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Healthcare science assistant

Alternative titles for this job include Assistant technical officer

Healthcare science assistants support healthcare professionals.

Average salary (a year)

£22,000 Starter


£28,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

40 to 42 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends on a rota

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Healthcare science assistant

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly


You could take a college course to help improve your chances of finding work. Courses include:

  • Level 2 Certificate or Level 3 Diploma in Applied Science
  • T Level in Healthcare Science

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths for a T Level

More Information


You can do an intermediate healthcare science assistant apprenticeship.

If you have A levels or equivalent Level 3 qualifications, you could do a healthcare science associate higher apprenticeship.

The Academy of Healthcare Science has more information about apprenticeships.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

More Information


You'll find it helpful to get some paid or voluntary work experience before you apply for jobs or training.

You can also find volunteering opportunities near you through The National Council for Voluntary Organisations and Do IT.

Direct Application

You can apply directly for jobs. You'll usually need:

  • good literacy, numeracy and IT skills
  • an understanding of medical terminology
  • some experience of working in a healthcare or lab setting

More Information

Professional and industry bodies

You could join organisations like the Academy for Healthcare Science for professional development and training opportunities.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a healthcare science assistant from:

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of chemistry including the safe use and disposal of chemicals
  • knowledge of biology
  • analytical thinking skills
  • maths knowledge
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • the ability to work well with others
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As part of your day-to-day duties, you might:

  • label, sort and store specimens
  • help with tissue and fluid sample analysis
  • put together chemical solutions
  • load and operate machines
  • use a computer to input and analyse data
  • dispose of hazardous waste
  • sterilise equipment
  • maintain stock levels

Working environment

You could work in an office, in a laboratory or at a GP practice.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could apply for a post as a healthcare science associate.

With a degree you could work towards becoming a healthcare scientist or biomedical scientist, or apply for the NHS Practitioner Training Programme.

You could also train to become a cardiological technician, cardiographer, cervical cytology screener or phlebotomist.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Apprentice Associate Genetic Technologist

  • Wage: £22,816 a year Annually
  • Location: Westbury on Trym, Bristol, Bristol

Courses In England

Certificate in Applied Science

  • Provider: CALDEW SCHOOL
  • Start date: 01 September 2024
  • Location: Carlisle

Certificate in Applied Science

  • Start date: 05 September 2025
  • Location: Aylesbury

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