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Genetic Counseling Communication: A Discourse-analytical Approach

  1. Srikant Sarangi

Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

DOI: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0005630



How to Cite

Sarangi, S. 2006. Genetic Counseling Communication: A Discourse-analytical Approach. eLS. .

Author Information

  1. Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

This is not the most recent version of the article. View current version (19 SEP 2013)


The rich and complex communication process that constitutes the activity of genetic counseling has largely remained a black box. Genetic counseling can encompass topics as diverse as the natural history of a genetic disorder, its treatability, lay genetic awareness, psychosocial aspects of coping, reproduction choices, the ethical and legal consequences of decisions, and privacy issues concerning the circulation of genetic information. Given this embedded nature of the communication process, a discourse-analytical approach is an attempt to uncover the structural and thematic organization of genetic counseling as a situated speech event.


  • discourse analysis;
  • activity type;
  • decision-making;
  • risk explanation;
  • uncertainty;
  • probability;
  • nondirectiveness;
  • professional neutrality