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Guided writing and painting are classic methods in geragogy

Geragogy , gerontagogy or pedagogy for the elderly (from the Greek  γέρων géron , German  old man , as well as ἄγειν , ágein , lead, transport, drive, pull ) describes the science of education in old age and the further training of older people. It deals with didactic concepts, methods and content of the learning of older people and also with the task of preparing middle-aged people for retirement and the side effects of aging, as well as related social and societal issues. Geragogy can be classified as a branch of education or gerontology (the science of aging ). Within the social sciences , geragogy is assigned to the area of social work . It is also used in health promotion .

Word origin

The word gerontagogy is an analogy to pedagogy , which means translated: "To guide children, to lead them to something"; Gerontagogy means: "To guide old people, to lead them to something". The term was introduced in 1962 by Otto Friedrich Bollnow as a "doctrine of the education of the elderly". The term geragogy was coined in 1965 by Hilarion Petzold and promoted in particular by Hans Mieskes as an alternative to gerontagogy. Both terms are largely used synonymously, although some authors with a clear pedagogical focus prefer geragogy, while the term geragogy occurs more frequently in the context of holistic concepts in which, for example, methods of psychotherapy or social pedagogy are used.

Principles and goals

Geragogy includes a holistic , theoretical and practical teaching about the aging process and the age phase, equally for the generation of children and adolescents, the generation of adults and the generation of the elderly.

The goals of geragogy include:

  • Activate resources, provide protective factors
  • Competencies and performance boost
  • Compensate for deficits (skills that are no longer or only partially available)
  • to maintain the physical and mental performance of older people
  • to enable old people to lead a self-determined lifestyle
  • to promote age-specific learning behavior
  • promote social relationships between older people
  • Preservation of quality of life

The practical offers include advanced training (such as lectures, senior studies ), exercise (gymnastics, dancing), leisure activities and therapeutic measures ( psychomotor skills , reality orientation). Memories are activated in a variety of ways and telling one's own life story is encouraged. B. in “memory café ”, narrative café , biography work or life review therapy .

This is intended to enable old people to deal with themselves and their environment, lead a self-determined lifestyle and cope with specific environmental requirements.

In geragogy the concept of lifelong learning is based. Learning takes place at every age. She deals with methods and organizational forms of senior education and also with the task of preparing middle-aged people for retirement and the accompanying symptoms of aging. In doing so, she draws on findings from gerontology ( gerontology ). Geragogical offers are aimed at older workers, called Young-old (60-75 years) Elderly people (76-89 years) and very old people (from 90 years). Geragogical knowledge is important for both self-employed people and residents of old people's homes. A further goal is the further training of all persons employed in the care of the elderly (including nurses , geriatric nurses , physiotherapists , people who care for their relatives at home).

See also


  • * Berdes, Celia, Dawson Grace D., Zych, Adam A. eds. (1992). Geragogics: European research in gerontological education and educational gerontology . The Haworth Pres, New York, ISBN 1-56024-397-X .
  • Elisabeth Bubolz-Lutz, Eva Gösken, Cornelia Kricheldorff, Renate Schramek: Geragogy. Education and learning in the process of aging. The textbook. Kohlhammer, Stuttgart 2010, ISBN 978-3-17-021164-3 .
  • Hans Mieskes: Geragogy - your concept and its tasks within gerontology. In: Current Gerontology. Issue 1. Organ of the German Society for Gerontology and the Austrian Society for Geriatrics, pp. 279–283.
  • Hilarion Petzold: Géragogie - nouvelle approche de l'education pour l'agesse et dans l'agesse. In: Publication de St. Denis. 1, 1965, pp. 4–10 ( PDF; 175 kB).
  • Janina Steurenthaler: Dementagogy: encounter people with dementia in a new and holistic way. Springer VS, Wiesbaden 2013, ISBN 978-3-531-19834-7 , doi: 10.1007 / 978-3-531-19835-4 ( content).

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Otto Friedrich Bollnow: The old age. In: New Collection. Issue 5, 2nd year 1962, pp. 385–396 ( PDF).
  2. Hilarion Petzold: Géragogie - nouvelle approche de l'education et pour l'agesse dans l'agesse. In: Publication de St. Denis. 1, 1965, pp. 4-10.
  3. Hans Mieskes: Geragogy - pedagogy of old age and the elderly. In: Pedagogical Review. 24, 1970, pp. 89-101.
  4. Udo Hinze: Reflexive Gerontagogy. BoD – Books on Demand, 2002, Chapter: Gerontagogy vs. Geragogy. P. 17.