Barton College Academic Programs

Aging Studies


Degrees Offered:

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Since its inception in 2003, Barton’s Aging Studies program has prepared students for careers in the broader aging network by providing a solid theoretical and applied foundation in aging studies while instilling a sense of respect and compassion for older adults. In keeping with the rich heritage of Barton’s School of Nursing, we aspire to be not only one of the best programs in North Carolina but the premiere liberal arts college program in the nation.

The Aging Studies program is a multi-disciplinary major with courses in several departments. In addition to specific courses in aging studies, students take courses in philosophy and religion, social work, psychology, and nursing. Students receive instruction from a variety of professors within these academic programs.

Special Features

In the Aging Studies program, students play a significant role in the Alzheimer’s Association Memory Walk and in the Caregiver Education Conference conducted by the Alzheimer’s North Carolina Inc., the Upper Coastal Plain Area Agency on Aging, and Barton College each spring. By assisting with these significant community events, students blend knowledge, outreach, and intervention.

Our students have become a mainstay at professional meetings, presenting their work at the Southern Gerontological Society as well as the North Carolina Conference on Aging.

The internship portion of our major provides real-world application of knowledge in preparing you for employment.

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Course Information

The Aging Studies major draws on departments from across campus and provides you with a multi-disciplinary background. Specific courses taught in the program include:

  • Aging, the Individual, and Society
  • Ethnic and Cross-Cultural Perspectives in Aging
  • The Aging Network
  • Family Caregiving and Dementias
  • Health Needs of Older Adults
  • Legal and Ethical Issues in Healthcare
  • Living with Dying
  • Psychology of Aging
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Aging Studies Internships

You’ll complete a 300-hour internship during your senior year. Some of the agencies hosting our interns include:

  • Longleaf Neuro-Medical Treatment Center
  • Elm Croft Assisted Living
  • Dementia Alliance of North Carolina
  • AARP – North Carolina
  • The Upper Coastal Plains Area Agency on Aging
  • Parkwood Village Assisted Living Residence
  • The Office on Aging of Smithfield
  • Alterra Sterling House
  • WilMed Hospice
  • Wilson County Home Health
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Aging Studies Career Opportunities

The growing numbers of elderly in the U.S. and the healthcare network that will be needed to care for them mean a wide variety of employment opportunities are available to you.

You may also choose to pursue further education. Some of our graduates are pursuing graduate work in gerontology at:

  • Appalachian State University
  • North Carolina State University
  • University of North Carolina – Greensboro
  • University of South Carolina – Columbia

Recent graduates are employed across North Carolina at:

  • Assisted-Living Memory-Deficit Residences
  • Rehabilitation Health Care Facilities
  • Local Offices on Aging
  • Area Agencies on Aging

Some of the positions include:

  • MedLink Coordinator
  • Coordinator of Memory-Deficit Assisted-Living Residences
  • Long-Term Care Ombudsman
  • Health Promotions Specialist
  • Caregiver Support Coordinator
  • Care Planner
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