Skip to Local Navigation
Skip to Content
California State University, Long Beach
Department of Family and Consumer Sciences

Gerontology Certificate

Are you looking for a job in an area that is growing rapidly, that needs people with a broad range of skills, that will improve people’s lives, and that will be exciting, challenging, and rewarding? Consider a career in the field of aging!

What is Gerontology?

Gerontology is the study of how we grow up and how we grow older and how to grow older well. It includes (a) the study of physical, mental and social changes in people as they grow older; (b) the study of the changes in society as more people grow older; and (c) how to use this knowledge to develop policies and programs to serve the community. People who are educated in the field of aging call themselves “gerontologists”.

Why Study Gerontology?

There is a growing need for people to work in the field of aging because there is an increasing number of older people since we are all living longer than we did many years ago. Some people work directly with older persons in the community. Others work on behalf of older persons in areas such as research, advocacy, teaching about aging, or in government agencies. The goal of gerontologists is to help older people live healthier, happier lives.


Prerequisites and recuirement for entering the progam:

Bachelor’s degree from an accredited University
3.0 grade point average, or better, in the last 60 units (semester) or 90 units (quarter) of your undergraduate work
Evidence of professional promise
Transcripts of all college work
3 letters of recommendation
Statement of goals.
Prerequisites: Completion of the 4 core courses for the Certificate Program or their equivalent
Upper division or graduate level statistics course
Passing score on the Writing Proficiency Exam prior to advancement to candidacy
May be taken upon admission to the Program

Certificate Program requirements: (24 units)


4 core courses (upper division) or equivalents—2 will fulfill upper division general education requirements
Perspectives on Gerontology (GERN 400I)
Biology of Aging (BIOL 401)
Adult Growth & Development (PSY 365 or HDEV 357I)
Culture and aging (ANTH 454)
9 units of electives in Gerontology or related fields, chosen in consultation with the Gerontology Program Director— up to 6 units from your major may be applied towards your Certificate if aging related

3 units of approved field experience/internship (GERN 492 or an equivalent in your major)

Your individual program should be preplanned with the Gerontology Program Director so that it can be tailored to your individual needs and interests


A bachelor's degree (may be taken concurrently).

24 units distributed as follows:

GERN 400I, ANTH 454, BIOL 401, PSY 365 or HDEV 357I.

Six units of electives chosen in consultation with the Gerontology Program Director from a list of approved courses.

Three units of independent study (GERN 497) on a topic related to gerontology.

Three units of approved field experience (GERN 492) in a gerontology setting.

Early consultation with and approval by the Gerontology Director.

University Catalog

Advisors go by your last name:
Letter of Your Last Name Advisor
A-Z Claver, M
Graduate Students White, B