Iowa State University

Iowa State University

2009-2011 Courses and Programs

Iowa State University Catalog

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300 |400 |Graduate Courses |500 |

(Interdepartmental Minor and Interinstitutional Program)

Advisory Committee: P. Martin, Director; L. Alekel, W. Franke, J. Lempers, Fred Lorenz, Jennifer Margrett, Mack Shelley, A. Smiley-Oyen, R. West

Undergraduate Study

The gerontology program is designed for students desiring careers in aging-related fields and for students interested in improving their understanding of aging persons in American Society. Students are expected to take courses to develop the necessary interdisciplinary breadth which, in combination with other disciplinary training, can prepare them to work with older adults.

Graduates understand the ways in which individual and Societal aging influence, and are impacted by, developments in their major field of study. They have an appreciation and understanding of the cross-disciplinary aspects of human aging.

Gerontology courses are offered in the interdepartmental gerontology program in the following participating departments and programs: Architecture; Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Molecular Biology; Economics; Apparel, Educational Studies, and Hospitality Management, Food Science and Human Nutrition; Health and Human Performance; Human Development and Family Studies; Political Science; Psychology; and Sociology.

Undergraduate Study: Christine Cook, Coordinator

Undergraduate study in this program provides the student with an opportunity to develop a minor in gerontology. A balanced grouping of courses assists the student in developing both a sensitivity to the issues and the ability to synthesize ideas from the variety of disciplines important to the study of the aging process.

Undergraduate students may minor in gerontology by taking 16 semester hours of gerontology related courses. Nine of these credits must come from the following courses: Geron 373, 377, 378, 463. Students will participate in a prepracticum seminar, Geron 466, and will complete a supervised field practicum after all gerontology coursework is completed (Geron 467). A minimum of 3 semester credits must be selected from a list of supportive gerontology related courses. Supportive courses include units or topics related to aging and can be used to complement the student's major interests. The student's minor program must be approved by the undergraduate gerontology coordinator.

Graduate Study

Karen Bermann, Coordinator

A declared graduate minor in gerontology consists of a minimum of 12 credits taken from a list of acceptable courses, and from at least two departments. Nine of the 12 credits must be in courses that are focused specifically on aging. One 590 course (3 credits maximum) can be taken as part of the 12 credits. Geron 510 is required for all minor students. At least one member of the gerontology faculty will be on a student's advisory committee; this person must be a member of the Graduate Faculty. Contact the coordinator to determine whether courses other than those listed below are available.

Interinstitutional Program

Contact: Peter Martin

Participating Faculty:

Iowa State University Gerontology Program Peter Martin, Christine Cook, Jennifer Margrett, 

Kansas State University College of Arts and Sciences Gayle Doll, Lyn Norris-Baker, 

College of Human Ecology Janice Dinkel, 

North Dakota State University College of Human Development and Education Marlys Bratteli, Margaret Fitzgerald, Greg Sanders, 

Oklahoma State University College of Human Environmental Sciences B. Stoecker, Whitney A. Brosi, David Fournier, 

Texas Tech University College of Human Sciences JeAn Scott, 

University of Missouri Terasa Cooney. Marilyn Coleman, Timothy Killian, 

Gerontology is an interinstitutional distance education program offered through the Web. The student selects the home institution, which grants the degree. After admission at the home institution, the student takes courses from each of the six institutions: Iowa State University, Kansas State University, North Dakota State University, Oklahoma State University, Texas Tech University, and the University of Missouri.

At Iowa State University, gerontology is an area of specialization in the Master of Family and Consumer Sciences degree program of 36 semester hours, 24 of these hours are from the following courses: Geron 530, 534, 540, 545, 563, 577, 584, 594. The remaining 12 credits will include electives and specific courses needed to meet the requirements of the institution awarding the degree. Neither a thesis nor a creative component is required. A computer with a CD-ROM drive, the capacity to access and download materials from the Internet, and a browser equivalent to Netscape/Explorer 4.0 or newer are required for completing the program. An e-mail address is essential as well, plus access to a VCR and a FAX.

Gerontology Graduate Certificate Program.

The 21-credit Graduate Certificate Program in Gerontology includes five courses from the list of core courses: Geron 530, 534, 540, 585, 594. The additional six credits required for the certificate can be chosen from the remaining core courses or from other approved elective courses. A maximum of three credits of practicum also can be included in the elective credits.

Admission Procedures: Admission to the Gerontology Certificate Program requires exactly the same procedures as admission to the Graduate College. See Graduate College section of the catalog.

Registration: Students choosing to receive their degree from Iowa State University complete all the admissions, registration, and fee payment processes through ISU.

Courses primarily for undergraduate students

Geron 373. Death as a Part of Living. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3. F.S.Alt. SS., offered 2010.Prereq: HD FS 102. Consideration of death in the life span of the individual and the family with opportunity for exploration of personal and societal attitudes.

