Course Descriptions

Aging and Health Program
2017-2018 Academic Year


Course Descriptions

Courses for the Graduate Diploma, Master of Science and PhD in Aging and Health
This list represents the range of Aging and Health (AGHE) graduate course offerings in the School of Rehabilitation Therapy. Not all courses will be offered in each academic year and the current calendar should be consulted for the term and instructor. The Aging and Health program offers 3.0 credit-unit 'term' courses.

NOTE: All AGHE- 900 level courses will normally be open only to Ph.D. students.
NOTE: A (C) indicates a core course in a program and an (E) indicates an elective course.

(C) AGHE-800*     Evaluating Aging-Related Programs and Services     

This course introduces learners to evaluation principles and practice as applied to programs that address social, physical and economic determinants of wellness and participation for older adults. Learners will acquire skills necessary to identify and apply program evaluation methods to inform ongoing program development. Topics will include theoretical aspects of program evaluation, as well as strategies for program development, monitoring and change with a focus on participatory approaches. Current debates in the field will be discussed, with particular attention to issues underlying research and evaluation with older adult populations in community and institutional contexts. Attention will be given to knowledge mobilization strategies that foster inclusion, empowerment and innovation. Winter. 

(C) AGHE-802*     Ethics and Bioethics of Aging     

This course will explore ethical issues arising in the wellbeing and care of aging adults. Aspects of three streams of ethics will be addressed: professional ethics, organizational ethics, and biomedical ethics, as these streams relate to wellbeing and aging. Issues that will be addressed include: the organizational importance placed on aging adults, moral distress, advance directives, consent, values, and the ethics of wellbeing.  Fall.

(E) AGHE-803*     Demography and Geography of Aging     

This course surveys the latest literature on the demography and geography of aging highlighting the latest census and survey data from Statistics Canada and international sources. Attention is placed on the underlying demographic factors and socio-economic characteristics of population aging and how issues like fertility, mortality, morbidity, life expectancy, mobility and immigration are changing the demography of the older population in Canada and internationally. Emphasis is also placed on how demographic and socio-economic characteristics of population aging result in complex and uneven geographies of aging at various scales from neighbourhood to international comparisons. Not offered 2017-18.

(E) AGHE-804*     Health and social systems for older adults     

Health and social systems for older adults are amongst the most complex in many societies. They include parts or all of the primary care, acute care, chronic care, palliative care and home care systems, and rehabilitation services on the health provision side. On the social systems side, they include parts of the transportation, social housing, social work and legal systems. The complexities of health and social systems for older adults are the foci of this course and are examined through a review of the literature mainly with an emphasis on the health and social systems for older adults in Canada.

(E) AGHE-810*     Epidemiology of Aging     

Students are introduced to an overview of the core principles central to the epidemiology of aging, with an emphasis on health and disease processes in older adults. Essential epidemiologic design/analytic issues and common themes of age-related factors and disease are addressed. Topics include: definition and measures of disease, application of cohort and experimental studies to aging, bias and confounding arising from the process of aging, causal inferences, and special topics on aging.

(C) AGHE-811*     Normal Aging Processes     

This course will differentiate normal from abnormal aging and examine the theories, models and strategies for healthy aging in Canada. These principles will be studied through a mix of online and group learning activities in the context of a variety of health concerns related to aging and with respect to individual and community action and public policy. Fall.

(E) AGHE-812*     Religion, Spiritual Health and Aging     

Spiritual well-being is a defining aspect of healthy aging. This course will pay attention to the spiritual challenges as well as resources that come with aging. The following topics are addressed with attention to their complexity: mortality, loss and grieving, dementia, developmental theory and faith, religious participation, the relevance of diverse faiths and culture, and ultimate questions of meaning. Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist perspective will be included. Participant will have the opportunity to explore listening skills, self-awareness, and relational dynamics such as transference, as these relate to the course. Not offered 2017-18.

