It stands for the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance. The Great Plains IDEA is an award-winning multi-state alliance of Human Sciences Colleges founded in 1994 as a means to create a marketplace for sharing distance education courses and programs at the graduate level. It utilizes the growing field of distance education to connect students around the country and afford them the opportunity to be admitted to one member institution and study at other member institutions via Internet-based courses. For more information visit the Great Plains IDEA website.
We offer a 36-credit master's degree program and a 15-credit graduate certificate program, which consists of a subset of courses from the master's degree program. The certificate program is for students who want a credential in gerontology and who do not need a master's degree. We do not offer a web-based undergraduate degree in gerontology.
Several institutions are participating in the online gerontology and certificate programs. Students are accepted into the program of their choice, enroll through their home institution, take web-based courses offered by all participating institutions, and meet graduation requirements at the institution through which they take courses. The program was developed and implemented by a team of graduate faculty representing all participating institutions.
A bachelor's degree from a college or university accredited by the cognizant regional accrediting agency, undergraduate preparation in the proposed major field equivalent to that acquired by a graduate of Kansas State University, or evidence of an appropriate background for undertaking an advanced degree program, and a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale in the last 60 hours of coursework. This GPA is based only on courses graded on a multi-level scale, usually A, B, C, D, F. For more information on admission and general requirements please review Chapter 2 of the Graduate Handbook.
By agreement among the institutions the common tuition rate for the 2018-2019 academic year is $580 per graduate credit hour. Books and classroom materials are not included. No other campus fees are assessed. Student fees are paid to the institution to which they are accepted and through which they enroll, regardless of which institution teaches the courses.
Students typically complete the master's program in four years if they are employed full time and taking only one course each semester. Students who take two classes each term (fall, spring and summer) can complete the program in 2 years. The certificate program may be completed in one year, depending on how many courses are taken each semester. Students may take classes on either a part-time or full-time basis.
Each course is offered at least once a year with sustaining enrollment. New elective courses are added as they are developed. For information on when required and elective courses are offered, please see the gerontology course matrix.
Yes. Some of the classes will be taught by your home institution and some will be taught by professors based at one of the other universities participating in the gerontology degree program. Typical students in the program may be located in the US or in other countries. Students are not required to visit the campus at any time during the degree program, although they have the option to attend graduation ceremonies in person if they wish to do so.
The program at Kansas State University currently has rolling admissions and you may apply at any time of year. Please note that there are specific university deadlines for international student applications because they take longer to process. International applications will be reviewed after the deadline date. At that time the graduate committee will consider the request for admission to the Gerontology program and will forward the approved applications to the Graduate School. The Graduate School provides final approval and notifies applicants of their acceptance.
A 3-credit hour practicum may be used as an elective in the program by pre-arrangement and with advisor approval, although it is not required for completion. Students should visit with their major professor if they wish to add a practicum to their studies.
Kansas State University accepts graduate credit from another university if the institution is accredited by the cognizant regional accrediting association to offer graduate degree programs. Under normal circumstances, graduate credit transferred from other universities may not exceed 10 credit hours, and only for courses graded B or better. Credits earned more than six years prior to the semester in which the program of study is approved may not be transferred. For more information review the Graduate Handbook.
If your question is about your application materials, please contact Pam Evans at the Center on Aging at firstname.lastname@example.org or 785-532-5945. Once you are accepted to the program the campus coordinator (Rachel Ohmes) should be able to answer your questions or direct you to other resources for assistance. Contact the coordinator at 785-532-5493 or email@example.com.
Students may download course information sheets prior to enrolling from the K-State Great Plains IDEA website. Additionally, students will receive an email 3-4 weeks prior to the start of the semester which includes the list of required textbooks for a course, and a list of possible sources for purchase. Many times books are available through the teaching institution's campus bookstore, and students are given contact information to place their order. Books may also be available online through Amazon or Barnes and Noble, or directly from the publisher as either hard copies, ebooks, or as rentals. Students may shop around once they receive the textbook information to see where they can obtain the best price. When doing this, students should ensure they are purchasing the correct edition of the textbook and that the book(s) will be received in a timely manner prior to the start of class.
In most cases, students must be enrolled in at least six credit hours to be eligible for financial aid. Contact the Student Financial Assistance office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 785-532-6420. The Center on Aging and its staff cannot assist with questions or problems related to Financial Aid.
If a student is currently enrolled and has active benefits, then the coursework will usually be covered by VA benefits. For more information contact the Kansas State University Office of Veterans Affairs at email@example.com or 785-532-7061. The Center on Aging and its staff are unable to assist with questions or problems related to VA benefits.
You will receive a Master of Science in Gerontology through Kansas State University. If you are enrolled in the certificate program, you will receive a Graduate Certificate in Gerontology. Students enrolled through our partner universities will receive a degree which may have a different title.
Kansas State University does not require GRE scores for admission to the online gerontology program. The GRE may be required at the other participating schools. Please contact the particular school you are interested in for more information. For additional Graduate School information, please visit www.k-state.edu/grad/.
When you are accepted into the program and enrolled at Kansas State University you will be assigned a K-State email address. This is the address you should use for all of your classes and correspondence because it is the address at which you receive communications from your instructor through K-State Online (KSOL), a course management system designed to deliver an interactive, web-based classroom to students. You may access K-State webmail through your web browser via a link on the K-State home page. Your K-State email address may be forwarded to another email address if you prefer, although this is strongly discouraged if you use a Yahoo! or Hotmail account due to bounced/undeliverable message issues.
Depending on the area of the country in which you live, and whether it is rural or urban, you should have a number of job options in a number of areas. These might include direct services (health or legal services), program planning and evaluation, management and administration, marketing and product development, advocacy (health care, community services, government policy), education and training (instructional programs for older people or degree programs and continuing education of practitioners in the field of aging), or research. A good resource on job possibilities in the field of gerontology is an This information can be found in the online publication titled, “Careers in Aging: Consider the Possibilities” by the Academy for Gerontology in Higher Education.
The pay scale would depend on the type of job, profit vs. non-profit agency, geographic location, etc. and there will be a wide variation based on the level of expertise required and/or level of responsibility. For specific information about the pay scale of jobs related to aging in your state, contact your state Department on Aging.
Off-campus access to K-State electronic resources includes the library catalog, databases, e-journals, and e-books; web-based subject guides; telephone or email help from a librarian (including your subject specialist); and web-based library instruction tutorials. More information can be found at the Distance Learning web page at K-State Libraries. Once you are accepted into the program and enrolled in classes, you will be given electronic access to these library resources.
Community Development, Dietetics, Family & Community Services, Family & Consumer Sciences Education, Family Financial Planning, Gerontology, Merchandising, Youth Development and Military, Veterans & Families are available as online degree programs. There are also programs in Agricultural Education, Agricultural and Environmental Law, Agricultural Systems Management Technology, Bioenergy & Sustainability Technology, Food Safety and Defense, Grassland Management, Horticulture, Soil, Water and Environmental Science and Swine Science. For more information on these programs please visit the K-State Great Plains IDEA website.