Degree Program


The Master of Arts in Gerontology (GRN) consists of 33 units which includes ten required core courses and one elective course. The required internship (6 units), included in the core consists of student placement in an off-campus facility or organization. Numerous facilities and organizations collaborate with the graduate program in offering internships in clinical, community and institutional settings. The required culminating experience (3 units) also included in the core, consists of a culminating project course integrating bodies of knowledge from the required courses. This usually translates into a two-year academic program.

Course Requirements - Master of Arts in Gerontology

Core (11 Courses)

Course Number Name of Course Credits Semester
GRN 705 Aging in a Multidimensional Context 3 Fa
GRN 710 Aging Processes: Health and Human Services 3 Fa
GRN 715 Age and Social Policy 3 Fa
GRN 725 Aging and Diversity 3 Sp
GRN 735 Ethical and Lecal Issues in Aging and Social Services 3 Sp
GRN 760 Research Methods in Gerontology 3 Fa
GRN 765 Age and the Continuum of Care 3 Sp
GRN 838 Gerontology Seminar 3 Fa
GRN 839 Gerontology Internship Sp
GRN 890 Integrative Seminar 3 Sp
Elective Please consult with GRN faculty advisor 3 All

Minimum Total 33

Back to Top

Course Descriptions – Master of Arts in Gerontology

500 - Gerontology: An Interdisciplinary Perspective (Units:3)

Prerequisite: Upper division standing or consent of instructor.
Concepts and issues in gerontology; processes, problems, and challenges of aging as related to other disciplines, integrating and emphasizing research findings.

510 - Death and Dying in Contemporary Society (Units:3)

Prerequisite: Upper division standing or consent of instructor.
Attitudes, beliefs, practices, grief responses, and bioethical issues of dying and death which confront the individual and society. Ways to cope and help oneself and others to enhance life and maturity. This course is offered as NURS 500 and GRN 510.

705 - Aging in a Multidimensional Context (Units:3)

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.
Examination of theories and research on aging: interpersonal and structural dimensions of aging; scope, concepts, and approaches in the field.

710 - Aging Processes: Health and Human Services (Units:3)

Examination of the biomedical and physiological processes and theories of aging. Implications on health and human services for the elderly of diverse backgrounds, cultures, and ethnicities.

715 - Age and Social Policy Analysis (Units:3)

Exploration of the variety of public and private agencies and businesses, including entitlement programs designed to serve an aging population. Examine a variety of models and frameworks for policy analysis, with attention to global aging issues.

725 - Aging and Diversity (Units:3)

Multicultural aging issues; psychological aspects of aging for ethnic/racial groups within the U.S. Cultural competence, cohort variations, health differentials, life expectancy/longevity, theoretical perspectives, and methodological implications.

735 - Ethical and Legal Issues in Aging and Social Services (Units:3)

Ethical dilemmas and legal issues as they pertain to the professional practice of gerontology and the delivery of social services to the elderly.

760 - Research Methods in Gerontology (Units:3)

Prerequisites: Introductory statistics and consent of instructor.
Quantitative and qualitative research designs and methods, data gathering techniques, measurement and data analysis and interpretation. Applications of research methods to studies in aging, including descriptive and comparative research, program evaluations, and needs assessments.

765 - Aging and Continuum of Care (Units:3)

Overview of continuum of care; emphasis on human diversity, quality of care, and quality of life. Concepts, functions, issues, and skills associated with home and community-based services, adult day care, assisted living, nursing facilities, and hospice care.

838 - Gerontology Seminar (Units:3)

Prerequisite: Enrollment in gerontology program or consent of instructor.

Group process in support of gerontology internship, learning contract and qualitative methods; fieldwork experience and techniques; ethics and problem-solving. May be repeated for a total of 6 units. (Plus-minus letter grade; CR/NC allowed, RP)

839 - Gerontology Internship (Units:3)

Field internship in cooperation with a private/public profit or non-profit organization enabling students to acquire competencies and experiences required for professional responsibilities. May be repeated for a total of 6 units.

890 - Integrative Seminar (Units:3)

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor and approval of Advancement to Candidacy (ATC) and Culminating Experience (CE) forms by Graduate Studies.
Capstone to demonstrate knowledge and skills in problem-solving, decision-making, critical thinking, and cooperative and collaborative communications.

897 - Gerontology Research (Units:3)

Prerequisites: Classified graduate status and consent of graduate adviser. Independent/original research under faculty supervision.
Continuous enrollment required for all students yet to complete the master's thesis or research project. May be repeated for a total of 9 units, but cannot be used more than 3 units for degree credit.

Back to Top

Two - Year Roadmap - Master of Arts in Gerontology

Semester 1 (Fall) Semester 2 (Spring) Semester 3 (Fall) Semester 4 (Spring)
GRN 500 or GRN 510 (If needed as prerequisite) GRN 500 or GRN 510 (if needed as prerequisite) None None
GRN 705 ("Aging in a Multidimensional Context") GRN 725 ("Aging and Diversity") GRN 760 ("Research and Methods in Gerontology") GRN 890 ("Integrative Seminar")
GRN 710 ("Aging Processes: Health and Human Services") GRN 735 ("Ethical and Legal Issues in Aging and Social Services") GRN 838 ("Gerontology Seminar") GRN 839 ("Gerontology Internship")
GRN 715 ("Age and Social Policy Analysis") GRN 765 ("Age and the Continuum  of Care") Elective Elective

Back to Top