The certificate will be awarded upon completion of five graduate level courses (15 credit hours) in the area of gerontology. The students in this graduate certificate program will need to complete the following courses*:

 KNES 5232. Physiology of Human Aging (3 credits)

Focuses on the normal physiological alterations that occur as the human progresses from a young adult to the latter stages of life. Special attention is given to interventions commonly promoted to combat the physiological changes that result from aging.

GRNT 5280. The Experience of Dementia (3 credits)

Offered in the Spring

Provides an overview of Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders using a person-centered perspective. This topic is explored from the perspectives of the person diagnosed, family members and concerned friends, and both formal caregivers. Students who successfully complete this course will gain a holistic insight into these Disorders and their implications of both individuals and society.

GRNT 6600. Current Issues in Gerontology (3 credits)

Offered in the Fall

Study of current issues and topics in the field of aging from an interdisciplinary perspective. Reading materials present the contributions of researchers, practitioners, and policy makers from multiple disciplines. The objectives for students include: (1) learning about the main topics on aging discussed at the 2015 White House Conference on Aging in July 2015; (2) identifying the issues that are relevant for older adults and their families in the coming years in North Carolina; (3) exploring policy recommendations for supportive services addressing needs of older adults and their families; and (4) engaging in the conversation with organizations in the aging field and other stakeholders, as well as individuals, to shape the set of evidence-based strategies to improve the quality of life of older adults and their families.

PSYC 6124. Psychology of Aging (3 credits)

Particular emphasis on issues related to community/clinical psychology and industrial/organizational psychology. Topics include myths and stereotypes about aging, cognitive abilities among older adults, problems faced by older workers, retirement, mental health and normal aging, counseling the older adult, and psychological disorders in later life.

GRNT 6400. Practicum (3 credits)

Offered in the Summer

Completion of a field-based educational experience which relates to the student's career goals and objectives (150 hours). The practicum is meant to provide additional hands-on experience for those who are relatively new to the field or to broaden the experience of those with extensive practical experience working with older adults. Each student will work with his/her adviser to design a Practicum which will meet his/her specific needs.


*These are the primary courses, however, there may be some alternative options for students.

Find additional details on the curriculum, faculty profiles, schedule of course delivery, and course descriptions online at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Gerontology Program page. The cumulative GPA must be at least 3.0 and at most one course with a grade of C may be allowed toward the certificate. Requests for related course substitutions may be approved at the discretion of the Program Director.