Geriatrics and Gerontology Degrees

Geriatrics is an area of medical science that refers to diseases, illnesses and problems related to old people. Gerontology is the study of the aging process which includes the social, psychological and physical aspects of it. If you are interested in working with the elderly then a degree in geriatrics and gerontology can provide you with the knowledge and skills you will require.

As the population of those aging increases due to better health provision, the importance of geriatrics and gerontology professionals will rise too. As demand for these experts’ increases, those who have received formal training in the field will be able to make a more successful career for themselves.

Wondering about the career possibilities for Geriatrics and Gerontology graduates?

  • Geriatrics: “A branch of medicine that deals with the problems and diseases of old age and aging people”*
  • Gerontology: “The scientific study of old age and of the process of becoming old”*

* Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Career Choices

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology graduates are presented with a wide range of careers
  • Here we will list some of the most popular choices

Recreational Therapists

  • Their job is to arrange, direct, and organize treatment programs for people with illnesses or disabilities using recreational methods like sports, music and arts
  • Annual Median Salary (2012): $42,280
  • Expected Job Growth (2012-2022): up to 13%

*All career-related figures have been taken from BLS and O*NET OnLine

Social Workers

  • Their job involves solving everyday problems for people. Some also have the authority to identify and care for mental and emotional difficulties as well.
  • Annual Median Salary (2012): $44,200
  • Expected Job Growth (2012-2022): up to 19%

*All career-related figures have been taken from BLS and O*NET OnLine

Nursing Assistants and Orderlies

  • Their job involves offering basic care for patients who are incapable of doing so themselves.
  • Annual Median Salary (2012): $24,400
  • Expected Job Growth (2012-2022): up to 21%

*All career-related figures have been taken from BLS and O*NET OnLine

Rehabilitation Counselors

  • Their job involves assisting people suffering from emotional and physical disabilities and giving them the help they need to live independently.
  • Annual Median Salary (2012): $33,880
  • Expected Job Growth (2012-2022): up to 20%

*All career-related figures have been taken from BLS and O*NET OnLine

Medical and Health Services Managers

  • Their job is to arrange, oversee, and manage medical and health services. They can be administrators of entire medical facilities, clinics or private practices.
  • Annual Median Salary (2012): $88,580
  • Expected Job Growth (2012-2022): up to 23%

*All career-related figures have been taken from BLS and O*NET OnLine

Home Health Aides

  • Their job is to give assistance to incapacitated or old patients that can’t care for themselves. They also provide basic medication and health checks.
  • Annual Median Salary (2012): $20,820
  • Expected Job Growth (2012-2022): up to 48%

*All career-related figures have been taken from BLS and O*NET OnLine

Geriatrics and Gerontology Degrees and Programs
Geriatrics and gerontology related degrees can be found at the certificate, Associate, Bachelor, Master and PhD levels. You can find such programs both online and in traditional campus-based settings. Such degrees can prepare you for a career in social work or assisted living care provision. Some related degrees include:

  • Certificate in Gerontology Health Care
  • Certificate in Geriatric Care Management
  • Bachelor in Long-Term Care Management
  • Master in Gerontology

A geriatrics and gerontology degree teaches students how to provide health care to elderly patients keeping in view the social, psychological and biological factors that play a role. Proper care management is taught to those enrolled in such a program. The impact of aging on families is also part of the program curriculum. Other areas of study in a geriatrics and gerontology degree are:

  • Psychology of aging
  • Anatomy
  • Statistics
  • Geriatric health management
  • Communication
  • Sociology
  • Physiology
  • Counseling
  • Health care administration

Also offered as part of a geriatrics and gerontology program are courses related to ethical, legal and financial aspects of dealings with the elderly. The psychology of death and dying may also be taught. Some programs require students to complete a supervised internship. This can be undertaken at a home health care agency, nursing home, long term care facility or other health care facility.

Careers for Geriatrics and Gerontology Graduates
Geriatrics and gerontology experts can be found working at a number of different places such as hospitals, nursing homes, social service organizations and government agencies. There are employment opportunities also available at mental health centers, community agencies, research firms and other health care facilities. Apart from elderly health care administration and management, adult education, advocacy for the elderly and public policy are also some areas where you can form a career for yourself.

