GERO 406 Death and Dying
Instructor: J. Barry Worsfold, M.S.W., Dip. Gerontology.
Office hours: by appointment
This web page is intended to help you find information for the GERO 406 assignments. For further assistance, ask at the Belzberg Library Reference Desk or contact Nina Smart, Liaison Librarian for Gerontology (778.782.5051 or firstname.lastname@example.org) Monday to Thursday.
- Course description and readings
- Services for Distance Education Students SFU Library guide
- Book Review
- Major Paper
- Field Interview
- Learning Log
Useful Web sites including Style Guides
Course Description and Introduction:
The course is of special interest to both caregivers for the terminally ill and caregivers for the institutionalized elderly. GERO 406 focuses on understanding issues around death and dying, including philosophical, religious, social, and psychological concerns. Topics include hospice care, dying at home versus dying in an institution, multicultural issues, and ethical issues facing families and professional caregivers as terminally ill individuals enter the “dying trajectory.” [Note: for more information see the course page (most recent: Fall 2012) and WebCT.]
Dying and death in Canada BF 789 D4 N67 2008 The 2001 edition is available online
Death: Current Perspectives BF 789 D4 D38 1995
Death, Grief, and Caring Relationships HQ 1073 K34 1985
What Dying People Want: Practical Wisdom for the End of Life BF 789 D4 K834 2002
Students can view video clips of National Film Board titles such as "Griefwalker", "Housecalls", "Afterlife" or "The Street" through NFB.ca
PBS also has useful video titles such as "The Undertaking" (or browse by topic such as Health and Wellness/Aging)
Note: Students are expected to read articles and papers of their choice in addition to the required reading.
Journal articles that are relevant to the topics discussed will be copied for students and will be available as a course package. These will be provided by the Instructor at the beginning of the course. Useful Web sites will be given throughout the course.
- WebCT additional information on WebCT
Omega: journal of death and dying available online from 1999 onwards
Students must choose a book from the bibliography below. If the book does not have a call number beside it, it is not at SFU, so check at your local library (you can search other library catalogues).
- Death, Dying and Bereavement HQ 1073.5 G7 D42 1993
- Tuesdays with Morrie New York : Doubleday, c1997. ISBN 0385484518
- Social Perspectives on Death and Dying (e-book is 2002 ed.) also in print HQ 1073.5 C2 A84 2007
- Another World PR 6052 A6488 A76 1998
- The Denial of Death BD 444 B36
- Dandelion Wine PS 3503 R167 D3 1957
- Patterns of Transcendence: Religion, Death and Dying BL 325 D35 C48 1990
- Corr, Charles A., Clyde, M. Nabe and Donna M. Corr. Death Dying, Life and Living. Pacific Grove, California: Brooks/Cole Publishing Company, 1994.
- DeSpelder, Lynne Anne and, Albert Lee Strickland, Ed. The Path Ahead: Readings in Death and Dying. Mountain View, California: Mayfield Publishing Company: 1995.
- Living with Grief After Sudden Loss - Suicide, Homicide, Accident, Heart Attack BF 575 G7 L58 1996
- Final Exit R 726 H843 1991
- Kalish, R.A. Death, Grief and Caring Relationships. 2nd Ed. Monterey, California: Brooks/Cole Publishing Company, 1985.
- Death and Dying: Views from Many Cultures GT 3150 D4
- Kalish, R.A. Ed. The Final Transition. Farmingdale, New York. Baywood Publishing Company. Inc.,1985.
- The Stone Angel PR 9294 A745 S7 2004
- The Undertaking - Life Studies From The Dismal Trade BD 444 L96 1977
- Maquire, D.C. Death by Choice (2nd Ed.). New York: Image Books, 1994.
- In the Midst of Winter - Selections from the Literature of Mourning RC 607 A26 W34 1991
- Nuland, S.B. How We Die - Reflections on Life’s Final Chapter. Vintage Books, 1995.
