Major in Gerontology and Aging Services

Students may seek an academic major or minor in gerontology and aging services.

The major in gerontology and aging services prepares students to implement and manage health and human service programs in gerontology and aging services. It combines a foundation in the psychosocial and physiological aspects of aging with an understanding of programs, services, and policies related to aging and older adults. Graduates are prepared for careers such as gerontological services or program manager, program and policy analyst, services developer, and housing or facilities manager.

Intended Program Outcomes

The student who graduates with a major in gerontology and aging services should be able to

  • Access, interpret, and apply gerontological research findings related to biopsychosocial processes in the context of aging.
  • Analyze the impact of sociological and cultural factors, such as race, ethnicity, gender, and social class, on the aging process.
  • Analyze the development of policies related to aging and their impact on services and organizations for older adults, both locally and nationally.
  • Apply interdisciplinary gerontological knowledge to work with older adults in a chosen area of practice.
  • Practice within the legal and ethical standards of the aging services field.

Degree Requirements

A degree with a major in gerontology and aging services requires the successful completion of 120 credits of coursework, including 30 credits for the major; 41 credits in general education requirements; and 49 credits in the minor, electives, and other degree requirements. At least 15 credits in the major must be earned in upper-level courses (numbered 300 or above).

Requirements for the Gerontology and Aging Services Major

Coursework for a major in gerontology and aging services includes the following:

Recommended Sequence

The following course sequence will fulfill all the requirements for the BS in gerontology and aging services. Coursework for the major is indicated by Coursework for the major. Since some recommended courses fulfill more than one requirement, substituting courses for those listed may make it necessary to take additional courses to meet degree requirements. Students should consult an advisor whenever taking advantage of other options.

Gerontology and Aging Services Degree Courses

First Courses (to be taken within the first 18 credits)

Note: Placement tests are required for math and writing courses.

  • LIBS 150 Introduction to Research (1)
  • WRTG 101 Introduction to Writing (3)
    or WRTG 101S Introduction to Writing (3)
  • MATH 106 Finite Mathematics (3)
    or a higher-level math course

Introductory Courses (to be taken within the first 30 credits)

  • Coursework for the major GERO 100 Contemporary Issues in Aging (3)
  • ECON 103 Economics in the Information Age (3)
    or other behavioral and social sciences course
  • BIOL 103 Introduction to Biology (4)
    or other biological and physical sciences lecture and laboratory course(s)
  • WRTG 293 Introduction to Professional Writing (3)
    or other writing course
  • IFSM 201 Concepts and Applications of Information Technology (3)
    or CMST 301 Digital Media and Society (3)
  • HUMN 100 Introduction to Humanities (3)
    or other arts and humanities course

Foundation Courses (to be taken within the first 60 credits)

  • Coursework for the major GERO 220 Psychological Aspects of Aging (3)
    or PSYC 357 Adulthood and Aging
  • Coursework for the major STAT 225 Introduction to Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences (3)
    or STAT 200 Introduction to Statistics (3)
    or STAT 230 Introductory Business Statistics (3)
  • BEHS 103 Technology in Contemporary Society (3)
    or other behavioral and social sciences course (discipline must differ from first)
  • NSCI 100 Introduction to Physical Science (3)
    or other biological and physical sciences lecture course
  • HIST 125 Technological Transformations (3)
    or other arts and humanities/historical perspective course (discipline must differ from other humanities course)
  • COMM 202 Media and Society (3)
    or other communication, writing, or speech course
  • CMIS 111 Social Networking and Cybersecurity Best Practices (3)
    or other computing course
  • Coursework for the major GERO 302 Health and Aging (3)
    or BIOL 307 The Biology of Aging

Additional Required Courses (to be taken after introductory and foundation courses)

  • Coursework for the major GERO 301 Service/Program Management (3)
    or HMGT 300 Introduction to the U.S. Health Care Sector
  • Coursework for the major GERO 306 Programs, Services, and Policies (3)
  • WRTG 391 Advanced Research Writing (3)
    or other upper-level advanced writing course
  • Coursework for the major GERO 338 Health Promotion in Older Adults (3)
    or other health-related course for the major
  • Coursework for the major GERO 311 Gender and Aging (3)
    or GERO 410 Cross-Cultural Perspectives of Aging
    or other supplemental major course
  • Coursework for the major GERO 327 Ethnicity and Aging (3)
    or other supplemental major course

Practicum for Major (to be taken within the last 30 credits)

  • Coursework for the major GERO 486A Workplace Learning in Gerontology and Aging Services (3)

Minor and/or Elective Courses (49)
(to be taken within the last 60 credits along with required major courses)

Recommended Electives
 

Total credits for BS in gerontology: 120

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