Some of the roles open to geriatrics and gerontology experts include:

  • Home health aide
  • Health care professional
  • Geriatric nurse
  • Geriatric care manager

The salary range for someone with a degree in this field is between 29,000 – 56,000 US dollars. If you are interested in a career as a health services specialist who particularly aids the elderly and families looking after older relatives, then enrolling in a geriatrics and gerontology program can help you launch yourself in the field.

Frequently Asked Question(s)

Q:What various courses are studied in Online Geriatrics and Gerontology Degrees?

A:The curriculum of Online Geriatrics and Gerontology Degrees include a number of courses. These include basic courses, and concentration courses. Following mentioned are a few areas of study in Online Geriatrics and Gerontology Degrees: demography and epidemiology, effects of ageing, physiology of ageing, impairment and disability, prescribing drugs, geriatrics syndromes and conditions, and many more.

Q:What is the duration of the master's degrees in geriatrics?

A:The master level degrees in geriatrics and gerontology is typically a two year program that enables the students to specialize in their chosen field. Besides, the duration for these degrees can vary if the students wish to pursue them online as many online universities offer self-paced programs.

Q:What is the employment outlook for a professional with a degree in geriatrics health?

A:The employment outlook for a professional with a degree in geriatrics health is very bright. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, this industry is going to see an increase of more than 20% till 2018. Most of the jobs created will be driven by the aging population. The salaries for this sector depend on the level of qualification of the professional with nurses and physical therapists in demand all over the United States, especially in the state of Florida.

Q:My search for top online geriatrics gerontology nurse practitioner programs mentioned distance learning. What are the advantages of online education?

A:Distance learning would be mentioned when searching for top online geriatrics gerontology nurse practitioner programs. Online educational programs are specifically designed to help students study at their own convenience and pace. The curriculum for online programs is comprehensive with every topic discusses in detail. Students can also save money on travel and accommodation with the help of these programs. Prospective students interested in online education are advised search our website for more information.

Q:Which the best geriatric degree programs for me?

A:There are many factors an individual would consider before deciding the 'best' program for them. For some, cost is the most important issue. While for others it could be the location of the school, the reputation of the school or faculty. It could even the topics covered in the program and their usefulness. You should, however, only consider those programs which are accredited.

Q:Can you tell me about the various sub-categories I can specialize in a geriatrics degree?

A:Geriatrics focuses on healthcare services for elderly patients. This field of medicine has grown in popularity, seeing a rise in number of student enrollments. One can pursue a specific branch of geriatrics for specialization. Specializations options usually include the following: geriatric nursing, geriatric nutrition, geriatric occupational therapy, geriatric pain management, and geriatric physical therapy.

Q:What is geriatrics all about?

A:Geriatrics is concerned with study of diseases and illnesses common in old age. The subjects vary but typically you will be studying about human anatomy, physiology, aging process, sociology, counseling and health care fundamentals. You can find certificate programs in gerontology or in geriatric care management and degree programs also.

Q:How long is the bachelor in geriatrics degree in USA?

A:A bachelor's degree in geriatrics normally takes four years to complete. However, the duration can vary depending on the institute. Online programs can also vary in the duration, due to the self paced nature of their programs. Students can either join accelerated programs or choose to complete courses according to their own preference.

Q:After completing geriatric degrees, do I need to get additional training to receive a certification in this field?

A:Yes, geriatric practitioners or specialists must receive training and acquire a certification in this field. The training requirements may vary a little from state to state. Geriatrics are practitioners who help and treat elderly patients. The job can be quite in demanding in many ways. Take a look at our page for more detail.

Q:Why should I pursue a Gerontology Degree Online?

A:An online gerontology degree is the right degree from students wanting to contribute to the healthcare sector of the economy. If you have prior work or family commitments which do not allow you to pursue full time higher education, then an online degree can be the right degree right for you.

Q:Can you tell me what is the difference between geriatrics and gerontology degrees?

A:Gerontology and geriatrics are fields of study that deal with the ageing process. However, there are certain differences between the fields. Gerontology basically covers the various facets of ageing that include psychosomatic and communal factors. On the other hand, geriatrics only deals with the healthcare and treatment of aged patients.

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