Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. (University College)

Program Code: HFSUC_BS

Program Description

This major is a multidisciplinary program that examines the development of individuals and families across the life span. HDFS prepares graduates for professional, managerial, or scientific roles in health and human services professions, in public and nonprofit agencies, and in business and industry, as well as for advanced professional or graduate study. Students obtain a broad background in individual and family development across the life span. Courses emphasize biological, psychological, social/cultural, and economic aspects of development as well as applied skill development. We strive for our curriculum (and the experienced and opportunities we extend to students) to foster cultural humility and highlight diverse characteristics, contexts and considerations that impact individuals, families, and communities.

Two options are available within the major:

  1. Human Development and Family Science Option
  2. Developmental Science for Health Professions Option

All students pursuing the HDFS B.S. are guided to complete a capstone experience customized to their interests. Capstones may include approved field experiences (internships), guided research experiences/projects, and advanced coursework selected to align with individual student interests.

Human Development and Family Science Option

Available at the following campuses: Altoona, Brandywine, DuBois, Fayette, Harrisburg, Mont Alto, Scranton, Shenango, University Park, World Campus, York

This option focuses on the acquisition and application of scientific knowledge about development and family functioning across the life span for the purposes of enhancing personal and family development. Courses emphasize:

  1. understanding the biological, psychological, and social development across the life span, and the structuring and functioning of families;
  2. understanding basic theoretical and methodological issues; and
  3. the development of applied skills in intervention and evaluation, prevention, and in the formulation of social policy.

Students in this option often pursue internships in service settings that work with children, youth, and/or adults. Typical employment settings include preschools, daycare centers, hospital programs for children, youth, and families, institutional and community mental health programs for individuals and families, programs for abused or neglected children and adolescents, women's resource centers, human resources programs, employee assistance programs, nursing homes, area agencies on aging and other community settings for older adults, and public welfare and family service agencies. This option also provides preparation for advanced training in careers in developmental or family research, teaching at a college or university, or for professional careers that require graduate training. Typical postgraduate pursuits of students completing this option include graduate study in human development, family studies, psychology, or sociology, or advanced professional training in psychology, law, behavioral health, counseling or social work, or other programs related to services for individuals and families.

Developmental Science for Health Professions Option

Available at the following campuses: Altoona, Brandywine, DuBois, Fayette, Mont Alto, Scranton, Shenango, University Park, York

This option is designed for students interested in focusing on human development/developmental science as a foundation to pursue health-related post graduate studies or work careers. This option guides students to acquire and apply scientific knowledge about human development (and family functioning) across the life span; emphasizing understanding biological, psychological, and social development across the life span. Additional coursework focuses on health across contexts. Students also select science foundation courses to complement their study of development across the lifespan and align with their career/post-graduate study interests. Typical postgraduate pursuits of students completing this option include graduate or professional studies in health-related areas (e.g. pediatrics, adolescent medicine, geriatrics, family medicine, psychiatry).

What is Human Development and Family Studies?

Penn State's Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) program prepares students for careers across a wide range of human service, healthcare, and helping professions. The HDFS degree is grounded in research-based knowledge on the psychological, biological, social, cultural, and economic influences that impact the well-being of individuals, families, and communities across the lifespan. HDFS coursework guides students to develop skills for working with and caring for diverse individuals and groups through emphasizing mindfulness, compassion, diversity, equity, advocacy and inclusion. Students take courses on infancy, childhood, and adolescent development, transitioning and thriving in adulthood, and healthy aging. Classroom experiences are supplemented by a range of engaged learning opportunities, including internships, research participation, and community partnerships through which HDFS students acquire skills preparing them for impactful careers. The program's flexible curriculum allows academic pathways and engagement experiences to be customized to align with students’ career goals.

You Might Like This Program If...

  • You are passionate about pursuing work focused on improving the lives and wellness of individuals, families, and communities.
  • You are interested to learn about individual, family, community, and social factors influencing development as well as evidence-based practices that promote the cognitive, social, physical, and emotional well-being of children, adults, families, organizations, and communities.
  • You are enthusiastic to use flexible degree requirements and integrated opportunities to pursue career exploration, experiential and engaged learning, and skill development specialized to your specific career goals.

Entrance to Major

In order to be eligible for entrance to this major, a student must:

  1. attain at least a C (2.00) cumulative grade-point average for all courses taken at the University; and
  2. have at least third-semester classification.

READ SENATE POLICY 37-30: ENTRANCE TO AND CHANGES IN MAJOR PROGRAMS OF STUDY

Degree Requirements

For the Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development and Family Studies, a minimum of 120 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 45
Electives 12-18
Requirements for the Major 60-67

3-4 of the 45 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes: 3-4 credits of GQ courses.

Per Senate Policy 83.80.5, the college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of coursework in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. 

Requirements for the Major

A grade of C or better is required for all courses in the major. To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn at least a C grade in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

Common Requirements for the Major (All Options)

Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
HDFS 216Thoughtful Communication for Navigating Human Interactions and Relationships3
HDFS 301Values and Ethics in Health and Human Development Professions3
HDFS 311Human Development and Family Studies Interventions3
HDFS 312WEmpirical Inquiry in Human Development3
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 3 credits from the following courses in Introduction to Human Development and Family Science:3
Introduction to Human Development and Family Studies Keystone/General Education Course
¿Helping People:¿ Introduction to Understanding Social Problems & How to Help Keystone/General Education Course
Select 6 credits from the following courses in Foundations of Lifespan Human Development:6
Infant and Child Development Keystone/General Education Course
Adolescent Development Keystone/General Education Course
Adult Development and Aging Keystone/General Education Course
Select 3 credits from the following courses in Family Foundations:3
Family Development
Family Development
Sociology of the Family Keystone/General Education Course
Select at least 3 credits from the following courses in Statistics/Quantitative Skills:3-4
Analysis and Interpretation of Statistical Data in Education Keystone/General Education Course
Quantitative Skills for Human Services Keystone/General Education Course
Elementary Statistics Keystone/General Education Course
For the Career Development and Experiential Learning Capstone, select 15 credits from one of the following pathways:15
Traditional Capstone Internship
Professional Development and Preparation for Internship Experience
Internship: Advanced Experience (9 credits)
Internship: Advanced Project
Modified Internship (Option only available with department approval)
Professional Development and Preparation for Internship Experience
Internship: Advanced Project
Professional Practicum in Human Services (3 credits)
6 Additional Credits with Department Approval
Experiential Mix
Professional Development and Preparation for Internship Experience
Internship: Advanced Experience (3-6 credits)
Internship: Advanced Project
3-6 Credits of 300-/400-Level Career-Related Course Work (with Department Approval)
Research Emphasis
Research Project (6 credits)
Senior Honors Thesis
Independent Studies
3 Credits of 400-Level HDFS
6 Additional Credits of 300-/400-Level Research Credits (e.g. HDFS 300H, HDFS 310M, HDFS 494, HDFS 494H, HDFS 496) or 300-/400-Level Career-Related Course Work (with Department Approval)
Requirements for the Option
Requirements for the Option: Require a grade of C or better
Select an option18-24

Requirements for the Option

Human Development and Family Science Option (18 credits)

Available at the following campuses: Altoona, Brandywine, DuBois, Fayette, Harrisburg, Mont Alto, Scranton, Shenango, University Park, World Campus, York

Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 3 credits from the following courses in Advanced Development:3
Gender and Social Development
Developmental Problems in Adulthood
Infant Development
Advanced Child Development
Developmental Problems in Childhood and Adolescence
Developmental Transition to Adulthood
Perspectives on Aging
Development Throughout Adulthood
Issues in Gerontology
Select 3 credits from the following courses in Advanced Family Topics:3
Adult-Child Relationships
Program Development in Family Relationships
Racial and Ethnic Diversity and the American Family
Biocultural Studies of Family Organization
Family Relationships
Family Development in an Economic Context
Family Disorganization: Stress Points in the Contemporary Family
Family Change in the Global Economy
Analysis of Family Problems
Family in Cross-Cultural Perspective
Select 6 credits from the following courses in Professional Skills for HDFS Careers:6
Communities and Families
The Helping Relationship
Resolving Human Development and Family Problems
Experience in Preschool Groups
Family Policy
Development and Administration of Human Services Programs
Child Maltreatment: Prevention and Treatment
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Supporting Courses and Related Areas: Require a grade of C or better
Diversity and Development: Select 6 credits from HDFS at any level or choose from approved list of University-wide offerings6
Developmental Science for Health Professions Option (24 credits)

Available at the following campuses: Altoona, Brandywine, DuBois, Fayette, Harrisburg, Mont Alto, Scranton, Shenango, University Park, York

Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 3 credits from the following courses in Health and Society:3
Global Health Equity
Health, Disease & Society Keystone/General Education Course
Select 6 credits from the following courses in Advanced Development:6
Gender and Social Development
Developmental Problems in Adulthood
Infant Development
Advanced Child Development
Developmental Problems in Childhood and Adolescence
Developmental Transition to Adulthood
Perspectives on Aging
Development Throughout Adulthood
Issues in Gerontology
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Supporting Courses and Related Areas: Require a grade of C or better
Diversity and Development: Select 3 credits from HDFS at any level or choose from approved list of University-wide offerings3
Science and Health Foundations: Select 12 credits from approved list of University-wide offerings12

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required and Inter-Domain courses do not meet this requirement.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits

Breadth in the Knowledge Domains (Inter-Domain courses do not meet this requirement.)

  • Arts (GA): 3 credits
  • Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 3 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 3 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 3 credits

Integrative Studies

  • Inter-Domain Courses (Inter-Domain): 6 credits

Exploration

  • GN, may be completed with Inter-Domain courses: 3 credits
  • GA, GH, GN, GS, Inter-Domain courses. This may include 3 credits of World Language course work beyond the 12th credit level or the requirements for the student’s degree program, whichever is higher: 6 credits

University Degree Requirements

First Year Engagement

All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.

Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.

First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.

Cultures Requirement

6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements

  • United States Cultures: 3 credits
  • International Cultures: 3 credits

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

Program Learning Objectives

Brandywine Campus

  • HDFS students will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the complexity of individual and family development across the life span in diverse contexts and changing environments.
    • Summarize, critique, and apply theories and concepts related to individual and family development from a multi-disciplinary, life-cycle perspective.
    • Articulate how biology, psychology, and history influence diversity in individual and family structures and functions in a social/cultural context.
  • HDFS students will be able to demonstrate the ability to evaluate and apply theory and research to practice and policy.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of the contribution of original research in human development.
    • Integrate and apply the findings of empirical research within a theoretical framework to human development.
    • Explain the strengths and weaknesses of various research methods in assessing human behavior.
    • Apply research skills in order to better understand in the use of research in agency practice.
    • Explain the process of planning and conducting research, including the role of the IRB.
    • Demonstrate skills to analyze and interpret data.
    • Apply theories to identify and resolve problems.
  • HDFS students will demonstrate the ability to analyze processes, policies, and contextual factors that affect the delivery of human services to individuals and families.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of history and policies for ethical conduct in the delivery of human services.
    • Examine environmental factors shaping individual and family interventions (such as political, social, economic, cultural, and technological).
    • Demonstrate an understanding of community-based programs and services.
    • Understand and articulate individual and family needs and roles of human service organizations in fulfilling those needs.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of HIPAA regulations.
    • Develop a working knowledge of and ability to evaluate community-based programs and services.
  • HDFS students will demonstrate professional ethical and culturally sensitive standards of conduct.
    • Articulate understanding of theories, skills, and competencies of an effective helper.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of the main ethical, legal, clinical, professional  and personal issues and challenges involved in the helping professions.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of informed consent for working with diverse groups of clients.
    • Understand and apply ethical decision making models.
    • Understanding how personal values and experiences influence one’s ability to make professional decisions.
    • Recognize stereotypical and prejudicial language and attitudes and their impact on the helping relationship.
  • HDFS students will demonstrate knowledge and competence in helping, leadership, and administrative human service skills.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of management in human services and how to apply appropriate practices.
    • Demonstrate professional written, oral and technology assisted communication skills.
    • Demonstrate clinical, interactional, and practical skills used in human service professions.
    • Identify the different organizational needs of public, private-for-profits, and private-not-for-profit agencies.

