Career as a Pathologist

8 minute read

Are you someone always interested in building a career in the medical field but never wanted to pursue MBBS? There are various other options for you such as Nursing, Pathologist, etc. When thinking of becoming a Pathologist, it’s always worth considering what your best subjects are and what you find interesting. Maybe you’re keen on analyzing and identifying patterns or diagnosing diseases in tissues. To find your fit, it is important to explore the dynamics of Pathology. So, here’s a blog to help you understand the different aspects of Pathology and what do you need to do to become a Pathologist.

What is Pathology?

Pathology is commonly recognised as the study of disease that bridges Science and Medicine. The field incorporates the elements of patient care, right from diagnostic testing, medical advice and care to the use of genetic technology and preventing diseases. A Pathologist has the expertise to support every aspect of healthcare and easily guide doctors on how to effectively treat common diseases. Moreover, these professionals play a crucial role in research and development in order to find out new and better treatments to fight against infections, viruses and diseases like cancer. In fact, every blood test, cancer screening test, biopsy sample or search for infection involves a Pathology team.

Credits: Umichpath

Also Read: Top Pathology Courses

Why Choose a Career in Pathology?

Pathology has many benefits and its scope is immense. Here are a few of the reasons you should think of a career in pathology:

  • Pathologists have always been in demand and will continue to do in the future. Students don’t have to worry about the future scope of pathology. It has a wider scope in India and abroad
  • Pathologists are not restricted to one field and have employment opportunities in healthcare, labs, hospitals, and much more
  • Pathologists play an important role in the medical field. They identify diseases and causes of the illness which helps doctors in treating the patients better.

Also Read: Courses in Canada After 12th

Eligibility Requirements

For those planning to take up Pathology courses abroad, will be trained in this challenging field in order to meet the global need for a Pathologist. The curriculum for the courses in universities abroad is designed to provide subjective knowledge with practical hands-on experience to prepare students for various job roles. However, to enrol for such intensive programs abroad, students need to fulfil the basic eligibility requirements listed below:

  1. High School diploma in Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Mathematics.
  2. Four years of an undergraduate degree in any field but with one year of Physics, General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry and Biology. These are the essential requirements to sit for an MCAT (Medical College Admission Test).
  3. Do residency training in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology (AP/CP). In the USA, there are options to do AP alone or CP alone.
  4. A minimum IELTS score of 7, to apply to good universities. Some universities worldwide could ask for GMAT or GRE.

Want to get admission to your dream university abroad? Then, Register Here!

Course Details

There is not just one particular course for building a career in pathology. You can get a certification, diploma, bachelor’s, master’s, and even doctoral degrees:

  1. Diploma in Pathology
  2. Diploma in Clinical Pathology
  3. Bachelor of Audiology Speech and Language Pathology
  4. Master of Dental Surgery in Oral Pathology
  5. Doctor of Philosophy in Speech Pathology and Audiology

Also Read: Best Countries to Study Psychology

Credits: Careers Clinic

How to Become a Pathologist?

In order to become a Pathologist, you need to:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Biology or Chemistry or a 5-year degree in Medicine.
  • 2-year general training foundation program.
  • 3 to 7 years in internship or specialist training program in Pathology.

Those who do not have qualifications in Science may be able to take a 6-year degree in Medicine with a 1-year foundation or pre-medical year.

But, if you have a degree in Science, you can simply go for a 4-year graduate program in Medicine. Over the years, medical schools have become highly competitive and students are asked to submit transcripts, MCAT scores, SOP and LOR. They also consider the applicant’s leadership qualities, personality and participation in extracurricular activities. Most admission committees will expect you to have done some relevant voluntary or paid experience.

Pathologist Courses after 12th

Students interested in building a career in pathology can either pursue a diploma, certificate course, or undergraduate degree after the 12th. Eligibility to apply for pathologist courses includes 50% in class 12th with PCB. Popular courses are:

  • Bachelor of Audiology Speech and Language Pathology
  • BSc Pathology
  • Diploma in Pathology
  • Diploma in Clinical Pathology

Also Read: FMGE (Foreign Medical Graduates Examination)

Top Universities for Pathology Abroad

Some of the top universities that offer courses in the subject are given below in the table:

The University of ManchesterUKBSc Anatomical Sciences3 years
Murray State UniversityUSABachelor’s in Communication Disorders4 years
Universiti Sains MalaysiaMalaysiaBachelor of Health Sciences in Speech Pathology4 years
Keuka College USABSc in Medical Technology3 years
University of MarylandUSABSc in Medical Laboratory Science2 years
University of New South Wales – UNSWAustraliaBachelor of Science Major in Pathology3 years
University of MissouriUSAMS in Pathology and Anatomical Sciences1 to 2 years
University of KentUKMSc in Infectious Diseases1 year
University of MalayaMalaysiaMaster of Pathology4 year
Manchester Metropolitan University UKMSc in Cellular Pathology 1 year
Dalhousie University CanadaMSc Pathology2 years
Queen’s University CanadaMSc Pathology2 years
The University of ManchesterUKMSc Molecular Pathology1 year
Western University (Ontario)CanadaMSc Pathology2 years

Next, apply for a license by taking an appropriate exam (like the United States Medical Licensure Examination or USMLE) which will decide the types of residency the medical students will obtain.

Do a 4-year residency i.e., work in a hospital as an assistant or something for another 4 years. After the residency, the student can present themself in front of the medical board. Upon passing the test, you can practice as a Pathologist. 

