Gerontology Specialist (AAS)

Degree: Associate of Applied Science
Major: Gerontology Specialist
Program Code: 1305

About This Major...

The Gerontology program is for individuals who wish to develop careers in the field of aging, those already employed or active in gerontology or related fields who wish to enhance their career paths, and those seeking challenging and meaningful career changes in response to new opportunities created by an aging society.

For more information on what you can do with this major, visit WCCC's Programs of Study page.

All CMU/WCCC associate graduates are expected to demonstrate proficiency in specialized knowledge/applied learning, quantitative fluency, communication fluency, critical thinking, personal and social responsibility, and information literacy. In addition to these campus‐wide student learning outcomes, graduates of this major will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate ability to write a resume (Communication Fluency).
  2. Demonstrate ability to act ethically, compassionately and responsible toward the elderly in the health care industry (Critical Thinking).
  3. Demonstrate knowledge of ethical law in aging, current society practices and principals as it relates to ethical law (Specialized Knowledge/Applied Learning).

Each section below contains details about the requirements for this program. Select a header to expand the information/requirements for that particular section of the program's requirements. 

To print or save an overview of this program's information, including the program description, learning outcomes, requirements, suggested course sequencing (if applicable), and advising and graduation information, scroll to the bottom of the left-hand navigation menu and select "Print Options." This will give you the options to either "Send Page to Printer" or "Download PDF of This Page." The "Download PDF of This Page" option prepares a much more concise presentation of all program information. The PDF is also printable and may be preferable due to its brevity. 

Institutional Degree Requirements

The following institutional degree requirements apply to all CMU and WCCC Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degrees. Specific programs may have different requirements that must be met in addition to institutional requirements.

  • 60 semester hours minimum.
  • Students must complete a minimum of 15 of the final 30 semester hours of credit at CMU/WCCC.
  • 2.00 cumulative GPA or higher in all CMU/WCCC coursework.
  • A course may only be used to fulfill one requirement for each degree/certificate.
  • No more than six semester hours of independent study courses can be used toward the degree.
  • Non-traditional credit, such as advanced placement, credit by examination, credit for prior learning, cooperative education and internships, cannot exceed 20 semester credit hours for an AAS degree.
  • Pre-collegiate courses (usually numbered below 100) cannot be used for graduation.
  • Capstone exit assessment/projects (e.g., Major Field Achievement Test) requirements are identified under Program-Specific Degree Requirements.
  • The Catalog Year determines which program sheet and degree requirements a student must fulfill in order to graduate. Visit with your advisor or academic department to determine which catalog year and program requirements you should follow.
  • See “Requirements for Undergraduate Degrees and Certificates” in the catalog for a complete list of graduation requirements.

Essential Learning Requirements

(16 semester hours)

See the current catalog for a list of courses that fulfill the requirements below.  If a course is an Essential Learning option and a requirement for your major, you must use it to fulfill the major requirement and make a different selection for the Essential Learning requirement.

ENGL 111English Composition I-GTCO13
Select one of the following:3
English Composition II-GTCO2
Interpersonal Communications
MATH 107Career Math (or higher)3
Other Essential Learning Core Courses
PSYC 233Human Growth and Development-GTSS33
BIOL 101
General Human Biology-GTSC1
and General Human Biology Laboratory-GTSC1
Total Semester Credit Hours16

Other Lower Division Requirements

(2 semester hours)

Wellness Requirements
KINE 100Health and Wellness1
Select one Activity course1
Total Semester Credit Hours2

Program Specific Degree Requirements

(42 semester hours)

GRNT 110Introduction to Gerontology3
GRNT 125Community Resources for Older Adults3
GRNT 181Exploring the Field of Aging2
GRNT 220Law and Ethics for Health Professions2
GRNT 245Health and Aging3
GRNT 247Applied Legal and Policy Issues in Aging3
GRNT 250Death: Cross-Cultural Perspectives3
GRNT 260Technology for Aging Services2
GRNT 270Neurology of Memory Loss2
GRNT 280Management of Senior Living Communities3
GRNT 294Gerontology Professional Seminar1
GRNT 299Internship3
Select 12 semester hours from the following:12
Hospice Care
Activity Director Training
The Aging Mind
Cognitive Activity Design
Arts and Cognitive Activity Design
Ethics and Aging
Supporting End of Life
Introduction to Dementia Care
Dementia Care Practices
End of Life Therapies/Practices
Care and Service Coordination
Total Semester Credit Hours42
Plan of Study Grid
First Year
Fall SemesterSemester Credit Hours
ENGL 111 English Composition I-GTCO1 3
MATH 107 Career Math 3
BIOL 101 General Human Biology-GTSC1 3
BIOL 101L General Human Biology Laboratory-GTSC1 1
GRNT 110 Introduction to Gerontology 3
KINE 100 Health and Wellness 1
 Semester Credit Hours14
Spring Semester
Select one of the following: 3
English Composition II-GTCO2  
Interpersonal Communications  
GRNT 125 Community Resources for Older Adults 3
GRNT 181 Exploring the Field of Aging 2
GRNT 245 Health and Aging 3
Restricted Electives (2-3 courses) 6
 Semester Credit Hours17
Second Year
Fall Semester
GRNT 220 Law and Ethics for Health Professions 2
GRNT 247 Applied Legal and Policy Issues in Aging 3
GRNT 250 Death: Cross-Cultural Perspectives 3
GRNT 270 Neurology of Memory Loss 2
PSYC 233 Human Growth and Development-GTSS3 3
Restricted Elective 3
 Semester Credit Hours16
Spring Semester
GRNT 260 Technology for Aging Services 2
GRNT 280 Management of Senior Living Communities 3
GRNT 294 Gerontology Professional Seminar 1
GRNT 299 Internship 3
KINA Activity course 1
Restricted Elective 3
 Semester Credit Hours13
 Total Semester Credit Hours60

Advising Process and DegreeWorks

Documentation on the pages related to this program is intended for informational purposes to help determine what courses and associated requirements are needed to earn a degree. The suggested course sequencing outlines how students could finish degree requirements. Some courses are critical to complete in specific semesters, while others may be moved around. Meeting with an academic advisor is essential in planning courses and altering the suggested course sequencing. It is ultimately the student’s responsibility to understand and fulfill the requirements for her/his intended degree(s).

DegreeWorks is an online degree audit tool available in MAVzone. It is the official record used by the Registrar’s Office to evaluate progress towards a degree and determine eligibility for graduation. Students are responsible for reviewing their DegreeWorks audit on a regular basis and should discuss questions or concerns with their advisor or academic department head. Discrepancies in requirements should be reported to the Registrar’s Office.

Graduation Process

Students must complete the following in the first two months of the semester prior to completing their degree requirements:

  • Review their DegreeWorks audit and create a plan that outlines how unmet requirements will be met in the final semester.
  • Meet with their advisor and modify their plan as needed. The advisor must approve the final plan.
  • Submit the “Intent to Graduate” form to the Registrar’s Office to officially declare the intended graduation date and commencement ceremony plans.
  • Register for all needed courses and complete all requirements for each degree sought.

Submission deadlines and commencement details can be found at

If a student’s petition for graduation is denied, it will be her/his responsibility to consult the Registrar’s Office regarding next steps.