MA, Gerontology
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Advance Your Healthcare or Eldercare Career with an MA in Gerontology

Leadership in healthcare is more critical than ever, particularly in the area of serving the elderly. The U.S. population is aging, but this generation of senior citizens is living longer and staying more active than any generation before it. Leaders with skills and knowledge in the challenges of age-related issues are highly valued.

For those ready to take on influential roles in this critical area, the online Master of Arts in Gerontology from Concordia University Chicago is an innovative degree program from a school of distinction.

Concordia University Chicago designed the online master’s in gerontology program for mid-career healthcare professionals ready to take the next step in their career. Students in this interdisciplinary program will develop expertise in age-related research, trends and public policy. The program prepares gerontology leaders who wish to take an ethical, socially responsible approach to working with the elderly.

The online MA in Gerontology program covers many issues related to aging care, services and research:

  • Research methodology
  • Application of methodology in age-related issues
  • Integrated perspectives on issues impacting the elderly
  • Best practices of gerontological education, academic research and professional practice

Skilled gerontologists play a vital role in healthcare. Becoming a leader in the profession requires dedication to serving the elderly and expert-level knowledge in the latest age-related research and strategies. Graduates who complete the gerontology program online will be prepared for gerontological leadership from the moment they earn their degree.

Elevate Your Career: Earn a Master’s in Gerontology Online from Concordia University Chicago

Concordia University Chicago offers a variety of specialized degrees in many industries, including health care, business, education and human services. The gerontology master’s online program is designed for working healthcare professionals ready for top positions in their field.

The online MA in Gerontology program from Concordia University Chicago is aligned with the national competencies and best practices of the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE). The program gives students the chance to:

  • Prepare to promote and contribute to the wellness of an aging population.
  • Appreciate the potential of older adults and their contributions to family, community and society.
  • Develop increased competency in service to older adults and their families.
  • Understand the interdisciplinary nature of major concepts within the field of gerontology.
  • Adopt a critical perspective when considering complex age-related issues.
  • Apply gerontological theories and research based in the sciences, social sciences and humanities.
  • Exhibit social and cultural awareness when considering the diverse nature of an aging population.
  • Communicate effectively using written, oral and interpersonal skills.
  • Prepare for leadership roles in a variety of age-related careers.
  • Leverage a data-oriented yet people-focused approach to program leadership and plan analysis.

All students enrolled in the master’s in gerontology program at Concordia University Chicago will have access to the university’s Center for Gerontology, which offers opportunities for collaborative research, rapport-building with other gerontology students and the Distinguished Learning Speaker Series.

Degree Program Specifications

Students must complete 33 credit hours of online coursework to earn an MA in Gerontology from Concordia University Chicago. The two-year program includes 11 eight-week courses worth three semester hours each, including a master capstone experience. There are six to 19 students per cohort.

Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission into the master’s gerontology program at Concordia University Chicago, students must have earned a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution. Prospective students are required to complete the free online application and submit all required admissions materials:

  • Objective Statement– Write a brief essay outlining your education and career goals and explain how an online master’s in gerontology degree from Concordia University Chicago will help you fulfill those objectives.
  • Official Transcripts– Provide one official, sealed transcript from each institution that has granted you a degree. Full admission requires a cumulative grade point average of 2.85 or better for bachelor’s degrees and 3.0 or higher for master’s degrees.
  • Letters of Recommendation– Send two letters of recommendation from individuals who are able to comment on your academic proficiency, professional competencies and personal character.

International applicants may be required to submit additional supporting materials, such as proof of English language proficiency and a foreign transcript evaluation from an approved credentialing service. For full requirements, visit the Admission & Tuition page. 

There is no application fee and no GRE requirement to apply for the online master’s in gerontology program at Concordia University Chicago.

MA, Gerontology: 33 Credit Degree Program

Gerontology Courses

Introduction to Research

RES 6620    3 credit hours 

This course examines foundation-level principles and processes of social and behavioral research as applied across disciplines. This course is designed to enable students to acquire both a basic understanding and skills in general research methods. Specifically, the course prepares students to be critical consumers of research and to be active participants in the generation and implementation of research knowledge.

Perspectives in Gerontology

GERO 6000    3 credit hours

Introductory course for the Master of Arts in gerontology program that provides students with a comprehensive overview of the multi‐disciplinary field of gerontology. Involves several academic disciplines or professional specializations in an approach to gerontology. Substantive, conceptual and methodological issues central to the study of aging and the life course are explored.

Aging, Values, Attitudes, and Ethics

GERO 6045     3 credit hours

Provides an overview of ethics as they relate to aging and older adults. This course examines a variety of ethical and moral issues at the clinical, social, cultural, policy and individual levels. Students explore key value issues thatshape societal and individual perceptions about ethics and aging. This course considers the ethical implications of ageism.

