Description: This course examines intervention efforts aimed at the self-management of chronic illness from a lifespan perspective with a focus on midlife and older adulthood. Theoretical and conceptual frameworks for viewing chronic illness in the context of individual and family development will be discussed. Specific examples of health education interventions for selected chronic illnesses will be examined, including diabetes, arthritis, asthma, health disease, COPD, and HIV/AIDS. The appropriate developmental tasks and psychosocial and cognitive stages for individuals and their implications for the self-management of chronic illness will be described. The impact of comorbidity, depression, coping, resilience, social support, and self-efficacy on self-managment and the role of family caregivers will be discussed. The format of the course will rely heavily on structured and informed discussion. A brief overview will be provided each week, followed by exchange generated by discussion questions for each week's reading assignments as well as small group exercises. Student presentations based on a wide variety of chronic illnesses will be scheduled throughout the course.
Description: This course provides an overview of trends in aging and health with a particular focus on health behaviors and health promotion. Age-related changes in health and health behavior and the impact of societal and personal attitudes toward aging on health behaviors will be discussed. Successful aging, an emerging paradigm for gerontology, will frame discussion of strategies for facilitating optimal health behaviors among older adults. Current recommendations and practices and multi-level interventions will be presented for physical activity, smoking, obesity, weight management, nutrition education, immunizations, and cancer screenings. Recent evidence of the impact of health behaviors on brain health and the prevention of cognitive decline will be discussed.