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International Study Programs

Activation Co-ordinator/Gerontology Dip GBC

Activation Co-ordinator/Gerontology Dip GBC

George Brown College, Canada

About This Program

George Brown College's  two-year Activation Co-ordinator/Gerontology diploma program will provide you with specialized knowledge in the field of aging.  You will learn over the course of two years, how to design and deliver meaningful therapeutic programs to enhance the quality of life of older adults that consider the physical, mental and spiritual perspectives of the aging process.

The approach in this academically challenging program is based on a holistic, person-centred philosophy and informed by relevant theoretical and practical knowledge of gerontology:

  • Strong communication skills – both from a management and interpersonal perspective. This work requires the ability to work with people across different life stages so effective communication skills are essential to the job;
  • Science and theory behind aging.  With an understanding of the biological changes of aging, you will get a new perspective of diseases often related to aging like Alzheimer’s and dementia;
  • You'll learn proper documentation and Resident Assessment Instrument – Minimum Data Set (RAI-MDS) training.

If you are someone who is energetic, organized, creative and enjoys working with older adults, consider this profession.

Learn more about the Canada student visa category.

Course Delivery

This Activation Co-ordinator/Gerontology Diploma program is offered at the Waterfront Campus of George Brown College.

This four semester diploma is a full-time program.  It combines field placement and classroom experience to prepare its graduates to work with older adults in a variety of settings.

As hands-on learning is a major component of this program, you will get practice in creating specialized therapeutic programs at George Brown College's 21,000+ square foot Simulation Centre facility.

Field education is a requirement in all four semesters.  You will gain more self-confidence and even more exposure to your chosen career with one of the college's field placement partners.


You may have employment opportunities that include positions in long term care, retirement residences and community-based settings such as:

  • Day centres
  • Community centres
  • Long-term care homes
  • Retirement homes
  • Community-based service agencies

Future Study Options for Graduates of the Activation Co-ordinator/Gerontology diploma program

If you successfully complete this program may be considered for exemptions in other programs at George Brown College.

And if you have a grade point average of 2.8 or higher, you can apply to complete a three-year B.A. in Gerontology at Laurentian University in a reduced timeframe (approximately 12-18 months).  The exact time of completion will depend on existing post-secondary credentials.

Learning Outcomes

By the time you graduate, you will gain skills and have demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Function effectively as a member of an inter-professional team in the development and provision of health promoting and life enhancing services and programs for older adults;
  2. Accurately and comprehensively assess and record the ongoing needs of the older adult using a variety of widely used electronic systems;
  3. Develop, coordinate, deliver and evaluate a variety of services/programs that enhance clients’ level of functioning and quality of life by applying relevant research and theory to practice;
  4. Apply appropriate health and safety protocols in order to protect the health, safety and well- being of their clients, their co-workers and themselves;
  5. Communicate effectively using a variety of therapeutic techniques and in adherence with privacy and freedom of information legislation;
  6. Identify, select and use appropriate professional and community resources to meet the needs of the older adult;
  7. Ensure programs operate in compliance with relevant policy, legislation and standards of practice for services to older adults in a variety of settings;
  8. Establish and maintain professional and ethical standards in the field of activation gerontology as set out by relevant professional bodies;
  9. Promote accessible, inclusive and responsive programs and services by recognizing the diverse needs and experiences of individuals, groups, families and communities;
  10. Manage physical, financial and human resources in order to effectively coordinate services for older adults.

Course Outline


  • COMM1081:  Interpersonal Communication Skills
  • GERT1004:  Recreation I: Therapeutic Interventions
  • GERT 1038:  Pre-Placement Seminar
  • GERT1018:  Field Practice I
  • GERT1035:  Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders
  • GERT1033:  Introduction to Gerontology
  • GERT1010:  Aging in Place
  • GERT1025:  Integrated Seminar I
  • COMM1003:  English Skills


  • GERT1002:  Fitness and Wellness
  • GERT1015:  Recreation II: Therapeutic Programming
  • GERT1020:  Field Practice II
  • GERT1027:  Integrated Seminar II
  • GERT1012:  Assessment Skills and Inter-RAI Methodology
  • GERT1036:  Management I: Foundation Skills
  • GERT1160:  Introduction to the Biology of Aging
  • COMM1007:  College English
  • Year 1 Journals


  • GERT2004:  Management II: Professional Development
  • GERT2009:  Field Practice III
  • GERT2016:  Integrated Seminar III
  • GERT2028:  Recreation III: Alternative Therapeutic Programming
  • GERT2031:  Ethical and Professional Leadership
  • SWRK2001:  Group Processes
  • GNED:  General Education Elective


  • GERT2006:  Activation Industry Resources
  • GERT2023:  Governance of Services for Older Adults
  • GHUM1043:  Living with Dying
  • GERT2011:  Field Practice IV
  • GERT1014:  Psychogeriatrics
  • GERT2018:  Integrated Seminar IV
  • SWRK2000:  Management III: Human Resources
  • GNED:  General Education Elective

Course Info

Course Code : C102

College : School of Health and Wellness

Duration : 2 years (4 semesters)

Qualifications Level : Diploma

Fees :

All fees listed below are quoted in Canadian Dollar (CAD).