- Peck, M.S. Denial of the Soul. Harmony Books, 1997. ISBN 9780517708651
- Last Wish RC 280 O8 R65
- A Traveller Came By-Stories about Dying PR 9333 I74 T73 2000
The Good Death. Bantam books, 1999. ISBN 0553379879
- How to Write a Book Review Queen's University
- Book reviews SFU Library's guide to the what, why and how, including how to find book reviews
Citation Guide: APA Footnotes and bibliographies
Subject of paper to be chosen by student. Approval of subject must be obtained from instructor. Format of paper is formal and all references noted appropriately. It is suggested that the student follow the Citation Guide: APA. Plagiarism is not acceptable and will result in a failing grade. (Please refer to the SFU Library Plagiarism guide.)
- Start Your Research Here "gives you an overview of the research process and includes some ideas of where to look for information. Remember that careful research takes time and creativity." SFU Library guide
- "How to Research a Term Paper in Gerontology" the full guide is a chapter (or an appendix, depending on the edition) of Harry Moody's Aging: concepts and controversies, HQ 1064 U5 M665 (several editions)
Outlines: see Purdue OWL's Why and How to Create a Useful Outline and Sample Outlines
- Encyclopedia of death and dying HQ 1073 E543 2001 "rich and fascinating articles on all aspects of death and dying. Arranged alphabetically by subject, each entry is signed and includes references and suggestions for further reading."
- Encyclopedia of philosophy B 41 E5 "the highest achievement of 20th century philosophy: Over 4,200 pages, over 1500 contributors"
- Handbook of family resilience See part 4: Resilience, Loss and Grief
- Macmillan encyclopedia of death and dying also in print HQ 1073 M33 2002 "a contribution to the understanding of life." Entries include bibliographies.
- Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy also in print B 51 R68 1998 "a multicultural affair with over 2,000 individual articles...to provide a sophisticated yet accessible intellectual primer that requires only a willingness to learn."
- Wikipedia entries often have useful sections on external links (for example, the Suicide entry)
Check the library catalogue to find materials at the SFU Library, under subjects such as:
To find scholarly articles on your topic, start with these indexes:
- PsycINFO the major psychology index Hint: go to Advanced search and limit results by Age Group, i.e. Aged (65 yrs & older). See also their Quick Reference Guide
- Ageline the major social gerontology index
- ATLA Religion Database "religion in social issues"
- Philosopher's Index the "premier international resource in philosophy"
Many of the required and suggested readings come from: Omega: journal of death and dying, which can be read online back to 1999. British Journal of Social Work is also available online. In addition, there is browsing the SFU Gerontology and Aging e-journals list.
Conduct a structured field interview with an individual who works closely with those who are terminally ill or who have recently died.
Compare the actual experience of the individual chosen with what you have been studying in the literature.
Talk, with some comfort, about dying and death from your own perspective.
During the interview your task is to find out about the individual’s work in the field of dying and death. You want to understand how this work is relevant to the study of death and dying among the elderly.
- General Guidelines for Conducting Interviews from the Free Management Library "easy-to-access, clutter-free, comprehensive resources regarding the leadership and management of yourself, other individuals, groups and organizations"
- Field Research: Conducting an Interview from Purdue University Writing Lab
- The professional stranger : an informal introduction to ethnography GN 346 A42 has a useful chapter on fieldwork and conducting interviews
- The practice of social research H 62 B2 2001a has a chapter on Field Research
Handbook of interview research : context & methods H 61.28 H36 2002 good to look through, e.g. "Interviewing Older People"
To be received by the Instructor in the last week of the course-either handed to the Instructor at the last class or e-mailed by Friday of the last week of classroom instruction.
This log should be started at the beginning of the course and is your own personal journal in which you keep your thoughts and key learning points as you progress through the course. It is intended to be both personal and experiential. While completing the log, students are asked to consider the following:
- In what ways has the course (presentation and readings, discussion and assignments) influenced your thinking about death and dying?
- Did you have any emotional responses to end of life issues in this course?
- What questions do you have about your learning experience in this course?
- How would you apply your learning in this course to working with elderly people who are dying?
The log therefore is to contain personal reactions and to be also reflective of the course content. Please quote specific course references in the log. The Instructor will be the only person reviewing the logs. Grading on this assignment is based on the quality of the reflective and integrative process.
