Degree Programs

Undergraduate Program

The Human Development and Family Studies Department offers two undergraduate majors and one minor:

Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS)

  • This degree can lead students onto careers, graduate programs, or professional programs in any helping profession (non-profit work, healthcare/physical health, mental health, prevention and intervention, education, business, etc.)
  • Any CSU student can add the HDFS major. Please see the link for “Undergraduate Academic Advising and Appointments” to see how to add this major.

Early Childhood Education (ECE)

  • This degree offers the coursework required to obtain an early childhood education teaching license (pre-school through 3rd grade). Please talk with the HDFS advisors about the differences and similarities between an early childhood education degree and an elementary education degree.
  • This is a controlled major in which students must be admitted into the major based on an application process – please talk with a HDFS advisor for more information.

Gerontology Interdisciplinary Minor (GIM)

  • The Gerontology Interdisciplinary 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 offered on campus and online. See the link for “Gerontology Interdisciplinary Minor” for more information.

Bachelors of Science in Human Development and Family Studies

Is The HDFS Major For You?

  • Are you curious about the way human beings grow and develop?
  • Have you ever wondered how environmental and social factors affect physical, cognitive, and emotional development?
  • Are you interested in learning more about specific stages of human development such as infancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood and aging?
  • Does the study of family dynamics or the aging process intrigue you?
  • Have you ever thought about a career in early childhood education, in family counseling, or working with youth in various settings?
  • Would you like to work with hospitalized children to help reduce the stress of medical treatment on them and their families?

If your answer to any of these questions is "yes" then a major in Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) may be for you.

Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) is an interdisciplinary program focusing on the development of families and individuals across the life span. Students learn to identify factors that influence cognitive, emotional, social, and physical development through infancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood, and later adulthood in the contexts of culture and family.

The HDFS Major can be completed on campus or online. Students in the HDFS major select one to two concentrations out of five concentration options. The declared concentration(s) are listed on students' transcripts and thus indicate specialized training within the HDFS degree program.

Please note: ALL students wishing to complete a bachelor's degree in the Human Development and Family Studies Department will need to complete and pass a CCIC and NCIC background check. If you have questions regarding the background check, please contact a HDFS advisor.

Graduates from the program work in a variety of settings. These include youth services organizations; early childhood, elementary and parent education programs; health care settings; juvenile and adult corrections; family and community services; and long-term care facilities. Graduates are also well prepared to pursue an advanced degree in the behavioral and social sciences, or other professional programs. Students may complete this program on campus or online.

Bachelors of Science in Early Childhood Education

Is The ECE Major For You?

  • Are you curious about the way children grow and develop?
  • Have you ever wondered how environmental and social factors affect physical, cognitive, and emotional development?
  • Are you curious about development within the context of family, community, and culture?
  • Are you interested in learning more about specific stages of child development?
  • Are you interested in teaching children from infancy through age 8?
  • Have you ever considered becoming a childcare center administrator?

If your answer to any of these questions is "yes" then a major in Early Childhood Education (ECE) may be for you.

Early Childhood Education (ECE) is a competitive entry major focusing on the development of children from infancy through age 8 with early childhood education licensure and Director Qualifications. Students learn to identify factors that influence cognitive, emotional, social, and physical development through infancy and childhood in the contexts of culture and family.

Graduates from the program teach in settings such as public and private schools, Head Start, family childcare, or center childcare. Graduates are also well prepared to pursue additional teaching endorsements and advanced degrees.