Ambika Krishnakumar, Associate Professor, Chair
144 White Hall
Eunjoo Jung, Undergraduate Program Director, 315-443-5778
The Department of Human Development and Family Science is involved in the scientific investigation of children and families. Students engage in multidisciplinary learning about the challenges facing families and children across social, cultural, and contextual settings. In addition, students study the factors that promote strengths and resiliency to foster healthy families and children. Students not only learn in the classroom, they receive first-hand experience in the community as well. For example, seniors are involved in a 180-hour community practicum that allows them to apply the knowledge gained in the classroom to real life settings. As a result, students have a comprehensive understanding of children and families in theory and in practice.
Students in the 124 credit B.S. degree in Human Development and Family Science program pursue interests in one of four tracks of specialization: (a) Early Child Development, (b) Youth and Family Development, (c) Child Life Specialist, (d) Early Childhood Education (4+1). Core courses focus on child and youth development (i.e., early years, play, interpersonal competence, human sexuality) and family development (i.e., marriage, family systems, life span development, domestic violence). The department also offers minors in Human Development and Family Science , Child and Family Policy, and Mindfulness and Contemplative Studies.
Graduates pursue careers working with children and families in a variety of areas including early education and intervention programs, social service and mental health agencies, the juvenile justice system, youth programs, schools and parent and family services. Many students also pursue post baccalaureate degrees in fields such as social work, psychology, medicine, family law, counseling, health care, and education as well as human development and family science.
The Bernice M. Wright Child Development Laboratory School provides opportunities for research, teacher training, and community service. Founded as a model of the parent cooperative movement in early childhood education, the school includes parent involvement at the center of its mission. The school is staffed by both graduate and undergraduate students and offers a strong inclusive component that embraces the developmental and cultural perspectives of its children and families. Limited enrollment is open to both the University and local communities.
ProgramsBachelor of ScienceMinor