Practicum/Research FAQ | Gerontology | SIU

Southern Illinois University




College of Education and Human Services


Practicum/Research FAQ

Why do a practicum?

Practicum/research experiences are an integral part of the total educational experience of the Certificate of Gerontology program. Through this experience, you will deepen your understanding of human behavior and enhance your skills for working with older adults.

Do I get credit for the practicum?

Your practicum/research experience is worth 3 to 6 credit hours.

What is the time commitment?

Most experiences require 150 hours of work, for 3 credit hours, at the internship/research site spread over the 15 weeks of the semester excluding finals week. That translates into working 10-20 hours per week (depending upon number of hours: 3 to 6, taken).

Are there any special requirements to enroll in the practicum/research experience?

To enroll for the internship, students must have 2.75 GPA standing, be admitted to the Graduate Certificate in Gerontology, and have an overall GPA of 2.75 as well as a GPA of 2.5 in their major coursework. Additionally, all required gerontology courses must be completed before the internship semester unless special arrangements have been made with the coordinator of the Certificate program.

Please note that some electives may be required depending on the type of internship you desire.

Do I have to find my own practicum/research experience site?

Not necessarily. Assistance is available from the Certificate in Gerontology Coordinator.

What if I don’t know where I might want to do my internship?

You may not know where you would like to complete your internship when you begin the program. Don’t worry about it yet. After you have taken some of the classes and have made visits to various community agencies, you will probably begin to have an idea of what you would like to do on an internship.

Will I be able to do my internship at an agency in my hometown?

That depends on where you live. (We provide supervision of all the internships our students complete).