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Program Overview

The Certificate in Gerontology is intended for post-baccalaureate students interested in developing a special expertise in aging. The program's goals for students are:

  • Acquaintance with the fundamental issues and problems confronting older adults in our society
  • Immersion in the vast body of scholarship related to aging
  • Exposure to available career paths
  • Development of professional competencies in working with older adults

Admission criteria

Complete and submit the graduate school application available at Students may apply to this program alone or complete it in conjunction with a master's degree in Counseling, Human Sciences or Thanatology. Certificate programs are not eligible for financial aid resources.

Request one copy of an official transcript reflecting the highest degree conferred. Transcripts should be sent directly from the institution or in a sealed envelope from the institution.

A résumé and personal statement (less than 500 words) describing background experience and future goals should also be submitted. The quality of the personal statement’s content and structure carries considerable weight in determining admission to this program.

Grade Point Average
Minimum of 2.75 cumulative GPA (2.5-2.7 GPA may be reviewed for possible provisional admission). No GRE required.

Course completion

The Certificate in Gerontology requires the completion of the following 12 graduate credits:

GERO 554 Social Gerontology
GERO 555 Psychological Aspects of Aging
GERO 556 Health and Aging
GERO 599 Special Topics in Gerontology

Topics will rotate and may include but are not limited to: Research Methods in Aging, Death and Dying, Public Policy and Aging, Ethics and Aging, Cultural Perspectives on Aging.


Faculty in the program include:

Flavius Lilly, MPH,, Ph.D.
Adjunct Instructor

Elizabeth MacDougall, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Psychology and Program Director

Kelly Watson, CRNP, DNP
Assistant Professor of Nursing

The gerontology program features courses taught by visiting professors with extensive experience in their field of study. Students are guided by full-time faculty members in Hood’s psychology and nursing departments.