Gerontology Graduate Certificate
Specialize in Care and Advocacy for Older Adults
The Online Gerontology Graduate Certificate approaches aging from a variety of perspectives, enabling you to develop programs for older adults; provide direct care; advocate for elders; and advise older persons and their families.
Course topics include health and psychosocial aspects of aging, community resources and social policy. This is not a profession-specific certificate and does not require a comprehensive exam. It is designed for individuals who:
- Have a bachelor's degree in any discipline plus experience in a human service related occupation; or
- Hold or are pursuing a master's degree or professional designation (e.g. RN, MSW) in a different discipline.
This 12 credit hour (4 courses) certificate also serves as a head start toward a UNC Gerontology Master of Arts degree, for those who are interested in further education in the field.
You can begin the Gerontology Graduate Certificate program each Fall or Spring (contact the Academic Coordinator about Summer options). See the Get Started section below for application deadlines for each term and the steps to apply.
A Growing Population...A Growing Need
By the middle of the 21st Century, 1 in 5 Americans will be over the age of 65. - www.aghe.org
The Online Gerontology Graduate Certificate is designed to equip you with the practical knowledge and skills to pursue a wide variety of growing-demand positions with older adults. You can prepare for work in assisted living centers, senior centers, community agencies, and businesses that work with or employ older adults.
People who work in aging report satisfaction in addressing the challenges of those who are growing older. This program can help you positively influence agencies and organizations that serve older persons and the policies that affect their lives.
We also encourage you to visit the Gerontology Department page for this program. From there you can also learn more about the on-campus Master of Arts program.
View the Online Gerontology Graduate Certificate Brochure.
Contact the Academic Program Coordinator
Gerontology Graduate Certificate—Academic Program Coordinator
Susan Collins, Ph.D.
Course of Study
Required Courses (12 credit hours)
- GERO 560 Community Resources for the Elderly (3)
- GERO 625 Psychosocial Aspects of Aging (3)
- GERO 635 Social Policies for the Aging (3)
- GERO 640 Health Aspects of Gerontology (3)
At least two of the courses above are offered each Fall and Spring semester. For more details about the course of study and to establish the best course of study for your progress through the certificate, contact the Academic Program Coordinator.
Acceptance into this graduate certificate program requires that you hold a bachelor's degree and have a GPA of 3.0 or better in your most recent 60 semester hours of college work. The UNC Graduate School and the Gerontology department will evaluate all eligible applicants to determine entry into the certificate program.
Eligibility by State
UNC has secured approval from almost every state, as required by new federal regulations, so that students are eligible to apply to online programs at UNC. However we are unable to accept applications at this time for our online programs from students residing in a few select states because their requirements, particularly application fees, for such approval are prohibitive. Please verify your Eligibility by State before applying.
Note: All international students residing outside of the United States are eligible to apply to our online programs. Students attending online while residing outside of the United States do not need student visas for admission.
Tuition and Financial Aid
This program is offered through the UNC Office of Extended Studies, which means a flat per-credit tuition rate for all students in the program. There are no student fees. Certain courses may carry specific course fees for additional services and materials.
Tuition rates are set each academic year (which begin each Fall semester). The tuition rate for the 2013-14 school year for this program is $507 per credit hour.
Certificate, endorsement-only and principal licensure program students (non-degree seeking) aren’t eligible for aid through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Details about the federal aid program are available at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Your program coordinator may be aware of your eligibility for any discipline or campus-based aid if available.
Extended Studies students may contact Aimee Rogers in Financial Aid for more specific help at (970) 351-2502 or visit UNC Financial Aid website.
Students can also find information in the Guide to Federal Student Aid at studentaid.ed.gov/students/publications/student_guide/index.html
The Gerontology Certificate program accepts applications throughout the year, and you can begin the program at the start of any academic Fall or Spring semester (contact the program coordinater regarding Summer). It is recommended that you apply at least 60 days before the start of the semester for which you desire admission, but you can contact the Academic Program Coordinator to confirm upcoming deadlines.
Once you apply to the UNC Graduate School and your application packet is complete, admission to this program is a two-stage process. Your application will be reviewed by the graduate school then sent to the faculty/program for an admission decision. A completed application typically takes four to six weeks to process. The Gerontology department web page for this program includes specific details about the additional items that should be submitted to the department during the application process.
If you are currently a graduate student in another UNC program and would like to get the Gerontology Certificate, please 1) contact the Gerontology program coordinator and 2) email the Graduate School at firstname.lastname@example.org to tell them you wish to add the certificate. You do not need to reapply to earn this certificate in addition to your program.