Pre-Conference Workshops

Pre-Conference Workshops are intensive, skill-developing sessions. Complement your Annual Scientific Meeting experience by signing up for one of these sessions.  

Pre-registration for all workshops is required. On-site registration for these sessions will be on a first-come, first-served basis. All workshop fees are nonrefundable. Continuing Education is not awarded for pre-conference workshops.

Registration Type

Fee Type   Amount
Full Day – Member   $185.00
Full Day – Student Member   $135.00
Full Day – Non-Member   $235.00
Full Day – Student Non-Member   $175.00
Half Day – Member   $105.00
Half Day – Student Member   $80.00
Half Day – Non-Member   $130.00
Half Day – Student Non-Member   $95.00



Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 12 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
National Study of Older LGBTQ Americans: Aging with Pride
Chair: Karen Fredriksen Goldsen
Faculty: Charles Emlet, Hyun-Jun Kim, Sean Cahill, Charles Hot-Ellis, Lisa Krinsky
Health disparities among LGBTQ older adults are of great concern. For the first time, Healthy People 2020 identifies the health of older adults in the LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) community as a national health priority. Yet, few studies include sexual orientation and gender identity and expression questions or measures of key risk and protective factors. The NIH/NIA-funded National Study of Older LGBTQ Americans: Aging with Pride provides a unique opportunity to share empirical knowledge of the science and effective strategies for research with this demographically diverse population. This half-day interactive workshop includes three components: 1) best practices for the ascertainment of sexual orientation and gender identity and expression with older adults, and measurement of other key risk and protective factors; 2) effective sampling and data collection strategies used with this population; and, 3) publicly available data with LGBTQ older adults and expert consultation on individual research studies.

Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 12 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Using the National Health and Aging Trends Study (NHATS) in Analyses of Disability and Aging
Chair: Judith Kasper
Faculty: Maureen Skehan, Jennifer Wolff, Vicki Freedman, Jhn Mulcahy
The National Health and Aging Trends Study (NHATS) is an annual, longitudinal study of functioning in later life. Funded by NIA, NHATS enables analyses of disability trends and trajectories in people ages 65 and older. This workshop will provide an overview of the study design and content of NHATS and the National Study of Caregiving (NSOC). The workshop also will cover topics such as content on disability, caregiving, and opportunities for data linkages. Presenters will review user resources including annotated instruments, content documentation, and technical papers. There will be time to answer users’ questions and provide analysis advice.

Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 12 pm  •  Fee: $0, registration required.
Geroscience and the Hallmarks of Aging
Chairs: Felipe Sierra, Rafael DeCabo
Faculty: Marissa Schafer, Saul Villeda, Viviana Perez, Johan Auwerx, David Glass, Danica Chen, Meng Wang
Geroscience is an important approach to translate the basic findings in aging biology into interventions that might profit elderly patients.  The aim is to delineate the cellular and molecular mechanisms linking aging with chronic diseases and conditions. The long-term goal is to develop interventions that target aging, the major and common risk factor for most of these diseases and conditions. The major molecular and cellular underpinnings of aging were described in two seminal papers in 2013 and 2014, and these identified a set of 7-9 hallmarks or pillars of aging. In many cases, interventions that modify these pillars result in resistance or delay of chronic diseases and conditions in animal models. This pre-conference will focus on re-visiting some of the progress done in the last 5 years in terms of some of these hallmarks.

Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 12:00 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
How to Implement the 4-step KAER Process to Detecting Cognitive Impairment and Diagnosing Dementia Earlier
Mike Simmons
Katie Maslow, Stephen L Hines, Gregory A. Hinrichsen, Joshua Chodosh, Ted Johnson, Cynthia M. Carlsson, Jody Krainer
Cognitive impairment in older adults is severely underdetected.  The KAER process - kickstart the conversation, assess for cognitive impairment, evaluate for dementia, and refer for community resources - is the foundation for a toolkit that provides tips for communicating about brain health,  clinically-relevant measurement instruments for detecting CI, links to clinical practice guidelines for conducting diagnostic evaluations for dementia, and a comprehensive listing of community resources.  This program will review how to use the kit and provides attendees an opportunity to  create a customized action plan for their own practice setting.

Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Stress and Resilience: Concepts and Measures for Minority Aging Research          
Chair: Anita Stewart
Faculty: Steven Wallace, Anthony Ong, Keith Whitfield, Irena Stepanikova, Jeanne Teresi, David Almeida, Tara Grunewald, Lis Nielsen

A NIA/Resource Centers on Minority Aging Research (RCMAR) Workshop on Promoting Innovative Research in Minority Aging

Co-Sponsored by: The Gerontological Society of America’s (GSA) Minority Issues in Gerontology Committee; AARP and the Research on Quality of Care (RESQCARE) Interest Group

Supported by grant R13AG023033 from NIH/National Institute on Aging (NIA)

This workshop will describe the main approaches to defining and measuring stress and resilience, identify the value of including stress and resilience measures in minority aging research, discuss how to incorporate stress and resilience into research questions analysis and dissemination and explain sources of data and measurement tools on stress and resilience. The workshop will also include a breakout session, moderated by the speakers, where participants can discuss useful approaches for including stress measures in their own research. Because of the importance of standard self-report measures that can be broadly applied in disparities research, we focus primarily on self-report measures, although we will also discuss biomarkers as an alternative measurement approach.

Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Age-Friendly Environments – Applying Design Principles From the Classroom to the Conference Venue
Chair: Birgit Pianosi
Faculty: Alan De La Torre, Margaret Perkinson, Melissa Cannon
Age-Friendly Communities (AFC) serve individuals of all ages and abilities and create greater opportunities for intergenerational linkages and cooperation. In this workshop, participants are introduced to AFC course material from several universities in North America and are offered ways to use content, theories, and community-based participatory research in their own courses. Presenters will guide participants through the use of the material, provide examples of usage, and assist participants in adjusting course material to their own needs. Additionally, using a “train the trainers” model, participants will gain hands-on experience applying their knowledge to assessing the conference venue in Boston for its age friendliness. In closing, participants will report back recommendations to the larger group. This workshop is intended for older adults, current students and faculty members of all ages, teaching and graduate assistants, and community representatives interested in learning and teaching about age-friendly communities.

Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
GSA Mentoring and Career Development Technical Assistance Workshop
Chair: Patricia Heyn
Faculty: Shani Bardach, J Taylor Harden, Keith Whitfield, Carmen Sceppa, Charlene Quinn, Ruth Dunkle
This unique Mentoring and Career Development Technical Assistance Workshop program is tailored to suit the needs of trainees from diverse backgrounds. This exceptional educational and career development opportunity supports professional training and growth among GSA early career members. The workshop content was designed to provide trainees with diverse professional experiences and specialized gerontological education and mentoring related to career development. This workshop has the goal to empower trainees for successful career development and strategic planning. Comprehensive information related to career development, mentoring, and professional networks will be discussed with the goal to produce a successful and empowered diverse workforce to contribute to the future of aging research.

Funding for this conference was made possible, in part by R13 AG062151 from the National Institute on Aging. ‘The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention by trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

Wednesday, November 14  •  8 am to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Research that Matters: Overcoming Constraints of Later Life Work
Chair: Jacquelyn James
Faculty: Marcia Pitt-Catsouphes, Kerry Hannon, Sara Rix, Christina Matz-Costa, Cal Halvorsen, Nancy Morrow-Howell
Research that Matters: Overcoming the Constraints of Later Life Work  This workshop aims to (1) examine some of the constraints older workers face in their efforts to obtain or retain employment and (2) identify strategies for overcoming those constraints for people who either want to or need to work in later life.  Toward that end, the workshop will feature a set of papers generated by a fall meeting of the Sloan Research Network on Aging & Work (the Fall Institute) during which presenters collaborated on a set of proposed pilot projects, discussed revisions, developed insights, and formed collaborations. Findings from those projects, now completed, will be presented and discussed in two panels.  The second half of the day will then be structured similar to that of the Fall Institute whereby a set of proposals for new work will be heard, discussed, and built upon among both new and returning participants.

