Human Development & Family Sciences (Ph.D.)
Graduate students in UConn’s Human Development and Family Sciences department study the diverse ways in which individuals develop within their social and familial contexts across the lifespan. They examine theory, develop and evaluate intervention/prevention programs, and engage in research to advance the field and, above all, to benefit the lives of individuals and families globally.
Research interests of the Department's faculty and graduate students currently cluster in five overlapping areas of specialization: adulthood, aging, and gerontology; child and adolescent development; couples, parents, and families; diversity and culture; and, health, wellbeing, and prevention.
Strengths of the UConn HDFS graduate program
- Multidisciplinary: Our faculty come from a range of disciplines and their research cuts across the lifespan and multiple contextual settings
- Individualized mentoring: Our student-centered advising model allows students to tailor their plan of study to meet their research interests and specific career goals in academic and/or applied settings
- Diversity and culture: Our graduate courses and many faculty’s programs of research consider diversity on a number of dimensions, including but not limited to gender identity, sexual identity and orientation, race and ethnicity, culture, disability/abilities, religion, economic status, disparities, and local community functioning and norms
- Health and wellbeing: At the core of all of our training and research is an interest in identifying processes and mechanisms for individuals’ and families’ health and wellbeing across the lifespan
- Quantitative and qualitative methods: The methodology curriculum includes courses in quantitative and qualitative methodology, providing students with the tools to address research questions with a range of techniques
- Applied/translational science: Students are trained to do research at the intersection of advancing basic scientific knowledge and developing knowledge that can be directly applied to real world settings. Our research works to understand individual and family development, and to see this knowledge used to improve the human condition