  • Application Fee:  95
  • Base Tuition Fee:  13,520 for 2 semesters
  • Incidental Fees (student ID, student association membership, etc.):  1,500
  • Public Transportation, estimated per year:  1,500
  • Supplies, estimated per year: 1,000 - 1,200
  • Textbooks:  500
  • Field trips and industry site visits:  50
  • Mandatory Health Insurance:
    • One year coverage, from Sep to Aug: 603.34
    • 8 months coverage, from Jan to Aug: 409.91
    • 4 months coverage, from May to Aug: 215.44

Take note of the following:

  • The above figures represent what George Brown College expects will be your reasonable international fees. 
  • Externship, internship, work term, apprenticeship fees are not included in the tuition fee.  This could range from $450 to a full term.
  • You will be responsible for your own transportation to complete externship, internship or practical lab requirements not listed above.

Accommodation for International Students at George Brown College

Toronto has a large housing and rental market that offers numerous accommodation options for students.  George Brown College however, does not arrange non-homestay accommodation for students. Estimated costs for privately arranged accommodation may range from $500-$1200 per month, depending on individual living situation and location.

George Brown College's free Housing Services offer support in helping students find off-campus housing.  This will be an advantage for you as it generally takes about 2-3 weeks to find an apartment in Toronto. Apartment listings usually go up 1-2 months previous to their availability so if you’re looking to move beginning of September it is usually good to start looking in July.

Housing Cost (your choice):

  • Landing Pad for 4 weeks:  750/month
  • Homestay for 2 months minimum:  750/month
  • Dormitory
    • September to April:  6,900
    • January to April:  3,450
    • May to August:  595/month

If you would rather live in the residence of the college, you should sign up early.  The George, as the building is known, has the flexibility of 8 month- (Fall/Winter) and 4 Month- (Summer) agreements. Units are 2-bedroom suites that include a kitchenette and 3-piece bathroom with Wi-Fi, phone, and cable television.

As costs are subject to change, the above figures may be changed at any time without notice by the administration of George Brown College.  Please check with your IVC-assigned Visa Counselor or Documentation Officer periodically for any changes.

When estimating your cost of living for an academic year, include rent, weekly supermarket shopping, some meals on campus, electricity bills, heating bills, refuse bills, parking fees, mobile phone expenses, travel, clothing, snacks on campus, socializing, and health.

Intake Dates :

There is only ONE intake per year and this is in SEPTEMBER.

IVC has a 3-month preparation period that includes, among others:

  • Review by the School of Health and Wellness of George Brown College for your eligibility;
  • Processing by the International Admissions Office;
  • Enrollment;
  • Processing of insurance;
  • Payment of tuition fee;
  • Payment and processing of your living expenses fund if you are applying under the Student Direct Stream;
  • Seeking accommodation.

It is important to apply early as this course may have many applicants.  Moreover, beginning an application well in advance of the intake date will allow you a lot of time to prepare for the IELTS and consolidate your academic and professional credentials for your visa application.  So make sure you apply early!

Entry Criteria

Admission Requirements  

Applicants are selected on the basis of their academic achievement and you must be able to meet the selection criteria outlined below:

  • You must be able to demonstrate that you have the equivalent of an Ontario Secondary School Diploma.  Notarized translations of your diploma and transcripts from senior secondary school and/or other level of postsecondary education completed (for applications to postgraduate certificate programs will therefore be needed.
  • English Proficiency. Please note that when needed, GBC may request for higher test scores.
    • IELTS (Academic Test) Overall Band Score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each skill band OR
    • TOEFL iBT 80 with a minimum of 20 in each skill band.
  • If your status is that of a mature student status (more than 19 years old), George Brown College recommends that you should have at least 40 volunteer hours, preferably working with older adults, prior to applying.
  • Upon acceptance and confirmation into the program, you must meet all the mandatory pre-placement health requirements for this program. All costs, service fees and fines associated with the overall health requirements will be your responsibility.
  • You must provide a Police Vulnerable Sector Check annually.  This is in compliance with requests from GBC's placement partners.  This requirement must be renewed annually before entering into field or clinical placement.  The fees for the police record check vary and must be paid by the student.

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