Program on Gerontology Graduate Study

Graduate Study

Program on Gerontology

The Program on Gerontology offers an interdisciplinary approach to the study of aging. Because aging involves physiological, sociological, and psychological processes, gerontology education and research is relevant to many disciplines.

Career opportunities in gerontology are extremely diverse and include positions in community services, health sciences, nutrition and dietetics, housing, health and physical education, pharmacy, counseling, health care administration, business, public policy, and many other arenas.

Recognizing the diversity of relevant disciplines and of career opportunities, the Oregon State Program on Gerontology offers coursework in gerontology through 11 departments.


Oregon State offers over 20 graduate level gerontology courses plus field study and research opportunities.

There are four ways to pursue significant graduate work in gerontology at OSU:

  • Adult development and aging may be selected as an area of concentration for both master's and doctoral degrees in Human Development and Family Studies. Students choosing this concentration will select adult development and aging coursework and research in their major as well as choose an integrated minor in gerontology.
  • Gerontology is an integrated minor (i.e., courses chosen from a variety of departments) available to graduate students in any major field. The minor requires 18-36 quarter-hour credits, including HDFS 587 Social Gerontology. The balance of the coursework is selected from graduate gerontology courses, field study, and/or research.
  • Gerontology is an area of study in the Masters of Interdisciplinary Studies (MAIS) program. MAIS students are required to take a minimum of 15 quarter hours in gerontology, including HDFS 587 Social Gerontology. The balance of courses is selected from graduate gerontology courses, field study, and/or research.
  • Aging Sciences minor is an interdisciplinary graduate education in the aging sciences through formal course work, research requirements and experiential learning that is aligned with the student's career goals in aging. The Aging Sciences minor requires that master's students select 15 credits from selected courses, including HDFS 565 Topics in Human Development and Family Sciences: Behavioral and Social Sciences of Aging. Doctoral students must select 18 credits.