A Masters in Gerontology online can help nurses and practitioners gain valuable skills and develop specializations to advance their careers in nursing and medicine. We have compiled here a list of the most affordable online Masters in Gerontology degrees in the United States. While some of the degrees are a Master of Arts with an emphasis on social work others are a Master of Science, focusing on care and service. Note that the tuition rates provided below reflect the cost of the entire program, from start to finish. Our data comes from the university and colleges' websites as well as nationally recognized U.S. News and World Report and The National Center for Education Statistics.
Boise State University
The Masters of Nursing AGNP program at Boise State prepares students to care for and serve the older adult population. Students specialize in either acute or primary care, learning how to execute focused physical examines, make critical diagnoses, treat illnesses and injuries, perform procedures, order tests, and more. Unlike many of the other programs included in this list, at Boise online students are required to attend on-campus summer intensives that are one week or more long, giving students hands-on training.
From National University you can obtain a Master of Arts in Gerontology that focuses on the theoretical but also clinical approaches to caretaking. Additionally, National University encourages engagement in public policy and research as well as thoughtful reflection on issues of ethics and personal biases. By stressing an analytic and conceptual approach to gerontology, this program differentiates itself from the more practically oriented. Students are usually those midway into their careers looking to supplement their areas of specialization.
University of North Dakota
Featuring an Adult Gerontology Primary Care track, the University of North Dakota offers a Masters of Science degree that prepares students for advanced caretaking of older adults. Students will learn how to provide effective and compassionate care for adults throughout their lifetimes. Abiding by the standards of the American Nurses Association, the curriculum at the University of North Dakota covers everything from leadership and policy to the social, economic, and cultural issues that affect older adults. Completing the MS degree through UND makes one eligible to complete the national exam for certification as an Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner. Though UND’s program is online, they do require four one-week visits to campus, one per semester.
University of Missouri
Designed specifically for professionals who are currently working with older adults and are looking to become more involved in education and research, the University of Missouri offers a Master’s of Arts in Gerontology. The curriculum covers a wide range of both conceptual and clinical theory, including biological principles, women and aging, environments and aging, research methodology, mental health, and more. Students also choose between an internship and a research project, meaning the University of Missouri ensures students’ access to practical experience in addition to theory.
Grand Canyon University
Grand Canyon University offers a Master of Science in Nursing: Acute Care Nurse Practitioner with an Emphasis in Adult-Gerontology. Accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, this program is ideal for those experienced registered nurses looking for further study on care provision and service for older adults. Courses covered include health assessment and diagnosis, care management, chronic illness, and more. For those who already have a Master of Science in Nursing and are looking for only the specialization, Grand Canyon also has a post-master’s certificate program.
Kansas State University
Kansas State University’s Center on Aging offers a Master’s in Gerontology that is taught fully online and does not require a GRE or a graduate thesis, making it one of the most flexible and approachable programs on our list. The curriculum is based on core competencies identified by the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education and is partnership with IDEA, the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance. Students typically complete the program in three years or less.
University of Indianapolis
Allowing up to five years to complete the degree, the University of Indianapolis’ program is self-paced, meaning students can choose how many classes to take on at one time. Though fully online, students will engage in their local communities of older adults, have discussions with classmates, and interface through multi-media with professors and experts. The Master of Science in Gerontology at the University of Indianapolis Center for Aging and Community has been named a “Program of Merit” by the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.
One of the more flexible programs on the list, Brenau University’s Master of Science in Applied Gerontology is distinctly interdisciplinary in focus, meaning students can create a curriculum that best suits their academic and professional ambitions. Whether interested in marketing, advocacy, research, business, psychology, nursing, legal services, education, or program planning, Brenau’s uniquely inventive program suits many students’ needs and interests. Finally, Brenau is the first university in Georgia to be granted a chapter of the National Gerontology Academic Honor.
Iowa State University
Like many of the other institutions on the list, Iowa State University partners with the Great Plains IDEA (Interactive Distance Education Alliance) to provide a fully online Master of Family and Consumer Sciences degree. Because ISU collaborates with six other institutions through GPIDEA, students have access to a slew of courses taught by gerontology faculty and experts. Iowa State also allows their students to design a program suited to their professional goals, pairing students with collaborative advisors.
Wichita State University
The Aging Studies program at Wichita State University offers one concentration for those wishing to earn a Master of Arts online: the social science track. However, the curriculum includes a diverse range of classes that cover everything from biology and policy to fitness and psychology. Students will also learn research methodology and statistics and they will choose one of three program completion options: thesis, internship/practicum, or coursework. With in-state tuition for online students, Wichita is the most affordable options.