Students in classroom

Human Development and Family Studies

Human Development and Family Studies

This major integrates practical and academic experiences to provide general education background, a knowledge base in life span and family development, and a core of professional skills that may be applied in program planning and service delivery activities.

There are two HDFS program options:

Adult Development and Aging Services Option

This option is designed to prepare students for a wide variety of service roles in mental health facilities, nursing homes and other institutions for the aged, area agencies on aging, public welfare and family service agencies, women's resource centers, human relations programs, employee assistance programs, and customer services and consumer relations programs in business and industry. An approved field experience in any of a wide variety of settings that serve adults, the aged, and their families, is required for this option.

Children, Youth, and Family Services Option

This option is designed to prepare students for service roles in preschools, day care centers, hospitals, institutional and community programs for emotionally disturbed, abused or neglected children and adolescents, as well as a variety of public welfare and family service agencies. An approved field experience in a children, youth, or family services setting is required for this option.

Fast-track Option

This program has a recommended academic plan that will enable you to complete all required courses by taking classes during a summer session. Some courses will be offered in the evenings, on Saturdays, and online to better accommodate students' busy schedules.

For more information and to obtain a copy of the fast-track recommended academic plan, contact the program coordinator.

Career Opportunities

A variety of career opportunities are available to students who earn an associate degree in Human Development and Family Studies. Working parents, dual-career families, new family structures, and an growing elderly population have increased the demand for professional practitioners who can respond to the increasing needs of each of these segments.

Graduates may find employment as:

  • Adult daycare assistant
  • Alcohol or drug abuse counselor
  • Case management aide
  • Community outreach worker
  • Community support worker
  • Daycare center supervisor
  • Gerontology aide
  • Health program assistant
  • Life skill assistant
  • Mental health aide
  • Social work assistant
  • Social service assistant

 

For more information about the Human Development and Family Studies degree program, contact:

Ms. Anne Mercuri
Program Coordinator
570-385-6083
aem141@psu.edu