Welcome to the Human Development Program!

Interested in majoring in Human Development? You can now declare Pre-Human Development!

Pre-HD is NOT impacted and is open to all matriculated SSU undergraduates, regardless of class level. Find out more about Pre-HD on the Pre-Human Development page.

The Human Development (HD) Program offers an interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts degree that focuses on human growth and development across the life course, the underlying processes and structures that support that development, and the relationships between the individual and the complex familial, social, and cultural environments in which development is situated. Human Development is housed within the School of Social Sciences. Departments in the School of Social Sciences focus on knowledge and skills that prepare our graduates to live richly rewarding personal, professional, and social lives while understanding and appreciating human complexity in a global society.

Why Major in Human Development?

The Human Development major is designed to provide students with a comprehensive grounding in theoretical approaches to human development across the life span in comparative cross-species, cross-cultural, and multicultural, as well as class and gender perspectives. The Human Development major is interdisciplinary, meaning it draws on theories and concepts from multiple disciplines, including: Anthropology, Biology, Education, Gerontology, Nursing, Psychology, