The Institute of Gerontology at King's College London is one of the leading gerontological research and teaching centres world-wide. Founded in 1986, the Institute is at the vanguard of multi-disciplinary research and teaching, acting as a bridge between the social and clinical sciences. The Institute has many long-standing research and teaching collaborations including the Institute of Psychiatry, the School of Medicine, the School of Nursing and Midwifery and the School of Biomedical & Health Sciences, as well as close working links with King's Health Partners. King's Health Partners brings together King's College London, a world leading research led university and three successful NHS Foundation Trusts (Guy's and St Thomas', King's College Hospital and South London and Maudsley).
The Institute's inter-disciplinary nature is reflected in its broad research sponsorship base; it has received funding from UK Research Councils (i.e. ESRC, MRC, EPSRC & AHRB), from many of the charities concerned with the welfare of older people and from government (including the Department for Work and Pensions & the Department of Health).
In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) Gerontology was submitted at as part of the Health Services Research category ranking fourth out of 24 units of assessment in terms of research power. The RAE results are testimony to the Institute's strengths in ageing policy, families, health and healthcare.
At the Institute, research is central to our work. It helps maintain our position at the forefront of gerontology and at the same time helps to enrich the learning experience of our students. Encouraging the development of doctoral research is a central part of our research activity. Our MPhil/PhD Gerontology programme will enable you to develop an area of research in great depth and help you become a leading expert in your own right.
Course study environment
The Institute has a community of research students with diverse interests in all aspects of ageing who enjoy a friendly and supportive environment in the Department of Social Science, Health & Medicine. Gerontology students are integrated within a community of research students, research fellows, visiting researchers and senior visiting academics from across the world, and have access to a range of formal and informal study groups and activities organised by this research community. Students also have access to graduate seminars, workshops, seminars and conferences, often in association with other departments in social sciences, arts and humanities and the Health Schools within King's.
The supervisory relationship is central to doctoral studies in the Department. Admission to the doctoral research programme is highly selective and is dependent upon a good match being found between student interests and supervisor capabilities. Each student is allocated a principal supervisor from within the Department (usually from the Institute), experienced in the relevant research area and responsible for all aspects of supervision. A second supervisor is allocated, who may be a member of the Department, or a specialist from another Department in the School.
As well as training in IT skills, the Graduate School runs an excellent structured programme of workshops and training for Postgraduate Research Students.
Head of group/division
Professor Karen Glaser (Director/Reader in Gerontology)
Contact for information
Recent publications: As an active research Institute we publish widely in peer reviewed journals, books and grey literature. For details of publications please see our staff pages.
Current research projects: Many members of the Institute are currently involved in a new research project investigating wellbeing, health, retirement and the Lifecourse (WHERL). This 3 year interdisciplinary consortium is funded by the cross-research council Lifelong Health and Wellbeing (LLHW) programme under Extending Working Lives. The consortium involves 5 institutions and 3 project partners.
We will be examining a crucial question for ageing societies: how inequalities across the life course relate to paid work in later life in the UK. This issue is of growing importance since the UK, in common with many other governments across the world, is rapidly extending the working lives of older adults through the postponement of State Pension Age (SPA) and other measures. These policy reforms affect millions of people, yet their implications for health and wellbeing are unknown. Do these policies harm, benefit or have little effect on the population? To answer this, we need to understand the lifelong drivers affecting the complex relationship between paid work in later life, health and wellbeing.
For more information please see our website: http://wherl.ac.uk/welcome-to-wherl/