Gerontology Program

Advanced Behavioral & Cognitive Care - Certificate

The Certificate

The Advanced Behavioral & Cognitive Care Certificate prepares students for the Certified Alzheimer Caregiver (CAC) Exam of the National Certification Board for Alzheimer Care. Instructors of the core courses of the ABCC Certificate (GRN235 Advanced Care Issues and GRN236 Advanced Care Practice) are qualified as dementia care trainers and educators through the Certified Alzheimer Educators (CAEd) Exam of the NCBAC. These courses and the additional courses required for the ABCC Certificate not only parallel the CNA2 content, but provide students with a grounding in gerontological theory and research, enabling them to advance their professional development and apply new research to practice. The Certificate internship requirement will introduce Certificate earners to work-based requirements of observation, documentation, and practice in relevant long-term care, home and community based settings.

The courses in this Certificate are wholly contained within the State Board approved Gerontology AAS Degree. The Gerontology AAS Degree articulates with Portland State University, Eastern Oregon University and other OUS and private baccalaureate programs.

Certificate Outcomes

  • Work effectively as an advanced care provider with diverse individuals or groups of older adults with cognitive decline, dementia, and other challenging behavioral and cognitive conditions, in long term care, adult daycare, home and community settings

  • Apply best practices for dealing with challenging cognitive and behavioral issues, following care plans, providing appropriate documentation and working collaboratively with all stakeholders, including multidisciplinary teams, medical and healthcare professionals, family and community members

  • Conduct gerontological research relevant to advanced care issues, and apply the research to practice

  • Adhere to professional and ethical care standards

  • Continue to develop professional care knowledge and skills through continuing education and training

Certificate Courses

Certificate Courses
Course Number Course Title Credits Terms Offered
GRN181 Exploring the Field of Aging 2 All terms
Soc223 Sociology of Aging 4 Winter, Spring
Soc231 Health and Aging 4 Fall, Winter, Spring
Soc232 Death and Dying 4 All terms
AD105 Aging and Addiction 3 Fall, Winter, Spring
GRN280B Internship Seminar 1 Fall, Winter, Spring
GRN280A Internship 4* All terms
GRN235 Advanced Care Issues 2 Fall, Spring
GRN236 Advanced Care Practice 2 Winter, Summer
Total Credits 23-26 credits

*Up to 3 credits can be waived with documentation of related employment or volunteer work (70 hours for each waived credit). Students applying for the Certificate should present evidence of prior experience and training to the Gerontology Program Advisor on application for the Certificate to determine eligibility for the waiver.

National Certification Board for Alzheimer Care (NCBAC)

The NCBAC has favorably reviewed the Advanced Behavioral & Cognitive Care (ABCC) Certificate and plans to formally endorse the Certificate as meeting their standards. The Certified Alzheimer Certificate exam will be administered through PCC, which is a designated Pearson VUE site. Instructors of the core ABCC courses will also take the Certified Alzheimer Educator exam.

Other Partners

The Jobs to Careers in Community-Based Care, which is funded by the Robert Woods Johnson and Hitachi Foundations, supports this Certificate as well as the standards and professional development they represent. Partners in this project include Portland Community College’s Gerontology and Customized and Workplace Development programs, five long term care providers, the Oregon Health Care Association, the Oregon Alliance of Senior and Health Services, Work Systems, Inc., the Oregon Department of Seniors and Persons with Disabilities, the Oregon State Board of Nursing, Portland State University Institute on Aging, and others working together to raise the educational and training standards and quality care and service provision.

The Gerontology Program also partners with the Oregon Home Care Commission to conduct a peer mentor program and to promote professional development for the client-employer, state-paid home care workers in the PCC District.