DuBois and York Campuses

  • Understand the complexity of individual and family development across the lifespan.
  • Evaluate and apply research and theory to practice and policy.
  • Understand the processes, policies and contextual factors that affect the delivery of human services.
  • Understand the professional, ethical, and culturally sensitive standards of conduct.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and competence in helping, leadership and administrative skills.

Fayette Campus

  • Understanding of the complexity of individual and family development across the lifespan in diverse contexts and changing environments.
    • Summarize, critique, and apply theories and concepts related to individual and family development from a multi-disciplinary, life-cycle perspective;
    • Articulate how biology, psychology, and history influence diversity in individual and family structures and functions in a social/cultural context.
  • Ability to evaluate and apply theory and research to practice and policy.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of the contribution of original research in human development;
    • Integrate and apply the findings of empirical research within a theoretical framework to human development;
    • Explain the strengths and weaknesses of various research methods in assessing human behavior;
    • Apply research skills in order to better understand in the use of research in agency practice;
    • Explain the process of planning and conducting research, including the role of the IRB;
    • Demonstrate skills to analyze and interpret data;
    • Apply theories to identify and resolve problems.
  • Ability to analyze processes, policies, and contextual factors that affect the delivery of human services to individuals and families.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of history and policies for ethical conduct in the delivery of human services;
    • Examine environmental factors shaping individual and family interventions (such as political, social, economic, cultural, and technological);
    • Demonstrate an understanding of community-based programs and services;
    • Understand and articulate individual and family needs and roles of human service organizations in fulfilling those needs;
    • Demonstrate knowledge of HIPAA regulations;
    • Develop a working knowledge of and ability to evaluate community-based programs and services.
  • Professional ethical and culturally sensitive standards of conduct.
    • Articulate understanding of theories, skills, and competencies of an effective helper;
    • Demonstrate knowledge of the main ethical, legal, clinical, professional  and personal issues and challenges involved in the helping professions;
    • Demonstrate knowledge of informed consent for working with diverse groups of clients;
    • Understand and apply ethical decision making models;
    • Understanding how personal values and experiences influence one’s ability to make professional decisions;
    • Recognize stereotypical and prejudicial language and attitudes and their impact on the helping relationship.

Mont Alto and Scranton Campuses

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the complexity of individual and family development across the life span in diverse contexts and changing environments
  • Demonstrate an ability to evaluate and apply research and theory to practice and policy.
  • Analyze processes, policies, and contextual factors that affect the delivery of human services to individuals and families.
  • Demonstrate professional, ethical, and culturally sensitive standards of conduct.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and competence in helping, leadership, and administrative skills for human services.

Shenango Campus

  • Graduates can apply theories and principles of human services to clinical and /or practice and research.
    • Explain and cite appropriate theories that can be applied to a given scenario.
    • Compare and contrast, and can explain the pros and cons of major theories in human services.
    • Construct appropriate treatment plans and/or make appropriate referrals.
    • Develop a coherent research question and construct an appropriate research design and methodology to investigate the question.
    • Interpret and critique research findings.
    • Apply research/research findings to inform practice.
  • Graduates will demonstrate professional and ethical accountability in dealing with clients and coworkers.
    • Interact respectfully with people of diverse populations at all times.
    • Define diversity and the benefits of diversity as it relates to the human services fields.
    • Conduct themselves successfully in interview settings whether as the interviewer or interviewee.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of laws concerning confidentiality, professional boundaries, and sexual harassment within the human services field, especially laws related to HIPAA, licensure regulations, and FERPA.
    • Demonstrate a strong work ethic in their courses and in the field.
    • Communicate, verbally and in writing, in a professional manner at all times.
    • Take responsibility for and accept the consequences for their actions.
    • Demonstrate the ability to work collaboratively in teams or groups.
  • Graduates can identify, access and utilize resources to better serve individuals, families, and communities at the micro and macro level.  
    • Locate potential opportunities and develop high quality proposals to obtain funding from external sources.
    • Identify, locate, and access regional, national, and global resources for information, referrals, and assistance in performing their professional duties.
    • Locate policies, rules, regulations, and laws that impact their professional duties.
    • Explain the differences among profit, non-profit, and faith-based agencies and evaluate the relative credibility of those agencies.
  • Graduates can use technologies necessary to perform professional duties efficiently and effectively.
    • Students will demonstrate a level of proficiency in email, web searches, presentation software, databases, publication software, library databases, statistical software, and word processing.
    • Students will recognize and effectively use appropriate software programs to more efficiently complete projects and assignments.
  • Graduates will demonstrate strong verbal and written communication skills.
    • Students will demonstrate active listening skills and can construct effective questions to further explore issues and concerns.
    • Students will be proficient in APA style writing.
    • Students will be able to use proper grammar, sentence structure, accurate spelling, formal language, correct punctuation, coherent paragraphs, … to write well organized and effective documents and professional communications.
    • Students will make effective presentations.
    • Students will construct effective arguments from multiple perspectives.
  • Graduates will demonstrate personal and professional growth that leads to the ability to build and enhance skill sets.
    • Students will participate in professional development activities.
    • Students will demonstrate effective time management by completing all assignments and coursework by the assigned deadlines and attending class regularly.
    • Students will learn to recognize and deal with their personal issues and persist in their education and professional growth.
    • Students will identify their scope of practice based on their clinical limitations.

