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Research: Producing Novel Knowledge in the Field

Being a trainee is about far more than rote memorization— you’ll also get your chance to bring new insight and ask new questions in the field. When you join Vanderbilt MGC, you’ll embark on a novel research project that will culminate in a master’s thesis presentation and submission to a relevant academic journal.

Cutting-edge resources for research

At Vanderbilt MGC, you’ll have access to the praxis and technology of a premier research institution. Our faculty and staff are among those pushing the boundaries of the field on an everyday basis.

Learn from Vanderbilt’s online resources like the The Vanderbilt Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, methodology experts for study design assistance, and statistical consultants for data analysis.

Mentorship to match your needs

During your first semester here, you’ll be paired with a faculty research advisor, who’ll help you navigate the thesis process. Through regular check-ins, you’ll select a topic, organize a research timeline, and develop a thesis proposal.Whatever your comfort level with research, our team of mentors are here to help you take the next step forward in your journey as an evidence-informed clinician.

Long-term investment, long-term growth

Here’s what your research timeline may look like over your five semesters here.

  • Fall 1 – Dive into research planning and implementation with Research for Genetic Counselors 1 (GC6610). In this course, you’ll engage everything from critical literature reviews to research ethics— and then apply these to developing your own thesis.
  • Spring 1 – Explore the field’s opportunities for research further through Research for Genetic Counselors 2 (GC6615), which prepares you to submit an IRB proposal and present your thesis proposal to the Research Review Committee near the end of the semester.
  • Summer + Fall 2 – Begin to implement your research plan by collecting and analyzing research data. Start drafting your thesis in the format of a manuscript targeted towards a particular peer-reviewed journal.
  • Spring – Finalize your manuscript and present your master’s thesis to your research committee and other invited faculty. Finally, submit your manuscript for publication by your target journal.

Follow your curiosity

Your master’s thesis is more than a capstone project or a literature review— you’re producing new knowledge in a quickly evolving field.

Choose a topic you’re passionate about and think outside the box. There’s guaranteed to be a provider or faculty member here who’s also interested in working with you.

Full course descriptions can be found in the VUSM catalog.