Gerontology Graduate Certificate and Graduate Degree Pathways

If you are currently a graduate student in another program at UNC Charlotte, be sure to seek gerontology advising before progressing towards our graduate certificate.  You should take no more than one course before applying for admission.  Proper advising is the best way to ensure that you can complete the certificate in a timely manner.

The Graduate Certificate in Gerontology is designed for those who seek supplemental graduate education in aging.  This program is designed for those with a bachelor’s degree, exceptional students completing their bachelor's degree, those who already have a graduate degree in another field, and those currently completing a graduate degree in another field.  An Early Entry option is available for qualifying UNC Charlotte undergraduate students.  The certificate program requires the completion of a minimum of 12 semester hours of graduate level coursework related to the study of aging and older adults. The program can typically be completed in two semesters.   

We accept students year-round into the Graduate Certificate Program.  The Graduate School Application Deadlines can be found here.  It is strongly recommended you submit all materials prior to the final deadline so as not to get bogged down in the last-minute queue of applicants.  The summer final deadline will only allow you to take second summer session classes.

You can view our program flyer here.

Additional information is available in the course catalog. 

Qualifying undergraduate students can apply for Early Entry into the Gerontology Graduate Certificate and double count all 12 Gerontology graduate credit hours towards the Gerontology Graduate Certificate and undesignated undergraduate electives - saving time and money!

We have developed pathways between the Gerontology Graduate Certificate and multiple graduate programs on campus.  These pathways provide an opportunity for students to complete our Gerontology Graduate Certificate along with another degree.  Current Pathways exists with:

 

Master of Arts in Communication Studies.  Three elective credits for the MA in Communications Studies can be fulfilled by a Gerontology Graduate Certificate course.  Nine more gerontology credits must be completed to earn the graduate certificate with the MA in Communication Studies.  Students can double count courses cross-listed between the programs for both the MA and the Certificate.  Please be sure to discuss these courses with the Director of the Communication Studies MA.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your graduate studies in communication here.

Master of Arts in Counseling - Twelve elective credits in the MA can be fulfilled by the Gerontology Graduate Certificate for those co-enrolled in both programs.  Counseling MA Students must take GSLG 6205 as their Health Elective.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your counseling studies here.

Master of Arts in Liberal Studies - Twelve elective credits in the MA can be fulfilled by the Gerontology Graduate Certificate for those co-enrolled in both programs.  This degree allows for 21 elective credits in their 30 credit degree - allowing for additional gerontology courses to be taken*.  Students should strongly consider adding in the Gerontology Graduate Practicum as a way to expand their hands-on experience in aging programs and services.

Master of Arts in Psychology - Twelve elective credits in the MA can be fulfilled by the Gerontology Graduate Certificate for those co-enrolled in both programs.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your psychology studies here.

Master of Arts in Sociology - The MA in Sociology allows students to take 14 credit hours of electives, 8 of which need to be in sociology. To complete the Gerontology Graduate Certificate with the MA in Sociology students can take 6 credit hours of Gerontology courses (GRNT 6600 is required) and 6 credit hours of SOCY-GRNT cross-listed courses taught by a Sociologist as long as elective requirements for the certificate are fulfilled.  You can find those requirements here.  With special permission from the Sociology MA Director, students may be able to petition for up to 9 gerontology credit hours outside of Sociology.  Students should discuss this with the Sociology Graduate Director and their committee. There are multiple paths to completing the MA and Certificate without taking extra courses.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your sociology studies here.

Master of Education in Educational Leadership - The six elective credits required for the MEd can be fulfilled by courses that also meet requirements for the Gerontology Graduate Certificate.  Additionally, The Adult Learner (ADMN 6101) can double count as an administration elective for the Gerontology Graduate Certificate.  Students would then need one additional gerontology course from the certificate curriculum to complete the 12 credit certificate.

Master of Health Administration - The six elective credits required for the MHA can be fulfilled by courses that also meet requirements for the Gerontology Graduate Certificate.  Early Entry MHA students usually have space when moving into the full MHA program to complete the Gerontology Graduate Certificate. More information can be found in the MHA Manual.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your MHA studies here.

Master of Public Administration - Twelve elective credits in the MPA can be fulfilled by the Gerontology Graduate Certificate for those co-enrolled in both programs.  Information can be found by clicking here.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your MPA studies here.

Master of Public Health - MPH students enrolled in the Gerontology Graduate Certificate program by the end of their first year, may be eligible to substitute some of their certificate credits for their MPH electives. Please contact the MPH Program Director for details.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your MPH studies here.

Master of Science in Kinesiology - Six elective credits in the MS in Kinesiology can be fulfilled by courses that also meet requirements for the Gerontology Graduate Certificate.  Additionally, Physiology of Human Aging (KNES 5232) can double count as the health elective for the Gerontology Graduate Certificate.  Students would then need one additional gerontology course from the certificate curriculum to complete the 12 credit Graduate Certificate in Gerontology.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your graduate studies in kinesiology here.  

Master of Science in Nursing - Three elective credits for the MSN can be fulfilled by a Gerontology Graduate Certificate course.  Additionally NURS 6115 will count as the gerontology administrative elective.  Students would then need to take 6 more credits (two classes) of appropriate gerontology courses to earn the Graduate Certificate in Gerontology.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your graduate studies in nursing here.

Master of Social Work (MSW) - Students working towards the MSW at Charlotte can use their nine elective credits to earn the twelve-credit Graduate Certificate in Gerontology.  The final three credits can come from an additional gerontology course or focusing the MSW capstone project in SOWK-7651, Reflection and Synthesis, on an aging related topic – with the approval of the Gerontology Program Director.  The MSW Program Director or the Gerontology Director can discuss this with you.  Learn how a graduate certificate in gerontology can complement your graduate studies in social work here.

*Please note that if you have an interest in teaching Gerontology, you must have a graduate degree which includes completion of 18 graduate credit hours in gerontology.  It is possible to do this with the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies degree. Please speak with the Program Director for details.  

* This information was correct at the time of posting.  Programs do change requirements so please check with Graduate Directors and the University Catalog for the latest and most accurate information.