The Human Sciences interdisciplinary program allows for customizable educational experiences for undergraduate students at Texas Tech
The College of Human Sciences (COHS) offers a variety of degree pathways that ensure student success in many different careers. One of the most popular degrees is the Bachelor of Science in Human Sciences (HS). This interdisciplinary bachelor's degree allows students to create a degree plan that directly meets their personal, academic, and professional goals.
The Bachelor of Science in Human Sciences has taken on several forms over the years. Initially, the B.S. in Home Economics was created to allow students to complete an individualized general home economics degree. After being revamped and reformatted for the 21st century, the new degree was approved as the B.S. in Human Sciences by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) in September 2010. Ashlee Brown, assistant dean for undergraduate student services, says that the Human Sciences degree has been in an intentional and constant state of evolution.
"One initial development was to create a sequence of courses required throughout a student's degree," Brown said. "These sequenced courses are designed to assist our students through the process of integrating the culture and mission into their academic identity. It also showcases what it means to view their professional roles through the lens of human sciences and how to use the skills they have gained to improve and enhance the human condition."
Another successful development in the program was partnering with the Texas Tech School of Nursing in 2019. The College of Human Sciences was approved to offer students the opportunity to complete a dual degree between the B.S. in Human Sciences and the B.S. in Nursing. Dual degree students need to meet the necessary prerequisites for the nursing school, an additional 13 hours of courses specific to human sciences, be successfully admitted into the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) School of Nursing, and then graduate with two diplomas. The Human Sciences dual degree program allows pre-nursing students the opportunity to distinguish themselves from other applicants who chose the traditional STEM programs.
As the largest major enrollment in COHS, Human Sciences students are drawn to the customizable degree plan. The plan comprises a core curriculum and three areas of study, at least two of which are selected from any major or minor offered in the College of Human Sciences. While initially designed as a degree to help with student retention, the program has grown into the largest offered in the college, with high-achieving students pursuing graduate programs, health professions, teaching, and human wellness.
"The faculty and administrators responsible for the B.S. in Human Sciences are actively seeking new and innovative ways to meet the needs of our students, respond to problems in the community, and add to the research concerning holistic wellness," Brown said. "We are also excited to welcome the first cohort of M.S. in Human Sciences students to the college starting Spring 2023."
With the addition of the master's degree in Human Sciences, the college will also expand by offering accelerated bachelor to master's programs between the B.S. in Human Sciences and department-specific graduate programs in COHS. These programs will allow students to select areas of interest and focus from all over the multidisciplinary college to create new cross-discipline partnerships, research opportunities, and interventions to perennial problems previously unexplored. The future of the Human Sciences degree programs is created to educate students with a focus on relationships and impacting the community.
The College of Human Sciences represents all components of health and wellness. Curriculum and degree programs give practical experience in workplace settings outside the classroom and enable students to build confidence, skills, and professional contacts. COHS is dedicated to giving students opportunities to learn and serve their communities.
"The College of Human Sciences is health and wellness," Brown said. "As per the college's mission, our programs, individually and collectively, respond to the health and wellness needs affecting all aspects of individual, family, and community wellbeing. Health is not simply a concern for physical wellness, but is affected by financial wellness, developmental wellness, environmental wellness, etc."