Adult Development and Aging Program

Doctor of Philosophy

The Ph.D. program in Adult Development and Aging is offered jointly with the University of Akron Department of Psychology. Drawing on the resources of both universities, the program prepares students for careers as researchers and scholars in a variety of settings, including higher education, medical centers, government agencies, and research institutes. Students are trained as researchers who have expertise in social, cognitive, and behavioral aspects of adulthood and aging, and who convey existing knowledge through teaching; students also generate new knowledge through basic and applied research, and become involved with communities in addressing social issues related to aging. The program gives students the opportunity to work with multiple faculty across two different universities, offering broad exposure to the ever-growing areas of basic and applied aging research.


  • Research and Dissertation Opportunities Aligned with Faculty Research Interests
  • Opportunities for Conference Presentations/Publications
  • Student Funding (Tuition Waivers and Assistantships for Research and/or Teaching)
  • Resources of Cleveland State University and The University of Akron
  • Affiliations with Cleveland-area Medical and Research Institutions

Program of Study
The doctoral program in Adult Development and Aging requires 96 semester credit hours of study. Students will be required to take courses at both Cleveland State University and The University of Akron. Enrollment in and successful completion of the following courses will be required:

  • Quantitative Methods I and II
  • Multivariate Statistics
  • Structural Equation Modeling
  • Adult Development & Aging
  • Health Psychology in Later Life
  • Mental Health & Aging
  • Sensorimotor Processes in Adulthood
  • Neuropsychology of Aging
  • Social & Emotional Development in Later Life
  • Cognitive Aging
  • Independent Reading
  • Research and Thesis
  • Dissertation

Faculty Research Interests
The program has outstanding faculty with whom students conduct their master thesis and dissertation projects. Students have the opportunity to do research with faculty at Cleveland State and The University of Akron; faculty research interests include the following:

  • Social and emotional functioning
  • Aging and mental health
  • Language and cognitive changes
  • Biopsychological changes
  • Neuropsychological functioning and cognitive disorders
  • Psychosocial interventions for older adults

Visit our Faculty Profiles pages for more information about each faculty member's interests.

Refer to our Applying for Graduate Admissions page for information about admissions criteria and procedures.