HDFS Undergraduate Program

Human Development and Family Sciences

Undergraduate Program

Make a difference in the lifelong health of people and families.

Corvallis Campus



Study human development and family sciences

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

In Oregon State’s nationally ranked human development and family sciences program, you’ll address human development across all ages and learn how to help improve the human condition.

Study human development and family sciences to be part of a rewarding career that empowers individuals, families and communities to survive and thrive.

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Sample human services and child development courses

  • Children and youth with disabilities
  • Families and poverty
  • Family, school and community collaboration
  • Family policy
  • Fostering learning in early childhood development

Explore required courses.

As an HDFS major at Oregon State, you’ll...

  • Study how lives and relationships develop within families, school, work and society.
  • Learn about different stages of development, from childhood to adulthood.
  • Be equipped to understand and promote equity, inclusion and diversity.

Human development and family sciences major options

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

hdfs internship coordinator with student

HDFS internships

Human services and child development internships help you prepare for a full-time position upon graduation.

Examples of internship locations:

  • Food bank
  • Child development center
  • Homeless shelter
  • Hospital or clinic
  • Long term care facility
  • Nonprofit health organization
  • Women's shelter

Learn more

Career options in the human services field

With an HDFS degree, you can make a real impact in the lives of youth and their families.

Many of our students are interested in psychology, and some enter early childhood education, human services or pediatrics after graduation.

According to College Factual, human development, family sciences and human services careers are expected to grow 10% between 2016-2026.

Study human development and family sciences for careers in:

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

  • Adoption agency counselor
  • Activity director
  • Assisted living manager
  • Caseworker
  • Childcare coordinator
  • Crisis intervention worker
  • Early childhood policy advocate
  • Extension educator
  • Elementary teacher*
  • Emergency relief worker
  • Family support worker
  • Foster care caseworker
  • Health communication specialist
  • Hospice worker
  • Housing service coordinator
  • International relief worker
  • Mental health counselor*
  • Parent educator
  • Psychologist
  • Preschool or childcare teacher
  • Senior advocate
  • Social caseworker
  • Social worker*
  • Volunteer coordinator
  • Youth development specialist
Nyssa Cronin

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.”

Contact us

peers group photo sept 2023

Peer advisors

If you have questions regarding classes, student clubs or campus, our peer advisors would love to chat. Call or email them for advice.

 Mikaela Swaim

Mikaela Swaim

Student Outreach and Support Coordinator

For questions about the program, application process or requirements, contact our  COH recruitment team.