Gerontology Certificate

Kent State University and the University of Akron together offer a graduate level Certificate in Gerontology, which may be received in conjunction with degrees from either institution at the Specialist’s, Master’s or Doctoral levels.



Students thus receive basic preparation in their selected discipline or major, while concurrently obtaining specialized training in gerontology through the certificate program. Coursework completed at either institution may be applied to the Certificate Program. The two universities are located within a short 15 minute drive from each other.

To be eligible for the Graduate Gerontology Certificate Program a student must be matriculated in a graduate degree program or hold a graduate degree from an accredited institution. Students may be admitted with non degree status, but they must complete a graduate degree program prior to being awarded the Certificate.

The certificate program is flexible with minimal required courses beyond those needed to complete degree requirements. Students can tailor the courses taken toward completion of the certificate to meet their unique professional interests. A thesis or dissertation may be applied toward certificate requirements if it involves an aging-related topic. At least 12 of the required hours are to carry 600-level (University of Akron), 60000-level (Kent State University) or above designation. A maximum of three credit hours is transferable from outside the university. Certificate completion is acknowledged by special notation on student transcripts.


The Certificate is an interdisciplinary program consisting of the following two options:

  1. The Gerontological Studies Option is intended for Ph.D. and Masters students who wish to develop a specialty in gerontological scholarship. The coursework and other requirements associated with this tract emphasize the development of knowledge and skills related to gerontological theory and research.
  2. The Applied Gerontology Option is intended for students whose primary interest is to apply their gerontological expertise and knowledge within service-oriented professions (counseling, nursing, rehabilitation specialties, case management etc.)

Contact Information

Dr. Greg Smith 330-672-9993

Interdisciplinary Seminar 3
Psychosocial Gerontology 3
Research Methods 3
Biology of Aging or Physiology of Aging or Equivalent 3
Electives 3
Research or Practicum 3