Undergraduate Program

Human Development and Family Studies Major

This program can be completed on campus or online. In addition to courses in the All University Core Curriculum, students complete the human development and family studies content, foundational and experiential learning requirements and, with the assistance of an academic advisor, select and complete courses towards one or two concentrations. Additionally, students choose support courses and electives that reflect their future career aspirations. Through this coursework and supervised field experience, students gain skills in observation, needs assessment, program development and implementation, and social policy information as these relate to diverse populations. In accordance with University guidelines regarding the outcome assessment of all students, seniors complete a capstone seminar. This is designed to allow students the opportunity to demonstrate their skills in oral and written communication, principles of human development and family studies, research methodology, and the professional skills necessary in human services settings.

The curriculum prepares students to work with individuals and families in a broad range of contexts. While HDFS students are exposed to the principles of development across the lifespan, each student also chooses at least one, and no more than two, concentrations in order to gain additional knowledge specific to future individual career aspirations.

HDFS Core Courses

Note: All of the HDFS courses and concentration courses require a C or better. The All University Core Curriculum (AUCC) requirements plus university credit and GPA requirements must also be met.

HDFS Content Courses:

  • HDFS 310 (3) INFANT AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT IN CONTEXT
  • HDFS 311 (3) ADOLESCENCE/ EARLY ADULT DEVELOPMENT IN CONTEXT
  • HDFS 312 (3) ADULT DEVELOPMENT/ MIDDLE AGE AND AGING

HDFS Foundational Courses:

These course requirements are new starting FA 2016. Continuing HDFS students should meet with their HDFS advisor if they have questions about their requirements.

  • HDFS 334 (3) FAMILY AND PARENTHOOD ACROSS THE LIFE CYCLE
  • HDFS 375 (3) LIFESPAN PREVENTION AND INTERVENTION SCIENCES
  • HDFS 402 (3) COUPLE AND FAMILY STUDIES
  • HDFS 434 (3) RISK AND RESILIENCE ACROSS THE LIFESPAN

HDFS Experiential Learning Courses:

  • HDFS 277 (1) PROFESSIONAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT I
  • HDFS 350 (3) APPLIED RESEARCH METHODS
  • HDFS 477 (1) PROFESSIONAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT II
  • HDFS 488 (5-8) FIELD PLACEMENT (OR COGNATE)
  • HDFS 492 (3) SEMINAR-PROGRAM PROPOSAL DEVELOPMENT

HDFS Concentration Courses:

  • Please read the concentrations page for more information.
  • 15 credits from student's chosen concentration (12 upper division credits; 9 HDFS prefix credits)
  • Concentration choices (must pick one concentration, may pick up to two concentrations):
    • Human Development and Family Studies Concentration
    • Early Childhood Professions Concentration
    • Pre-Health Professions Concentration
    • Prevention and Intervention Sciences Concentration
    • Leadership and Entrepreneurial Professions Concentration
  • Note: Students who were HDFS majors prior to Fall 2015 may choose a concentration, or they may choose to take career interest courses under the previous program of study instead (at least 14 credits).

HDFS also offers three options that lead to licensure, a certificate, or a minor:

  • Early Childhood Education Major: For students interested in Early Childhood Education Major (leads to teaching licensure):
    • We highly recommend students to declare the HDFS major first and then talk with a HDFS advisor about the application process for the Early Childhood Education Major.
  • Director Qualifications: HDFS students can choose to take courses to then apply for the State of Colorado Director Qualifications. Students can plan to take the appropriate courses through the HDFS Major, the Early Childhood Professions Concentration, and electives.
    • Students in the Early Childhood Education Major complete all of the courses to apply for the Director Qualification in their program of study.
  • Gerontology Interdisciplinary Minor: Students interested in careers in adulthood and aging may consider a Gerontology Interdisciplinary Minor. The minor helps students to develop an understanding of the aging process, including the biological, psychological and social aspects of adult development and aging. This minor is supported through funding from Columbine Health Systems.

Additional Information about the HDFS Major:

  • A complete HDFS Curriculum Checksheet and course lists for each of the 5 Concentrations are available.
  • Those interested in completing the HDFS Degree online may explore that option.
  • Those interested in applying to the Early Childhood Education (ECE) Major should review the requirements for that major and follow the ECE Curriculum Checksheet.
  • Cognate Information: In consultation with their advisor, students may choose to petition to take a Cognate (a minimum of 3 upper division courses for a minimum of 9 credits) in lieu of HDFS 488. A Cognate is an integrated academic or research experience, planned with an academic advisor and approved by the Director of Undergraduate Advising and the Undergraduate Programs Chair. Specific courses or blocks of courses assist in the preparation for clearly identified career goals or directions. Students must fill out and submit to their advisor the Petition for Cognate Approval form.