GERON 2003 Careers in Health and Medicine: 1 semester hour
Same as ANTHRO 2003, INTDSC 2003, SOC 2003. In this course, students will learn about occupations in such fields as medicine, the allied health professions, health non-profit organizations, and global healthcare delivery. Students will understand the education and skills necessary for various careers and for application to medical, professional, and graduate schools, and will become familiar with majors, certificates and minors that are available at UMSL. They will learn about employment opportunities in the healthcare industry in the St. Louis metropolitan area, and will be introduced to members of the local community who give guest lectures. Students will gain practical experience by shadowing a healthcare professional in their job.
GERON 2170 Aging in America: Concepts & Controversies: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 2170. This course examines the major theoretical and service issues connected to the study of older adults and their families, using multidisciplinary perspectives. Students are provided with an introduction to the field of aging through an examination of current social issues and controversies. This course emphasizes student involvement through class discussion and applied activities, and is appropriate for students in the arts and sciences, business, communication, education, and nursing.
GERON 2220 Special Topics in Gerontology: 3 semester hours
Selected topics dealing with various aspects of gerontology. The specific contents of this course will vary from semester to semester. The course may be repeated with permission from the Gerontology director.
GERON 2256 Bioethics: 3 semester hours
Same as PHIL 2256. An examination of ethical issues in health care practice and clinical research and in public policies affecting health care. Topics include: abortion, euthanasia, health care, experimentation, informed consent and the right to health care.
GERON 2300 Social & Community Services for an Aging Population: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 2300. This service-learning course is designed for students interested in working with and for the benefit of older adults in various settings. Students attend classes on campus and participate in defined volunteer placements with local agencies (e.g., St. Louis County Older Residents Program). The course introduces the range of social and community services available to seniors and their families today, while also exploring trends and technologies for the future. Public, for-profit and not-for-profit service models are examined, including common organizational, management, and staffing approaches. The important roles of volunteers-including peer to peer supports-are discussed. Attention is also given to how limited resources are allocated and the importance of program evaluation to ensure service quality and efficacy.
GERON 3212 Medical Anthropology: 3 semester hours
Same as ANTHRO 3212. Prerequisites: ANTHRO 1011 or GERON 2170 or PSYCH 1003 or SOC 1010 or consent of instructor or program director. An examination of the growing interaction between anthropology and medicine, and the increasing use of anthropologists in medical and health-care settings. In addition to teaching current theory in medical anthropology, the course focuses on anthropologically-based skills essential to those working in health-related fields.
GERON 3215 Aging, Culture & Globalization: 3 semester hours
Same as ANTHRO 3215 and SOC 3215. Prerequisites: ANTHRO 1011 or GERON 2170 or PSYCH 1003 or SOC 1010 or consent of instructor or program director. This course examines the wide-ranging variability in the roles of older people across different cultures and the effects these have on older people, their families, and their societies.
GERON 3280 Psychology of Death and Dying: 3 semester hours
Same as PSYCH 3280. Prerequisite: PSYCH 1003 or consent of the instructor. An exploration of end-of-life issues integrating the scholarly, social, and individual dimensions of death and dying. This course provides a solid grounding in theory and research, as well as practical application to students' lives.
GERON 3300 The Social Construction of Aging and Ageism: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 3300 and GS 3300. This course examines perspectives of age, aging, and ageism using several perspectives: the theory of social construction and the frameworks of essentialism and intersectionality. The materials, discussions, and assignments in this course will familiarize and provide students with tools to investigate age and ageism in a complex, multidimensional manner. The overarching focus of this course is located in the tension with the “nature versus nurture” debate, paralleling nature with essentialist ideas and nurture with social constructionism. Ideas, conceptions, attitudes, and understandings of age within the media, family, medical community, and other institutions will be investigated as biological and/or a development of society in effort to perpetuate social control, organization, and power dynamics. Through research, fiction and non-fiction work, creative assignments, and theoretical texts, students will approach the following questions: How do we value lived-experiences? How might situated knowledge affect social constructions of aging and ageism? What evidence is provided toward age and/or ageism as an essential or socially constructed outline within society? How are socially constructed ideas developed and perpetuated? How might one affect change in an essentialist and/or socially constructed society?.
GERON 3400 Environment, Society, and Aging: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 3400. This course examines the intersection of the environment and human society with an emphasis on aging. Drawing from research in environmental sociology, medical sociology, and gerontology, this course will address the following topics: climate change, natural disasters, community development, food production and distribution, waste and pollution, illness and disease epidemiology, and health and well-being.