Adult Development and Aging

GERO 6050     3 credit hours

This course promotes integrity as students acquire attitudes and skills that promote the understanding of adult development with special attention paid to the aging process. It further promotes integrity as students learn to suspend judgment and draw various fields together in order to understand and provide quality care services to the aging population with sensitivity to cultural differences. Students obtain the knowledge of techniques and research while attaining competency in the timely use of various person‐centered interventions. As knowledge and competency develop, a sense of confidence and leadership is cultivated.

Sociology of Aging

GERO 6160     3 credit hours

This course examines the impacts of aging on individuals and societies, including social, cultural and individual reactions to aging in the society and the diversity of reactions to aging. Theoretical frameworks for aging and involvement will be presented, examined and integrated. Field trips may be required.

Program Management in Aging

GERO 6495     3 credit hours

Designed to expand students’ knowledge of and skills in effective program management of aging services and organizations serving older adults. Students review the aging network while considering the unique needs of older adults. This course also examines approaches for managing service programs effectively. Implications for program evaluation are considered.

Public Policies and Aging

GERO 6500     3 credit hours

The course provides an overview and analysis of the policymaking process and policy initiatives as these affect older adults in society.

Diversity in Aging

GERO 6510     3 credit hours

This course focuses on the differences and diversity of the aging population from a national perspective. Topics include race, ethnicity, gender, social class, spiritual and economic issues.

Advanced Topics in Gerontology

GERO 6750    3 credit hours

Covers a variety of special topics in gerontology. This course is developed and offered based on interest from students and instructors. The topics broaden and complement the gerontological content offered in the required courses taken in the M.A. in gerontology program. Examples of topics include: Families in Later Life; Death and Dying; Aging and Health; Resilience over the Life Course; Global Aging; Gender and Aging; Aging in Literature and Film; Sexuality and Aging; and Grant Writing.

Seminar in Gerontology (includes capstone experience)

GERO 6900   3 credit hours

Focuses on current issues and problems in gerontology utilizing literature reviews, research and primary data collection. Students complete a thesis, applied or analytical project and are expected to define, complete and defend their project and complete their capstones during this 16‐week course. This course includes the capstone experience.

Practicum in Gerontology (240 hours in field)

GERO 6980  3 credit hours

The practicum experience encompasses a supervised practice in a community agency that serves older adults and their families. In addition to the coursework, students are required to complete 240 hours of service during this 16‐week course.

Career Outlook for Gerontologists

While the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn’t specifically track jobs in gerontology, many professions related to gerontology are growing rapidly as the U.S. population ages. This includes those who work as directors or managers of social and community service agencies. Jobs in that area will increase 18% by 2026, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.

Opportunities are expected to grow as more businesses turn to professionals skilled in working with the elderly for recommendations on planning benefits, training, policy and procedures for an aging employee base.

Earning an MA in Gerontology prepares graduates to take management positions in eldercare jobs in many settings, including:

  • Community, human service and religious organizations
  • Senior living facilities and long-term care institutions
  • Federal, state and local government agencies that provide services to the elderly
  • Retirement communities
  • Professional organizations
  • Research programs with universities or government agencies
  • Financial gerontology
  • Consulting to businesses on age-related issues

Salaries in this field vary depending on the position. Many graduates with a master’s in gerontology degree go on to work as social and community service managers. According to the BLS, these managers earn a median salary of almost $65,000 a year, with the top 10% earning nearly $111,000.

With an aging population that is living longer and staying more active than any previous generation, skilled and well-trained leaders are needed more than ever in gerontology. Earning an online MA in Gerontology from Concordia University Chicago prepares you to achieve your goal of working in an influential, decision-making role in this challenging and rewarding field.

Professional Certificate in Gerontology

Students may opt to supplement an existing degree or a graduate program in another field of study with a specialized professional certificate. The online Certificate in Gerontology program from Concordia University Chicago aims to prepare graduates with the skills and knowledge needed to address age-related issues in healthcare and social services. This 15-credit gerontology credential is applicable within many different professions. Students who enroll in Concordia’s gerontology program online are united by an interest in learning the latest information on public policy that affects the elderly as well as current research and theories related to aging services and eldercare. 

Tuition & Financial Aid

If there is no interruption in your course of study at Concordia University Chicago, you are guaranteed there will be no increase in tuition rates. Contact us to confirm the current tuition and fees for the online master’s in gerontology degree. Students who enroll in the online gerontology program as a degree candidate are eligible to apply for federal financial aid.

Active-duty military service members, veterans and eligible dependents can take advantage of financial programs available to assist in paying for a college education. For more information, please visit the Active Duty/Military website.

Contact Information

Lori McGill-Sarago
Concordia University Chicago
Student Recruitment Manager


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