Wednesday, November 14  •  12:30 to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
ReFraming Aging: A New Approach to Change the Public’s Misperceptions of Aging
GSA and seven colleague organizations have championed the development of a new initiative to “reframe” the public perception of aging in the United States so that it aligns with the reality of aging as demonstrated by research.  A research program conducted by the FrameWorks Institute has resulted in the development of multiple strategies and tools for changing the “conventional wisdom” around aging.  Participants will be introduced to a set of empirically tested interventions for presenting information. These tools offer different ways to “reframe” aging and have been shown to “open doors” to more productive public thinking. Attendees will learn about the research supporting the development of these tools and will apply new metaphors in shaping a more productive dialog. A new set of resource materials to support this process will be showcased.  Participants will take this new story “out for a spin”, working in small groups to apply recommendations to frame-up messages.  

Wednesday, November 14  •  12:30 pm to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Tools for Building Population Health Models to Better Understand Health Outcomes Among Elderly Populations: Incorporating secondary and contextual data resources
Chair: James McNally
Faculty: John Marcotte, Kathryn Lavender
Population Health models have increased interest in contextual and administrative data to improve understanding of health outcomes among individuals and groups; particularly the elderly population. A primary resource for contextual information are data repositories such as NACDA at the University of Michigan. The workshop will discuss the emergence of Population Health models as a research tool and the resources available at NACDA to build Population Health models. The workshop will provide guidance on how to identify, link and incorporate external contextual data sets into analysis files, and an overview of the appropriate statistical models for analyzing multilevel data and measuring variations in health outcomes among the elderly. The workshop will discuss ways to incorporate NACDA data resources for population health models within a clinical or medical setting; ensuring compliance with HIPAA, human subjects protections and respondent confidentiality. The workshop offers information to individuals from biomedical and social research settings.

Wednesday, November 14  •  12:30 pm to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Dementia Care Practice Recommendations for Long-Term Care and Community Based Settings
Chair: Douglas Pace
Faculty: Sam Fazio, Katie Maslow, Sheryl Zimmerman, Maggie Calkins, Sheila Molony, Karen Hirschman, Susan Glister
The Alzheimer's Associations Dementia Care Practice Recommendations were released in a supplement to The Gerontologist in February 2018.  This workshop will discuss the evidence-based recommendations on person-centered care, detection and diagnosis, assessment and care planning, medical management, information, education and support, ongoing care, care of behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia,  workforce, therapeutic environment and safety, and transitions and coordination of care.  The workshop will discuss how the recommendations can be used to increase the quality of care and quality of life for people with Alzheimer's and related dementia who access services in long-term care and community-based settings.

Wednesday, November 14  •  12:30 to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Research Priorities in Caregiving Summit: Advancing Family-Centered, Collaborative Care
Chair: Theresa Harvath
Faculty: Carolina Apesoa-Varano, Katherine Kim, Elena Siegel, Heather M. Young, Janice Bell, Jennifer Mongoven
One in five American households is involved in a wide range of caregiving activities that vary in intensity. Achieving optimal outcomes for this vulnerable population requires advancing the knowledge needed to improve the quality of care delivered by families, health professionals, and community programs. In response to a recommendation of the National Academy of Sciences’ Families Caring for an Aging America report, thought leaders in aging and caregiving assembled in March 2018 to identify priority caregiving interventions that take into account, in part, diverse populations and settings, care across the trajectory, the heterogeneity of caregiving and technology-based interventions. The goal of this workshop is to bring together gerontological researchers to further refine the research priorities and develop an action plan that will improve access and reduce barriers to optimal caregiving.

Wednesday, November 14  •  12:30 pm to 4:30 pm  •  Fee: See chart above.
Fulfilling the Promise of Longevity: The Personal Determinants of Health
Chair: Eric Kim, David Martin
Faculty: Laura Kubzansky, Andrew Steptoe, Charlotte Yeh, Victor Strecher, Louise Hawkley, Daniel Russel;, David Martin, Catherine Alicia Georges
A modern definition of health can be articulated as “The ability to withstand life’s challenges.” This definition is more actionable than the older World Health Organization definition of “A state of well-being.” If we define health this way, then resiliency becomes a central concept. A psychosocial clinical model we refer to as Aging Strong 2020 envisions resiliency as being supported by such characteristics as a sense of purpose in life, an abiding sense of optimism, and maintaining social connectedness (mitigating loneliness and social isolation). This workshop convenes a panel of thought leaders in each of the above domains to critique this psychosocial clinical model, to guide further research efforts, and ultimately to craft clinical interventions.

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