Program Overview

Due to the increasing demand for individuals who are capable of caring for the aging population, Portland Community College offers an Associate of Applied Science degree with a concentration in Gerontology.  The social, psychological and biological study of adults between the ages of 65-85 requires well educated and trained individuals passionate about improving research and providing proper social cues to include an older age group.  The study of gerontology may be applied to a wide variety of careers: medicine, social work, therapy, psychology, sociology, economics, political science, geography, urban planning, nursing, public health, and anthropology, to name a few.  

Students in the program must complete a minimum of 90 credit hours to earn the AAS designation.  The required coursework is comprised of topics of interest applicable to individuals studying the social, mental and physical changes in humans as they age.  In addition to core general education courses and an internship, students of the gerontology concentration will study: Aging and Addiction, Ethical Issues, Psychology of Adult Development, Social Gerontology, Sociology of Aging, cultural differences in Death and Dying and Sociology of Health and Aging.

Graduates should develop the dynamic research and societal skills appropriate for working with an aging population.  The constant technological increases in medicine and healthcare are allowing people to live longer, healthier lives, and also increasing the need for professionals able to assist in health care services, financial and legal services, leisure, life-long learning, hospitality, fitness and wellness areas.

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    Program Details

    Degree Level: Associate

    Delivery Format: 100% Online

    Accelerated Degree:

    Accreditation & Licensing

    Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

    School Overview

    Initially founded in 1961 as an adult education program, Portland Community College is a public, two-year institution of higher education. Since its opening, Portland has expanded to include four campuses and eight academic centers that offer job training, specialized programs and a variety of transfer courses. Portland Community College operates with the mission to “advance the region’s long-term vitality by delivering accessible, quality education to support the academic, professional and personal development of the diverse students and communities it serves.”

    Portland Community College offers certificates and associate's degrees. Students desiring to participate in virtual coursework at PCC have a variety of options, including online degree programs, telecourses, teleweb (hybrid of telecourses and web-based courses), and interactive television classes. Online classes offer working adult students the necessary flexibility to complete assignments and learn in a manner that fits their busy schedules.


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