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Department of Anthropology

Discover Your Focus

Graduate Programs

Take a critical social science perspective and an interdisciplinary approach to the study of health and/or aging.

Undergraduate Programs

Our BA programs in Health Studies and Gerontology provide a multi-disciplinary focus on the study of aging and in-depth knowledge on a wide range of topics and issues in gerontology.

About Us

Our faculty members have backgrounds in economics, human geography, political science, social work, and sociology. These disciplines provide the multiple lens through which we view health and aging.

Research

Research in the Department of Health Aging and Society examines a wide range of issues and topics related to the fields of health studies and social gerontology.

Latest News & Events

Does Receiving Subsidized Housing Affect Mental Health? Results from a Natural Experiment in the Greater Toronto West

Dr. Jim Dunn, Professor & Chair, Department of Health, Aging & Society; McMaster University Director, McMaster Institute for Healthier Environments, will present his findings regarding the effects of subsidized housing on the mental health of individuals in Hamilton, Halton, Peel and Toronto who were on the waitlist for social housing.

Nov 22, 2017

Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Well-Being, Community Engagement and Innovation

Chelsea Gabel, assistant professor, health, aging and society, is the Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Well-Being, Community Engagement and Innovation (Tier 2).

Nov 12, 2017

Understanding the Landscape of Youth Mental Health and Housing in Hamilton, Ontario

Dr. Julia Woodhall-Melnik, CIHR Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Department of Health, Aging & Society, will be delivering a talk on her findings pertaining to Hamilton Youth and their experiences accessing services for mental health and/or housing.

Nov 03, 2017

Voices from Health, Aging & Society Leading Aging Discourse in Hamilton

Rachel Weldrick, PhD candidate in social gerontology, and Dr. Margaret Denton, professor emerita in the Department of Health, Aging & Society, share their perspectives on Hamilton's aging population and its relationship with the rest of society.

Oct 05, 2017

Drugs, Sex and Alcohol: Society and Its Addictions - Winter 2018

The Department of Health, Aging & Society has added an additional section of HLTH AGE 2L03: Drugs, Sex and Alcohol: Society and Its Addictions to the course offerings for the 2017/2018 academic year.

Sep 20, 2017

Health geographer named new fellow of the UK's Royal Society of Arts

Gavin J. Andrews, a professor in McMaster’s Department of Health, Aging and Society, has been named a Fellow of the UK's Royal Society of Arts.

Sep 13, 2017

Hons.B.A. Combined Honours in Gerontology and Health Studies

Students will graduate with a double major and because much of the Gerontology and Health Studies curriculum is common, will still have the flexibility to take many interesting electives or use elective units towards the completion of a minor and/or one of three certificates (1. Applied Behaviour Analysis 2. Business Studies 3. Leadership and Management in the Not for Profit Sector)

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Hons.B.A. Combined Honours in Gerontology and Another Subject

This degree program brings a multidisciplinary approach to the study of aging. Designed to foster an understanding of aging issues within and across different contexts, issues ranging from the individual experience of the aging process to the societal complexities of an aging population are examined both within the Canadian context and more broadly.

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Hons.B.A. Combined Honours in Health Studies and Another Subject

This degree program focuses on the significance of health and illness in cultural context. The perspectives of the social sciences and humanities are brought to bear on exploring the diverse meanings and practices associated with health and health care. Attention is given to different theoretical approaches to understanding the health of individuals, groups and communities in contemporary and historical perspectives.

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Hons.B.A. Honours Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology

This degree program brings a multidisciplinary approach to the study of aging. Designed to foster an understanding of aging issues within and across different contexts, issues ranging from the individual experience of the aging process to the societal complexities of an aging population are examined both within the Canadian context and more broadly.

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Hons.B.A. Honours Bachelor of Arts in Health Studies

This degree program focuses on the significance of health and illness in cultural context. The perspectives of the social sciences and humanities are brought to bear on exploring the diverse meanings and practices associated with health and health care. Attention is given to different theoretical approaches to understanding the health of individuals, groups and communities in contemporary and historical perspectives.

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Minor Minor in Health, Aging and Society

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Minor Minor in Mental Health, Addiction and Society

New for 2017/2018!  The minor in Mental Health and Addiction provides students with opportunity to develop an in-depth understanding of the relationship between mental health, addiction, and society. It involves examining the links between mental health and wider social processes, including marginalization, the construction of deviance, and the social determinants of health. Students will also gain a solid understanding of mental illness and some of the ways in which social change and other non-biomedical interventions can be harnessed to address issues related to mental health and addiction and promote well-being.

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B.A. Bachelor of Arts in Health, Aging and Society

Health and aging issues have become more complex, more important, and more challenging for individuals, institutions, and societies around the world. With the number and proportion of older people increasing, individuals, institutions, and societies face new opportunities and new challenges in a number of areas, including family dynamics, social relationships, work and retirement, health and health care, and the social and cultural experience of aging.

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M.A. Master of Arts in Health & Aging

The M.A. in Health & Aging is an interdisciplinary study of social and cultural aspects of health and aging. Complementing an attention to key conceptual and methodological debates in the social sciences, this degree highlights a number of key research fields in the study of health and/or aging, such as: social-cultural dimensions of health and aging; systems, services and policy; and environments and health inequalities.

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Ph.D. Doctor of Philosophy in Health Studies

The Ph.D. in Health Studies is an interdisciplinary study of social, cultural, political, and environmental aspects of health. The program allows students to take a critical, interdisciplinary, and social science perspective in the study of health, illness, and health care. Areas of research include: critical health studies; environments and health inequalities; systems, services and policy; and global health. NOTE: The Department of Health, Aging & Society is in the process of recommending a degree name change from PhD in Health Studies to PhD in Health & Society, subject to required approvals. Please visit the Department web site regularly for updates.

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Ph.D. Doctor of Philosophy in Social Gerontology

The PhD in Social Gerontology is an interdisciplinary study of social, cultural, and political aspects of aging. The program allows students to take a critical social science perspective and an interdisciplinary approach to the study of aging. Areas of research include: health and social care; critical gerontology; systems, services and policy; diversity; and cumulative inequalities.

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