Professor, School of Nursing

Lucy Walker Honorary Term Professor of Gerontological Nursing

Room 313 Fagin Hall 418 Curie Blvd.


(215) 898-1316





Research Interests

Dr. Kagan's program of clinical research is centered on human experience and illness, with a focus on symptom experience for older adults particularly those who have cancer. Her second book - forthcoming from Penn Press in 2009 - is entitled Cancer in the Lives of Older Americans: Blessings and Battles. Dr. Kagan commonly examines the experience of cancer for older adults through narrative inquiry using head and neck cancer as a model of cancer in older adults. Her current explorations include a collaborative project to understand embodiment in younger and older individuals who have oral tongue cancer. Dr. Kagan welcomes undergraduate students, in particular, as collaborators in her research.

Selected Work

Kagan, S.H. Cancer in the Lives of Older Americans: Blessings and Battles. (Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2009).

Kagan, S. H. Special Needs of the Gero-Oncology Patient. Principles of Skin Care and the Oncology Patient (M. Haas and G.H. Moore Ed.). (Pittsburgh, PA: Oncology Nursing Society Press, Inc., 2009).

Kagan, S.H. & Krishna, B. Nursing Considerations in Head and Neck Cancer. Otolaryngology: Head and Neck Surgery (C. d'Souza, Editor-in-Chief Ed.). (India: Orient Longman Pvt. Ltd., 2009).

Teaching Fields

Dr. Kagan teaches students across the baccalaureate, masters and doctoral programs in the School of Nursing as well as offering lectures and preceptorships in the School of Medicine. She is the director of the Nursing Undergraduate Honors Program and the Penn-UK Study Abroad Programs in the School of Nursing. Dr. regularly teaches two undergraduate honors courses "Sweet Little Old Ladies and Sandwiched Daughters" and "Ageing, Beauty, and Sexuality". In addition, she directs the advanced qualitative methods course in the PhD program. Dr. Kagan teaches a course in comparative health systems and elder care in conjunction with the Departments of Community Medicine and Nursing Studies at the University of Hong Kong.

Faculty Bookshelf