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Thanatology, Study of Death & Dying

Certificate of Completion | TS91

Program Overview

This program aims to promote awareness and understanding of death and how it affects individuals. Courses in the program focus on grief and bereavement issues, communication strategies and religious philosophies of dying and death from the perspective of both the dying and the bereaved. Graduates of this unique program will have the skills and experience to better understand, support and care for those facing or coping with death. The program is ideal for individuals who work with the terminally ill or their families and for those who provide support or assistance to those affected by death including police officers, teachers, paramedics, social workers and employees in hospitals, hospices, and long term care facilities. These courses would also help family, friends and caregivers of the dying or deceased cope with and manage death.

Curriculum

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Course Name 2022/2023 Academic Year 2023/2024 Academic Year 2024/2025 Academic Year
Compulsory Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb
THAN 001: Introduction to Thanatology
THAN 002: Religious Beliefs, Traditions and Customs of Death
THAN 003: Mourning, Grief & Bereavement: Reactions and Responses to Death
THAN 004: Coping with Death: Counselling, Support Groups and Alternative Therapies
THAN 005: Learning from Death and Dying

Compulsory Courses

THAN 001 Introduction to Thanatology
  Start Date: January 2023  
This course introduces students to thanatology; the study of death and dying. Students will develop an understanding of the broad, interdisciplinary nature of thanatology and will explore personal attitudes and experiences of death. Current issues and topics in thanatology such as near death experiences, death in the arts and media and the business of the funeral industry will also be explored.

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THAN 002 Religious Beliefs, Traditions and Customs of Death
  Start Date: January 2023  
This course will explore attitudes towards death and the death rituals and ceremonies of world religious traditions including Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Buddhism. Students will also explore the religious attitudes and beliefs concerning immortality and life after death.

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THAN 003 Mourning, Grief & Bereavement: Reactions and Responses to Death
  Start Date: January 2023  
This course examines reactions and responses to death from a variety of perspectives. Students compare anticipated responses to death as determined by an individual’s relationship to the deceased. Other factors influencing the grief response such as age, gender and manner of death are also considered.

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THAN 004 Coping with Death: Counselling, Support Groups and Alternative Therapies
  Start Date: January 2023  
This course introduces various coping strategies for individuals experiencing grief and loss. Students examine the mourning process; they survey different counselling theories and approaches and identify groups and organizations dedicated to grief and bereavement issues. In addition, emerging trends such as art therapy, journalling and online communities are presented.

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THAN 005 Learning from Death and Dying
  Start Date: January 2023  
In this capstone course, students integrate learning from other courses in the program to develop an understanding of the role of death and dying, grief and bereavement in modern society. Inspirational readings and personal narratives offer practical insight and powerful life lessons that will assist students of thanatology in providing support to individuals facing or coping with death and will better prepare them to confront their own mortality.

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Contact Us

Humber Continuous Professional Learning Social & Community Services
416.675.6622 ext. 4554
cplcommunityservices@humber.ca


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