologist Edward W. Sparrow Hospital Association Lansing, MI Jul 15, 2016 $65,448
Cytotechnologist New York University Hospitals Center New York, NY Jan 11, 2010 $65,385
Cytotechnologist New York University School of Medicine New York, NY Jan 11, 2010 $65,385
Cytotechnologist Labwest Inc. Monrovia, CA Oct 28, 2010 $64,958 -
Cytotechnologist Labwest Inc. Monrovia, CA Sep 01, 2010 $64,958 -
Cytotechnologist Legacy Health System Portland, OR Mar 08, 2010 $63,090
Cytotechnologist Henry Ford Health System Detroit, MI Mar 05, 2010 $55,390
Cytotechnologist Henry Ford Health System Detroit, MI Jul 02, 2010 $55,390
Cytotechnologist Quest Diagnostics Incorporated Teterboro, NJ Sep 15, 2012 $55,182 -
Cytotechnologist Greater Baltimore Medical Center Baltimore, MD Jan 25, 2016 $54,246
Cytotechnologist Mid-Columbia Medical Center The Dalles, OR Sep 02, 2014 $51,424
Cytotechnologist University Laboratories, Inc. Detroit, MI Jan 01, 2011 $50,443
Cytotechnologist Detroit Medical Center Detroit, MI Nov 15, 2010 $50,443
Cytotechnologist Detroit Medical Center Detroit, MI Oct 01, 2010 $50,443
Cytotechnologist Detroit Medical Center Detroit, MI Jan 01, 2011 $50,443
Cytotechnologist Quest Diagnostics Incorporated Teterboro, NJ Sep 03, 2010 $48,752 -

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Top Skills for A Cytotechnologist


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Top Cytotechnologist Skills

  1. Pathology Residents
  2. FNA
  3. Cytology Lab
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Assisted in teaching pathology residents during their cytology rotation.
  • Have had experience in performing FNAs in a hospital setting.
  • Contributed to the procedural manual for the Kansas City cytology laboratory.
  • Diagnosed GYN cytology specimens utilizing Surepath processing and computer entry.
  • Trained in Thin Prep specimen examination, manually and with Thin Prep Imager Trained in Sure Path examination

Top Cytotechnologist Employers

Cytotechnologist Videos


CAREERS IN MEDICAL LAB TECHNOLOGY – BMLT,Certification Courses,Job Openings,Research,Salary Package

UND Cytotechnology