Certificate in Gerontology

Certificate in Gerontology

Prove you have the skills required to meet the health care needs of an aging population. This course will deliver the information you need to work with people over 65 including assessing and managing pain, common issues of aging, dealing with elder abuse, mental health, and death and dying.
6 Weeks Access / 25 Course Hrs
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The Certificate in Gerontology represents a specialization in the field of gerontology. It is designed to enhance the knowledge and skills of individuals who work with older adults by providing an educational experience that is multidisciplinary in nature.

This certification course provides you with the knowledge and skills to effectively meet the needs of the aging population in a wide range of careers. There are opportunities in nursing, teaching, service, administration, and research that focus on the needs and interests of older adults. These opportunities also exist within government programs and agencies; public and private institutions that provide health, education, and social services; research centers; special interest groups; colleges and universities; and corporate human resources divisions. (25 contact hours)

Enrollment Options:
6 Weeks Access Course Code: all
Start Dates*Aug 12 | Sep 16 | Oct 14 | Nov 11
*Choose start date in cart
$259.00 CAD
3 Months Access Course Code: T9210
No Instructor, Start Anytime
$259.00 CAD


Opportunities are unlimited for the individual who knows the field of gerontology. Demographic changes and changes in health care have influenced the development of a variety of gerontologic roles.

There are more older adults in the United States than ever before in history, making this segment one of the fastest-growing portions of the population. The appropriate care of older adults requires health care providers to have a solid understanding of the physiologic changes that accompany aging.

This lesson provides health care professionals with an overview of mental health and aging, including mental health wellness strategies, mental health disorders, cultural competence, cultural diversity, complementary and alternative medicine treatments, animal-assisted therapy and mental health, mental health resources, and trends in mental health and aging.

This lesson introduces the health professional to a broad, conceptually integrated perspective on the topic of healthy aging.

Pain is a symptom that signals distress in virtually every population and every age. To provide quality care to aging adults, health care providers must be particularly skilled at assessing pain, understanding misconceptions of pain management, addressing cultural issues in pain management, and providing effective pain therapies.

What is grief? What are normal grief responses? What is involved in the final life transition—death? These are some of the questions that will be discussed in this course. The role of culture, palliative and hospice care, advance directives, and the role of spirituality in death and dying will be described. Interactions, healing strategies, and rituals that use the senses and bring comfort and peace for the dying will also be explored.

Sleep is essential to a healthy, productive life. Sleep disorders and changes affect people as they age and older adults undergo many sleep-related changes that can affect their physical and psychological well-being.

America is growing older and most older Americans are women. Today's older woman is part of a diverse group that varies in income, education level, health, functional abilities, living arrangements, and access to support services. Because women live longer than men, they face unique economic, social, and health challenges.

Older adults today are vibrant, independent, living longer, and in better health than their ancestors. However, as this growing population increases, so does the issue of caring for elderly individuals. Caregivers must often cope with stressful economic and personal burdens when caring for the elderly who pay the price for this stress and may be abused, exploited, or neglected.

Communication links all human beings together. As individuals age, their ability to perceive information through their senses is often distorted or impaired. Age-related sensory changes impact the quality of life and the quality of communication. Aging adults must compensate for these changes and families must be sensitive to the often-silent process of sensory deterioration in their aging family member.

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a condition in which the concept of loss is central—the loss of one's memories, independence, ability to recognize loved ones, and dignity. Often referred to as "the long goodbye," AD is the most common type of dementia, affecting millions of Americans. It is responsible for billions of dollars annually in health care costs; however, new research is providing hope for those with Alzheimer's disease as well as for their families and caregivers.



Hardware Requirements:

  • This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac.

Software Requirements:

  • PC: Windows XP or later.
  • Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Adobe Flash Player. Click here to download the Flash Player.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here to download the Acrobat Reader.
  • Java. Click here to download Java.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.


  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.


There are no prerequisites to take this course.

Instructional Material Requirements:

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.


Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC is a nurse who has cared for patients in acute care settings, community clinics, and the home. Her professional nursing career has involved nursing executive leadership and administration, accreditation consultation, staff development and education, community education and wellness, and holistic care. She has designed, developed, and presented numerous educational programs for audiences covering integrative health, promotion and wellness, and chronic disease management and prevention. She is the co-author (with Caroline Young) of two health care textbooks. She is the co-CEO and co-founder of ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC and has designed and developed over 300 online professional continuing education courses.

Caroline Young, M.P.H., has an extensive public health background that includes experience in research, workshop presentations in various areas of health care, and online and onsite teaching. She has expertise in holistic community health and wellness program design, development, marketing, implementation, and evaluation. She has also designed, developed, and presented integrative health programs for culturally diverse populations, senior populations, and faith communities. She is the co-author (with Cyndie Koopsen) of two health care textbooks. She is the co-CEO and co-founder of ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC and has designed and developed over 300 online professional continuing education courses.


I really enjoyed this course. I think the study material in each lesson was well prepared and presented. I would recommend this to others in the geriatric field who are interested in expanding their knowledge and patient care skills. Thank You.

Yippee!!! I made it. Finally done the entire course! Many thanks to the instructors Miss Cyndie and Miss Caroline. The lessons were very informative although I actually felt overwhelmed upon seeing the course outline at the beginning. After finishing it, I now have a new perspective in dealing with our older folks. I will certainly consider enrolling again here for my future CE needs. To my fellow students, especially those sharing their insights, thank you.

As a social scientist, this course was VERY interesting but more difficult than the others, for me. More science and more challenging for me to grasp. At the same time, probably learned the most new stuff to apply to my work as a case manager. Great!

I am finding the information very informative. I do a great deal for my parents and my father has spent some time in a nursing home so I can relate to what we are reading. I teach Human Services and am always looking for new ways to improve my curriculum. I think this course will really help me to have a stronger curriculum about the elderly and the aging process.

I am a clergy person and many of my parishioners are elderly. I always try to be sensitive to their needs. I've found the majority of older people to be assets in their communities. I took this course because I want to be able to serve this population more effectively, especially around issues of spirituality, grief, and health. I found the course material to be interesting and applicable to some of my pastoral care work…I will review some of the references in more detail. I definitely want to learn about the theories of aging.

This course has been a great asset , with a wealth of information for me in the business I am now working in. Thank you and the staff for putting together such a great curriculum, for those of us who have compassion, commitment, and time for the lives and well being of the elderly.

This course have really brought clarity to a lot of misconceptions about the elderly level of care, medical terminology, myths and confusion about caring for the older adults. Thanks for this amazing opportunity to get such great knowledge from such great scholars.

The best part of this class was that every piece of information was backed up with research. All information was presented unbiased. I am so thrilled and excited that this course was exactly what I wanted. I want the freedom to go my pace, all was presented and it was up to me to do one chapter a day or five chapters a week. I love it! Thanks.

I found that this course gave me a greater insight on caring for the geriatric population. I have a better understanding of the changes that occur with aging and the losses one must endure as they grow old. I feel that I gained a much better understanding about Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia and I will be able to use this knowledge at work. I will be able to implement many of the communication strategies to improve the quality of care I provide and the quality of life for my residents.

I am presently a Senior Psychology Supervisor for two skilled nursing facilities at a State Psychiatric Hospital. I have learned an enormous amount and have applied this knowledge in supervising psychologists, and at case reviews. I graduated with a Masters in Social Work -Gerontology Track in the eighties, and earned my licensed as a clinical social worker. Later I earned a Clinical Psychology degree and a license. I am now back in Gerontology and am so appreciative that I found this course.