Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology
The Gerontology Program is an Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE) Program of Merit. Gerontology is the multi-disciplinary study of the aging processes (biological, psychological, and sociological), and of individuals as they age from middle adulthood through later adulthood. It includes the study of mental, physical and social changes in older adults as they age, and the impact of social programs and social policies on their well-being. Since older adults, especially those around 85 years of age and above, constitute the fastest growing segment of the population, the focus of gerontologists has been on the acquisition of specialized knowledge and skills to meet the needs of this rapidly expanding population. Additional information about gerontology can be obtained from the following websites:
- Association for Gerontology in Higher Education
- Southern Gerontological Society
- North Carolina Association on Aging
- Northwest Piedmont Council of Governments, Area Agency on Aging
With a bachelor's degree in gerontology a student is likely to find employment in any of the following fields:
- Government Agencies: Department of Veteran Affairs, Healthcare Financing Administration, National Council on Aging, National Institute on Aging, Senior Services Centers, Social Security Administration, State Offices on Aging.
- Institutions: Adult Day Centers, Assisted Living Facilities, Colleges and Universities, Churches, Hospitals and Out-patient Facilities, Mental Health Facilities, Nursing Homes, Rehabilitation Facilities, Retirement Communities.
- Organizations: AARP (American Association of Retired Persons), ASA (American Society on Aging), AGHE (Association of Gerontology in Higher Education).
- NB: Specialists in the field of Gerontology earn salaries that are generally comparable to those of other health and human service administrators, planners and service providers who do not work in the field of aging.
Program of Study
The Bachelor of Arts program requires a total of 123 semester hours, consisting of:
46 hours of gerontology core courses: The Aging Experience, Aspects of Aging in Diverse Groups, Public Policy, Biology of Aging, Social Gerontology, Psychology of Aging, Legal, Political, and Economic Aspects of Aging; Principles and Practices of Gerontology; Health Related Functional Aspects of Gerontology; Research Methods and Evaluation in Gerontology; Dying, Death, and Bereavement; Senior Seminar; Internship.
The minor in gerontology requires 22 hours in gerontology and other aging related courses.
An online concentration in gerontology is being developed.