Skip navigation

Pathologists - 29-1069.07

O*NET-SOC Description

Diagnose presence and stage of diseases using laboratory techniques and patient specimens. Study the nature, cause, and development of diseases. May perform autopsies.

Sample of Reported Job Titles

  • Anatomic Pathologist
  • Associate Pathologist
  • Attending Pathologist
  • Cytopathologist
  • Dermatopathologist
  • Forensic Pathologist
  • Oral Pathologist
  • Pathologist
  • Pathology Laboratory Director

SOC Occupation Groups

Related Occupations


  • Analyze and interpret results from tests such as microbial or parasite tests, urine analyses, hormonal assays, fine needle aspirations (FNAs), and polymerase chain reactions (PCRs).
  • Communicate pathologic findings to surgeons or other physicians.
  • Conduct genetic analyses of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) or chromosomes to diagnose small biopsies and cell samples.
  • Conduct research and present scientific findings.
  • Consult with physicians about ordering and interpreting tests or providing treatments.
  • Develop or adopt new tests or instruments to improve diagnosis of diseases.
  • Diagnose diseases or study medical conditions using techniques such as gross pathology, histology, cytology, cytopathology, clinical chemistry, immunology, flow cytometry, or molecular biology.
  • Diagnose infections, such as Hepatitis B and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), by conducting tests to detect the antibodies that patients' immune systems make to fight such infections.
  • Educate physicians, students, and other personnel in medical laboratory professions such as medical technology, cytotechnology, or histotechnology.
  • Examine microscopic samples to identify diseases or other abnormalities.
  • Identify the etiology, pathogenesis, morphological change, and clinical significance of diseases.
  • Manage medical laboratories.
  • Obtain specimens by performing procedures such as biopsies or fine need aspirations (FNAs) of superficial nodules.
  • Perform autopsies to determine causes of deaths.
  • Plan and supervise the work of the pathology staff, residents or visiting pathologists.
  • Read current literature, talk with colleagues, or participate in professional organizations or conferences to keep abreast of developments in pathology.
  • Review cases by analyzing autopsies, laboratory findings, or case investigation reports.
  • Testify in depositions or trials as an expert witness.
  • Write pathology reports summarizing analyses, results, and conclusions.

Detailed Work Activities

  • Analyze laboratory specimens to detect abnormalities or other problems.
  • Analyze medical data to determine cause of death.
  • Analyze test data or images to inform diagnosis or treatment.
  • Collaborate with healthcare professionals to plan or provide treatment.
  • Collect biological specimens from patients.
  • Communicate test or assessment results to medical professionals.
  • Conduct research to increase knowledge about medical issues.
  • Develop health assessment methods or programs.
  • Diagnose medical conditions.
  • Maintain medical or professional knowledge.
  • Manage healthcare operations.
  • Operate laboratory equipment to analyze medical samples.
  • Prepare reports summarizing patient diagnostic or care activities.
  • Present medical research reports.
  • Supervise technical medical personnel.
  • Test biological specimens to gather information about patient conditions.
  • Train medical providers.

Military Crosswalk Titles

  • Pathologist (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist (Army - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist (Navy - Commissioned or Warrant Officer)
  • Pathologist, Cytology (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Dermatology (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Forensic (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Gynecology (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Hematology (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Microbiology (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Neuropathology (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Pediatric (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Pediatrics (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Pathologist, Transfusion Medicine (Air Force - Commissioned Officer only)

Apprenticeship Crosswalk Titles

No information available.

DOT Crosswalk Titles

  • Histopathologist
  • Oral Pathologist
  • Pathologist
  • Veterinary Pathologist