Health and Aging

The Social Work in Health and Aging Certificate officially launched in the fall of 2022. It replaces the Social Work in Health Care certificate and the Levande Gerontology certificate programs. It focuses on cultivating competencies in social work practice in the areas of wellness, illness, disability and aging. Students will gain hands-on experience with individuals, groups, families, and/or communities in healthcare and/or aging service settings.

The required coursework teaches students how to conduct biopsychosocial assessments, engage in interdisciplinary collaborative work, and implement evidence-based practice in an ethical and culturally appropriate way. Students can apply to this certificate program in their first program year or specialization year (i.e., Clinical and OCL).


3 required courses

  1. SW891/SW472 Health and Social Work course (synchronous online offered in the fall)
  2. SW877 Aging and Social Work course (synchronous online offered in the spring)
  3. One relevant elective
  4. One field placement in a health care setting OR the aging field depending on the choices of concentration.
  5. Attend one simulation event on interprofessional education (IPE) (offered once a semester either in person or online in collaboration with the School of Nursing)

If students choose the aging track (e.g., taking the aging field placement), they will receive a stipend of $1,000 as a Levande Gerontological Social Work Scholar. In 2009, the School of Social Work successfully completed a three-year John A. Hartford Foundation Practicum Partnership Program grant focused on gerontology. The stipend for students in the aging track is due to the generous endowment of a Social Work Professor Emerita Diane Levande, a pioneer of gerontological social work at MSU.

Contact Person

Fei Sun, PhD

MSW Certificate Application