George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Gerontology, Graduate Certificate

Cathy Tompkins
Associate Professor

Program Overview

Older adults are the fastest growing sector of today’s population. The interdisciplinary nature of gerontology makes this graduate certificate ideal for students interested in pursuing or advancing careers as an elder law attorney, a certified geriatric pharmacist, a strategic policy analyst, an educational gerontologist, and much more. This certificate will provide you with important knowledge and skills to better serve the older adult population.

This 15-credit, fully online graduate certificate combines theoretical and applied coursework in aging with a graduate curriculum in any department, such as biology, health care, policy, law, social work, and other behavioral and social sciences.

Our faculty at Mason are well-known in the field of gerontology and have received awards, grants, and other recognition from the National Institute on Aging, the Virginia Center on Aging, the Health Resources and Services Administration, and many other government agencies and foundations.


This 15-credit graduate certificate in gerontology is available fully online and may be completed on a full- or part-time basis. Specific program requirements for the Gerontology, Graduate Certificate are available in Mason’s University Catalog. Additional information is available via Mason Online.


The Gerontology Graduate Certificate will create stronger marketability for you in your discipline.  It is no longer a rarity for professionals to work on an individual, community or policy issue related to an older person, an older person's family or community.  Advanced education in gerontology will increase your potential of being hired in  long-term care facilities and organizations, and professional fields aware of the personal and societal realities of aging - fields such as social work, mediation, nutrition, rehabilitation sciences, nursing, public health, health policy, and public policy. Students completing this certificate are prepared for roles such as:

  • hospice social worker
  • adult protection services worker
  • older adult activities coordinator / director
  • older adult social worker
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