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Course Description

This course is an overview of the areas involved in the study of aging. We will consider the major theoretical approaches and current research in aging in the following areas:
biology and health, psychology, sociology, and social policy.

Course Objectives

At the end of this course, you should be able:

  • To understand the basic terms and concepts in multidisciplinary gerontology
  • To explain the inter-relatedness of biological, psychological, and social aspects of aging
  • To identify and understand societal and individual consequences of demographic changes in an aging society
  • To explain major theories of aging
  • To understand research methods used by gerontologists
  • To understand and be able to discuss public policies related to aging
  • To access and use library and electronic data sources on aging
  • To relate knowledge of aging processes to real life experiences
  • To translate research on aging to implications for practice with older adults
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Course Components

Below is list of what this course is composed of, and directions for accessing the web tools this course uses.

Each week you are required to complete the reading assignments BEFORE you work with the web-based module. The required practice activities in each module are based on concepts presented in the textbook.

After reading the chapter, you will need to go to the web-based classroom in Oncourse. Here are the directions for accessing the individual course units:
  • Go to http://oncourse.iu.edu/ This will take you to the Oncourse log-in page.
  • Log in (username and password are the same as the ones you use for accessing your campus email account).
  • Click "Continue" on the gray box stating that you are on an insecure site.
  • Select HPER H324/H524-Multidisciplinary perspectives in Gerontology.
  • Note that the first time you log on you'll need to click "Listed" to continue
  • You should see a page that says Student of the Week and Course Announcements. Click "Continue."
  • Click on the date or unit of your choice.

Click here to see a sample unit.

An important aspect of online learning is interaction, both between the students and between the students and the instructor. We will often use the conferencing tools in Oncourse.

Applications and Activities

Each unit has fun-filled opportunities for students to practice and use the information presented in the text and unit. These practices will help you learn the material presented. These applications are opportunities for you to interact with the instructor and each other. Specific directions for completing these required practices are provided in each unit.


After each unit you will take an online test. Tests are graded immediately and must be completed by due dates to receive full credit.

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Course Textbook

Hooyman, N. & Kiyak, H. A. (2002). Social Gerontology: A Multidisciplinary Perspective. (6th Edition). Allyn and Bacon, Inc.

Cox, H. (Ed.). (2003). Annual Editions: Aging 04/05. Guilford, CT: Dushkin

Textbooks can be obtained from the IU Bookstore on the Bloomington Campus by calling 1-800-553-6471.

For this course, you also need a living textbook I’d like to to acquire an E-Pal. This can be any person over the age of 65 who is willing to exchange 4-5 emails, phone calls, or visits with you this semester. You will be asking your E-Pal questions about what it’s like in “The Country of the Old.” Your E-Pal can be your grandma, or it can be someone you’ve never met IRL, but posts comments online and is willing to write with you this semester. Your E-Pal is like a textbook, an additional source of rich information about what aging is.

Graduate and Undergraduate Sections

Graduate (H524) and undergraduate students (H324) will follow the same schedule and do the same assignments. Graduate students will have additional opportunities to investigate current literature and research in this field.

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Last updated: 1 September, 2003
Comments: Lesa Huber
Copyright 2002, The Trustees of Indiana University

H324/H524 Multidisciplinary Perspective in Gerontology GET LINKS-Gerontology Education Through Linking Into Networked Knowledge Systems