Genetic Counseling Program

Clinical Rotations Overview

Clinical rotations are an integral part of the Genetic Counseling Program and provide students with opportunities to increase their general clinical knowledge, gain experience with counseling for a variety of indications and develop the necessary skills and competencies required for the practice of genetic counseling.

The UNCG Genetic Counseling program has clinical rotations available at the following sites:

First Year Experiences:

During the first semester of the program via the Genetics and the Community course, students are involved in many observational activities that serve to increase their awareness of the impact of genetic disorders on patients and their families. This is accomplished by field trips to specialty clinics (e.g. Turner syndrome, hemophilia, muscular dystrophy, and sickle cell). In addition, students spend one-on-one time with children and adults with genetic conditions in their classrooms, group homes, institutions and other settings. Students also spend time observing in a prenatal diagnosis, pediatric and cancer genetics clinic. These are primarily observational experiences, and students are not expected to collect logbook cases at these locations.

Summer Clinical Rotations:

Students complete a seven-week Summer Clinical Rotation between the first and second year of the program. The summer clinical rotations take place at ABGC approved sites. Under the supervision of on-site, board certified clinical geneticists and genetic counselors, students will progress from observation to participation in various aspects of clinical genetic services. Students may choose to complete summer rotation at an institution outside of the UNCG clinical placements as long as the outside site agrees and has a genetic counselor or medical geneticist who is board certified in genetics. Appropriate paperwork must be completed ahead of time so the site can become a temporary rotation site for the UNCG program. Summer rotations at other sites may be arranged on an individual basis with approval of Program Director Nancy Callanan.

Second Year Clinical Rotations:

During the second year of the program there will be two 7 week rotations in each semester (for a total of 4 rotations) to permit students to work in a variety of settings. During the clinical rotations, students will be directly supervised by ABGC certified Genetic Counselors and/or Clinical Geneticists.

•  Each student will be assigned at least one rotation in the pediatric/general/adult genetics, cancer genetics, and prenatal diagnosis. The remaining rotations will be assigned based on the student's interest and rotation availability.

•  Students will be provided with the general learning objectives for the clinic rotations and will be required to establish, in consultation with the Clinical Supervisor, a set of specific learning objectives for each rotation. The specific learning objectives should reflect the student's prior experiences and identify areas in which the student needs to gain additional experience or practice.

•  Evaluation / feedback of the student's activities and progress will be an ongoing component of the Clinical Rotations. At the end of each rotation a formal written evaluation will be conducted by the Clinical Supervisor and reviewed with the student.

•  Students are required to keep an accurate logbook and journal of their clinical experiences that will include appropriate written documentation of their patient contacts (e.g. clinic notes, summary letters). An Access Database is provided to assist students in keeping track of their clinical cases. The logbook and journal will be reviewed periodically by the Program Director and/or Assistant Director to monitor student progress.

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  • "I chose to attend UNCG because of its shared learning environment and the access to some of the leading institutions in the country. "

  • "UNCG is a great fit for me. The program directors have extensive experience in the world of genetic counseling and provide you with opportunities to work with some of the best medical centers in the country. Our location allows us to have expert guest lecturers, many of whom you also get to work alongside or observe in your clinical rotations in your second year. We also have some really wonderful and unique opportunities as a part of this program: we observe in syndrome specific support groups and clinics, tour genetic laboratories, and are matched with a family with a genetic disease to learn what it is like to live with a genetic condition. Finally, our directors are genuinely invested in each of us, and care about our success and getting to know each of us personally."

  • "The director and assistant director do their best to ensure that our program provides a collaborative learning experience.  Both are active members of the Genetic Counseling community and strive to introduce you to all aspects of this field.  We also have renowned clinical sites and the beautiful state of North Carolina at our disposal.”