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Master of Science in Aging Program Director Tracy Davis head shot.

To learn more,
contact Tracy Davis, Ph.D.,
track coordinator

Certificate in Applied Gerontology

The Need for Aging and Health Care Professionals

As the aging population increases, so too does the need for well-trained health professionals, service providers, planners and policy workers who understand the unique issues of the older adult. That is why SHP has created a certificate program specifically to meet the need for more health care professionals in this field. In our fully online Certificate in Applied Gerontology, the student will gain a strong foundation in specialized courses in aging and health and administration.

Graduates of this rewarding field can make an impact working directly with older adults, influencing elder health care policy and challenging stereotypes related to the aging population.

  • Graduate certificate (15 credits)- The 15-credit Graduate Certificate in Applied Gerontology is shorter than the master’s program and is designed for working health care professionals who want to develop or expand their skill set to work with the aging population.

The program is unique in offering:

  • The convenience of entirely online course offerings
  • A rich academic environment with a vast array of aging-related resources
  • The ability to apply credits earned from the Graduate Certificate to the Master of Science in Healthcare Management Program
  • Enrollment in a university ranked #1 of 582 schools nationwide in health professions education by College Factual

Hear Track Coordinator Tracy Davis talk about the urgent need to educate health professionals to provide appropriate care for the growing aging population in podcast.

Learning Outcomes are aligned with the School of Health Professions Outcomes and include outcomes related to major competencies for aging.  While in the program, learners will demonstrate:

  • knowledge of human aging as a combination of psychological, social, and biological processes;
  • critical thinking skills when analyzing diverse and complex aging issues and outcomes for elders, families, and society from an interdisciplinary
  • comprehension of major concepts, theories, and approaches to research in the study of the aging process, including the knowledge of an interdisciplinary approach and the use of multi-methods in the study of the aging process;
  • comprehension of how the aging population can inform analysis of social policy which is applied in the public and private sector;
    an ability to communicate effectively with older adults and professionals in the field of aging;
  • an improvement in the skills needed to promote older persons’ strength and adaptations to maximize well-being, health and mental health;
  • an ability to utilize the principles of evidence-based practice when providing service to older adult;

The population of Americans 65 and older is projected to double by mid-century, rising from 42 million today to 89 million in 2050. The aging population requires specialized health care by an interprofessional team trained to focused on the physical and mental well-being of older Americans. Our program prepares graduates to fill a critical demand for highly qualified health professionals, service providers, planners, educators, and policy workers who understand the issues of aging and the aging population.

Rutgers is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), a voluntary, nongovernmental, peer-based membership association dedicated to promoting standards of excellence and improvement in higher education.

To apply to the  Graduate Certificate Program in Applied Gerontology you must meet the following requirements and provide the following documents:

  • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree with an overall GPA of 3.0 or greater
  • Health Professional with current licensure/registration, if applicable
  • Statement of career interest and why the Certificate in Applied Gerontology meets career goals
  • Official transcripts from all academic institutions attended
  • Resume/CV
  • Completed application for degree or certificate

The coursework for the Graduate Certificate in Applied Gerontology is fully online and can be completed at times that are best for the professional.

Required Gerontology Core (9 Credits)
IDST 5300 Introduction to Gerontology 3 F
IDST 5310 Physical Changes and Aging 3 F
IDST 5320 Social and Health Care Policy for the Older Adult 3 F
Electives credits (6) Select one from each category
Gerontology Electives (select one)
IDST 5100 Introduction to Long term Care Administration** 3 SP
IDST 5400 Perspectives on Death and Dying 3 SP
Health Care Related Electives (select one)
IDST 5600 Management and Leadership in Health Care 3 F
IDST 5650 Quality Management in Health Care 3 F
IDST 5700 Legal Aspects in Health Care Administration 3 SP
IDST 5800 Financial Management in Healthcare 3 F
Total Credits 15

**Required for students in Rutgers MPH Population Aging

The 15-credit fully online certificate program is for working healthcare professionals who want to develop or expand their skill set to work with the aging population.

The program is for those with established health care careers who desire to become teachers in aging education programs, continuing education programs, or provide staff development and in-service training.

The program prepares graduates to assume rewarding and high-demand careers within the health care industry with a focus on caring for the aging population.  Graduates may work in government agencies, hospitals, community agencies, residential facilities, or private agencies.

Yes. If a Certificate graduate enters the master’s program within five years of completing the Certificate and earns a “B” or better in all Certificate courses, the credits may be applied to the master’s degree.  These credits are evaluated on an individual basis.  There is no guarantee that Certificate graduates will be accepted in the master’s program.  The Certificate graduate must apply to the master’s program. Acceptance into the master’s program is on a competitive basis.

Applicants do not need to take any standardized test such as the GRE and an interview is not required.   However, applicants must have earned at least a bachelor’s degree, generally with an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher, and be a health professional with current licensure/registration, if applicable to the field.

You may apply online here   for the Master’s program and here for the certificate program. Along with the application, the following should be submitted:

  • Copy of a current health profession’s license/registration, if applicable
  • Two recommendations using the Recommender Form
  • Essay
  •  Statement of career interest and why the Aging program meets career goals
  • Official transcripts from all academic institutions attended
  • Resume/CV

Subject to approval, up to 12 credits may be taken on a non-matriculated basis.  However, non-matriculants must follow the course sequence as delineated in the curriculum sequence.  The non-matriculated application and courses can be found here.

The best source for financial aid information is at the Rutgers Student Financial Aid Office.  They can be contacted 973-972-4376 or by clicking here.

There are limited scholarships available for SHP students.


Please contact the Office of Admissions at 973-972-5454 or Dr. Vaishali Singhal in the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies at