Bachelor of Arts | College of Arts and Science

What is Gerontology?

If you enjoy working with older adults and have in interest in their well-being, you should consider the study of gerontology. Gerontology is an exciting, relatively new field that has evolved considerably over the last decade. As a social science, it focuses on the social implications of the aging experience. Social gerontology integrates knowledge from anthropology, demography, economics, ethics, health, history, human development, law, philosophy, psychology, sociology, political science, and social policy, among other disciplines.

What are the features of Miami’s program?

Small class size

To maximize interaction between faculty and students, introductory level gerontology courses are limited to 50 or fewer students, and advanced courses are limited even further, with many having 25 or fewer students.


Gerontology majors can specialize in one of three curricular tracks, including applied research, aspiring health professions, and policies and programs.

Multidisciplinary faculty

Gerontology faculty members represent a wide variety of disciplines, including gerontology, psychology, sociology, social work and social welfare.

Scripps Gerontology Center

All gerontology faculty members are actively involved in research, and students are encouraged to work with them to gain experience. This research is conducted through Miami University's Scripps Gerontology Center, which has a full-time research staff and was one of the first centers in the nation dedicated to the study of aging.

What are the special admission requirements, if any?

There are no additional admission requirements for this program.

What courses would I take?

Gerontology majors engage in critical, multidisciplinary analysis of aging and develop ideas and skills that can be integrated with other areas of study. Students develop an understanding of the impact of aging in all areas of life and work.

The first year of study includes the College of Arts and Science requirements and Global Miami Plan courses in addition to an introductory gerontology course, Aging in American Society. In their sophomore year, majors will take coursework in statistics and research methods, followed by upper-level courses addressing current issues in aging during their junior and senior years.

What can I do with this major?

Most graduates pursue careers and/or advanced degrees in an aging-related field. Because of the ever-increasing population of elders, there will continue to be a great need for individuals trained in gerontology.

Continued increases in numbers, proportion, and life expectancy of the older population will have an impact on the entire population and all of our social institutions. Because of these demographic changes, individuals with gerontological expertise will have employment opportunities both within the traditional aging network (such as senior care centers and long-term care settings) and beyond (in business and industry).

Graduates who are employed in applied settings provide direct services; plan, implement and evaluate services; develop policy; administer programs; and are employed in research positions. Gerontology graduates work in social service, community, and government agencies; in advocacy and research organizations; in business/industry; and in residential and long-term care facilities.

Who can I contact for more information?

Department of Sociology and Gerontology
375 Upham Hall
Oxford, OH 45056