GERON 4050 Narrative Experiences in Aging and Health Care: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 4050, COMM 4050, and GS 4050. Prerequisites: Junior, senior or graduate student status, or permission of the instructor. This course examines the experiences of older adults and their families in the navigation and receipt of primary and specialized health care services. Challenges associated with bias, ageism, ethical dilemmas, miscommunication, patient-provider dynamics, and family systems are addressed. Patient experiences are highlighted across the continuum of care with emphasis on improving current systems.
GERON 4130 Interviewing Older Adults and Life Review: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 4130. Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. This course combines training in interviewing techniques with video editing/production. Students will learn how to conduct life review interviews with older adults, and then take these skills into the community by interviewing older adults living in various settings. Students will learn how to use a digital video camera and edit video clips on the computer. Student-conducted interviews will be viewed by the instructor and classmates, issues associated with aging will be discussed, and constructive feedback provided. Some of the video clips developed in the course will become part of an educational video clip library.
GERON 4170 Aging in America: Life Course, Health Care and Socioeconomic Perspectives: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Junior standing or consent of the instructor. This advanced course focuses on aging in North America from three primary perspectives: (1) the life course and trajectories of personal aging; (2) systems and policies associated with health care; and (3) socioeconomic aspects, including workforce issues and retirement. Human aging is relevant to most professional disciplines and areas of study; thus the course emphasizes a multidisciplinary understanding and encourages integrative thinking, discussion and writing.
GERON 4200 Gerontological Practice with Aging Veterans: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. Aging veterans often demonstrate different social, health and psychological support needs. This practice-oriented course reviews and frames gerontological interventions for different veteran subpopulations, including those residing at home, in senior housing, and under Veterans Administration (VA) care. The impacts of age cohort, gender, service during war or peacetime, post-traumatic stress status, substance abuse and addiction, military culture, and pension and service-connected compensation are studied. Special opportunities and challenges for social service providers in the VA health system are also reviewed.
GERON 4320 Gender, Sexuality & Aging: 3 semester hours
Same as GS 4320. Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. This course examines advancing age through a gender lens. Men and women experience aging differently based on a host of genetic, biological, psychological, sociocultural and personal identity factors. This course challenges students to consider aging from various perspectives, including cultural expectations and norms, couple and family relationships, health and function, work life and retirement, sexuality, sexual orientation, gender identity, concerns of LGBT elders, and veterans' issues.
GERON 4361 Social Gerontology: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 4361. Prerequisites: SOC 1010 and junior standing or consent of instructor. Topics include sociological theories of aging, technological and social change and its effects on the environment of older people, and prejudice and discrimination against the elderly.
GERON 4376 Mental Health and Aging: 3 semester hours
Same as PSYCH 4376 and SOC WK 4376. Prerequisites: 9 hours of psychology, graduate standing, or consent of instructor or program director. This course provides a survey of theory and research in mental health issues for older populations, focusing on psychological and social aspects of mental health and impairment. The course details approaches to understanding prevalence, etiology, assessment, and treatment of the psychological disorders most commonly experienced by older adults, including anxiety, depression, delirium, and dementia, among others.
GERON 4430 Ethnicity, Dementia and Caregiving: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 4430. Prerequisites: GERON 2170 or SOC 2170 or 3000 level GERON, SOC, PSYCH or ANTHRO course or consent of instructor. This course examines the interaction between sociocultural factors and the experience of dementia, both for the person who has dementia and their family caregivers. Students will focus on the importance of cultural competence in the provision of health and social services to dementia patients and family caregivers from diverse national and ethnic backgrounds.
GERON 4445 Aging, Chronic Illness & Disability: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. This course will examine the consequences of chronic illness and disability in aging for individual well-being, social roles, family dynamics, and the functioning of society. Chronic illness and disability are presented as medical concerns that have psychosocial and functional impacts for both individuals with these conditions and their caregivers. These impacts are shaped by the changing age structure of society. This course also reviews typologies of chronic illness and relevant state and federal policies intended to support both adults with chronic illness and disability and caregivers. Although the main focus of the course is on aging in the US, population aging is a worldwide phenomenon and global comparisons will be included.
GERON 4490 Directed Readings: 1-3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. Directed reading and research or field work. May be repeated for a maximum of three hours.
GERON 4500 Physiology & Pharmacology of Aging: 3 semester hours
Same As PSYCH 4500. Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or consent of the instructor or program director. This course examines functional health in advancing age and the impacts of common disease processes on the aging body. Symptom presentations, diagnostic considerations, treatment and management issues are discussed. A special emphasis is placed on pharmacology, especially how the aging body responds to different medication types, risks for drug-drug interactions, and challenges associated with polypharmacy. The course emphasizes a "whole person" approach to health and well-being, and targets the learning needs of those wishing to work with older adults in health, social and community service settings.
