Master of Science in Genetic Counselling (MSc)
Over the past decade, advances in genomic medicine and genetic technology have been dramatic. Genetic counsellors have an integral role to play in helping patients and other healthcare professionals understand the options, benefits and limitations of this rapidly changing landscape. Established in 1996, the University of British Columbia’s Genetic Counselling Program is dedicated to equipping the next generation of genetic counsellors with the skills, knowledge and mindset to flourish as part of an inter-disciplinary team and work across a broad range of health care settings and specialties. Accredited by the Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling, graduates are eligible for certification and/or licensure across North America.
What makes the program unique?
Based in the heart of Vancouver at Children's and Women's Health Centre of British Columbia, the tertiary care provider for clinical medical genetics services, UBC's Genetic Counselling Program is one of only five programs in Canada, and the largest.
The program balances strong academic grounding and direct clinical experiences with independent research, preparing graduates for the dynamic field of genetic counselling.
With only six students accepted into the program every year, students receive close mentorship and one-on-one support from award-winning faculty in the Department of Medical Genetics.
Program curriculum and learning opportunities are constantly evolving to equip students with the tools and knowledge they need to succeed and adapt to advances in the field of genomic medicine.
Students have the opportunity to gain a specialized skillset and work toward a genetic counselling degree with diverse clinical placements including prenatal, pediatrics, oncology, cardiology, neurology and psychiatric genetics.
Starting in the first week, students learn through a combination of direct classroom and hands-on experience working with genetic counselors, medical geneticists and other health care professionals.
Through collaboration with the College of Health Disciplines, UBC's Genetic Counselling program also offers students a number of inter-professional health education experiences, including:
- The Health Mentorship Program: A unique educational experience in which teams of students from different disciplines learn together, from and with a patient.
- The Interprofessional Education (IPE) Passport: An online tool that enables students to register and keep track of their interprofessional learning, and sign up for a variety of activities.
Admission Information & Requirements
In order to apply to this program, the following components may be required.
All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.
Minimum Academic Requirements
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies establishes the minimum admission requirements common to all applicants, usually a minimum overall average in the B+ range (76% at UBC). The graduate program that you are applying to may have additional requirements. Please review the specific requirements for applicants with credentials from institutions in:
Each program may set higher academic minimum requirements. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission as it is a competitve process.
Letters of Reference
A minimum of three references are required for application to graduate programs at UBC. References should be requested from individuals who are prepared to provide a report on your academic ability and qualifications.
Statement of Interest
Many programs require a statement of interest, sometimes called a "statement of intent", "description of research interests" or something similar.
English Language Proficiency
Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.
Minimum requirements for the two most common English language proficiency tests to apply to this program are listed below:
Criminal Record Check
Course-based programs may assign academic advisors to cohorts of students, but usually do not require applicants to reach out to individual professors / faculty members to seek commitment as their supervisor. Please do not contact faculty members if you are applying to this program.
Test Scores (GRE / GMAT or similar)
Some programs require additional test scores such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Test (GMAT). The requirements for this program are:
Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
Deadline to submit online application. No changes can be made to the application after submission.Transcript Deadline
Deadline to upload scans of official transcripts through the applicant portal in support of a submitted application. Information for accessing the applicant portal will be provided after submitting an online application for admission.Referee Deadline
Deadline for the referees identified in the application for admission to submit references. See Letters of Reference for more information.
September 2021 Intake
Application Open Date31 October 2020
Applicants to course-based and professional programs might seek employer support in the form of a benefits package, private institution credit lines and loans, or rely on personal savings. Some programs may offer entrance awards or bursaries. Domestic applicants may be eligible to apply for financial aid or other benefits in the form of government loans, tax credits, or similar.
Tuition / Program Costs
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$8,236.71||$8,817.22|
|Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible)||Not applicable|
|Other Fees and Costs|
|Student Fees (yearly)||$944.51 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $16,954.00 (check cost calculator)|
All fees for the year are subject to adjustment and UBC reserves the right to change any fees without notice at any time, including tuition and student fees. Tuition fees are reviewed annually by the UBC Board of Governors. In recent years, tuition increases have been 2% for continuing domestic students and between 2% and 5% for continuing international students. New students may see higher increases in tuition. Admitted students who defer their admission are subject to the potentially higher tuition fees for incoming students effective at the later program start date. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.