A Certificate III in Pathology Collection is a great way to get started in a specialist career in health. It will equip you with the skills you need to succeed in this rewarding line of work. You'll learn how to collect pathology samples and prepare them for testing in a laboratory. The Certificate III in Pathology Collection will develop your practical skills and includes a work placement so you can gain real world experience with patients.

The Certificate III in Pathology Collection covers a range of topics relevant to working in a pathology unit, collection centre or testing facility. You’ll learn to perform venous blood collection and collect other types of pathology specimens. You’ll explore clinical risks in pathology collection and learn to respond to them safely. This course also covers infection prevention and control procedures and gives you the skills to interpret and apply medical terminology. You’ll learn to work with diverse people and communicate effectively in the health sector.

A career in pathology collection or testing can be an interesting choice. If you enjoy helping other people and contributing to the health industry, this could be a great pathway for you. You’ll need to have good interpersonal skills and be able to communicate with people from a range of backgrounds. It’s important you can understand patient concerns and work as part of a team. Working in pathology collection also means you’ll need to be safety focused and able to follow correct procedures.

A Certificate III in Pathology Collection is an ideal course of study for the following careers:

Pathology Collector

A Pathology Collector takes samples from patients for laboratory testing. You might collect blood, body tissue or other types of bodily fluids including saliva or urine. Pathology Collectors may have to deal with patients who are hesitant with needles or have other conditions making collection challenging. You’ll ensure specimens are correctly labelled and make sure relevant paperwork is complete. You’ll store samples appropriately and might arrange for transport to a laboratory.


Phlebotomists collect blood samples that need to be sent for testing in a laboratory. You might work in the pathology collection unit of a hospital or work for a private pathology centre. Phlebotomists take blood from patients and prepare it for laboratory work. You’ll make sure blood is accurately labelled and stored correctly until it can be transported to a testing facility. Some Phlebotomists work at blood donation clinics to collect blood used for transfusions and other medical procedures.

Higher education pathways

A Certificate III in Pathology Collection is an excellent qualification to develop your skills in this area of health care. You might also decide to enrol in a Certificate III in Pathology Assistance where you’ll gain the skills to receive, prepare and dispatch pathology specimens, prepare culture media and perform basic tests. You could also undertake the Perform Venous Blood Collection course where you’ll learn to draw blood while ensuring the comfort and safety of your patients.

If you decide to further your career in pathology you could enrol in a university degree such as a Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science or a Bachelor of Medical Science (Biotechnology and Diagnostic Pathway). This will expand your knowledge and broaden your career opportunities. A university degree may allow you to take on a pathology role with more responsibility. You may be able to use a Certificate III in Pathology Collection as a pathway to these courses.

Getting started

If you’re planning to enrol in a Certificate III in Pathology Collection, it’s important you collect information from a range of course providers. There are usually some differences in the way providers deliver their qualifications, so find out about the duration of the course, costs, any prerequisites and the content the course will cover. Once you have all the information, you can compare details and find the course that best meets your needs.

Written by Jodie Magrath
Jodie Magrath
Jodie is a freelance writer with a background in communication and journalism. She’s spent almost 20 years working in roles such as Special Projects Writer and Publications Officer.