Gerontology


AWARD OFFERED Certificate (2 Semesters)

Admission Requirements and Curriculum
Program Application

Worldwide, populations are aging and people are living longer. People over the age of 65, especially those over the age of 80, are among the fastest growing in the industrialized nations. For those born in the United States in 1900, almost half died before they were 50 years old. Those individuals born today can expect to live to be age 75 and older. In 1900, about one in 25 Americans were over the age of 65; today one in 8 is over 65. The age group growing the fastest today is the people aged 85 and over. In the 21st century, one in five Americans will be over 65.

Since seniors are the fastest-growing group of consumers of healthcare services, these growth trends will result in a demand for professionals with knowledge and expertise in the field of gerontology. Expanded career opportunities are forecast requiring a work force with education and training in gerontology.

The Gerontology Certificate program prepares social service and health care professionals, as well as students, with specialized knowledge of the aging process and geriatric issues that will help them better serve older adults. Adding the gerontology certificate to existing work and educational experience is likely to enhance an individual’s career advancement opportunities and options. The program provides a background of basic knowledge in gerontology, and prepares certificate option students in professional skill areas such as counseling, recreation, social work, nursing, and administration. The certificate consists of 15 semester hours. Students should complete the Gerontology Certificate Program in two semesters.

The program includes a wide variety of courses that provide students with state-of-the-art knowledge about aging and teaches students how to implement that knowledge into practice. Completion of the program will develop and/or enhance existing proficiencies, knowledge, develop specific skills to address the complex needs of older adults in a variety of areas, including: Enhance employment marketability, Create a network for sharing of expertise, Develop and build skills and competencies, Develop an interdisciplinary perspective on aging, Fulfill continuing education requirements for professionals, serve as advocates for older adults and their families, manage services and programs that promote the health and independence of older persons, Educate others about geriatric health care, Serve as a leader in developing and implementing multidisciplinary health care and social service teams, Assist caregivers and provide direct care to older persons, and provide counseling assistance for end-of life issues.

View Gainful Employment Information 
 

Susan Beck, Program Director
256/352-8339
susan.beck@wallacestate.edu