Pathologists' Assistant - MSc Program
Coordinator: Mr. Lance Fuczek 


This is a two year program to train paramedical personnel to function as Pathologists' Assistants in a clinical setting. All applicants whose primary language is not English must pass, prior to admission, a Proficiency Test in the English Language (TOEFL and/or CanTEST). Students are only accepted every other year. The next year of admission will be September 2019.

Students will spend 3h/day working in autopsy and surgical pathology laboratory. They will create a manual related to cases studied. In addition, students will prepare an analytic report on an area of interest in Anatomic Pathology relating to the work of a Pathologist's Assistant and present this project as a thesis defense. 

What is a Pathologists' Assistant?

Pathologists' Assistants are highly trained paramedical professionals who work under the supervision of a medically-qualified pathologist, providing a broad range of services in anatomic pathology. Many of their duties are those previously performed by pathologists. The extra technical skills brought to the laboratory by the Pathologists' Assistant, standardize and enhance the overall quality in the practice of anatomic pathology. The Pathologists' Assistant assumes major responsibility for the initial examination and dissection of all surgically removed tissues and to a variable extent, for the dissection of bodies during post-mortem examination.

What do they do?

  • Describe and dissect surgical specimens
  • Standardize dissection techniques
  • Prepare teaching specimens
  • Teach dissection techniques and pathology
  • Photograph and X-Ray specimens
  • Summarize medical histories
  • Perform autopsy dissections
  • Assist in Research Projects
  • Supervise pathology residents and laboratory students
  • Develop processes for laboratory quality assurance
  • Ensure proper safety and health issues in the laboratory

Employment Opportunities

The increased use of tissue diagnosis and the growth of the related knowledge base have not been matched by growth in the numbers of pathologists. There is an increasing demand across North America for Pathologists' Assistants due to the shortage of pathologists. As a consequence, it has become essential to train paramedical personnel (Pathologists' Assistants) who can take responsibility for some of the tasks required to practice anatomical pathology.

Prerequisites for Admission

The students wishing to apply to the program must meet the following requirements:   GPA 3.2 (minimum), must have a 4-year undergraduate degree (Science preferred), Good communication skills (both Verbal/Written), and manual dexterity is required.

Tuition Fees

Fees are assessed by Student Records. Information regarding fees is accessible on the Faculty of Graduate Studies website.

About the Program

This is a two year program with a Master of Science degree conferred upon completion of the course.  Students will be required to complete the following courses: 

ANAT 7470 (Part A & B)

IMED 7212

PATH 7120

PATH 7130

PATH 7140

PATH 7032

PATH 7034

PATH 7036

PATH 7038

PATH  7042

Students will also attend weekly seminars, and will spend time in the pathology labs for their practical work experience.  The clinical laboratory exposure will focus on surgical pathology and autopsy pathology.
Students must successfully complete a research/practicum project on pathology work.  The project in its magnitude, scope and rigor, will be comparable to a thesis at the Master's level.

Class Size and Facility

The class size is limited to two students every other year so that more individual attention can be given to the students during their practicum.  The required course work will take place in the Max Rady College of Medicine, University of Manitoba, and the remainder of the course will mainly take place in the pathology departments of the three major care hospitals, Health Sciences Centre, St. Boniface General Hospital and Grace General Hospital.    Class Intake: Every other Year (odd years)

How do I Apply? | What do I need? | Where do I find an application?

All program inquiries should be directed to:
Phone: 204-789-3212

APPLICATION DEADLINE (Every Other Year):    September 1 - March 30th   (Canadian/Permanent Residents & US Students)

Program Staff:

Mr. Lance Fuczek                  

Dr. Robert Wightman
Medical Director

Ms. Terri Martin


Please consult the website of the Faculty of Graduate Studies at the University of Manitoba for information regarding admissions.

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Pathology Admissions | Apply Online | Faculty of Graduate Studies