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Wurzweiler course syllabus
COURSE DESCRIPTION: ¶The world population is growing older at an unprecedented pace. In the U.S. alone, close to 35 million persons are 65 years or older. Between 2020 and 2030 alone, the number of older persons is projected to increase by almost 18 million as the last of the large baby boom cohorts reaches age 65. This demographic trend represents enormous challenges and opportunities for older adults, their families, communities and professionals of all disciplines. ¶Currently there is a shortage of health and social service professionals who are familiar with the diversities of the aging experience. It is important for social workers to be knowledgeable about the aging process and the social services that impact older adults (pension, long-term care, housing, etc.). Learning about their future clients and advocating for them will contribute to an age-friendly society. ¶Gerontology is an elective course open to students in either the foundation or advanced years. The course introduces students to the field of aging providing an overview as preparation for the dramatic demographic shifts facing our society and profession. The course builds upon knowledge of biology, and psychosocial development taught in the Human Behavior in the Social Environment course. It also explores the contemporary manifestations of ageism taught from a historical perspective in the social welfare organization course. The course highlights the unique challenges confronting aging women, LGBTQ groups and ethnic and racial minorities who have had to cope with multiple levels of oppression, sexism, racism and other forms of discrimination throughout their lifespan. ¶Students are expected to apply practice principles learned in foundation and advanced practice courses to issues in aging, such as: retirement, chronic illness, depression, social isolation, elder abuse, widowhood, and caregiving. Students will be invited to discuss and investigate many systems that disproportionately affect older adults and examine the role of the social worker within these systems. At the same time, students will learn about the disparities that already exist within the older population and that may become even more pronounced in the future. ¶Readings, class discussion and student activities will center around the understanding of the aging process and its complexities.
Stein, Gary. (2021, Fall), Syllabus, SWK6686 Gerontology, https://www.yu.edu/sites/default/files/inline-files/GERONTOLOGY-SWK%206686.pdf .
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