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university's academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee's unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.

READ SENATE POLICY 32-00: ADVISING POLICY

Brandywine

Jennifer Zosh
Associate Professor Human Development and Family Studies
25 Yearsley Mill Road
Media, PA 19063
610-892-1438
jmz15@psu.edu

DuBois

Jessica Clontz, M.Ed., CRC
Assistant Teaching Professor, Human Development and Family Studies
1 College Place
DuBois, PA 15801
814-375-4833
jlb5810@psu.edu

Fayette

Elaine Barry
Associate Professor
2201 University Drive
Lemont Furnace, PA 15456
724-430-4284
esb12@psu.edu

Mont Alto

Robin Yaure
Associate HDFS Professor and Program Coordinator of HDFS & Psychology
112 Weistling Hall
Mont Alto, PA 17237
717-749-6210
r2y@psu.edu

Scranton

Janet Melnick
Associate Teaching Professor
111B Dawson Building
Dunmore, PA 18512
570-963-2674
jam81@psu.edu

Shenango

Roxanne Atterholt
Associate Teaching Professor and Program Coordinator
147 Shenango Avenue
102 McDowell Hall
Sharon, PA 16146
724-983-2953
rxa32@psu.edu

York

Amber Majeske, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Human Development and Family Studies
13 John J. Romano Administrative Building
York, PA 17403
717-771-4029
ajs49@psu.edu

Altoona

Lauren Jacobson
Associate Teaching Professor
123 Hawthorn Building
3000 Ivyside Park
Altoona, PA 16601
814-949-5333
lpj100@psu.edu

Harrisburg

A. Patricia Aquilera Hermida, M.F.T, D. Ed.
Associate Teaching Professor and HDFS Program Coordinator
Olmsted Building W314
Middletown, PA 17057
717-948-6227
aua240@psu.edu

University Park

Melissa Wetzel, M.A., LPC, NCC
Academic Adviser
119 Health and Human Development Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-863-8000
mup874@psu.edu

World Campus

Undergraduate Academic Advising
301 Outreach Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-863-3283
advising@outreach.psu.edu

Suggested Academic Plan

The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2024-25 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition.

Brandywine Campus

Human Development and Family Science Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Brandywine Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 129*3HDFS 229, 239, or 249N* 3
ENGL 15, 30H, or ESL 153HDFS 315*3
General Education Course3CAS 100, CAS 100A, CAS 100B, or CAS 100C0-3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
 15 12-15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 229, 239, or 249N* 3HDFS 312W*3
HDFS 301* 3ENGL 202A, 202B, 202C, or 202D3
HDFS 311*3General Education Course (GHW)1.5
EDPSY 101 or STAT 200*†13-4General Education Course3
General Education Course3Supporting Course3
 Supporting Course3
 15-16 16.5
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 411*3HDFS 428, 429, 433, or 445* 3
HDFS 414*3HDFS 4553
HDFS 418*3HDFS 300/400-level* 3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
Supporting Course 400-level3General Education Course3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 490* 2HDFS 495A* 9
General Education Course3HDFS 495B* 3
HDFS 300/400-level3 
HDFS 300/400-level3 
General Education Course (GHW)1.5 
Supporting Course 400-level3 
 15.5 12
Total Credits 116-120
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

1

Student who choose to take EDPSY 101 will need to complete at least 1 cr in elective coursework to reach the minimum of 120 crs for graduation. 

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Developmental Science for Health Professions Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Brandywine Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 129*3HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3
ENGL 153General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
 15 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3HDFS 312W*3
HDFS 311*3ENGL 202A, 202B, 202C, or 202D3
HDFS 315*3US Cultures3
CAS 100, CAS 100A, CAS 100B, or CAS 100C0-3General Education Course3
EDPSY 101 or STAT 200*†3-4General Education Course (GHW)1.5
 Supporting Course3
 12-16 16.5
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 301*3HDFS 428, 429, 433, or 445*3
HDFS 418*3HDFS Selections*3
HDFS 428, 429, 433, or 445*3Supporting Course 400-level3
HDFS Selections*3Supporting Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course (GHW)1.5 
 16.5 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 494 or 494H*3HDFS 494 or 494H*3
HDFS Course 400-level*3HDFS Course 400-level*3
HDFS Course 400-level*3Supporting Course 400-level3
HDFS Course 300/400-level *3Supporting Course3
Supporting Course 400-level3 
 15 12
Total Credits 117-121
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Advising Notes

Major requires departmental approval. In consultation with an adviser and Program Coordinator, students must submit an application for the Life Span Developmental Science option during their 5th or 6th semester.