Geron 377. Aging and the Family. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3.Prereq: HD FS 102. Interchanges of the aged and their families. Emphasis on role changes, social interaction, and independence as influenced by health, finances, life styles, and community development.

Geron 378. Economics of Aging. (Cross-listed with Econ, HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3. S.Prereq: 3 credits in principles of economics and 3 credits in human development and family studies. Economic status of the aging, retirement planning and the retirement decision, role of Social Security, public transfer programs for the elderly, intrafamily transfers to/from the elderly, private pensions, financing medical care and housing for the elderly, prospects and issues for the future.

Geron 463. Environments for the Aging. (Dual-listed with 563). (Cross-listed with HD FS, ArtID). (3-0) Cr. 3. S.Prereq: HD FS 360 or 3 credits in housing, architecture, interior design, rehabilitation, psychology, or human development and family studies. Emphasis on independent living within residential settings including specialized shelter, supportive services, and housing management. Application of criteria appropriate for accessibility and functional performance of activities; universal design principles. Creative project provides service learning opportunities.

Geron 466. Gerontology Prepracticum Seminar. (1-0) Cr. 1. F.S.SS.Prereq: 9 credits in core courses for the gerontology minor and approval of the gerontology undergraduate coordinator. Prepracticum training for students planning a gerontology practicum. Exploration of possible agencies for the practicum, in-depth study of a selected agency, and development of goals and objectives for the practicum.

Geron 467. Gerontology Practicum. Cr. 3-6. Repeatable. F.S.SS.Prereq: 466, advance reservation. Supervised field experience related to aging. Satisfactory-fail only.

Geron 490. Independent Study. Cr. arr.Consult program coordinator for procedure.

Courses primarily for graduate students, open to qualified undergraduate students

Geron 501. Seminar. Cr. arr. Repeatable. F.S.SS.

Geron 510. Survey of Gerontology. Cr. 1-3. Repeatable. S.Provides an overview of important gerontological issues.

Geron 530. Perspectives in Gerontology. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3. F.WWW only. Overview of current aging issues including theory and research, critical social and political issues in aging, the interdisciplinary focus of gerontology, career opportunities, and aging in the future.

Geron 534. Adult Development. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3.F: on campus. S: WWW only. Exploration of the biological, psychological, and social factors associated with aging. Although the focus is on the later years, information is presented from a life-span developmental framework. Empirical studies are reviewed and their strengths, limitations and implications for normative and optimal functioning are discussed.

Geron 540. Nutrition and Physical Activity in Aging. (Cross-listed with Diet). (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. F., offered 2010.WWW only. Basic physiologic changes during aging and their impacts in health and disease. The focus will be on successful aging with special emphasis on physical activity and nutrition. Practical application to community settings is addressed.

Geron 545. Economics, Public Policy, and Aging. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. F., offered 2010.WWW only. Policy development in the context of the economic status of the older adult population. Retirement planning and the retirement decisions; social security and public transfer programs; intra-family transfers to/from the aged; private pensions; financing medical care; prospects and issues for the future.

Geron 563. Environments for the Aging. (Dual-listed with 463). (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. S., offered 2010.Prereq: HD FS 360 or 3 credits in housing, architecture, interior design, rehabilitation, psychology, or human development and family studies. Emphasis on independent living within residential settings including specialized shelter, supportive services and housing management. Application of criteria appropriate for accessibility and functional performance of activities; universal design principles. Creative project provides service learning opportunities.

Geron 571. Design for All People. (Cross-listed with Arch, Dsn S). (3-0) Cr. 3. S.Prereq: Senior classification or graduate standing. Principles and procedures of universal design in response to the varying ability level of users. Assessment and analysis of existing buildings and sites with respect to standards and details of accessibility for all people, including visually impaired, mentally impaired, and mobility restricted users. Design is neither a prerequisite nor a required part of the course. Enrollment open to students majoring in related disciplines. Credit counts toward fulfillment of Studies in Architecture and Culture requirements.

Geron 577. Aging in the Family Setting. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3.Prereq: 9 credits in social sciences. Alt. S., offered 2008: on campus. Alt. S. offered 2009: WWW only. Theories and research related to personal and family adjustments in later life affecting older persons and their intergenerational relationships. Related issues including demographics also are examined through the use of current literature.

Geron 584. Program Evaluation and Research Methods in Gerontology. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. SS., offered 2010.WWW only. Overview of program evaluation, research methods, and grant writing in gerontology. Includes application of quantitative and qualitative methods in professional settings.

Geron 590. Special Topics. Cr. arr. Repeatable.Consult program coordinator for procedure.

Geron 594. Professional Seminar in Gerontology. (Cross-listed with HD FS). (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. SS., offered 2011.WWW only. An integrative experience for gerontology students designed to be taken near the end of the degree program. By applying knowledge gained in earlier coursework, students will strengthen skills in ethical decision-making behavior, applying these skills in gerontology-related areas such as advocacy, professionalism, family and workplace issues. Students from a variety of professions will bring their unique perspectives to bear on topics of common interest.