University of California, Irvine

School of Medicine

Genetic Counseling - MS


School of Medicine

University of California

Orange, CA 92868

United States





Program Information

Degrees Offered:

M.S. in Genetic Counseling

Format: Campus

Program Description:

Genetic counselors are health professionals with graduate education and clinical training in medical genetics and counseling. Most are certified by a nationally recognized board with a few states requiring a license process. UC Irvine  and UC Irvine Medical Center were one of the early pioneers in genetic counselor education. Our program was started over 35 years ago(i.e.,1973).  At that time, there were only five other institutions offering a master’s degree in genetic counseling. UC Irvine's first class of three students graduated in 1975 and the program has over 100 alums. The program is based in the Division of Human Genetics in the School of Medicine's Dept. of Pediatrics and located at UC Irvine Medical Center (UCIMC) located in Orange, California—about 15 miles from the main university campus in Irvine. Most classes, clinics and rounds in which students are involved are held at UCIMC.

The goals of the program are to provide a firm base of knowledge in medical genetics, to develop appropriate skills in the discipline of genetic counseling, and to foster growth of the student’s professional identity as a genetic counselor. In successfully completing the program, the student will acquire…

* an understanding of genetic concepts concerning the structure, function and transmission of genetic material, and familiarity with the clinical manifestations and natural history of the more common genetic diseases and birth defects.
* knowledge of basic cytogenetic, molecular, biochemical, and quantitative genetic theory and techniques, and basic cytogenetics laboratory skills.
* an appreciation of normal and abnormal human development, including embryology and the principles of teratology.
* an understanding of mental retardation and developmental disabilities, including the problems and range of potential of affected individuals.


This graduate program is fully accredited by the American Board of Genetic Counseling (ABGC).Additionally, the University of California reviews all graduate degree programs on 5-year cycles.

Facts & Figures

Classification: Doctoral/Research University—Extensive

Loans Offered: Tuition assistance is available through student loans

Locale: Midsize City

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