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Human Development and Family Studies

Undergraduate Studies Overview

For many years, the Department of Human Development and Family Studies has ranked as one of the top programs of its type in the country. HDFS has a unique and interdisciplinary focus on applied development across the lifespan in multiple contexts including the family contexts. HDFS students acquire a broad knowledge of family interaction and family dynamics so that they may understand and work with today’s families as they continue to change and diversify.

Undergraduate Studies Overview

Internships and Field Placements

Internships and field placements in the Lubbock area are available as part of the HDFS degree plan; our Child Development Research Center and Early Head Start program provide opportunities to observe and interact with young children and their families. For the observation of young children, a multimillion dollar expansion of the CDRC has provided many state-of-the-art observation rooms for lab students. Students also have the opportunity to work in social service agencies that offer help with marital discord, child abuse, alcoholism, and challenges associated with aging populations. These placements provide training and practical experience, adding weight to a resume as well as community contacts and references.

Career Options

The HDFS degree is excellent preparation for many occupations that involve human services delivery. Our graduates are frequently hired as caseworkers or administrators by agencies such as the Children’s Protective Services, the Child Advocacy Center, Ronald McDonald House, Mental Health and Mental Retardation, and adoption services. Career possibilities also include teaching family life education in schools, churches, the YMCA, YWCA, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and other United Way agencies. Graduates work as counselors at residential camps and children’s homes and as church youth ministers. They are also well trained for business management positions that involve customer relations skills.

In addition to the general HDFS major, our department supports two certification programs for those who desire a teaching career. The Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood offers a foundation for certification as teachers of young children from 3 years of age through grade 6. The Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies with teacher certification in Family and Consumer Sciences Education prepares students to teach in grades 8-12.

Graduate Study

HDFS graduates with strong academic records often enter graduate programs as the first step toward a career in higher education or to attain advanced qualification in family-related fields such as psychology, social work, religious education or counselor education. Allied health fields and legal mediation services are also possible options for post-baccalaureate study and future careers. Graduate programs in HDFS offer Master’s and Doctoral Specializations in several areas of Applied Development, working with a competent and productive faculty.

Degree Plans and Course Information

For more information on this program, please contact the HDFS Department at 806.742.3000.