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How to Apply

Direct Application only

Please Note: The Direct Application link will take you to the School for Graduate Studies webpage. Go to Prospective Students - Admissions Information - Graduate Program Applications. You will see a link on the right hand side of the page entitled Application Log In to begin your application.


The application includes:

  • CWRU on-line application form completed by the student
  • Official transcripts sent directly from all previous institutions attended (includes both degree and non-degree programs, regardless of the number of courses taken.
  • Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores for the general exam (quantitative, verbal and writing) taken within 5 years of the application and sent directly from ETS. The GRE subject exam is not required.
  • The institutional code is 1105 and department code is 0210 (there is no separate genetic counseling code). GRE
  • TOEFL score for international applicants
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Personal Statement
  • Current CV/Resume
  • A $50.00 application fee (check or money order in US $ payable to CWRU)

Admissions Requirements and Process

Fulfillment of the requirements for admission to the School of Graduate Studies at Case Western Reserve University must be met as well as those required by the Genetic Counseling Training Program. An applicant having graduated with excellent academic credentials (minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale) from a fully accredited university or college. Complete credentials must be on file with the School of Graduate Studies.

Admission requirements are as follows:

  • Successful completion of the following prerequisite courses:
    Biology - minimum of one year
    Genetics - minimum of one semester
    Biochemistry - minimum of one semester
    Statistics - minimum of one semester
    Psychology - minimum of one semester
    Anatomy and/or Physiology are highly recommended

  • Results of Graduate Record Examination scores on the general examination. Scores at the 60th percentile and above are considered competitive.

  • Advocacy Experiences. Counseling experiences that are relevant to genetics, medical genetics and genetic counseling are highly recommended. Such experiences as counseling with a crisis hot line, Planned Parenthood program, peer/community counseling centers (paid or volunteer), working with individuals with disabilities and shadowing a genetic counselor are examples of experiences that highly desirable. Experience working in a DNA/molecular genetics/cytogenetic laboratory, or teaching assistant positions in biology or genetics courses are also very appropriate. The applicant should strive for experiences that provide for one-on-one interactions with others. Moreover, in the application personal statement, applicants should demonstrate an understanding of the field of genetic counseling, what led to choosing this field as a career and discuss how previous experiences have enriched his or her understanding of the profession of genetic counseling.

  • Interview. A personal interview is required. All interviews are by invitation only to assess maturity, written and oral communication skills, an awareness of the professional role of the genetic counselor and the genetic counseling profession.

Genetic Counseling Admissions Match

New for the 2018 Admissions Cycle!

The Genetic Counseling Training Program at Case Western Reserve University is participating in the Genetic Counseling Admissions Match through National Matching Services (NMS). The GC Admissions Match has been established to enhance the process of placing applicants into positions in masters-level genetic counseling programs that are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling (ACGC). The Match uses a process that takes into account both applicants' and programs' preferences. All applicants must first register for the Match with NMS before applying to participating genetic counseling graduate programs. At the conclusion of all program interviews, both applicants and programs will submit ranked lists of preferred placements to NMS according to deadlines posted on the NMS website. The binding results of the Match will be released to both applicants and programs simultaneously in late April.

Please visit the NMS website at ( to register for the match, review detailed information about the matching process, and to view a demonstration of how the matching algorithm works.

Important: After you have registered with NMS, you will need to put your NMS ID number at the top of your CV/Resume and/or at the top of your personal statement.


1. How much weight is given to GPA and GRE scores?

The average GPA for matriculating students is 3.5 and GRE mean scores are approximately, 60-70th percentiles and above. However, we take a holistic view of the applicant's complete file in determining admission, which means we look at everything the applicant has submitted. A high GPA or GRE score will not automatically lead to admission; neither will low scores automatically lead to a denial.
*While the CWRU application form asks for your GRE scores, please include the percentile score as well.

2. What do we look for in the Personal Statement?

The Personal Statement is extremely important and applicants need to pay specific attention to how they present themselves in their Personal Statement. Aspects to remember include: Is the applicant's Personal Statement grammatically sound, and does it give us a clear picture as to who the applicant is? Applicants' should emphasize those experiences which have directly assisted them in becoming aware of and knowledgeable about the genetic counseling profession. Genetic counselors are highly motivated and hardworking individuals. Thus, the Admissions Committee looks for applicants who demonstrate initiative, self-direction, excellent communication skills and who have "gone the extra mile" to show their passion for becoming a genetic counselor.

3. Who should write letters of recommendation?

Letters of recommendation should be written by individuals who can provide an accurate picture of your academic capabilities, your communication skills (both written and spoken) and your potential to successfully complete graduate education. At least two referees should be faculty from your past institutions. Other excellent referee sources include genetic counselors you have shadowed or supervisors of internships or advocacy experiences which you have had. Recommendation letters from friends or family members are discouraged. Please note, while CWRU provides an on-line recommendation form for referees to complete, your referee should also provide a personal letter to accompany the form.

4. How many people apply to the genetic counseling program and how many are accepted?

While the number of applications received by the Program varies from year to year, in general we receive approximately 60 - 70+ applications each year. At this time, the Program is able to accept 8 students per year.

5. What is the application deadline and can students do the Program part-time?

December 15th of each year is the application deadline. It is important that all required materials such as GRE scores (including their percentiles), transcripts from all institutions in which you have completed coursework and letters of reference be submitted by the application deadline if you wish to have your application reviewed by the Admissions Committee. If you will be taking a prerequisite course or courses in the upcoming semester that will not be reflected on your current transcripts, please let us know in your personal statement (or Resume) which course or courses you will be taking to meet the prerequisites. Also, please submit a current CV or resume along with your personal statement. The Program only admits one class per year -- in fall semester. Because of the intensive nature of the Program, all students must be full time, we are unable to accommodate part-time students.

Last update on: 4th October 2018