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Minor inGerontology

Minoring in Gerontology involves the study of the human aging process. In an interdisciplinary approach, you’ll take courses in psychology, biology, sociology, kinesiology, and family studies to understand the physical, behavioral and social changes associated with aging. What are the symptoms of age-related diseases? What ethics surround elderly people’s decision making? How does mental health affect physical health? You’ll gain knowledge and skills that are important for a career working with the elderly as you take 22 credit hours toward a gerontology minor in conjunction with a different bachelor’s degree major.

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Gerontology Curriculum Overview

You’ll gain knowledge and skills that are important for a career working with the elderly as you take 22 credit hours toward a gerontology minor in conjunction with a different bachelor’s degree major.

Prerequisites from General Education
Course ID Course Name Credit Hours
PSY - 101 Introduction to Psychology 4
SOC - 152 Introduction to Sociology 4

This course introduces the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. Psychological, behavioral, cognitive, humanistic, psychodynamic and social-cultural perspectives are explored. Topics such as scientific method, statistical reasoning, neuroscience, learning, cognitive processes, development, psychological adjustment, therapy, social psychology, diversity and community are studied.

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This course provides an introduction to the systematic study of society and social behavior. Investigation will focus on the values and norms shared by society's members, the groups and institutions that compose social structure, and the forces that are transforming social reality.

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Required: 22 credits
Course ID Course Name Credit Hours
SOC - 353 Themes in Adult Dev. & Aging 4
BIO - 415 Biology of Aging 3
KHS - 445 Ethics & Decision Making H C 4
FAS - 400 Family Systems 4
KHS - 439 Physical Dimensions of Aging 3
PSY - 360 Abnormal Psychology 4

This course explores a variety of themes in development throughout the lifespan beginning with youth and ending in the last stages of adulthood including aging, death and dying. Lifespan, sociological, psychological, and family science perspectives will be used to examine a variety of themes. (Prerequisite: SOC152)

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This 3 credit course will focus on theories of human aging from a biological perspective. The structural and functional changes that occur during the aging process will be investigated at several levels: molecular, cellular, tissue, and organ system. The symptoms and clinical management of age-related diseases will also be explored. This course is targeted for students interested in the health sciences and is required for the gerontology minor/certification. Prerequisite: BIO120 (preferred) OR BIO100

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This is a foundational course in ethics for individuals pursuing vocations of service in health care. Students will have a greater understanding of the ethical principles that are applied to the delivery of health care services and the processes for making sound ethical decisions. Students will develop models of decision making that are consistent with core personal values as well as the ethical standards of their professions. Motivations for ethical healthcare decisions will be evaluated. The roles and responsibilities of healthcare professionals will be explored on the basis of Christian values as well as assumptions drawn from reason and societal norms and expectations.

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This course is an analysis of the family. It investigates the family as a system of relationships which interacts across the family life cycle. It includes a survey of current developments in the study of the family and an analysis of changes in American society and their influence on family life. Also included is a focus on marriage and family therapy from a systems framework.

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This course is designed to provide students interested in the gerontology population the knowledge base of physical aging. Physical aging is central to most daily activities and permeates through all aspects of life. Throughout this class, students will study the biomechanical, physiological, and motor effects associated with aging. Students will understand that when society encourages older individuals to stop being active, professions should be encouraging activity, while understanding their physical abilities.

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An introduction to the study of abnormal psychology. The course covers a wide range of behaviors that are distressing to a person or society or which are otherwise identified as abnormal. A comprehensive review of the etiologies of psychological disorders, discussion of available treatments and a focus on the effects that mental illness has on the individual, the family system, and society are included. Current controversies in the field are identified. (Prerequisite: PSY101)

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An academic minor normally consists of 20 to 24 credits taken in courses in one area or related areas of study prescribed by the faculty.

Career Potential

  • Assisted Living Communities
  • Advocacy Groups
  • Case Management
  • Community Organizations
  • Government Agencies
  • Hospitals
  • Mental Health
  • Nursing Homes
  • Religious Organizations
  • Skilled Nursing Facilities