DuBois Campus

Human Development and Family Science Option with a Focus on Children, Youth & Families: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at DuBois Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 1293CAS 100A3
HDFS 239 or 249N (every even fall, if gerontology minor)3General Education Course3
ENGL 153General Education Course - Quantitative (EDPSY 101)3
General Education Course3HDFS 2293
General Education Course3General Education Course (BBH 143 if CSPCC or BIOL 155 if Geron.)3
First Year Seminar0-1 
 15-16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 3113HDFS 3013
HDFS 315Y3HDFS 312W (Writing across the curriculum)3
Supporting Course (CNED 401 if CDPCC)3HDFS 3141
ENGL 202A3General Education Course3
General Education Course 3General Education Course3
General Education Course3-4HDFS (300-400 level) (HDFS 416 or HDFS 405 or HDFS 413 if Geron)3
 18-19 16
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 4113HDFS 4143
General Education Course3Advanced Development (HDFS 433)3
General Education Course3Supporting Course (EDTHP 115 or ASB)3
Supporting Course (HDFS 108N, SOC 1, or CNED 401)*3HDFS 300/400 Supporting Course - HDFS 302A3
Advanced Development (HDFS 429 or HDFS 445 if Geron.)3Supporting Course (400 Level) (CNED 420 every odd spring or CNED 416 every even spring)3
Supporting Course (400 level) (CNED 401 or CNED 404 every even fall, or CNED 421 every odd fall) If Geron. DLC class3General Education Course3
 18 18
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 401 (490)3HDFS 495C (495A)6-8
HDFS 4183HDFS 496 (if Geron.)3
HDFS 4553Internship3
General Education Course3 
General Education Course3 
 15 12-14
Total Credits 127-131
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Program Notes:

  • CDPCC if as student is pursuing the Chemical Dependency Prevention Certificate
  • Gerontology designation if a student is pursuing the Gerontology minor

HDFS Course Options:

  • Advanced Development Selections: (Need one, but could take a second one as 300/400 level support):  HDFS 429, HDFS 433 or HDFS 445
  • HDFS 300/400 Level Support: (Select at least two; can do more if using for 400 level support, supporting courses or electives):  HDFS 395, HDFS 302A, HDFS 413, HDFS 447, HDFS 405, HDFS 416, HDFS 448
  • 400 Level Support: (Select two of these; can also be used for elective or supporting courses): CNED 401*, CNED 404*, CNED 421*, CNED 416*, CNED 420*
  • Supporting Courses: (Select three to five):  CRIMJ courses, BBH 143*, BBH 146, EDTHP 115 US, HDFS 108N, PSYCH 100, PSYCH 212, SOC 1

* Options for the Chemical Dependency Prevention Certificate

Fayette Campus

Human Development and Family Science Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Fayette Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 129 or 239 (GS)*3STAT 200†*4
ENGL 15 or 30H3HDFS 129 or 229 (GS)*3
PSU 81CAS 1003
General Education Course 3General Education Course3
General Education Course 3General Education Course3
Quantification (GQ)3 
 16 16
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 129 or 239 (GS)*3HDFS 311*3
HDFS 301*3HDFS 312W3
HDFS 315Y*3Supporting 400-Level Course- Other Selections*3
General Education Course3United States Cultures- Additional Requirement for HDFS*3
General Education Course3Supporting Course-Consult with an Adviser*3
 15 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 411*3HDFS 412, 429, 433, 440, or 445 (or see adviser)*13
HDFS 412, 429, 433, 440, or 445 (or see adviser)*13HDFS 418*3
General Education Course3HDFS 414*3
ENGL 202A3Supporting Course in Other Selections- Consult with an Adviser*3
HDFS 300/400-Level Other Selection*3General Education Course3
General Education Course (GHW)1.5 
 16.5 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 412, 429, 433, 440, or 445 (or see adviser)*13HDFS 495A*9
HDFS 490*2HDFS 495B*3
HDFS 455*3 
General Education Course3 
Elective3 
General Education Course (GHW)1.5 
 15.5 12
Total Credits 121
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

1

Course selection based on semester availability. HDFS 412, 429, 433, 440, 445, Students should work with their adviser.

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Advising Note:

  • Students should work with their adviser to address any deficiencies in MATH or World Languages in their first year.
  • This HDFS program is offering a CFLE Certificate (Certified Family Life Educator). SELECT COURSES REQUIRED for CFLE provisional certification when choosing supporting courses in the HDFS major. Please consult with Dr. Ittig.
  • Entrance to Major: Degree seeking students (DUS) must complete 18 credits AND have a 2.0 CGPA before one can declare this major. Degree seeking students are limited to 36 credits at Penn State in this status, at which point they must seek enrollment in a degree program to continue.

Mont Alto Campus

Human Development and Family Science Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Mont Alto Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 129*3HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3
ENGL 15 or 30H (GWS)3CAS 100A (GWS)3
General Education Course (GQ) or MATH 4 (if needed)3General Education Course (GN)3
General Education Course (GS)3General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3
General Education Course (GH)3Elective3
PSU 81 
 16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3HDFS 315Y (US)*3
HDFS 301 or 311*3ENGL 202A*‡3
HDFS at Any Level (Diversity and Development)3HDFS 2163
General Education Course (GN)3General Education Course (GA)3
EDPSY 101 or STAT 200 (GQ)*‡†3-4Elective3
 15-16 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS Skills (400-Level) #13HDFS Skills (400-Level) #23
HDFS 301 or 311*3HDFS 429, 433, or 445 (Advanced Development Course)*3
HDFS 312W*3General Education Course (Exploration)3
General Education Course (GHW)3Elective3
General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 490 (Internship Preparation)2HDFS 495A9
HDFS 418*3HDFS 495B3
HDFS at Any Level (Diversity and Development)3Elective3
Elective3 
General Education Course (Exploration)3 
 14 15
Total Credits 120-121
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Human Development and Family Science Option with Certification Family Life Education (CFLE): Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Mont Alto Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 129*13HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3
ENGL 15 or 30H (GWS)3CAS 100A (GWS)3
General Education Course (GQ) or MATH 4 (if needed)3General Education Course (GN)3
General Education Course (GS) (PSYCH 100)13General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3
General Education Course (GH)3Elective (HDFS 411)13
PSU 81 
 16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3HDFS 315 (Y) (US)*13
HDFS 301 or 311*13ENGL 202A*‡3
HDFS at Any Level (Diversity and Development) (HDFS 424)13HDFS 2163
General Education Course (GN) (Single or Inter-Domain)3General Education Course (GA)3
EDPSY 101 or STAT 200 (GQ)*‡†3-4Elective (HDFS 414)13
 15-16 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS Skills (400-Level) #1 (HDFS 440)13HDFS Skills (400-Level) #2 (HDFS 455)13
HDFS 301 or 311*13HDFS 429, 433, or 445*3
HDFS 312W*3General Education Course (Exploration)3
General Education Course (GHW)3Elective (PSYCH 422)13
General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 4902HDFS 495A19
Advanced Family Topics (HDFS 418)*13HDFS 495B3
HDFS at Any Level (Diversity and Development) (HDFS 412)13Elective3
General Education Course (Exploration)3 
Elective3 
 14 15
Total Credits 120-121
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

1

Requirement (or prerequisite) for Family Life Education certification.

