Shaping the genetic counseling profession’s future leaders
Discover how studying at UCSF will advance your career

The UCSF Genetic Counseling Program is a 21-month program of study that endeavors to train students for 21st century practice in genetic counseling. Training begins in the fall semester, continues through the summer and concludes in the spring of the second year. 

The curriculum emphasizes three primary areas:

  • Foundational Didactic Education
  • Clinical Training
  • Research

A rigorous academic program draws upon the expertise of UCSF genetics professionals and spans subjects such as molecular and cytogenetics, bioethics, medical genetics, research methods, genomic technologies, and humanistic counseling theory. Rich clinical experiences illustrating the application of genomic medicine are available throughout UCSF’s diverse genetics clinics and laboratories; with additional opportunities in regional Bay Area genetics centers and biotechnology companies. As a premiere research institution, UCSF offers a broad spectrum of research opportunities that support the development of genetic counseling scholars and the advancement of the field of genetic counseling.

Successful completion of all coursework, clinical training experiences and a capstone research project is required to achieve a Master of Science (MS) in Genetic Counseling.

Fresno, CA Experience

The UCSF program provides a unique opportunity for one student, with a special interest in community practice, to spend their entire second year of clinical training in the Fresno region. All students spend their first academic year of the GC Program (September through mid-June) in residence in San Francisco. Following successful completion of the first year, the Fresno student will transition to the Fresno region. The student in this position will complete their clinical training in the Fresno region, attend second year courses via videoconferencing and complete their Capstone research project remotely. The student in this position will also have regular meetings with the Assistant Director at Fresno and videoconference meetings with San Francisco-based advisors and classmates. Clinical training opportunities in the area are listed on the Rotations pageThe Fresno student will need to have access to a car as public transportation in the area is not sufficient to adequately access all rotation sites.

UCSF maintains a branch training campus in Fresno, California at Community Regional Medical Center. Community Regional is a large tertiary care medical center providing complex care to residents of the Central Valley. Fresno is the fifth largest city in California and is located in the heart of the rural San Joaquin Valley agricultural region.  It is located half way between San Francisco and Los Angeles. 

Travel time between San Francisco and Fresno is approximately 3 hours, either via car or train. Train transportation is provided by Amtrak, and Emeryville is the closest station to San Francisco.

Students requiring an F-1 Visa to enroll in the Genetic Counseling Program are not eligible for the Fresno position due to the distance from the main San Francisco campus.

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Curriculum FAQ