Application Process

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Getting Started

There are eight components to the Application Process:

  1. Register with NMS
  2. Create UCSF Graduate Division application account
  3. Application
  4. Transcripts
  5. Letters of Recommendation
  6. Personal Statement
  7. Resume/CV
  8. Application Fee
  9. Interview

Admissions Match

All accredited genetic counseling programs participate in the Genetic Counseling (GC) Admissions Match. Applicants are required to register with the National Match System (NMS) in order to obtain a unique identifying number, in addition to filling out the required UCSF application. Your NMS number MUST be included in your application. To register and learn more information about the matching process, please visit the NMS website.

The AGCPD/GCEA has established a waiver for the $100 fee associated with NMS registration. Prospective students who demonstrate financial need AND have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or greater can apply for a match fee waiver. Prospective students should apply for a fee waiver BEFORE registering for an NMS number.

Applications for the fee waiver due by October 4, 2023. Applicants will be notified by October 30, 2023 as to whether they have received a waiver. There are a limited number of waivers, so not all applicants will receive a waiver. Instructions for how to register for the NMS match will be provided to those who receive a waiver.

Waivers are non-transferable to future match cycles or other prospective students. Prospective students who are granted fee waivers must register for the Match by January 1, 2024. Waivers not used by January 1, 2024 will be rescinded and granted to another applicant.

Prospective students who are applying for a match fee waiver will be required to write a short essay and to upload docmentation demonstrating financial need. Additional information and application requirements may be found on the NMS website (scroll to Fee/Match Fee Waiver Application).


Applications are submitted on-line. The online application portal may be found at the UCSF Graduate Division application site. Register for a new account and select Genetic Counseling Program to apply.

UCSF will communicate with you via email. It is essential that you have a reliable email account that you check on a regular basis.


Applicants must provide copies of transcripts from every post-secondary (after high school) institution you have attended as a full-time student. Transcripts from any other schools are optional unless they document fulfillment of program prerequisites. All records should clearly indicate the name under which you are applying to UCSF. Any former names (e.g. maiden name) should be documented in the Personal Information section of the application.

Unofficial transcripts or scanned copies of official transcripts are sufficient for the application. ONLY students admitted into the Genetic Counseling program will be required to send OFFICIAL transcripts to Genetic Counseling Program offices in the spring.

Letters of Recommendation

The UCSF Genetic Counseling Program requires 3 letters of recommendation. There are no requirements regarding the background of your recommenders, although they should not be relatives. You are encouraged to choose individuals from different aspects of your life that can comment on different strengths. Letters of Recommendation will be directly submitted by your recommender through the application portal. You will enter your recommender’s name and email address in the portal and the recommender will receive an electronic link to upload their Letter of Recommendation.

Personal Statement

We truly enjoy reading personal statements from all applicants. Please tell us how you became interested in genetic counseling, any inter-personal and/or extracurricular experiences that led to your interest, how you determined that this career aligns with your professional goals, and highlight your personal characteristics that will contribute to your success as a genetic counselor in whatever path you pursue post-graduation. Your Personal Statement may also discuss how your personal background and/or history informed your decision to pursue a graduate degree. Please include any educational, cultural, economic, family, or social experiences, challenges, or opportunities relevant to your academic journey.

The personal statement should be limited to 3 pages (~ 750 words, double-spaced).


A resume or Curriculm vitae (CV) is an outstanding way to feature all your accomplishments and activities that may not be captured on your transcript, Letters of Recommendation and/or Personal Statement.

Please include any work experience(s), volunteer experience(s), academic accomplishment, published works and/or experiences that highlight your exposure or interaction with the genetic counseling profession. Your resume or CV should not be limited to just genetic counseling-related activities, we are curious about you as a whole person. Please also indicate anything that is in progress (such as coursework or other activities) and the anticipated completion date.

Your resume or CV will be uploaded with your other materials through the online application portal.

Application Fee

An application fee of $120 for US citizens and permanent residents, and $140 for international applicants is required upon final submission of the application. Information and applications for application fee waivers may be found here. Applications for fee waivers must be submitted at least 3 weeks prior to the application deadline. Application fees are non-refundable.

Application materials, once submitted as part of your application, become the property of UCSF. Materials will not be returned, and copies will not be provided for applicants nor released to other institutions. Please keep any copies for your records.


Applicants found to be competitive for admission will be invited for an interview. Interview invitations will be sent by email.  Interviews are required for admission and will be conducted virtually for the 2023 admission cycle (admission in September 2023).


Application FAQ

Does your program require GRE scores?

No, the UCSF Genetic Counseling Program does not require GRE scores. UCSF does not use the GRE for admission to any program.

Where can I find information pertaining to international applicants?

There is an International Applicants section on the Admissions page of the Genetic Counseling Program website.  Information on academic credentials and English proficiency requirements may be found at the Graduate Division Application Requirements and Application Process website. Information on visa services may be found at the International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO). Admitted students will require an F-1 visa and are responsible for their own visa fees. Additionally, all international applicants are required to provide proof of sufficient financial resources.