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Developmental Science for Health Professions Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Mont Alto Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 129*3HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3
ENGL 15 or 30H (GWS)3CAS 100A (GWS)3
General Education Course (GQ) or MATH 4 (if needed)3General Education Course (GN)3
General Education Course (GS)3General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3
General Education Course (GH)3Elective3
PSU 81 
 16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 229, 239, or 249N*3HDFS 315Y (US)3
HDFS 301 or 311*3ENGL 202A*‡3
HDFS at Any Level (Diversity and Development)3HDFS 2163
General Education Course (GN or Inter-Domain)3General Education Course (GA)3
EDPSY 101 or STAT 200 (GQ)*‡†3-4Elective3
 15-16 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS (Science and Health Foundations) #1 (e.g., BIOL, CHEM, OTA, PTA)3Health & Society (see adviser for approved list)3
HDFS (Science and Health Foundations) #2 (e.g., BIOL, CHEM, OTA, PTA)3HDFS (Science and Health Foundations) #3 (e.g., BIOL, CHEM, OTA, PTA)3
HDFS 312W*3HDFS 429 (Advanced Development Course)*3
General Education Course (GHW)3General Education Course (Exploration)3
General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 490 (Internship Preparation)2HDFS 495A9
HDFS (Science and Health Foundations) #4 (e.g., BIOL, CHEM, OTA, PTA)3HDFS 495B3
HDFS 429, 433, or 445 (Advanced Development Course)*3Elective3
Elective3 
General Education Course (Exploration)3 
 14 15
Total Credits 120-121
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Scranton Campus

Developmental Science for Health Professions Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Scranton Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
PSU 81General Education Course (GWS) (recommend CAS 100A)3
HDFS 129 or 101N* 3EDPSY 101, STAT 200, or HDFS 200 (GQ)*‡†3-4
Quantification (GQ)3General Education Course3
General Education Course (GWS) (recommend ENGL 15 or ENGL 30H)3Lifespan Development #1 (HDFS 229, HDFS 239, or HDFS 249N)*3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3 
 16 15-16
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 301* 3HDFS 311* 3
HDFS 312W*3Skills and Ethics (HDFS 216)*3
HDFS 315* 3General Education Course3
Lifespan Development #2 (HDFS 229, HDFS 239, or HDFS 249N)*3General Education Course3
HDFS Diversity and Development #13Elective3
General Education Course3 
 18 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
Professional Skills (HDFS 411)*3HDFS 414*3
HDFS Diversity and Development #23HDFS 431*3
General Education Course3Advanced Development (HDFS 428, HDFS 429, or HDFS 433)*3
General Education Course3General Education Course (GWS) (recommend ENGL 202A)3
Elective3General Education Course3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 490*2HDFS 495A*9
General Education Course3HDFS 495B*3
Elective3 
Elective3 
Elective3 
 14 12
Total Credits 120-121
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Program Notes

  • Students are encouraged to take HDFS 312W in semester 3, if possible.
  • In consultation with an adviser, students will find a faculty member during their 5th or 6th semester to serve as the supervisor for HDFS 494, research project. This is a two-semester senior-year project culminating in semester 8 research paper.

Advising Notes

  • Fourth Year, Spring Semester:
    • Career Development & Experiential Learning Capstone (15 credits):
      • Choose 15 credits from one of the following options:
        • Traditional Capstone Internship: HDFS 490, HDFS 495A (9 credits), and HDFS 495B (~480 hours)
        • Modified Internship (*only with departmental approval): HDFS 490, HDFS 495C (3 credits FTE), and HDFS 495B (3) (~480 hours), plus 6 additional credits with departmental approval
        • Experiential Mix: HDFS 490, HDS 495A (3-6 credits), and HDFS 495B (~160–320 hours), plus 3-6 additional credits of career related coursework (with departmental approval)
        • Research Emphasis: 6 credits of HDFS 494, HDFS 494H, or HDFS 496, plus 3 additional credits of HDFS 400-level, plus 6 additional credits of 300/400-level research credits (e.g., HDFS 300H, HDFS 310M, HDFS 494, HDFS 494H, HDFS 496) or career related coursework (with departmental approval)
  • Math 21 is considered the standard 1st semester GQ. Students are encouraged to check with their adviser on the appropriate math sequencing if not placed in MATH 21 first semester.
  • It is recommended that General Education Arts (GA) and Humanities (GH) be taken in junior and senior year if student plans to study abroad.
  • HDFS 315 satisfies the University Requirement for US cultures.
  • IL may be combined with GA, GH, or GS.
  • Credit adjustments should be made if free elective credits are needed for a total of 120 credits minimum (which includes semester 8).

