Course Title: Perform haematological tests

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2020

Course Code: BIOL5248C

Course Title: Perform haematological tests

School: 174T School of VE Engineering, Health & Science

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5388 - Diploma of Laboratory Technology

Course Contact: Amber Mitton

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 8053

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Course Coordinator (teacher)
Andrea McAdam

Nominal Hours: 130

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

MSL973019  Perform microscopic examination

Course Description

This unit of competency describes the skills and knowledge to determine levels, function, activity and interactions of cellular and plasma components of blood using tests and procedures identified with the discipline of laboratory haematology.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

MSL975036 Perform haematological tests


1. Process samples and associated request details

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Identify specimens and request forms that do not comply with minimum industry requirements for labelling, identification, and test requests

1.2 Record any discrepancies or sample quality issues and indicate what action is required

1.3 Log samples, applying required document tracking mechanisms


2. Perform tests

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Conduct individual tests according to documented standard operating procedures, applying required quality control

2.2 Prepare blood films

2.3 Use appropriate manual haematological techniques

2.4 Identify normal and abnormal morphological characteristics of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets

2.5 Classify and count cell populations

2.6 Calculate red cell indices and white blood cells absolute counts

2.7 Interpret automated analyser results and correlate with blood film morphology

2.8 Record results in accordance with workplace procedures using correct terminology


3. Maintain laboratory records

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Record entries on report forms or into computer systems, accurately calculating, recording, or transcribing required data

3.2 Ensure samples and associated paperwork maintain traceability throughout testing

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

Learning sessions each week include:

  • background theory and case studies
  • interactive online laboratory classes designed to demonstrate processes in real labs
  • simulated decision-making applied by medical scientists
  • morphology case studies using microscope examination of blood films (slides)

In practical classes, students use a range of industry-standard laboratory techniques, analysers and equipment, interpret pathology results, work with macroscopic and microscopic specimens, keep records of results, and write reports to industry standards.

Teaching Schedule






Introduction to Haematology

Blood components, sample collection, specimen types

Introduction to blood film examination


Coulter principle, full blood count, Hb

Automated analysers, print out; retic count

Red cell inclusions, rouleaux, agglutination, nrbc


Red cell parameters

Calculations, trouble-shooting (high MCHC etc)

Writing film reports – examples and templates



Terminology for red cell populations

Microcytic hypochromic & macrocytic anaemia



Tests: Fe, TIBC, ferritin, B12, folate, homocysteine etc

α | β thalassaemia , sickle cell, HbE, HbC, other



Tests: FBC, film, retic, DAT, LDH, haptoglobin, D-D

Acquired (fragments), inherited enzyme deficiencies


Malaria, Review

Screening: thick & thin films, ICT

Finding malaria parasites










White cell function

Make blood films, ESR

Manual differential



Case study: Infectious Mononucleosis

Man diff, left shift, sepsis, reactive lymphocytes


Acute leukaemia

Flow cytometry



Chronic leukaemia

Cytogenetics, molecular tests, special stains

CML, CLL, myeloma



Counting, estimating

Size, shape, thrombocytopenia



Clotting tests, INR

ET, reactive thrombocytosis


Coagulopathies & Haemophilia

Factor deficiencies










Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Assessment may include

observation of laboratory skills

knowledge tests


case studies

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task 1Laboratory Practical Work
AT1: Log book evidence - laboratory tests 
Due: 25 October 2020

Assessment Task 2Applied Knowledge
AT2a: Applied Knowledge - interpreting results 
Due: Week 8
AT2b: Applied Knowledge - case studies & laboratory scenarios 
Due: Week 16

Assessment Task 3Produce a Resource
AT3: Produce a haematology resource 
Due: 18 October 2020

Assessment Task 4Morphology Records
AT4a: Morphology Sketchbook 
Due: 11 October 2020 (submit weekly; progress audit 30 Aug)
AT4b: Blood film reports
Due: 4 October 2020 (submit four through semester)

Assessment Task 5Morphology Practical Assessment
AT5: Morphology Diagnostic Skills - identifying blood films
Due: Week 16

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

This course is an ungraded competency-based unit of study.
The outcome is either Competent or Not Yet Competent. 
Individual assessment tasks are deemed Satisfactory | Not Satisfactory | Not Observed


You are expected to prepare all assignments and other written work in a professional manner. More information on general academic study and writing skills can be found on the “Learning Lab”

All Assessment tasks should be performed or submitted by their due dates.

You must keep a copy of all submitted assessments including electronic copies. It is expected that any work presented for assessment in this course will be your own. RMIT University has a strict policy on academic integrity and plagiarism. Plagiarism is the presentation of the work, idea or creation of another person as though it is your own. It is a form of cheating and is a very serious academic offence that may lead to expulsion from the University. Plagiarised material can be drawn from, and presented in, written, graphic and visual form, including electronic data and oral presentation. Plagiarism occurs when the origin of the material used is not appropriately cited. It also occurs through enabling plagiarism, which is the act of assisting or allowing another person to plagiarise or to copy your own work. Please make sure you consider this carefully in completing all your work and assessments in this course and if you are unsure about whether you might have plagiarised, seek help from your teacher. More information on this policy can be found at

You may be asked to submit your assessment work via Turnitin to check for the originality of items. The similarity percentage for any assessment submitted via Turnitin should not exceed 30%. If you exceed the limit, you may be asked to resubmit the assessment with up to one week’s extension. 

 This course assessments conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies and procedures which are described and referenced at


If you are prevented from submitting an assessment on time by circumstances outside your control you may apply for an extension of up to seven (7) calendar days by filling in the application form at least one working day BEFORE the due date. The application form should be emailed to your Program Coordinator, Kirsten Balding Eligibility criteria for application and the form is available from the link:

Where an extension of greater than seven days is needed, you must apply for special consideration.


If due to illness or other unforeseen circumstance, you are unable to attend on the due date of an assessment (e.g. test, examination, oral, etc.), you may submit an APPLICATION FOR SPECIAL CONSIDERATION within 5 working days of the due date. If Special Consideration is granted, you will be given the opportunity to complete/repeat the assessment task at a later date. For advice on this application please visit or speak to your Program Coordinator.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview