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Brandeis University's Master of Science (MS) in Genetic Counseling is a two-year course of study integrating coursework with clinical experience in an environment that encourages close student/faculty interaction. Ordinarily the program is completed in two academic years and the intervening summer. The program places a strong emphasis on human molecular genetics, while providing in-depth course work in counseling theory and technique as well as extensive clinical training.

Fieldwork and clinical internships are an integral part of the program. First-year students carry out a clinical genetics laboratory rotation during one semester and a community-based rotation during the other semester. Starting in the summer following the first year and continuing through the second year, students participate in three intensive clinical internships at prenatal, pediatric, general, or specialty genetics clinics. Satisfactory completion of the three clinical internships is required for graduation from the program (read more about fieldwork and clinical training).

Students who successfully complete the Program will be able to:

The program is accredited by the American Board of Genetic Counseling and prepares graduates for the certification examination in genetic counseling and employment as genetic counselors.

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Courses and Degree Requirements

For the most updated course listing, course descriptions, and degree requirements, please visit the Registrar.

How to Apply


In addition to a Bachelor's degree, applicants should have completed the following courses:

  • one year of general chemistry;

  • one year of biology;

  • one semester of genetics (course should include both Mendelian and molecular); and

  • one semester each of organic chemistry, biochemistry, psychology, and statistics. 

Applicants lacking one or more of these courses are invited to consult the program's director on how to fulfill these requirements. Volunteer or work experience in an area related to counseling, developmental disabilities, or genetics is also recommended.

After initial review of applications, potential candidates will be invited to Brandeis for a personal interview. Brandeis notifies applicants the same day as other schools accredited by American Board of Genetic Counselors (ABGC), usually end of April/beginning of May.

Application Deadline

Fall semester (starts in late August): January 1

Admission Requirements

To apply for the M.A. in Genetic Counseling, you need to submit:

  • An online application

  • An application fee;

  • Transcripts from all universities and colleges attended must be uploaded to your application; do not mail official transcripts to our office. For more information, visit Frequently Asked Questions

  • Three letters of recommendation, submitted electronically

  • curriculum vitae (CV) or resumé

  • statement of purpose/personal statement describing your interest in the field of Genetic Counseling

  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is required. Our GRE institution code is 3092 (please note: this institution code only applies to GRE scores).

  • Applicants should be prepared to list prerequisite courses and their relevant grades in the online application

  • International applicants: Additional requirements for international applicants (non-U.S. citizens or non-permanent residents), minimum TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores, and important information regarding visas. If you are submitting TOEFL scores, please note that our TOEFL institution code is 3261.

For a more comprehensive description of application requirements, please visit Frequently Asked Questions.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Generous scholarships and financial aid are available; for more information please visit Financial Aid.

Careers and Alumni

Students and alumni can work closely with Career Services for an array of resources, including CV/resume help, job search, and networking.