Virginia Tech Blacksburg Campus
The Center for Gerontology studies aging from a multidisciplinary perspective, with a focus on both typical and problematic aspects of aging. Certificate students complete courses in the social, psychological, and physical aspects of aging. They may also complete a practicum and research on a topic in gerontology. Students normally take the certificate courses as part of their degree plan of study.
Domestic (Blacksburg Campus Only) Application Deadlines:
- Fall: Aug 01
- Spring: Jan 01
International (Blacksburg Campus) Application Deadlines:
- Fall: April 01
- Spring: Sep 01
Our Graduate Students
What You'll Study
The required minimum of 9 credits focus on three core gerontology competency domains, namely aging processes and outcomes related to (1) biological changes and health, (2) dimensions of psychological functioning, and (3) contemporary social and societal issues. The principal goal of the curriculum is to offer learning experiences consistent with the recommendations of the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.
The Graduate Certificate in Gerontology requires 9 credits:
• HD 5104 Adult Development & Aging I
• PHS 5714 Health of the Elderly
• HD 5114 Adult Development & Aging II
• SOC 5714 Aging in Social Context
• 5904 Project and Report
• 5964 Practicum/Field Study
• Other approved course; assignments will be focused on gerontology
An optional practicum or field study may be arranged through the student's academic department or the Center for Gerontology. The contract or letter of agreement with the host agency is reviewed and signed by the Center's director, the student, an agency representative, and the faculty supervisor before the experience occurs in order for credit to be granted. A copy of the final written report on the internship or field study must be submitted to the Center for Gerontology for the student's file. See Practicum Guidelines for more details.
The research topic of the thesis or dissertation must be on an issue in adult development and aging. This requirement is not meant to supersede the authority of the student's committee. Its aim is to assure that an issue in gerontology is examined in the research. To meet this requirement:
Meet with the center associate director to discuss the topic of the thesis/dissertation before completing the proposal.
After the advisory committee has approved the final draft of the thesis/dissertation, submit a signed cover sheet and abstract to the Center for Gerontology.
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