Gerontology: The Basics is a vibrant and compelling introduction to the human aging process. Examining the complex issues which surround the study of adult development and aging in a clear and accessible way, it introduces the reader to the socially constructed life-course stages of mid- and later-life and explores the biophysical, psychological and emotional experience of becoming and being "old person". Inviting the reader to consider what it means to be an older adult, it answers such questions as: What is Gerontology? How and why did aging become a focus for study? Who decides what is true about adult development and aging? Is there such a thing as a normal aging process? Does theory help us understand an individual’s experience? What is the future of Gerontology? With case studies, a glossary of terms and suggestions for further reading and research, Gerontology: The Basics is an essential read for anyone wishing to understand the multi-faceted study of aging and gerontology.