GERON 4520 The Aging Body: 3 semester hours
Same as GS 4520. Prerequisites: GERON 2170 or SOC 2170 or another introductory course (2000 or higher) in Gerontology, Sociology, Psychology, Social Work, or Nursing; or consent of the instructor. This course focuses on the aging body with respect to health and function. Physiologic and cognitive concerns of older men and women are reviewed. Contextual factors (e.g., relationships, socio-cultural, spiritual, environmental) and issues in service delivery are also addressed.
GERON 4620 Dying, Grief & Death in Older Adulthood: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. This course examines trajectories to death in older age, the dying process, influences of medical and aging-related conditions, euthanasia and suicide, life extension and longevity, personal beliefs and existential responses, how individuals and families cope, ethical concerns, and strategies for supportive intervention. Topics are addressed from clinical, supportive care, and interdisciplinary perspectives. Ideal for those planning to work with older adults in counseling, health care, hospice, and/or community support settings.
GERON 4680 Introduction to Gerontological Practice: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC WK 4680. Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. This course introduces key concepts and practices in the evaluation and care of older adults. It is intended for students considering aging-focused careers in the social service or healthcare fields. Topics include developmental and health-related theories of aging, functional and psychosocial aspects of aging, working with older adults in various service settings, multi and interdisciplinary team approaches, and basic standards of professional conduct that apply across professions.
GERON 4700 Successful Aging: Individual & Societal Perspectives: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. This course addresses key components of successful aging, including avoidance of disease, maintenance of good mental and physical function, and sustained engagement in life. Students become familiar with the different intra- and extra-personal determinants of successful aging and learn to distinguish between the concepts of successful and productive aging. Also discussed is the impact of societal, economic and political context on success in aging (e.g. health care delivery, entitlement programs, technology, globalization, volunteerism, and culture).
GERON 4720 Ageless Arts: Creativity in Later Life: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC 4720. Prerequisites: Junior/senior undergraduate or graduate standing, or permission of the instructor or program director. This course examines how the lives of older adults are enriched through engagement in artistic, creative activities. Key approaches to creative aging are explored, with emphasis on benefits to physical health, emotional well-being, and interpersonal connection. Influencing factors are examined, including ageism, generativity, family and personal networks, environmental resources, sensory and cognitive deficits, and other health and physical changes of aging. The works of historical and current artists - painters, novelists, filmmakers, playwrights, musicians and others - are surveyed with an emphasis on products from later in the life course. Finally, the therapeutic benefits of creativity are examined through evidence-based research and the personal narratives of successful senior artists.
GERON 5361 Advanced Social Gerontology: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Graduate standing. An examination of sociological theories of aging, technological and social change and its effects on the environment of older people, and prejudice and discrimination against the elderly.
GERON 5376 Psychopathology and Aging: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Graduate standing. Recent theory and research in mental health issues for older populations. The primary focus is on major psychological disorders prevalent among older adults and in assessment and treatment approaches for aging populations.
GERON 5400 Aging and Environmental Change: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Graduate standing. This course examines how changes in the natural environment affect aging and the life course. This course will draw from research in gerontology and related disciplines to explore how changes in the climate, urban and rural landscapes, food production and consumption, and waste and pollution impact health and illness in later life with a focus on the implications of a changing environment for gerontological policy, industry, and clinical practice.
GERON 5420 Research Methods and Analysis I: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Admission to the MSG Program or graduate standing. The first of a two-course sequence designed to provide students with the knowledge base and skills for using the scientific method to advance gerontological knowledge, theory and evidence-based practice. Focuses on research methods employed in aging-related studies, with a special emphasis on the critical evaluation of academic studies and the evidentiary basis of key findings. Covers quantitative and qualitative approaches, research design, sampling procedures, measurement, use of results, impact of research, and ethical considerations.
GERON 5440 Sociocultural Aspects of Aging: 3 semester hours
Same as ANTHRO 5440. Prerequisites: Graduate status or consent of the instructor or program director. Focuses on the variety of solutions encountered in different sociocultural contexts for dealing with the problems, challenges and opportunities of growing old. It is organized around topics that are of concern to both anthropology and social gerontology: the status of the aged, intergenerational relations, aging in modernizing societies, ethnic dimensions of aging in complex societies, health in later life, death and dying. Both in-depth case studies and cross-cultural comparisons are examined in an effort to arrive at a culturally informed assessment of factors affecting aging and the aged in the United States.