(E) AGHE-814*     Mobility and functioning amongst older adults     

In this seminar course students will gain knowledge on psychosocial and physiological risk factors for and consequences of age-related decline in mobility and physical function. Indicators of functional health in aging population will be discussed. Self-reported and performance-based assessment tools of mobility and physical function designed for older population will be critically evaluated. The disability associated with age-related decline in mobility and physical function will be discussed with respect to incidence, prevalence, possible interventions and economic impact.

(E) AGHE-815*     Chronic conditions and self-management     

This course provides an overview of strategies to support and help older people develop skills to manage the challenges of living with chronic health conditions. Specific approaches to health promotion and disease prevention will be addressed.

(E) AGHE-816*     Pharmacology and Aging     

The focus of this course is an overview of basic pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes and how these are altered with advancing age. An emphasis is placed on assessment of risk, commonly prescribed medications in the elderly population, and strategies to optimize polypharmacy and medication-related problems. Not offered 2017-18.

(E) AGHE-818*     Rethinking Aging and Dying     

This course will seeks to question widespread approaches to aging, terminal illness and death by exploring alternative ways of addressing these realities through artistic and literary media (literature, film, painting), that is through examples that challenge current notions, assumptions and understandings through which we approach and define aging and the end of life.

(E) AGHE-819*     Planning for Age Friendly Communities     

This course will introduce students to the environmental conditions and policy contexts that create or impede opportunities for healthy aging at the local level. Applying a determinant’s of health perspective, various dimensions of age friendly communities will be examined, such as community design, housing, transportation and mobility, recreation, social and civic participation, and social inclusion.

(E) AGHE-820*     Developing educational resources for older adults     

This course is designed to provide learners with the opportunity to integrate theory, practice, and evidence in order to develop competency in the design and delivery of educational resources for older adults. Learners will build on their prior knowledge, collaborate to analyze and evaluate current resources in a variety of health care settings, and design client-centered resources that empower older adults.

(E) AGHE-821* Aging and Mental Health

This course examines the interface between mental health and healthy aging. Students will examine theories of mental health and aging, the mind-body connection, and approaches to optimize cognitive vitality and psychosocial well-being. The course will address common mental health conditions associated with aging, and explore issues related to these conditions.

(C) AGHE-898*     Master’s Project     

Students will develop research skills to search for evidence on a clearly defined question related to aging, methods for the critical appraisal of the evidence retrieved on the issue under investigation and skills in integrating the existing evidence. The course will include discussion, seminar presentations, and will culminate in a final research paper.

(E) AGHE-900*     Qualitative Research Methods     

The course will cover the philosophical traditions that have guided the development of qualitative research methodologies and methods. Traditions and methods covered may include but are not restricted to Phenomenology, Hermeneutics, Action Research, Ethnography, participant observation, focus groups, and interviews. Participants will have the opportunity to develop a research proposal in the area of Aging and Health. Not offered 2017-18.

(C) AGHE-901*     Knowledge Translation and Uptake     

An examination of the foundations of knowledge synthesis, translation, and uptake into practice with emphasis on definitions, frameworks, barriers and facilitators, interventions and evaluation and developing knowledge translation plans.

(E) AGHE-902*     Statistical Methods for Aging Research     

This course provides a comprehensive review of the application of advanced statistical analysis in aging research. Topics include assessment of the validity and treatment of results in scientific literature, sampling variability, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, univariate analysis, analysis of variance, regression models and non-parametric statistics. Emphasis will be placed on appropriate interpretation and appraisal of statistical information.

(C) AGHE-903*     Critical Analysis of Theories of Aging     

Major theoretical perspectives on aging from different disciplines will be explored and critically evaluated for their usefulness in guiding and informing practice and research in the broad area of healthy aging.  Emphasis will be on developing a critical approach to theory development, testing and implementation. Fall.

(E) AGHE-976* Independent Study

A study, offered through distance education, under the guidance of a faculty member, in a subject area related to the faculty member’s area of expertise or special interest that is not covered within existing courses. The Independent Study must be linked to studies in Aging and Health but not directly overlap with the student’s thesis work.

(C) AGHE-999     Ph.D. Thesis