The Basics of Vaccines and Immunization (Online CE Course)

(based on 1,484 customer ratings)

Author: Margaret Reinhart, MS, MLS(ASCP)
Reviewer: Linda E. Miller, PhD, I, MB (ASCP)CM, SI

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This course provides an overview of vaccine history, development of vaccines, and types of vaccines. It discusses the concept of immunization whereby a person develops an immune response from the vaccine and is thus protected from the disease for which they were vaccinated. A section is included on laboratory testing both in the development of the vaccine and in testing for the patient's immune status. Finally, there is a brief discussion on vaccines of the future and why it is so difficult to develop vaccines for certain diseases. A very short overview of the immune response is included, although a basic knowledge of the immune response is helpful in order to understand the course fully.

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Continuing Education Credits

P.A.C.E.® Contact Hours (acceptable for AMT, ASCP, and state recertification): 1 hour(s)
Approved through 8/31/2025
Florida Board of Clinical Laboratory Personnel Credit Hours - General (Serology/Immunology): 1 hour(s)
Approved through 8/31/2025

Objectives

  • Describe what a vaccine is and the types of immune responses that vaccines are intended to stimulate.
  • Relate the history of vaccines to our current status of vaccine availability and success.
  • Differentiate the various types of vaccines and the pros and cons of each.
  • Relate the concept of herd immunity to the public health success of a vaccine.
  • Describe types of testing that were used in the development of vaccines as well as how a person's immune status is tested after receiving a vaccine.
  • Identify possible future developments of vaccines and why certain diseases do not have an effective vaccine.

Customer Ratings

(based on 1,484 customer ratings)

Course Outline

Click on the links below to preview selected pages from this course.
  • Introduction to Vaccines and Vaccinology
  • History of Vaccines
      • A Brief Timeline of the History of Vaccines
      • Current Vaccine Administration in the U.S.
      • Vaccine Effectiveness, Public Health, and Vaccine Controversy
      • True or False: The first successful vaccine was the polio vaccine developed by Edward Jenner and was given in the 1950s.
      • The CDC recommends that vaccines begin at what age in a child's life?
  • Immunology of Vaccines
      • Brief Overview of the Immune Response
      • Overview of the Function of B Cells and T Cells in Adaptive Immunity
      • More about T Cells and B Cells
      • Which characterization of innate immunity is not true?
      • B cells that have been differentiated and are secreting antibodies are known as:
      • What is a role of T-helper cells?
  • Types of Vaccines
      • Types of Vaccines
      • Live Attenuated and Killed Whole Organism Vaccines
      • Toxoid and Subunit Vaccines
      • Viral Vector and mRNA Vaccines
      • All of the following are true about live attenuated vaccines except:
      • Which of the following is a component of almost all subunit vaccines?
      • How are viral vectored vaccines formulated?
  • Vaccine Development, Testing, and Approval Process
      • Developing New Vaccines
      • Laboratory Methods in Developing Vaccines - Early Methods
      • Laboratory Methods in Developing Vaccines, continued
      • When vaccines are being developed against viruses, they must first be grown in the laboratory. Typical laboratory methods for growing viruses include ...
      • In the clinical phase of vaccine development, clinical trials are conducted. How are Phase III clinical trials conducted?
  • Laboratory Testing and Vaccine Surveillance
      • Surveillance of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases
      • Types of Laboratory Tests for Vaccine Effectiveness or Presence of Disease
      • Determining Antibody Titers for Vaccine-Preventable Diseases
      • The National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System (NNDSS)
      • The final gathering and coordination of data on vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs) is done by:
      • All of the following are vaccine-preventable diseases that should be reported in the US except:
  • The Effectiveness of Vaccines and the Future Outlook
      • The Concept of Herd Immunity
      • Immunodeficiencies and Vaccine Side Effects in Immunocompetent People
      • The Myth of Antigenic Overload
      • Future Vaccine Development: Diseases
      • Future Vaccine Development: New Technologies
      • Which of the following statements is a "myth" about vaccines?
      • A pathogen that does not yet have a commercially available effective vaccine against it is:
  • References
      • References

Additional Information

Level of Instruction: Intermediate 
Intended Audience: This course is intended for Medical Laboratory Scientists and Technicians, students in the Medical Laboratory Sciences, and any others interested in gaining a basic knowledge of vaccines and vaccinology.  
Author Information: Margaret Reinhart, MS, MLS(ASCP) is a Senior Lecturer emerita of Biological Sciences at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia PA (now known as St. Joseph's University) where she taught hematology, clinical immunology, parasitology, and other related courses, as well as directed the MLS program for over 30 years. She also taught courses in Global Environmental Sustainability and Animal Studies. She is currently an adjunct instructor in Hematology at Pennsylvania Hospital, Philadelphia PA. She holds a Master's Degree in Biology and a Master's Degree in Health Care Administration. 
Reviewer Information: Linda Miller, PhD, I, MB (ASCP)CM, SI received her B.S. degree in Biology from Syracuse University and her PhD in Immunology from SUNY Upstate Medical University and has received certifications in Immunology and Molecular Biology from the American Society for Clinical Pathology. She has a Professor Emeritus appointment at SUNY Upstate Medical University, where she taught courses in immunology, human genetics, molecular biology, and research methods to students in the baccalaureate Medical Technology and Medical Biotechnology programs for forty years. She has authored numerous book chapters and continuing education exercises on topics related to clinical immunology and is co-author of the textbook, Clinical Immunology and Serology: A Laboratory Perspective, published by FA Davis.
Course Description: This course provides an overview of vaccine history, development of vaccines, and types of vaccines. It discusses the concept of immunization whereby a person develops an immune response from the vaccine and is thus protected from the disease for which they were vaccinated.  A section is included on laboratory testing both in the development of the vaccine and in testing for the patient's immune status.  Finally, there is a brief discussion on vaccines of the future and why it is so difficult to develop vaccines for certain diseases.  A very short overview of the immune response is included, although a basic knowledge of the immune response is helpful in order to understand the course fully.

How to Subscribe
MLS & MLT Comprehensive CE Package
Includes 178 CE courses, most popular
$109Add to cart
Pick Your Courses
Up to 8 CE hours
$55Add to cart
Individual course$25Add to cart
Need multiple seats for your university or lab? Get a quote
SARS-CoV-2 Virus. (7)


Vaccine administration. (2)


Serial dilution. (9)


Herd Immunity vs. Without Herd Immunity. (11)