GERO 403 Counselling with Older Adults

This web page is intended to help you find information for the GERO 403 assignments. For further assistance, ask at the Belzberg Library Reference Desk or contact Nina Smart, Liaison Librarian for Gerontology at 778.782.5043 (Tuesdays and Thursdays) or, Monday to Thursday or Chloe Riley, Acting Liaison Librarian for Psychology  at 778-782-3315 or .

Course information

GERO 403 (Older description) approaches counselling with older adults from a positive, life-course-development perspective. From the perspective of a number of therapeutic paradigms, we take the position that older adults can enjoy optimal living at any stage of life, with emphasis on self-growth and self-exploration. We'll examine person-centred, cognitive-behavioural, and other models that foster change and growth. Topics include the therapeutic relationship, attitudes and beliefs about counselling older adults, the process of dialogue and engagement, and theories of personality. Although this course does not train clinical counsellors to work with the aged, it does expose you to counselling theory and practice and demonstrate how these skills can be adapted to the needs of older adults and their families in a wide variety of services. For more information see GERO 403's  Canvas page.


Recommended Gerontology resources


Understand Counselling [print]

Counselling Older Clients [print and online]

APA handbook of clinical geropsychology [print or online]

Handbook of mental health and aging [online] Covers biomarkers, age-related structural changes in the brain, dementia, neuropsychology, psychotherapy, psychopharmacology, mood disorders, anxiety, schizophrenia, sleep disorders, and substance abuse. Extensive bibliographies conclude each chapter.

Handbook of the psychology of aging [print or online Vol 1 and Vol 2: Covers concepts, theory and methods, biological and social influences on behaviour and behavioural processes. Chapters contain extensive references. 

Dictionary of psychology [online]

Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders : DSM-5 (DSM-V) [print and online via Psychiatry Online, section DSM Library]

Check the library catalogue to find additional materials at the SFU Library. Sample subject headings:

Older people -- Counseling of
Psychotherapy for older people

Journal articles

To find scholarly articles on your topic for assignments start with:

PsycINFO: the major psychology index. Hint: In its Advanced search you can limit results by age group, i.e. Aged (65 yrs & older). See their Quick Reference Guide for further instructions.

You can also search:

the major social gerontology index. See: An Introduction to the Ageline database

CINAHL Complete 
Nursing and allied health


Centre on Aging 
University of Manitoba 
"an online, healthcare media publishing company"

American Psychiatric Association
covering Alzheimers, geriatric Psychiatry, and more


Learning logs and outlines

Keeping a learning log
BBC's Key Skills

Video on Outlines (1:48 mins)
The Writing Centre at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 

Creating an Outline
Douglas College Learning Commons

Further resources

Academic integrity

Avoiding Plagiarism: the SFU Library guide. See also the Understanding and Avoiding Plagiarism self-directed tutorial to ensure  that you will be following SFU's academic honesty and student conduct policies

Distance education

SFU Library's Services for Distance Education students guide.

See also

Psychology information resources at SFU, for more information about psychology research.

Style guides

For citing research in your in-text references and reference list, see the Gerontology Citing section