Master of Arts in Gerontology &
Master of Aging Services Management

The Education of a Lifetime

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Become an expert on the human lifespan and develop the professional skills to help the aging population stay healthy, active and involved in the community. An online gerontology degree from USC can prepare you to address the major demographic shifts on the horizon and improve the quality of life among adult populations.

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USC Davis: First and Foremost

The USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology was founded in 1975 as the nation’s very first professional school of gerontology. Today, we are recognized as a global leader in gerontology research and education. There are more than 2,000 USC Davis alumni, many of whom are employed by the world’s premier aging-related organizations. We are proud to offer roughly $500,000 in annual scholarship money to students who share our passion for the human lifespan and improving the aging process for people everywhere.

To help us explore the needs of an aging population, USC Davis features its own multidisciplinary research institution. The USC Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center conducts groundbreaking research in molecular biology, neuroscience, demography, psychology, sociology and public policy. USC Davis is also home to various centers and initiatives, including the USC Emotion and Cognition Lab, the USC/UCLA Center on Biodemography and Population Health, and the Center for Digital Aging.

Why a Master's in Gerontology?

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Empower the Aging Population to Thrive

It’s the common thread that connects us all – we’re aging every day. But are we aging well? As we grow in years, are we also growing mentally, physically and socially? Aging is more than a progression along a timeline; it’s an ongoing mission to improve our quality of life, advance our communities and take on new challenges. At USC Davis, we explore both the aging process and the process of aging well. A gerontology degree from USC can prepare you to challenge antiquated ideas in the field and be a leader in the aging revolution.

Find New Opportunities in Shifting Demographics

The population of Americans 65+ years of age is expected to nearly double from 2015 to 2055.* The demand for qualified leaders in aging services and gerontology-related occupations is likely to skyrocket as the first wave of baby boomers reaches the age of 70. As new opportunities become available, the value of an advanced education from a globally recognized gerontology institution such as USC Davis cannot be overstated.

Earn a Degree without Limitations

A master’s in gerontology can give you the tools to make a difference in the aging services industries by serving the older population in facilities such as residential care centers and retirement communities. However, a gerontology education can also be applied to a wide variety of areas outside aging services, including business, administration, medicine, advocacy, law and the nonprofit sector. Whether you’re pursuing a leadership career in aging services or you recognize the benefit of a high-level understanding of gerontology in your current field, an online gerontology degree from USC can be a catalyst for professional growth.

Explore a Comprehensive Curriculum

At USC Davis, our online gerontology programs feature coursework that delves into human development from all angles. Our faculty draws on their academic and professional versatility to deliver a curriculum that explores various aspects of the aging process, including biology, sociology, psychology, family structure and social policy. In both our Master of Arts in Gerontology and our Master of Aging Services Management programs, we strive to deliver a holistic understanding of the lifespan, providing broad-based expertise to help you succeed in roles of leadership and big-picture decision making.

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Award-Winning Faculty

USC Davis professors are experts who set the standard in gerontology education so you can set the standard in gerontology practice. Our faculty is made up of leaders in the field, and even includes the AARP Chair in Gerontology. Together, these world-class educators are a driving force in the advancement of gerontology, using groundbreaking research, academic mentorship and professional accomplishment to reshape the way we think about the aging process.

» Read more about the acclaimed USC Davis faculty

Career Outlook

The rapid growth of the aging population signals a massive wave of new career opportunities on the horizon. For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projected that from 2010 to 2020, home health and personal care aides will experience an employment growth rate of 70% - more than four times the average of all professions during the same timeframe.* A master’s in gerontology can put you in position to capitalize on this trend and others like it, while preparing you for a management role in the aging services industry. Here are just a few examples.

Leadership Careers in Gerontology

Nursing Home Administrator

Nursing Home Administrator – Put your USC Davis education to work as you create an atmosphere that promotes health, activity and fulfillment among facility residents. Nursing home administrators are in charge of delivering the best possible nursing home experience while also working to keep the facility profitable so the doors can stay open.

Case Management Supervisor

Case Management Supervisor – Provide client assessments and manage teams of social workers to provide clients with compassionate, effective human services. Case management supervisors use their expertise to deal in crisis intervention and conflict resolution, and are often called upon to advocate for older clients in matters involving Social Security and Medicare.

Hospice CEO

Hospice CEO – Ensure that your facility and staff offer comfort, counseling and engagement to hospice residents and their families in their most trying times. A hospice CEO oversees all operations while developing and distributing resources to balance first-rate care with financial stability.

Director of Affordable Housing Services

Director of Affordable Housing Services – Manage affordable independent housing communities for senior citizens. A director of affordable housing services maintains relationships with residents to provide recreational programs that reflect their needs and interests.

LVN/LPN Supervisor

LVN/LPN Supervisor – If you have a background in nursing, a master’s in gerontology could provide you with the aging services skills to manage teams of licensed practical nurses within adult living facilities. LVN/LPN supervisors may oversee care for residents with serious health issues, such as dementia and Alzheimer's.