Top 10 Universities in India for Pathologist Courses

If you don’t want to study abroad, here are some of the universities you can consider located in India:

  1. St Johns Medical College, Bangalore
  2. AFMC Pune – Armed Forces Medical College
  3. HIMSR New Delhi – Hamdard Institute of Medical Sciences and Research
  4. Vydehi Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Bangalore
  5. SRM Medical College Hospital and Research Centre, Chennai
  6. BJ Government Medical College, Pune
  7. Indira Gandhi Medical College, Shimla
  8. Uttar Pradesh University of Medical Sciences, Saifai
  9. Sapthagiri Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Center, Bangalore
  10. Punjab Institute of Medical Sciences, Jalandhar

Also Read: Courses After 12th Non-Medical

Pathologist Career and Salary

So, now you are a Pathologist, what are the future roles or career prospects you can expect?  Whether you open your own private lab or work for an established hospital, the responsibilities of the Pathologist remain the same everywhere. The only thing that changes is the area of expertise. Like studying only X-rays or bone problems, or working on blood samples or specialised genetic testing by pharmaceuticals or companies catering to deodorants, beauty products or new medicines that require testing before they are launched in the market. As a newly licensed Pathologist, you can earn up to USD 118,000 per year. In some countries or states within the USA, you can earn a lot more. In Wisconsin for example, the starting salary for a Pathologist is somewhere around USD 220,000 per year. Here are some of the popular job profiles with their salary structure:

Job ProfilesSalary in INR per annum
Lab Technician₹244542
Research Analyst₹387468
Research Scientist₹697755

Also Read: Medical Colleges in India

Top Recruiters

Pathologists can work in medical centres and hospitals. Some of the major recruiters are mentioned below:

  1. Dr Lal Pathlabs
  2. SRL Diagnostics
  3. Suburban Diagnostics
  4. Thyrocare
  5. Oncquest Laboratories Ltd
  6. Medall Healthcare Pvt Ltd

Also Read: Podcasts for Medical Students

Pathologist: Roles and Responsibilities

What is Pathology as a career like? Some of the things a Pathologist might do include:

  • Perform Autopsies – Experienced Pathologist can act like a Medical Examiner (ME) who examines the genetic modulation in order to determine the cause of death. 
  • Carry Out Tests – Pathologists determine the efficacy of new drugs or medicine in the market by doing some laboratory tests. The drugs or new products that can be dangerous are first tested and their discoveries can actually help scientists or developers of the particular product.
  • Make Reports or Deductions – Pathologists’ reports are used as proof of illness or deformity that is to be treated by the doctor. Their reports consist of more scientific matters of the patient’s problem.
  • Interpret Complex DataInterpret laboratory information to solve some unsolved medical mysteries regarding a patient or whole. Study tumours or any internal deformities.

Also Read: RRB Paramedical Syllabus

Essential Skills to Become a Pathologist

Becoming a Pathologist is not a piece of cake. You are subject to study and prepare like a doctor. Somewhere down the line, the procedures in the curriculum get changed as per the profession but it is one tough course to major in. So, a student should have:

  • An eye for detail: Pathology students are expected to have a clear eye for detailing and being accurate. As on the Pathologist’s shoulder, the whole treatment is based and even the slightest miscalculation would create a huge problem.
  • Good at data analysis and interpretation: Pathology students are expected to possess skills like data analysis and interpretation and are also good at communicating the results to the concerned patients.
  • Have detailed knowledge of some other subjects: As an aspiring Pathologist, one should have a detailed grasp of subjects like Physiology, Pathophysiology and other Medical Sciences courses.

Also Read: IMAT (International Medical Admission Test) 2021

Best Books

Wondering about the best books you can refer to for a career in pathology? Here are some of the best books for you:

Robbins and Kumar Basic Pathology by Vinay KumarBuy Here
Robbins and Cotran Pathologic Basis of Disease by KumarBuy Here
Exam Preparatory Manual  for Undergraduates Pathology by Ramadas NayakBuy Here
Review of Pathology and Genetics by Gobind Rai Garg and Sparsh GuptaBuy Here
Concise Pathology for Exam Preparation by Geetika KhannaBuy Here


How to become a pathologist without medical school?

It is not possible to build a career in pathology without a medical school.

Is pathology a good career?

A career in pathology is pretty good because of immense job opportunities in hospitals and medical centres

What jobs are there in pathology?

You can get a job as an Anatomical pathology technician, Medical laboratory assistant, Biomedical scientist, etc.

What’s a pathologist’s salary?

The average salary ranges between Rs. 7,00,000 – 10,00,000

From investigating common diseases to researching neurological disorders, a career as a Pathologist is incredibly diverse – focusing on areas of diagnosis, treatment and prevention of diseases. If you are confused about which course is best for you, let Leverage Edu’s revolutionary AI Tool do it for you. Book your 30 minutes of free counselling now!

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    1. Hi Amit,
      It’s great to see that you are aspiring to become a pathologist in the future. Before recommending you one of our top reads that will help you with your dreams, we would like to wish you all the best for your future endeavours. Sharing with you one of our detailed blogs on Pathologists here: If you are planning to pursue higher studies in the same field abroad, then please get in touch with our experts at 1800572000 and kickstart your study abroad journey in no time!

    1. Hi Amit,
      It’s great to see that you are aspiring to become a pathologist in the future. Before recommending you one of our top reads that will help you with your dreams, we would like to wish you all the best for your future endeavours. Sharing with you one of our detailed blogs on Pathologists here: If you are planning to pursue higher studies in the same field abroad, then please get in touch with our experts at 1800572000 and kickstart your study abroad journey in no time!