Histotechnologists and Histologic Technicians

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About the Job

Prepare histologic slides from tissue sections for microscopic examination and diagnosis by pathologists. May assist in research studies.

It is also Called

  • Pathology Supervisor
  • Histotechnologist Supervisor
  • Histotechnologist
  • Histotechnician
  • Histology Technologist
  • Histology Technician
  • Histology Specialist
  • Histologic Technician
  • Histologic Aide
  • Facility Manager, Histology
View All

What They Do

  • Perform electron microscopy or mass spectrometry to analyze specimens.
  • Teach students or other staff.
  • Prepare or use prepared tissue specimens for teaching, research or diagnostic purposes.
  • Supervise histology laboratory activities.
  • Identify tissue structures or cell components to be used in the diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of diseases.
  • Maintain laboratory equipment such as microscopes, mass spectrometers, microtomes, immunostainers, tissue processors, embedding centers, and water baths.
  • Operate computerized laboratory equipment to dehydrate, decalcify, or microincinerate tissue samples.
  • Perform procedures associated with histochemistry to prepare specimens for immunofluorescence or microscopy.
  • Freeze tissue specimens.
  • Examine slides under microscopes to ensure tissue preparation meets laboratory requirements.


People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: RIC.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Realistic interests, but also prefer Investigative and Conventional environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Support, but also value Independence and Achievement in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Education Required

Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.


In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $58,360 with most people making between $39,680 and $79,080


avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 8,620 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 9,570 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 95 openings due to growth and about 205 replacement openings for approximately 300 total annual openings.

Pennsylvania Department of Education