Human Development and Family Science Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Scranton Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
PSU 81EDPSY 101, STAT 200, or HDFS 200 (GQ)*‡†3-4
HDFS 129 or 101N* 3Lifespan Development #1 (HDFS 229, HDFS 239, or HDFS 249N)*3
Quantification (GQ)3General Education Course (GWS) (recommend CAS 100A)3
General Education Course (GWS) (recommend ENGL 15 or ENGL 30H) 3General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3 
 16 15-16
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 301* 3HDFS 311* 3
HDFS 312W*3Skills and Ethics (HDFS 216)*3
HDFS 315* 3General Education Course3
Lifespan Development #1 (HDFS 229, HDFS 239, or HDFS 249N)*3General Education Course3
HDFS Diversity and Development #13Elective3
General Education Course3 
 18 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
Professional Skills (HDFS 411)*3HDFS 414*3
HDFS Diversity and Development #23HDFS 455*3
General Education Course3HDFS 431*3
General Education Course3 Advanced Development (HDFS 428, HDFS 429, or HDFS 433)*3
Elective3General Education (GWS) (recommend ENGL 202A)3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 490*2HDFS 495B*3
General Education Course3HDFS 495A*9
Elective3 
Elective3 
Elective3 
 14 12
Total Credits 120-121
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Program Notes

  • Students are encouraged to take HDFS 312W in semester 3, if possible.
  • International cultures (IL) may be combined with GA, GH, or GS.
  • HDFS 315 satisfies the University Requirement for US cultures.

Advising Notes

  • Fourth Year, Spring Semester:
    • Career Development & Experiential Learning Capstone (15 credits):
      • Choose 15 credits from one of the following options:
        • Traditional Capstone Internship: HDFS 490, HDFS 495A (9 credits), and HDFS 495B (~480 hours)
        • Modified Internship (*only with departmental approval): HDFS 490, HDFS 495C (3 credits FTE), and HDFS 495B (3) (~480 hours), plus 6 additional credits with departmental approval
        • Experiential Mix: HDFS 490, HDS 495A (3-6 credits), and HDFS 495B (~160–320 hours), plus 3-6 additional credits of career related coursework (with departmental approval)
        • Research Emphasis: 6 credits of HDFS 494, HDFS 494H, or HDFS 496, plus 3 additional credits of HDFS 400-level, plus 6 additional credits of 300/400-level research credits (e.g., HDFS 300H, HDFS 310M, HDFS 494, HDFS 494H, HDFS 496) or career related coursework (with departmental approval)
  • MATH 21 is considered the standard 1st semester GQ. Students are encouraged to check with their adviser on the appropriate math sequencing if not placed in MATH 21 first semester.
  • Students should consult with their advisers concerning appropriate supporting courses.
  • This is a recommended plan and is not meant to substitute for students meeting with their academic advisers. Any deviations from this plan should be discussed with students' academic advisers.

Shenango Campus

Human Development and Family Science Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Shenango Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGL 153Art Elective (GA)3
HDFS 129*3CAS 100A3
PSU 81Quantification Elective (GQ)3
Humanities Elective (GH) (IL)3HDFS 239 or 249N*3
Natural Science Elective (GN)3US Cultures Course (US)*3
Social and Behavioral Science Elective (GS)3 
 16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
Health and Physical Activity Elective (GHA)3Supporting Course- Consult with an Adviser*3
HDFS 229*3HDFS 301*3
HDFS 311*3Natural Science Elective (GN)3
HDFS 315Y*3Social and Behavioral Science Elective (GS)3
STAT 200*†‡4Art Elective (GA)3
 HDFS 312W*3
 16 18
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
Supporting Course - 400 Level*3ENGL 202A or 202D3
Natural Science Elective (GN)3Supporting Course - 300/400 Level HDFS*3
Supporting Course - 300/400 Level HDFS*3HDFS 411*3
Elective3HDFS 445*3
Supporting Course - Consult with an Adviser*3HDFS 455*3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 401*3HDFS 402*4
HDFS 414*3HDFS 495C*6-8
HDFS 418*3 
Supporting Course - 400 Level3 
Humanities Elective (GH) (US)3 
 15 10-12
Total Credits 120-122
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Program Notes

Students must complete a 3-credit course in "United States Cultures (US)" and a 3-credit course in "International Cultures (IL)."

Human Development and Family Science Option with Certification Family Life Education (CFLE): Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at Shenango Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGL 153Art Elective (GA)3
HDFS 129*3CAS 100A3
PSU 81Quantification Elective (GQ)3
Humanities Elective (GH) (IL)3HDFS 239 or 249N*3
Natural Science Elective (GN)3US Cultures Course (US)*3
PSYCH 1003 
 16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
Health and Physical Activity Elective (GHA)3HDFS 249N*3
HDFS 229 (Course is a prerequisite to HDFS 412)*3HDFS 301*3
HDFS 311*3Natural Science Elective (GN)3
HDFS 315Y*3Social and Behavioral Science Elective (GS)3
STAT 200*†‡4Art Elective (GA)3
 HDFS 312W*3
 16 18
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
Natural Science Elective (GN)3ENGL 202A or 202D3
HDFS 440*3HDFS 412*3
PSYCH 422*3HDFS 411*3
Supporting Course - Consult with Adviser3HDFS 445*3
Elective3HDFS 455*3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 401*3HDFS 402*4
HDFS 414*3HDFS 495C*6-8
HDFS 418*3 
HDFS 424*3 
Humanities Elective (GH) (US)3 
 15 10-12
Total Credits 120-122
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

1

Students can choose either HDFS 429 or HDFS 433. Only one of the two courses is needed to fulfill the requirement. HDFS 429 is only offered during the fall semester. If students do not take HDFS 429 in the fall semester, they should take HDFS 433 during the spring semester.

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Program Notes

Students must complete a 3-credit course in "United States Cultures (US)" and a 3-credit course in "International Cultures (IL)."

