Older Person’s Mental Health

Subject code MH913
Lecturer TBD
Delivery mode Online, self-directed
Duration 10 weeks
Next start date Visit timetable

Subject Overview

Given a choice, the majority of older people would prefer to live in their own homes despite challenges such as disabilities, loneliness and the problems of health care. This subject considers the healthcare needs of older people and the ways in which older people are represented through the media, health and social policies and legislation. The way that these representations impact on the mental health and wellbeing of older people and their access to healthcare will be analysed. Case studies will be used to evaluate the importance of having a sense of meaning and purpose, a sense of belonging, and achieving balance through social networks, service to others, nutrition, and physical activity. Research on contemporary evidence on severe challenges to mental wellbeing such as dementia, bereavement, and end of life care, will be critically analysed. Behavioural gerontology is investigated and explains how changes in the environment can produce changes in behaviour. The role of compassion within healthcare provision for older people will be reflected upon. Students will develop advanced understanding of theories and methods for facilitating healthy ageing. Buddhist perspectives on death and dying are explored within this subject.


Learning Outcomes

    1. Discuss the psychological and physiological changes associated with ageing.
    2. Critically analyse the determinants of healthy ageing and the implications of an ageing population.
    3. Examine the mental health care needs of older people and the corresponding strategies for wellness.
    4. Study and critically assess approaches to dementia, bereavement, the process of death and dying and end of life care.


  • Assessment 1: Essay on the older person and public health, morbidity and mortality, screening and assessment (50%, due week 3)
  • Assessment 2: Report on a major mental health challenge within the experiencing of ageing, including review of literature and recommendations (50%, due week 10)


Offering a high degree of flexibility, our courses can be studied online or on campus, full or part-time. Our courses are designed for health and wellness professionals, counsellors, educators, and other leaders who are balancing a work schedule and already have an undergraduate degree. Enrol now or at a time that suits you.