2018-2019 Undergraduate Course Catalog 
    Dec 11, 2023  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Human Development and Family Science, BS

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Eunjoo Jung, Associate Professor, Undergraduate Program Director, 144 H White Hall, 443-5778, ejung@syr.edu


Colleen Baish Cameron, D. Bruce Carter, Joseph P. Fanelli, Eunjoo Jung, Irene Kehres, Ambika Krishnakumar, Teresa MacDonald, Matthew Mulvaney, Kamala Ramadoss, Rachel Razza, Jaipaul L. Roopnarine, Merril Silverstein, Sara Vasilenko


Chandice Haste-Jackson, Internship Coordinator
Arlene Johnston, Office Coordinator
Kathy Rainone, Administrative Assistant


The Department of Human Development and Family Science (HDFS) is a dynamic interdisciplinary program that is informed by research and theory from the fields of anthropology, psychology, sociology, public policy, and education. We take a cross-cultural and life-span approach to the study of development across communities and contexts (e.g., families, schools, work, and hospitals). HDFS provides numerous opportunities for diverse career paths and advanced degree options. HDFS graduates are prepared to pursue careers as service providers, program administrators, human resource specialists in governmental and nongovernmental agencies serving children, youth, adults, and families. Additionally, graduates may work as advocates and researchers in educational institutions, health services, counselling and family intervention programs. HDFS is a popular major for students interested in careers in law, medical or health related fields.

Students enrolled in the B.S. in Human Development and Family Science not only learn in the classroom, they receive first-hand experience in the community as well. Students complete 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, youth, adults, and families in theory and in practice.

The 124 credit B.S. degree program provides students with a broad foundation covering a range of issues focusing on the healthy development of children, youth, adults, and families across cultural contexts. In addition to liberal arts courses, students are expected to complete 40 credits of Program Requirements.

Intra-University Transfers

Students who meet the following criteria will be considered for Intra-University Transfer and/or Declaration of Major in Human Development and Family Science (HDFS) on a rolling basis.

Intra-University Transfer into HDFS - Students currently enrolled in programs outside the David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics (Falk College) must meet the following requirements:
1. have a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or above;
2. have completed a minimum of 12 credit hours of academic coursework at Syracuse University;
3. be making satisfactory academic progress; and
4. have expressed academic and career interests in the area of human development and family science.

Declaring a major in HDFS - Students currently enrolled in Falk College interested in declaring HDFS as a major or those currently enrolled in other programs who are interested in declaring HDFS as a second major must meet the following requirements:

1. have a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or above;
2. have completed a minimum of 12 credit hours of academic coursework at Syracuse University;
3. be making satisfactory academic progress; and
4. have expressed academic and career interests in the area of human development and family science.

Students must first complete the HDFS Major Inquiry form  (http://bit.ly/HDFSTransfer) and schedule an appointment with the HDFS Director of Undergraduate Studies to discuss their interests in the major and their prospects for completing the HDFS major. The HDFS Director of Undergraduate Program will decide whether or not to approve the student’s request.

Upon approval, students should complete the appropriate form (IUT: http://registrar.syr.edu/wp-content/uploads/form-undergraduate-intra-university-transfer.pdf or Declaration of Major: http://registrar.syr.edu/wp-content/uploads/form-declaration-of-major.pdf ).

Students who are not accepted into the major may appeal the decision to the HDFS Undergraduate Committee. The decision of the HDFS Undergraduate Committee is final.

Student Learning Outcomes

1. Explain, discuss, and analyze principles of human development in families from diverse populations

2. Analyze and explain how research is utilized to understand human development and family processes across settings

3. Critically evaluate and assess practices across settings

4. Demonstrate competence in working ethically with persons across life span in diverse settings

College Requirements (1 credit)

Natural Science and Mathematics

Social Sciences (12 credits)

Humanities (12 credits)

See below for the ethics requirement guidelines

Program Requirements (40 credits)

Required Courses 31 credits consisting of the following five catagories:

  • Life Span Development (9 credits)
  • Family Science (9 credits)
  • Research (3 credits)
  • Cross-Cultural Perspectives (1 out of 2) (3 credits)
  • Internship (7 credits)

HDFS Electives (9 credits)

Human Development and Family Science Electives

Take 9 credits from the following list:

Ethics Requirement

Students must complete an approved ethic course (3 credits) chosen from the following list of courses: PHI 191  OR PHI 192   OR HTW 415  .These course may be applied as a humanities (PHI 191 or PHI 192) or a general elective (HTW 415)

Electives to Reach 124 Degree Applicable Credits

Students must complete a total of 124 degree applicable credits.  This includes a minimum of 62 credits of liberal arts and science courses.

Early Childhood Education Master’s Degree 4+1

Students who wish to be certified as early childhood educators (have the opportunity to pursue a master’s degree in early childhood special education (ECSE). After completing the child and family studies degree, qualified students may apply for graduate study in the School of Education at Syracuse University. Students enrolled in this degree program will receive a 25 percent reduction in their graduate tuition. Students desiring to pursue this option complete these specific liberal arts requirements:

  • two appropriate courses in college-level mathematics
  • two sciences with laboratories (physical sciences recommended);  
  •  one humanities course that is not arts-related or history
  •  one social science course that is not psychology or history
  • at least one class in history (which may count toward fulfilling liberal arts core requirements in the social sciences or humanities, depending on the course); and
  • an art history course (e.g. HOA or HOM course that would also meet a humanities requirement).

The Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) graduate program requires that undergraduate writing, mathematics, and laboratory sciences courses have grades averaging no less than a B- with no grade below a C. Other liberal arts course grades should be C or better. Students are required to demonstrate competency in a foreign language either by successfully completing the first year of college study in a language (e.g. 101 at Syracuse University) or by providing official documentation of successful completion of Level III of foreign language in high school. Interested undergraduate students should contact the School of Education about taking other courses that might help reduce the number of graduate credits for the program.

Interested students should work closely with their academic advisors to meet these requirements.

Total Credits: 124

Degree Awarded: BS

SU Abroad

The College, in cooperation with the Syracuse University Abroad strongly encourages students to take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad. Syracuse University abroad options include semester, summer, and short-stay programs.

Syracuse Abroad offers students the opportunity to participate in a program of study abroad in Santiago, Chile; London, England; Madrid, Spain; Strasbourg, France; Florence, Italy; Hong Kong, China; or Beijing, China. Syracuse University also builds strong overseas affiliations and partnerships, allowing students to be placed directly at other centers and universities.

No prior knowledge of a foreign language is required, with the exception of the Chile program, and students may choose from a variety of courses to fulfill requirements or elective credits for their program of study in the College. It is essential that students begin planning early for study abroad and work closely with their academic advisors.

For further information, contact the Office of Student Services in the David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics 300 MacNaughton Hall, 315-443-3144, or Syracuse University Abroad, 106 Walnut Place, 315-443-3471.

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