Online Courses in Geriatrics: Course Descriptions

Online classes in geriatrics often contain material in both gerontology and geriatrics. Colleges, universities and nursing schools usually incorporate classes into bachelor's and master's degree programs. Professional organizations and private institutions provide online continuing education classes in geriatrics, while local governments sometimes offer online classes for seniors, families and non-professional caregivers of the elderly.

Online Courses in Geriatrics

Here are some of the most common online courses available in geriatrics.

  • Introduction to Care for the Aging Population Course: This course teaches students how to evaluate the needs of individual seniors and the senior population in general by using concepts from psychology, sociology, pathology, neurology and pharmacology. The student learns the basics of age-related conditions in cardiology, osteology, immunology and rheumatology. Substance abuse concerns, behavioral issues and physical syndromes are introduced. Recognizing and preventing elder abuse are also covered.
  • Preventive Medicine for Seniors Course: Students taking this course learn methods to assess seniors' conditions and assist them in increasing overall health and preventing injuries. The course teaches students how to structure cardio and resistance training programs, ensure nutrition, continue cognitive development and maintain dental health. In addition, techniques to prevent or minimize diabetes, osteoporosis, depression, hypertension and malnourishment are all presented. The course also addresses pain management and the need for patient compliance.
  • Psychological Issues for the Elderly Course: In this course, students learn the parameters of normal senior cognitive function and how to detect deviations in communication, social interaction and self-awareness behaviors. Students discover how to assess the risk for Alzheimer's disease, examine counseling techniques and weigh the pros and cons of pharmacological therapies. They also learn to recognize and treat different forms of dementia and depression.
  • Bone Diseases and Falls in the Elderly Population Course: This course teaches students how to recognize and treat bone diseases like osteoporosis and arthritis. They learn how to evaluate seniors' risk for falls and how to provide a safe environment in homes, medical offices and managed-care facilities. The course presents physical therapy concepts and examines preventive strategies like weight-maintenance, nutrition, resistance training and flexibility exercises.
  • Health Law And Ethics Course: Students investigate and evaluate ethical matters such as patient rights, biomedical research and other current health issues. In addition, they explore and apply legal case law to various elder health care questions to make the most informed and ethical decisions for patients.
  • Health and Fitness Course: In this course, students explore exercise and physical activity options for older adults. Emphasis is placed on developing wellness programs for elderly individuals.
  • Women and Aging Course: This course focuses specifically on the social and cultural factors that affect women as they grow older. Students learn how the aging process is related to race, sexuality, work, family life, religion, politics and other cultural concepts.

Program Information

Online classes in geriatrics usually satisfy some requirements leading to Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degrees in gerontology, health care administration, health and human services or long-term care management, as well as Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degrees. Possible advanced degrees include a Master of Science in Gerontology or an MBA in Elder Care Management. Certificate programs can focus on geriatric care management or gerontology health care. Some online classes have prerequisites, such as a bachelor's or associate degree or registered nursing license. Many degree and certificate programs require a practicum or other type of in-person, professional experience working with elderly populations.

Individuals who are interested in working with the elderly, either in management or direct care positions, can find relevant courses online that cover practices in the field, as well as the physical and psychological aspects of aging.

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