- Discussion paper on a provincial strategy for end-of-life care in British Columbia British Columbia BC Ministry of Health Services
- Provincial Framework for End-of-Life Care BC Ministry of Health Services
- The Pan-Canadian Gold Standards in Palliative Home Care: Toward Equitable Access to High Quality Hospice Palliative and End-of-Life Care at Home Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association (CHPCA)
- Dying with Dignity " improve quality of dying and to expand end of life choices in Canada"
- Compassion and Choices " a nonprofit organization, improves care and expand choice at the end of life. We support, educate and advocate."(U.S.)
- Campaign Life Coalition "We defend the sanctity of human life against threats posed by abortion, euthanasia, doctor-assisted suicide... "
- Quality End-of-Life Care: The Right of Every Canadian
- Death with Dignity Act Annual Reports (Oregon) and Death with Dignity Act
- Of Life and Death - Final Report The Special Senate Committee on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide
- Quotes Elisabeth Kubler- Ross
- The Definition of Death from Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
- The Canadian Law Reform Commission’s definition of death (1979)
- Dealing with Sudden Death BC Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General
- Beware the 5 Stages of Grief TLC Group
Meaning of Life and Meaning of Death in Successful Aging Paul Wong, International Network on Personal Meaning
Palliative Care Associations
- Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association (CHPCA) "That all Canadians have access to quality end-of-life care"
- BC Hospice Palliative Care Association
American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine The professional organization for physicians taking care of people at
the end of life
Australian and New Zealand Society of Palliative Medicine (ANZSPM) Provides professional support and fellowship for medical
practitioners working in palliative care
- Palliative Care Council of South Australia useful publications in the Information Centre
- European Association for Palliative Care "palliative care in Europe and to act as a focus for all of those who work, or have an interest, in the field of palliative care"
International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care Providing education about palliative care and hospice in the
- Age pyramid of Canada 1901 to 2001 Statistics Canada
- Leading Causes of Death and Hospitalization in Canada Public Health Agency of Canada
- Leading Causes of Death in Canada Statistics Canada "This publication lists statistical tables of ten leading causes of death in Canada for selected age groups by sex; ten leading causes of infant death; and ten leading causes of death for provinces and territories by sex."
- Demography BC Stats
- Infoline (December 5, 2008) from BC Stats -- this issue has causes of death in BC
- Mortality, Summary List of Causes Statistics Canada
- Life expectancy at birth Statistics Canada
- Predictors of death in seniors Statistics Canada
- Suicide: the hidden epidemic from CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal)
Medical Illness and the Risk of Suicide in the Elderly Archives of Internal Medicine
- Sociology of death and dying from Trinity University
- Elisabeth Kuebler-Ross official site
- American Hospice Foundation
American Society of Law, Medicine & Ethics "to provide high-quality scholarship, debate, and critical thought to the community of professionals at the nexus of law, medicine, and ethics."
Americans for Better Care of the Dying "dedicated to ensuring that all Americans can count on good end of life care."
- British Columbia Hospice Palliative Care Association "to ensure quality of care for British Columbians faced with a life-threatening illness, death and bereavement."
- Delta Hospice Society Delta, BC. See Resources/Brochures and Pamphlets
- Center for Advanced Illness Coordinated Care (CAICC) "a six-visit intervention of structured conversations and specialized care coordination for patients with advanced illness and their families."
Dying Well "for people facing life-limiting illness, their families, and their professional caregivers"
Growth House "provides content development and syndication services for organizations working with death and dying issues".
Hospice Net "For patients and families facing life-threatening illness"
- Human Mortality Database providing detailed mortality and population data (requires registration)
- Quality End-of-Life Care Coalition of Canada (QELCCC)
- Right to Die Society of Canada
- Web Links of the Delbat Hospice Society
- Longevity Game Find out how long actuaries think you will live.
For citing research in your footnotes and bibliographies, refer to the following:
- Citation Guide: APA SFU library guide
- Publication manual of the American Psychological Association BF 76.7 P83 2010 [It's also available at the GRC library, call number RE 550 P82 2001.] Chapter 2 has content and organization of a manuscript as well as examples of papers.
- APA style help from APA
- American Psychological Association (APA) Format from Purdue University