Human Development and Family Sciences

Undergraduate Program

More than a career...a calling.

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Examine human nature

Learn why and how humans develop the way they do throughout their life. Build more compassionate and effective solutions for societal challenges. Directly impact lives and relationships.

With an Oregon State bachelor of science degree in human development and family sciences you can change the world for the better — one person, family and community at a time.

As a human development and family sciences major at Oregon State, you’ll ...

  • Discover how lives and relationships develop within the context of family, school, work and society.
  • Learn about different stages of development, from infancy to adulthood.
  • Be equipped to understand and promote equity, inclusion and diversity.
  • Access HDFS classes through OSU Ecampus, a national leader in online education.
  • Be ready for professional work or graduate study in fields such as education, social work, allied health sciences or other helping professions.

Picture life as an HDFS student.

Sample schedule

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Oregon State’s human development and family sciences program is ranked No. 5 in the nation.
-College Factual

Human development and family sciences major options

Select an option that matches your interests and career goals, whether it’s working with children, the elderly or providing services for families and communities.

What will you do with an HDFS degree?

Help a child develop the social and emotional skills to thrive. Provide comfort and care to an aging adult. Help a family work through trauma.  

HDFS is an important and expanding field, and there are numerous career opportunities. According to College Factual, HDFS careers are expected to grow 10% between 2016-2026.


Start as an HDFS major for careers such as:

*These roles may require post-baccalaureate/graduate/professional education to qualify.

  • Adoption agency counselor
  • Activity director
  • Caseworker
  • Childcare coordinator
  • Crisis intervention worker
  • Early childhood policy advocate
  • Extension educator
  • Elementary educator
  • Elementary teacher*
  • Emergency relief worker
  • Family support worker
  • Foster care caseworker
  • Hospice worker
  • Housing service coordinator
  • International relief worker
  • Marriage and family counselor*
  • Parent educator
  • Preschool or childcare teacher
  • Senior advocate
  • Social caseworker
  • Volunteer coordinator
  • Youth development specialist

Nyssa Cronin, ’20

“I chose to major in human development and family sciences because of my interest in understanding why people do the things they do, how people navigate different relationships within their life, and how or why communities struggle or thrive.”