New genomics and counselling skills course

Funded learning opportunities are available for nurses on this new introductory online course

As the use of genomics in healthcare increases, growing numbers of genomic tests will be carried out and greater numbers of healthcare professionals will be called upon to understand and discuss genomic testing with patients.

To enable nurses to develop their knowledge of genomics, the University of the West of England has created a new online course; Genomics and Counselling Skills for Nurses in collaboration with Macmillan Cancer Support, a range of NHS genomics specialists, and Health Education England’s Genomics Education Programme (HEE GEP).

Modular course content

The CPD course will run over a 15-week period and has been designed for nurses with little-to-no previous knowledge of genomics. The online module aims to explain the fundamentals of genomics using examples from rare inherited diseases and common conditions such as cancer; it will also help participants to understand the family history of a condition and the role of early screening and/or genomic testing in saving lives, allowing early intervention and enabling targeted treatment. Candidates will also gain practical experience of taking a genetic family history and develop the skills necessary to talk to patients and their family members about genomics. The course format consists of a mixture of self-directed study, pre-recorded online presentations, scheduled interactive tutorials and group work/presentations.

Dates and times below are given as a guide and are subject to change. For the full timetable please contact the University.

Date Activity Times
19 October 2020 Course commences
26 October 2020 Interactive online Blackboard collaborative tutorial 09.00 – 10.00
13 November 2020 Interactive online Blackboard collaborative tutorials (x4) 09.00 – 13.00
27 November 2020 Online live tutorial – Putting genetic counselling skills into practice. 09:00 – 11:00
04 December 2020 Interactive online Blackboard collaborative tutorials (x2) 09:00 – 11:00
11 December 2020 Interactive online Blackboard collaborative tutorials 09:00 – 10:00
18 December 2020 Preparation for group assessment (online) 09:00 – 10:00
18 December 2020 Evaluation of course (online) 10:00 – 11:00
23 January 2021 Group assessment (online) 09:00 – 15:00
23 January 2021 Review of presentations (online) 16:00 – 17:00
25 January 2021 Peer information leaflet to be submitted for assessment (online) 17:00
29 January 2021 Review of goals and objectives set (online) 09:00 – 10:00
01 February 2021 Feedback. Scheduled interactive online live Blackboard collaborative session 09:00 – 10:00

Funded places available

Starting on 19 October 2020, participants can expect to spend six to eight hours per week engaging with the module content. To accommodate clinical work, all lectures will be available online, and participants will be supported by weekly live online tutorials.

The GEP will be funding 30 places for nurses who currently work in England. Funding covers the course fees only; students need to ensure they are available to attend ALL dates as funding will not be provided for those who do not attend.

Please note: data provided in an application will be held on file until the end of the course. After this date any personal information will be deleted by HEE. Information will be shared with the panel, made up of Health Education England, Macmillan Cancer and University of West of England, for a funding decision to be made.

Successful candidates will need to enrol with University of West of England who will hold the data under their data protection policy – see UWE Privacy Notice

Applications for funding are open until 20 September 2020. A panel will review all applications and notify successful candidates within seven days of the applications closing. Candidates can apply through the application form, found here.

If you have further questions about the course, please email melanie.watson@nbt.nhs.uk