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Developmental and Family Science

The Department of Human Development and Family Studies has developed a new major particularly for students whose interests include exploring the area of Human Development and Family Science and developing skills in research. The Developmental and Family Science curriculum is designed to provide students with a strong theoretical background in human development and family science and basic research skills. The Capstone Experience will include six credits of mentored research in the student’s area of choice under the supervision of a HDFS faculty member, as well as at least one senior seminar course. Students who may be particularly interested in this major include: (1) students who are interested in working in a research position in a field related to human development and/or family sciences; (2) students whose educational goal includes graduate study in human development or family studies; (3) students who plan to double major with a related area such as psychology; and (4) students who desire a human development/family science area as preparation for medical studies or graduate work in a health related field.  

With the help of their academic advisors, students select courses to meet the requirements of the major and their individual interests and needs. 


Developmental and Family Science majors take the following types of HDFS courses. (Not a complete list of all required or available courses.)

  • Introduction to Family Processes 
  • Introduction to Human Development 
  • Diversity in Family Life
  • Research Design and Program Evaluation
  • Families and Health
  • Child Development
  • Adult Development
  • Adolescent Development
  • Stresspoints in Contemporary Families
  • Sexuality and Family Life
  • Senior Seminar
  • Mentored Research