The programme is made up of 8 modules which will be delivered by online videos. The preliminary syllabus (subject to change) is listed here.

  1. 1. The Laboratory – from gamete to embryo

    • The Laboratory – from gamete to embryo, introduction to the module:  Joyce Harper
    • The history of events leading to the birth of the worlds first IVF babies: Kay Elder
    • Introduction to laboratory equipment and staff: Xavier Viñals Gonzalez
    • Culture media – development and composition: Joyce Harper
    • Culture media:  sequential and single step – what embryologist should consider:  Kiri Beilby
    • Semen assessment:  Steven Fleming
    • Preparing sperm for ART: Alpesh Doshi
    • Laboratory aspects of IVF:  Xavier Viñals Gonzalez
    • Laboratory aspects of ICSI: Rachel Cutting
    • The embryologist role in the egg collection: Alpesh Doshi
    • How to do the PN check: Mara Simopoulou
    • Blastocyst culture; advantages and disadvantages and in which patients?  Catherine Racowsky
    • Embryo selection and scoring: Kay Elder
    • Laboratory aspects of the embryo transfer procedure:  Alpesh Doshi
    • How should we bring new technology into the IVF lab – a discussion of the adjuncts: Joyce Harper
    • Assisted Hatching: Glora Calderon
    • Introduction to time lapse:  Walid Maalouf
    • Model building with time lapse technology: Cristina Hickman
  2. 2. Oocyte, sperm and embryo cryopreservation

    • Intro to the module – Joyce Harper
    • Principles of cryopreservation: TBC
    • Sperm freezing:  Steven Fleming
    • Embryo cryopreservation: Laura Rienzi
    • Oocyte cryopreservation:  Ana Cobo
    • Ovarian tissue cryopreservation: Richard Anderson
    • The frozen-thaw cycle:  TBC
    • Should we be doing freeze all cycles?  TBC
  3. 3. Lab design, quality assessment and trouble shooting

    • Laboratory design and construction
    • Air quality in the IVF lab: VOCs monitoring
    • How to decide which equipment to buy for the lab
    • Managing a high throughput laboratory
    • Quality management in the IVF lab
    • How to ensure a stable culture system
    • Monitoring your performance and KPIs
    • Auditing the IVF lab
    • Trouble shooting in the IVF lab
    • Managing infections in an IVF lab
    • IVF regulation and legislation
  4. 4. PGT and prenatal diagnosis

    • Basic genetics
    • Inherited diseases
    • Chromosome abnormalities
    • Genetics of infertility
    • Introduction to PGT
    • Polar body, cleavage stage and blastocyst biopsy for PGT
    • Genetic diagnosis for PGT
    • PGT-A
    • How to interpret PGT results
    • Non invasive prenatal diagnosis
    • Prenatal diagnosis
    • Genetic counselling
    • Discussion of ethical issues
  5. 5. New technology and ethical considerations in ART

    • Introduction to the module, Joyce Harper
    • Ethical considerations in ART, Dan Reisel
    • Using donor eggs and sperm – what needs to be considered, Saghar Kasiri
    • The global surrogacy market, Christina Weis
    • Cross border reproductive care, Francoise Shenfield
    • Embryo culture system: what will be next, Roger Sturmey
    • Mitochondrial replacement techniques, Mary Herbert
    • Genome editing, Helen O’Neill
    • The future of reproduction, Joyce Harper
  6. 6. Clinical aspects of ART

    • Introduction to the module, Joyce Harper
    • Causes of male infertility, Amr Raheen
    • Clinical andrology, Pippa Sangster
    • Causes of female infertility and investigations, Anis Feki
    • Clinical aspects of infertility treatments, Timur Gurgan
    • Drug regimes in ART, Svend Lindenberg
    • Monitoring an IVF cycle, Michel De Vos
    • The failed cycle, Yacoub Khalaf
  7. 7. Gametogenesis and preimplantation development

    • Introduction to the module Joyce Harper
    • Anatomy of the female and male reproductive tract and meiosis Joyce Harper
    • Oogenesis –John Carroll
    • Spermatogenesis Greg Fitzharris
    • Fertilisation and oocyte activation – Karl Swann
    • Preimplantation development; blastocysts in 2019, Giovanni Coticchio
    • Implantation, Siobhan Quenby
  8. 8. Reproductive health

    • Introduction to the module, Joyce Harper
    • Puberty and the menstrual, cycle Joyce Harper
    • Sexually transmitted infections, TBC
    • Contraception, TBC
    • Preconception care, Judith Stephenson
    • Pregnancy: TBC
    • Miscarriage and termination, TBC
    • Menopause Ertan Saridogan

Exit Exam

The exit exam includes submission and feedback of a 3000 word essay, a practical exam, approval of the log book and an oral exam. The exit exam can only be taken when the student has passed all eight modules.