Gerontology (Minor)

Gerontology (Minor)
Older woman's hands

What is gerontology?

Gerontology is the study of the biological, psychological and social aspects of aging. In this minor, you’ll learn to promote the health and well-being of aging individuals through research, teaching and service. The interdisciplinary curriculum lets you explore the fundamentals of gerontology. Faculty research areas include elder maltreatment, intergenerational relations and support, transitions in care and functioning, and community services and policies for older populations. You can combine the minor in gerontology with a major in areas such as healthcare, human development and family studies, recreation management or social work, preparing you for a variety of in-demand careers.

Why study gerontology at UNH?

As a major public research university, UNH emphasizes hands-on experience and research opportunities. Students in the gerontology minor have the opportunity to put theory into practice through the Center on Aging and Community Living, an integrated center of applied research, evaluation and training relevant to aging and community living. The center focuses on care giving, care transitions, person-centered approaches, innovative community living, and workforce development. The College of Health and Human Services also hosts an annual Age of Champions health fair, the goal of which is to raise awareness of and promote healthy aging from a holistic perspective.

Potential careers

  • Assisted living activities coordinator
  • Educator
  • Eldercare policy analyst
  • Family intervention case manager
  • Human rights advocate
  • Rehabilitation counselor
  • Social worker
  • Therapeutic recreation coordinator
  • Veteran services provider

Curriculum & Requirements

The gerontology multidisciplinary minor (GMM) provides students with the opportunity to examine and evaluate the aging process as it affects the individual and society within the United States and in the world. Through a multidisciplinary course selection, students develop an understanding of aging from a variety of perspectives with a focus on how people age physically, cognitively, emotionally, and socially. Students are encouraged to analyze the historical and philosophical foundation from which policies, programs, and professional activities affecting the aged are developed, implemented, and evaluated. The purpose of GMM is to prepare students as they enter their career fields on the effects that the growing elderly population will have in every component of modern life. 

To complete a minor in gerontology students are required to take a minimum of 20 credits.

  • Special Topic courses on aging-related topics can be used for GMM if approved by the GMM coordinator
  • The GMM follows UNH's policy on minors. Following University policy, students must complete 20 credit hours with a grade of C- or better and a 2.00 grade point average.
  • Students must submit a Certification of Completion of Minor form during their final semester to the GMM Coordinator: Dr. BoRin Kim in the Department of Social Work.
Required courses:8
EXSC 607
Biology of Aging
GERO 500
I'm Old, So What! An introduction to aging in the United States
Select 3 additional courses from the following:12
ANTH 695
Globalization and Global Population Health
GERO 795
Independent Study 2
HDFS 625
Adult Development and Aging
HDFS 707
Practicum 1
HHS #444
The Right to be Disabled in the Extreme Makeover Society
HHS 798
Special Topics
HPE 601
Lifetime Sports
NURS 506
Human Development, Interaction and Learning Across the Lifespan
NURS 535
Death and Dying
NUTR 400
Nutrition in Health and Well Being
NUTR 600
Field Experience in Nutrition 1
NUTR 650
Life Cycle Nutrition
NUTR 773
Clinical Nutrition
NURS 601
Function and Wellbeing of Older Adults
OT 501
Developmental Tasks of Adulthood
PHIL 660
Law, Medicine, and Ethics
RMP 503
Therapeutic Recreation Rehabilitation Principles & Interventions
RMP 563
Recreation Management and Policy Practicum 1
SOC 725
Social Demography
SW 444
You've Got Your Troubles, I've Got Mine
SW 702
Aging and Society
SW 740
Social Work Field Experience 1
SW 741
Social Work Field Experience II 1
Total Credits20

Up to 4 credits from the practicum courses including HDFS 707 PracticumNUTR 600 Field Experience in NutritionRMP 563 Recreation Management and Policy PracticumSW 740 Social Work Field Experience or SW 741 Social Work Field Experience II can be used for GMM if a student did their internship at aging-related institutions.


GERO 795 Independent Study is not a required course but up to 4 credits can be used toward GMM. GERO 795 is used by students and faculty as an option for creating an individual experience relating to aging. A faculty member must approve and oversee (mentor) the student's work. Additionally, the GMM coordinator must also approve of the proposal and retain a copy. A copy of the proposal and the final copy will be kept in the student's major academic folder.


Take the Next Step

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Thompson Hall
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