York Campus

Human Development and Family Science Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at York Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGL 15 or 30H3HDFS 200*3
HDFS 129*3HDFS 239 or 216*3
HDFS 216*3CAS 100A, 100B, or 100C3
General Education Course6General Education Course6
 15 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 229 or 249N*3ENGL 202A3
HDFS 311*3General Education Course3
HDFS 312W*3HDFS 301*3
General Education Course3HDFS 315*3
HDFS Diversity (any level)*3HDFS Diversity (any level)*3
 15 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS Development (400 level)3HDFS Skills (400 level)3
HDFS Skills (400 level)3General Education Course6
General Education Course6Elective6
Elective3 
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 490*2HDFS 495A*9
Elective3HDFS 495B*3
Elective9 
 14 12
Total Credits 116
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Developmental Science for Health Professions Option: Human Development and Family Studies, B.S. at York Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGL 15 or 30H3HDFS 200*3
HDFS 129*3HDFS 239 or 216*3
HDFS 216*3CAS 100A, 100B, or 100C3
General Education Course6General Education Course6
 15 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 229 or 249N*3ENGL 202A3
HDFS 311*3General Education Course3
HDFS 312W*3HDFS 301*3
General Education Course3HDFS 315*3
HDFS Diversity (any level)*3HDFS Diversity (any level)*3
 15 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS Development (400 level)3HDFS 480*3
Approved Health Course*6HDFS Development (400 level)3
General Education Course6Approved Health Course*3
 General Education Course6
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
HDFS 490*2HDFS 495A*9
Approved Health Course*3HDFS 495B*3
Elective12 
 17 12
Total Credits 119
*

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education

#

Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Career Paths

Demand for HDFS graduates is strong because the major provides students with a valuable foundation for understanding important social trends and guides students to develop the knowledge and skills to positively impact individuals, families, and communities. HDFS Students can customize their degree to align with career interests. HDFS students specialize through minors, certificates and credit-based hands-on learning opportunities.

HDFS students complete a capstone experience customized to their interests and designed to enhance their qualifications. Capstones include approved internships, guided research experiences, or advanced courses. The HDFS department capstone program provides:

  • A capstone preparation class to help students explore interests, identify opportunities, and submit professional applications - and -
  • Experienced capstone coordinators to help students get the most out of the capstone experience

Careers

Many HDFS graduates go directly to the workplace based on their understanding of people, their knowledge of group dynamics, and their skills in training and in program development and evaluation. HDFS students pursue positions right out of college in:

  • Health and Human Services Professions (e.g. youth and family services, child advocacy, health education)
  • Early Childhood Development (e.g. early childhood education, early intervention specialists, applied behavioral analysis)
  • Child and Youth Services
  • Foster Care and Adoption
  • Family Education and Intervention
  • Services for Older Adults
  • Services for Individuals with Disabilities
  • Program Administration and Advocacy (e.g. volunteer coordination, program management and evaluation, human resources)

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT POTENTIAL CAREER OPTIONS FOR GRADUATES OF THE HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND FAMILY STUDIES PROGRAM

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

A degree in HDFS is also a great foundation for individuals who are interested in pursuing advanced professional training/graduate study in:

  • Counseling (e.g., addiction counseling, marriage and family therapy, mental health counseling, counseling psychology, educational and vocational counseling)
  • Social Work and Public Health
  • Clinical Health Professions (e.g. psychiatry, pediatrics, adolescent medicine, family medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, geriatrics, occupational therapy)
  • Program Administration and Management
  • Special Education
  • Family Law
  • Public Policy and Advocacy
  • Research (e.g., on lifespan human development, psychology, sociology, prevention)

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT OPPORTUNITIES FOR GRADUATE STUDIES

PROFESSIONAL RESOURCES

Contact

Brandywine

25 Yearsley Mill Road
Media, PA 19063
610-892-1438
jmz15@psu.edu

https://www.brandywine.psu.edu/academics/bachelors-degrees/human-development-and-family-studies

DuBois

1 College Place
DuBois, PA 15801
814-375-4833
jlb5810@psu.edu

https://dubois.psu.edu/academics/degrees/hdfs/bachelor

Fayette

2201 University Drive
Lemont Furnace, PA 15456
724-430-4284
esb12@psu.edu

https://fayette.psu.edu/academics/baccalaureate/human-development-and-family-studies-bs

Mont Alto

112 Wiestling Hall
Mont Alto, PA 17237
717-749-6210
r2y@psu.edu

https://montalto.psu.edu/academics/hdfs

Scranton

111B Dawson Building
Dunmore, PA 18512
570-963-2674
jam81@psu.edu

https://scranton.psu.edu/academics/degrees/bachelors/hdfs

Shenango

147 Shenango Avenue
102 McDowell Hall
Sharon, PA 16146
724-983-2953
rxa32@psu.edu

https://shenango.psu.edu/academics/degrees/human-development-family-studies

York

13 John J. Romano Administrative Building
York, PA 17403
717-771-4029
ajs49@psu.edu

https://www.york.psu.edu/academics/baccalaureate/human-development-and-family-studies

Altoona

DIVISION OF EDUCATION, HUMAN DEVELOPMENT, AND SOCIAL SCIENCES
123 Hawthorn Building
3000 Ivyside Park
Altoona, PA 16601
914-949-5333
lpj100@psu.edu

https://altoona.psu.edu/academics/bachelors-degrees/human-development-family-studies

Harrisburg

SCHOOL OF BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES AND EDUCATION
Olmsted Building, W314
717-948-6227
aua240@psu.edu

https://harrisburg.psu.edu/behavioral-sciences-education/human-development-family-studies-bs

University Park

DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND FAMILY STUDIES
119 Health and Human Development Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-863-8000
mup874@psu.edu

https://hhd.psu.edu/hdfs

World Campus

DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND FAMILY STUDIES
119 Health and Human Development Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-863-8000
sac301@psu.edu

https://www.worldcampus.psu.edu/degrees-and-certificates/penn-state-online-human-development-and-family-studies-bachelor-of-science-degree