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The mission of the Department of Human Development and Family Science is (a) to provide students with a comprehensive, integrated knowledge of families and individuals across the life span as appropriate preparation for careers in human services and/or graduate study, and (b) to conduct research on the variety of factors and contexts relevant to human and family development. The goal of the Department is to enhance the quality of life for individuals of all ages through teaching, research, and service in a manner consistent with the University's land grant mission. The Department recognizes the importance of an ecological approach to the study of human development and families, and utilizes a systemic approach in teaching, research, and service. Interactions of individuals and families with the economic, political, judicial, religious, and educational systems are emphasized. The Department also serves as a resource base for citizens of North Dakota in the area of individual and family life.

Areas of Study
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Master's
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Doctoral
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Master's
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Master's
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Master's
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
CFLE Approved
Last Updated

HDFS is a leader in applied interdisciplinary scholarship focused on reducing risk and enhancing resilience within individuals and among families across cultures and generations. The distinguishing feature of HDFS is the interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary integration of instruction, research and application between and among human development, family science, early childhood education, gerontology, and marriage and family therapy. Because integrative approaches are necessarily broad, the department's focus is on the many ways resilience may be discovered, developed, mastered, and maintained across human processes and contexts.

Areas of Study
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Master's
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Doctoral
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Master's
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Undergraduate
  • Early Childhood - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Doctoral
  • Family Science/Studies - Master's
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Master's
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
  • Therapy (Couples, Marriage, or Family) - Master's
CFLE Approved
Last Updated

The Department of Human Development & Family Studies focuses its teaching, research, and outreach activities on the well-being and healthy development of individuals and families over the full span of life, including dynamic relations within the family as well as the family's interactions with other social institutions. The Department's undergraduate and graduate programs present a multidisciplinary understanding of individual and family development and change over the life span. Students are oriented to the broad social, cultural, and historical contexts within which families function, and how context is reflected in developmental variations related to issues of diversity such as family structure, race, gender, class, and ethnicity. Students are exposed to the study of how social policies and various types of social services affect families, family members, and the wider contexts in which families reside. At the graduate level, the Department awards an M.A. and Ph.D. in Human Development and Family Studies.

Areas of Study
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Doctoral
  • Family Science/Studies - Master's
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Doctoral
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Master's
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
  • Therapy (Couples, Marriage, or Family) - Doctoral
  • Therapy (Couples, Marriage, or Family) - Master's
CFLE Approved
Last Updated

Human Development and Family Sciences is committed to ensuring the optimal development, health, and well-being of individuals and families across the life course. Our transformational research, excellence in instruction, and active community engagement make us leaders in the advancement and application of scientific knowledge toward innovative solutions to the pressing challenges that confront communities, families, and individuals today. HDFS is situated in an accredited College of Publics Health and Human Services which provides a rich context for research and learning about health and well-being. 

Areas of Study
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Doctoral
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Master's
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Undergraduate
  • Early Childhood - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Doctoral
  • Family Science/Studies - Master's
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
Last Updated

HDFS offers an interdisciplinary approach to individual and family development across the lifespan. As one of the premier departments of its kind, we focus on child and adolescent development, adult development and aging, biological aspects of human development, family studies, intervention research, and developmental research methods. The family studies emphasis focuses on the human family: its evolution, history, and function and on relationships among family members throughout the life cycle. Students study communication patterns, power, decision making, problem solving, and intergenerational relations. Students study links between individual and family behavior and the wider community, for example, the relationship among parental employment, family dynamics, and patterns of child development. Students also learn about family and social, economic, and race influences; gender relations; and cultural variation in family structure. Family studies is integrated in teaching and research with the other areas of the department, for example, combining family and developmental perspectives.

Areas of Study
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Master's
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Master's
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
Last Updated

The Department of Human Development at Washington State University is a multidisciplinary department devoted to understanding the nature of human development across the lifespan. Through our teaching, research, and outreach programs, we promote the healthy development of children, adults, and their families in the state of Washington and throughout the nation. We offer a B.A. degree in Human Development at the Vancouver and the Pullman campuses, as well as a B.A. in Human Development via distance. A Ph.D in Prevention Science is available on the Pullman, Vancouver and Spokane campuses.  Members of our faculty are involved in a range of research projects involving children and their families and in outreach activities through our youth and family extension programs. We run preschool programs on both the Pullman and Vancouver campuses. All undergraduate human development majors complete an internship to help prepare them for a career in the field or graduate study. Our graduates are employed in a variety of educational and social services settings throughout the U.S.

Areas of Study
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Development (Child, Human, or Family) - Undergraduate
  • Early Childhood - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
Last Updated

Human Ecology is an interdisciplinary department that offers a holistic systems approach to examine the interrelationships that individuals and families have with social, economic, and political factors and conditions. This student-centered, research intensive department offers a BSc in Human Ecology with a major in Family Ecology (minors in Aging, Child and Youth Studies, Community Diversity, Community Ecology, Community Nutrition, International Development), MSc in Aging, MSc in Family Ecology and Practice, and a PhD in Human Ecology (with streams in Aging and Children, Youth and Families). Undergraduate and graduate programs focus on individuals and families across the life course, and on the development and evaluation of policy and programs to enhance individual and family well-being. Research programs focus on understanding the physical, economic, and social aspects of aging with a focus on aging well, and on enhancing the health and well-being of children, youth, and families across the life course with an emphasis on vulnerable groups.

Areas of Study
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Community - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Doctoral
  • Family Science/Studies - Master's
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Master's
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
Last Updated

The Family and Child Studies Department provides students with a greater understanding of multiple ways of knowing families and children in various contexts. It enables students to critically analyze the literature and to keep abreast of trends in research. The faculty creates a learning environment that supports and encourages the development of forward thinking practitioners and educators who work with families and children in a variety of settings. The department of Family and Child Studies examines multiple ways of knowing families and individuals over the life course in various socio-cultural contexts. Power, diversity, and social justice are analyzed through an interdisciplinary and critical approach.

Areas of Study
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Master's
  • Child or Adolescent Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Early Childhood - Undergraduate
  • Family Science/Studies - Doctoral
  • Family Science/Studies - Master's
  • Family Science/Studies - Undergraduate
  • Older Adults (Gerontology) - Undergraduate
CFLE Approved
Last Updated