This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

An Examination of the Perceptions of Older Americans on Successful Aging and Adult Education Programs to Meet their Aging Needs in Southeast Alabama




Cobb, Ileeia

Type of Degree



Education Foundation, Leadership, and Technology


The purpose of this study was to examine the personal perceptions of older Americans in regards to the aging process and the characteristics of successful aging. In addition, the study aimed to determine individual perceptions of adult education programs and resources necessary in aging successfully. The study examined current resources, services and adult education programs through surveys from an individual perspective regarding successful aging. Research obtained addressed the educational issues of older Americans and provided recommendations for adult education programs that most appropriately meet the aging needs of the elderly population. Findings from the Successful Aging research study revealed that a majority of older Americans perceive mental health issues as more important than physical issues. Survey participants contended there is a need for better appropriation, accountability, and allocation of current funding for services, programs, and resources. Almost all participants acknowledged interaction with friends and family, the ability to remain active mentally as well as physically, independent, and the autonomy to make decisions about their own aging needs as arguably the most significant distinctions which assist in aging successfully. Additionally, the study provides fundamental data and research in their field of gerontology to assist stakeholders with future strategic planning of services, programs, and resources for older Americans which most appropriately and adequately equipment them in aging successfully.