B.S. in Human Development and Family Science: Family Science
Study and learn about interactions of individuals, families and the broader environmental context in this online B.S. in Human Development and Family Science: Family Science degree program. Course work in the Human Development and Family Science (HDFS) department provides students with an ecological approach to the study of human development and families. Students gain an understanding of the development of children and adults and their interaction in the family and society. The family science option allows students to take a concentration of courses in human development, family science or family economics in preparation for careers in direct and support services for families. All undergraduate majors are required to complete a core set of courses for the department and for the option, but flexibility is provided by allowing students to select electives within the department to help them prepare for careers in which they are interested.
Each of the undergraduate options also includes a field experience component. All students are given the opportunity to work in a professional placement during their undergraduate program. This requirement enables students to apply their course work to a professional position as they prepare to move into important careers with children and families.
The Family Science option allows students to take a concentration of courses in human development, family science or family economics in preparation for careers in direct and support services for families. Each option offers the flexibility of a generalist program, but students may choose to focus on an area of specialization as well.
Career directions through HDFS can be divided into two general areas:
- Direct Service to Children and Families--community service worker, outreach worker, parent educator, gerontology outreach, extension agent, financial counselor, child life specialist.
- Support Service to Children and Families--program director for nursing or retirement facility, child care director, community and human service worker, consultant in human development, hospital-related services, researcher, child advocate, family life education. Some of the careers listed above require a planned minor or a double major.
View Human Development and Family Science Program Fact Sheet
Other careers require preparations beyond the bachelor's level. An HDFS degree is excellent preparation for students considering graduate work in counseling, family therapy or child and family development. If you are interested in a complementary graduate program, consider our online M.S. in Human Development and Family Science degree with options in Gerontology and Family Financial Planning. Both of these programs also have online graduate certificate programs available.
"I am a busy mom of three young children. Distance learning is the only way I could achieve my goal of obtaining a master's degree. NDSU has made the process much less stressful. I am able to work on my education on my own schedule."
- Angie, Fargo, ND
HDFS 462 Risk, Resilience & Competence in Families
Sample Plan of Study
HDFS Core Courses: (20 CREDITS)
- HDFS 135 Family Science (3 CREDITS)
- HDFS 230 Life Span Development (3 CREDITS)
- HDFS 250 Intro to Research Methods in CDFS (3 CREDITS)
- HDFS 353 Children, Families and Public Policy (3 CREDITS)
- HDFS 475 Children and Families Across Cultures (3 CREDITS)
- HDFS 496 Field Experience (5 CREDITS)
Family Science Core Courses: (9 CREDITS)
- HDFS 242 Couples, Marriages, and Families (3 CREDITS)
- HDFS 357 Personal & Family Finance (3 CREDITS)
- HDFS 462 Methods of Family Life Education (3 CREDITS)
HDFS Major Electives: (9 CREDITS)
HDFS Electives (9 CREDITS)
Must be 300-400 level and cannot include HDFS 496.
- HD&E 320 Professional Issues (1 CREDIT)
- Electives (45 CREDITS)
- A minor from outside the HDFS Department is required.
- General education requirements (40 CREDITS)
Total Credits: 122
Apply for admission
View Getting Started Guide
NDSU Department of Human Development and Family Sciences
NDSU Distance & Continuing Education
Phone: 1-800-726-1724 or 701-231-7015
NDSU Office of Admission