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Practical Skills in Genetic Counselling

$ 1,500.00


04 November




6 wks


Avg 10 hrs/wk

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Meet the expert

Dr Alison McEwen

Dr Alison McEwen
Professor, Graduate School of Health

Alison was the Head of the Department for a number of years and founder of the Master of Genetic Counselling in the Graduate School of Health. She came to UTS from Genetic Health Services New Zealand, where she worked as a senior genetic counsellor.

Alison has held several positions with the Australasian Society of Genetic Counsellors (ASGC) and the Human Genetics Society of Australasia (HGSA) during the past ten years, including chairing the ASGC between 2014-2016, and the HGSA Board of Censors in Genetic Counselling when the training and certification guidelines underwent a substantial review. She was involved in the accreditation of Master of Genetic Counselling training programs and a member of a working group that prepared the application for professional regulation of genetic counsellors. Alison was also president of the HGSA from 2021-23, the second genetic counsellor to hold this key role. Research interests include genetic counsellor education and training and the ways in which genetic counsellors roles are evolving.

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Equip yourself with key skills for practicing genetic and genomic testing. Gain hands-on experience in decision-making, consent conversations and interpreting genetic test results. Reflect on the importance of engaging with diverse communities, ensuring that your genetic counselling is accessible and inclusive, with this skills-based and practical microcredential.

About this microcredential

During this microcredential, you will be guided through the provision of evidence-based genetic counselling. You will will learn how to speak with clients about genetic testing and how to collect consent, interpret and return genetic test results. You will gain knowledge of working with interpreters to discuss genetics and genomics and how to talk about grief and loss.

Each week you will undertake self-paced online study to familiarise yourself with skills used in genetic counselling. In addition, you will attend weekly, live Zoom sessions where you will interact with professional colleagues and academic genetic counsellors to develop and practice new skills and apply your acquired knowledge to case studies.

Key benefits of this microcredential

This microcredential has been designed to equip you to:

  • Apply major psychotherapeutic counselling theories relevant to genetic counselling
  • Apply genetic counselling theories to practice
  • Use basic counselling skills including active listening, attending, reflecting, clarifying and summarising
  • Engage in client-centred genetic counselling practice
  • Elicit clients’ beliefs and values, hopes and concerns about genetic counselling
  • Facilitate informed decision-making with clients and their families
  • Facilitate a conversation and collect informed consent for genetic and genomic testing from clients and families.

This microcredential aligns with the 3 -credit point subject, Practical Skills in Genetic Counselling (96852) in the Graduate Certificate in Genetic Counselling Skills (C11375). This microcredential may qualify for recognition of prior learning at this and other institutions.

Digital badge and certificate digital badge example for UTS Open short courses

A digital badge and certificate will be awarded upon successful completion of the relevant assessment requirements and attainment of learning outcomes of the microcredential.  

Learn more about UTS Open digital badges.

Who should do this microcredential?

This microcredential is suitable for healthcare professionals, including nurses and allied healthcare professionals looking to develop genetic counselling skills. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Nurses
  • Medical professionals
  • Scientists, researchers and research assistants working in genomic research
  • Laboratory scientists supporting referrers who are ordering genomic testing
  • Students and graduates interested in studying genetic counselling
  • Healthcare managers wanting to learn more about genomic healthcare.


Full price: $1,728 (GST-free)*

Special price: $1,500 (GST-free)*

*Price subject to change. Please check price at time of purchase.

Discounts are available for this course. For further details and to verify if you qualify, please check the Discounts section under Additional course information

Enrolment conditions

Course purchase is subject to UTS Open Terms and Conditions. 

COVID-19 response 

UTS complies with latest Government health advice. Delivery of all courses complies with the UTS response to COVID-19.

Additional course information

Course outline

This course is structured into 4 modules. Each module includes self-study materials and facilitated live and online skills-based sessions (on Zoom).

Module 1: Making meaning of genetics with clients and families (weeks 1-3)

Module 2: Working with families from diverse communities (week 4)

Module 3: Grief and loss in genetic counselling (week 5)

Module 4: Applying skills to clients and families (week 6)

Course learning objectives

Upon successful completion of this microcredential, you should be able to:

  • Use core counselling skills to provide client-centred genetic counselling
  • Facilitate informed decision-making and collect consent for genetic and genomic testing
  • Reflect on the use of interpreters in genetic counselling
  • Reflect on grief, loss and meaning making in genetic counselling practice.  


Participants will be assessed individually across the following two tasks during the course:

Task 1: Case Study (weight 40%)

You will be provided with a case scenario in which a client is deciding whether to have a genetic test. You will be required to respond to question prompts, applying genetic counselling theory to the case.

Task 2: Part A: Counselling skills demonstration task; Part B: Reflection (weight 60%)

You will be provided with a case study and asked to record a short role play demonstrating your ability to facilitate a short consent conversation with a client who has been referred for genetic testing. You will be required to watch the recording and write a brief, structured reflection.




  •  To complete this online course, you will need a personal computer with adequate internet access and sufficient software and bandwidth to support web conferencing. You will also require an operating system with a web browser compatible with Canvas and Zoom.   


  • Background knowledge of genetics and genomics, including patterns of inheritance is desirable for participants in this course.  


  • Participants are strongly encouraged to attend the weekly, live Zoom classes where there will be opportunities to practice genetic counselling skills, prepare for assessment tasks and ask questions.  


Discounts are available for this course as follows: 

  • Discounted price of $1,350 (GST-free)* for 6 or more enrolments from the same organisation.

Discounts cannot be combined and only one discount can be applied per person per course session. Discounts can only be applied to the full price. Discounts cannot be applied to any offered special price. 

How to obtain your discount

To obtain your discount code, please contact UTS Open Support at with:

  • your organisation name, and
  • the 6+ staff names and email addresses for your group enrolment.

How to apply your discount voucher 

  • Add this course to your cart 
  • Click on "View Cart" (blue shopping trolley at top right of screen). You will need to sign in or sign up to UTS Open 
  • Enter your eligible code beneath the “Have a code?” prompt and click on the blue "Apply" button 
  • Verify your voucher code has been successfully applied before clicking on the blue "Checkout" button. 

Contact us

  • For any questions about course content, delivery, progression or requirements, please email Alison McEwen at  
  • For any questions about enrolment or payment, please email UTS Open Support at

Book a session

Mon 04 Nov 2024-
Fri 13 Dec 2024
Expert: Dr Alison McEwen
  • Click on the underlined sessions and hours total link below to reveal specific session details.
  • Online
  • 6 sessions, 12 hours total

Enrolments close at 5pm on Friday, 26 October 2024 (AEST), or when all places have been filled, whichever occurs first.

Learners are encouraged to attend a minimum of 85% of the online classes which are live, interactive and an opportunity to discuss issues, ask questions, practice skills and get the most out of this microcredential.  


Acknowledgement of Country

UTS acknowledges the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, the Boorooberongal people of the Dharug Nation, the Bidiagal people and the Gamaygal people, upon whose ancestral lands our university stands. We would also like to pay respect to the Elders both past and present, acknowledging them as the traditional custodians of knowledge for these lands.