Medical Technologist Certification
The Medical Technologist Certification (MT) is the flagship certification of American Medical Technologists (AMT), a professional organization which was founded in 1939. The AMT established a Council on Education, Qualifications and Standards Committee in 1955, and the modern "MT" designation was created in 1968, when the AMT created the certification categories of Medical Technologist (MT) and Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT). In 2000, a computer-based version of the MT exam was released. Over 60,000 certified professionals belong to the AMT, though because the AMT maintains nine categories of certification, it is not clear what proportion of their membership has MT certification specifically.
Function of the Test
The MT exam is a certification examination for entry-level medical technologists. The typical candidate is a medical technologist who has received his or her degree within the past five years. Because most states in the United States have no certification requirements for clinical laboratory personnel, holding MT certification from the AMT confers no special privileges or licensure in most jurisdictions. In this context, MT certification serves primarily to encourage professional development and help new medical technologists demonstrate value to employers. However, in ten states (plus Puerto Rico) that require clinical laboratory personnel to be certified, MT certification does satisfy the legal requirement. Only in New York and California is AMT certification invalid for state certification requirements.
Candidates must meet an education requirement in order to be eligible to take the exam. This requirement can be met with a Bachelor's degree in Medical Technology or through a combination of relevant academic training and work experience.
The AMT does not appear to report how many people take the MT examination each year or how many pass the exam.
The MT exam is administered year-round at Pearson VUE testing centers. The cost to apply for and take the examination is $135. The test is computer-based and has a time limit of 3.5 hours. According to the AMT's general candidate handbook, all AMT exams comprise 200-230 multiple choice questions with four possible answer choices.
Candidates receive their score and results immediately following the computer-based examination. Candidates who wish to retake the examination may do so one time without needing to submit a new application. Candidates who wish to take the examination a third or fourth time must submit a new application each time and must provide proof of additional training or retraining since the last application. Candidates who fail the exam a fourth time are barred from taking the exam again.
Candidates with disabilities who require special testing accommodations must request accommodations at the time of their initial application to take the MT exam. Applications for testing accommodation must include medical documentation, a personal statement, and proof of prior accommodations for the same disability.
The Medical Technologist test is offered as a computer based exam, lasting around three and a half hours. It deals with 11 major topics: General Laboratory; Chemistry; Hematology; Coagulation and Hemostasis; Immunology and Serology; Immunohematology; Blood Banking; Bacteriology; Parasitology; Mycology; and Urinalysis. There are about 200 to 230 multiple choice questions in all, each with four answer choices.
The MT Test is given by Pearson VUE. Candidates are expected to arrive at the testing site at least half an hour before the examination is scheduled to begin. There, two forms of ID are required for admission, one of which must be a government issued ID with a photo. In the testing room, all electronics, foods, drinks, and study material are prohibited.
- Sample Medical Technologist Questions
- Receiving cannot accept a specimen unless it has:
- A. A correct, legible label
- B. An uncontaminated, signed requisition with billing information
- C. An intact container with correct media
- D. All of the above
- US law overrides the patient's right to confidentiality if:
- A. The patient has a sexually transmitted disease or tuberculosis (TB)
- B. The caregiver is likely to be infected
- C. Authorities suspect child abuse or neglect under CAPTA
- D. All of the above
- Decreased sodium in the blood is:
- A. Hypernatremia, often from diabetes, burns, or Cushing syndrome
- B. Hyponatremia, often from vomiting and diarrhea, furosemide, or Addison disease
- C. Hyperkalemia, often from acidosis, spironolactone, or kidney failure
- D. Hypokalemia, often from alkalosis, stomach cancer, or eating too much licorice
- Confirm a fungal infection found through microscopy with a:
- A. Latex serology for cryptococcal antigen
- B. Fungal serology titer of more than 1:32 that increases x4 or more 3 weeks later
- C. Complement fixation for coccidiomycosis and histoplasmosis
- D. Immunodiffusion for blastomycosis
- Reject a transfusion request when:
- A. Recipient blood specimen is hemolyzed
- B. The patient armband does not have a unique identifier
- C. Donor blood is lipemic, clotted, or contains foreign objects
- D. All of the above
- A pregnancy test may be ordered for a man with:
- A. Testicular cancer
- B. Prostatitis
- C. Cryptorchidism
- D. Peyronie disease
The AMT reports that its examinations have 200-230 questions. The distribution of content on the MT exam is as follows:
| Distribution of questions|
on the MT exam
|Section|| % of|
|Coagulation and Hemostasis||7%|
|Immunology and Serology||9%|
Scores on the MT exam are scaled to a range of 0 to 100. The passing score is 70. Scores are scaled in order to adjust for the exact difficulty levels of different forms of the exam so that candidates who take more difficult forms of the exam are judged fairly compared to candidates who take easier forms of the exam. It is important to note that the scaled score is neither a raw score nor a percentage. For example, a scaled score of 90 does not mean that the candidate answered 90% of questions correctly.
Guessing does not appear to be penalized on the MT exam, but the AMT does not report exactly how raw scores or scaled scores are calculated.
Answers to Sample Questions
1;D 2;D 3;B 4;B 5;D 6;A
- AMT - AMT History 1939 - Present December 28 2014
- AMT - American Medical Technologists - Certifying Excellence in Allied Health December 28 2014
- AMT - Get Certified - Medical Technologist Eligibility December 28 2014
- AMT - State Licensure Authorities Recognizing AMT's Certification Exams for MT and MLT December 28 2014
- AMT - FAQs Regarding Computerized Testing December 28 2014
- AMT - Get Certified - Apply Online December 28 2014
- The AMT gives both paper-and-pencil and computer-based tests for some of its certifications. However, in the AMT's candidate handbook, the MT exam is not listed among the paper-and-pencil exams, suggesting that the paper-based version of the MT exam has been phased out.
- AMT - AMT Candidate Handbook December 28 2014
- AMT - ADA Application December 28 2014
- AMT - Content Outline for Medical Technologist and Medical Laboratory Technician Certification Examinations December 28 2014