GERON 5450 Research Methods and Analysis II: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: GERON 5420 or equivalent. An advanced course focused on the framing and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data to advance gerontological knowledge, theory, and evidence-based practice. Students learn to use and interpret various statistical procedures for analyzing qualitative and quantitative data (including bivariate and multivariate analyses). Students apply various analytic techniques using computer software applications.
GERON 6120 Theory and Practice with Older Adults: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC WK 6120. Prerequisites: Graduate standing. Examines theory and empirically-based assessment and intervention models for work with the elderly. It includes the life circumstances of older adults and how that differs from younger adult populations; how ethnicity, gender, social class, and sexual orientation interact with age and create special intervention issues; discussion of ethical and value issues (e.g. client autonomy, rationing of health care); examination of family and community resources in providing care; and interventions with physically or mentally disabled elders and elders in residential settings.
GERON 6441 Aging and Health Behavior: 3 semester hours
Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This course examines sociocultural influences on health care practices of older adults. The role of social support and other social resources in the health behavior of older adults is emphasized. Topics include self care decisions, formal service utilization, family caregiving, and planned interventions for older adults.
GERON 6443 Health Care Policy: 3 semester hours
Same as P P ADM 6430, POL SCI 6443, and SOC WK 6443. Prerequisites: Graduate standing or consent of instructor. Survey course examining current issues in health policy that face the nation. Policies are placed in a historical context to show how issues have been influenced by different political and economic conditions. Secondary consequences and limitations of current trends in health policy are explored.
GERON 6444 Seminar in Public Policy and Aging: 3 semester hours
Same as P P ADM 6444, and POL SCI 6444. The study of specialized issues and methods related to federal, state, and local policies that affect the elderly. Potential policy areas to be covered include: housing, taxation, mental health, transportation, etc. May be repeated for credit, provided the subject matter is different.
GERON 6449 Issues In Retirement: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Graduate standing. This course examines macro and micro issues of retirement in the United States--its processes, causes, and consequences--in relation to economic market conditions, demographic changes, and programs and policies that are targeted to support the elderly (e.g., Social Security). It also examines issues relating to older women and retirement.
GERON 6450 Gerontological Assessment: 3 semester hours
Same as SOC WK 6450. Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This course provides an overview of psychosocial assessment with older adults and their family caregivers. major areas of gerontological assessment practice are considered, including dementia, mood disorders, suicide, grief, alcoholism, elder abuse/neglect, family caregiving, and interdisciplinary team issues.
GERON 6490 Directed Study: 1-3 semester hours
Prerequisite: Consent of instructor. Designed to give the student an opportunity to pursue a more in-depth study of a problem area in gerontology than is normally covered in more formal courses. May be repeated for a total of six credit hours.
GERON 6495 Practicum in Gerontology: 3 semester hours
This course provides supervised work experience in an agency that serves older adults. Students are required to complete a minimum of 150 clock hours at the practicum site.
GERON 6496 Advanced Practicum in Gerontology: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: GERON 6495 and consent of instructor This course provides advanced practicum experience beyond GERON 6495. Students must complete a minimum of 150 clock hours of supervised field work (service or research) with older adults.
GERON 6497 Interdisciplinary Geriatric Care: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. Same as VIS SCI 6497. Interdisciplinary approaches that address the medical, social, instrumental and functional needs of older adults will be examined. Information about geriatric care management and social issues affecting the well-being of older adults will be provided. Clinical, theoretical, and educational perspectives will be presented.
GERON 6498 Advanced Seminar In Gerontology: 3 semester hours
Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This course will provide in-depth analysis of specialized topics in gerontology which are not covered in required courses. (Course may be repeated for a maximum of nine credits, assuming topics are different.).
GERON 6500 Practicum in Geronotological Research: 3 semester hours
Prerequisites: GERON 6495 and consent of the instructor. A supervised social science research experience involving a combination of two or more of the following activities: literature review, hypothesis generation, study design and proposal, IRB application, participant recruitment, data collection, data management, data analysis, and report/article generation.
GERON 6510 Directed Research in Aging: 1-3 semester hours
Prerequisites: Consent of the instructor. Designed to give the student an opportunity to explore a question of interest from a qualitative and/or quantitative research perspective. This supervised experience may include one or more of the following activities (depending on enrolled hours): literature review, hypothesis generation, study design and proposal, IRB application, participant recruitment, data collection, data management, data analysis, and report/article generation.