Program Director

Daniel J. Van Dussen, Ph.D.
440 DeBartolo Hall
(330) 941-1683
djvandussen@ysu.edu

Program Description

The curriculum is designed from an interdisciplinary perspective of gerontology with a focus on epidemiology and health. This program will provide students with advanced education in issues facing older adults, for the purpose of preparing them for advancement in the field of gerontology. The program allows for a Thesis or a Non-Thesis track based upon the students’ desires and goals. The program consists of 42 semester hours, which may be completed in four semesters of full-time coursework or six semesters part time. 

Admission Requirements

In addition to the minimum criteria set by the College of Graduate Studies, applicants must meet the following requirements for full admission:

  1. A cumulative Grade Point Average of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale).
  2. Three (3) letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the students’ academic or professional background.
  3. A letter of intent stating their objectives for seeking a Master’s Degree in Gerontology and how this program will help them fulfill their goals.
  4. A personal interview is optional.
  5. A Resume or Curriculum Vitae.
  6. A social statistics course at the undergraduate or graduate level.

Graduate Faculty

Tiffany F. Hughes, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Cognitive impairment and dementia; fall prevention; health promotion

Daniel J. Van Dussen, Ph.D., Professor
Social and psychological determinants of health among older adults; the family; social support; statistics and methods

Amy Weaver, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Geriatric education; geriatrics; simulation

Degree Requirements

The Master of Arts in Gerontology will consist of 12 courses (36 credit hours) which can be completed over a 2 academic year period.

Thesis Option

COURSE TITLE S.H.
Core Courses
SOC 6905Social Gerontology3
GERO 6915Service Delivery Aging Policy3
PSYC 6957Advanced Adult Development and Aging3
GERO 6906Perspectives in Gerontology3
GERO 6960Epidemiology of Aging3
GERO 6999Research Methods3
GERO/NURS 6998Anatomy and Physiology of Aging3
GERO 7090Field Practicum3
GERO 7094Selected Topics3
Thesis
GERO 7099Thesis3
Elective
Select 6 s.h. from the following:6
Behavior Change Interventions and Aging
Long-Term Care
Social Work in Aging
Field Practicum
Selected Topics
Total Semester Hours36

Non-Thesis Option

COURSE TITLE S.H.
Core Courses
SOC 6905Social Gerontology3
GERO 6915Service Delivery Aging Policy3
PSYC 6957Advanced Adult Development and Aging3
GERO 6906Perspectives in Gerontology3
GERO 6960Epidemiology of Aging3
GERO 6999Research Methods3
GERO/NURS 6998Anatomy and Physiology of Aging3
GERO 7090Field Practicum3
GERO 7094Selected Topics3
Non-Thesis Track
Field Practicum3
Elective
Select 6 s.h. from the following:6
Behavior Change Interventions and Aging
Long-Term Care
Social Work in Aging
Field Practicum
Selected Topics
Total Semester Hours36

Graduate Courses

GERO 6906    Perspectives in Gerontology    3 s.h.

Focus on the major theoretical perspectives of aging and aging related research with a focus on health. Theories from gerontology, epidemiology, sociology, and psychology will be covered.

GERO 6915    Service Delivery Aging Policy    3 s.h.

An interdisciplinary analysis of services for older adults including an examination of major policies, programs, and trends in aging.

GERO 6960    Epidemiology of Aging    3 s.h.

Integration and application of epidemiologic theories; major conceptual issues regarding epidemiology and aging; and contemporary interdisciplinary concepts and research. Primary focus will be on the disease distribution and leading causes of death among our aging population.

GERO 6998    Anatomy and Physiology of Aging    3 s.h.

Using a systems approach, this course will examine the anatomical and physiological changes that occur with aging. It will discuss age-related disorders and evaluate the impact of these changes on activities and daily function.

GERO 6999    Research Methods    3 s.h.

This course serves as an introduction to major methodological issues and basic statistics in the social-scientific study of gerontology. Major topics include developmental perspective and conceptualization of change, basic developmental research design, conceptualization of research problems, research design, measurement, and data analysis. This course should enable students to formulate research questions, design studies, and determine measurement devices and methods of analysis from a developmental perspective.

GERO 7001    Long-Term Care    3 s.h.

This course will introduce students to the following topics: who needs long term care; population distribution of long-term care and its current trends; long-term care industry; human medicine and long-term care; social structures and social inequalities in long-term care; culture components of long-term care; family care and social care; government, laws, and social policies of long-term care; and long-term care in a global perspective.
Prereq.: GERO 6960.

GERO 7090    Field Practicum    1-9 s.h.

Students will complete a 200-hour placement in an aging-related workplace. Variable credit 1-6 s.h. May be repeated for up to 9 s.h.

GERO 7094    Selected Topics    1-3 s.h.

An examination of contemporary topics in the field of gerontology. Examples of subject areas that may be covered: Nutrition, Pharmacology, Legal, etc. variable credit 1-3 hours may be repeated for up to 6 credit hours.

GERO 7099    Thesis    1-3 s.h.

A substantive research project with approval of a committee chair and committee. Variable credit 1-3 s.h. May be repeated for up to 6 s.h.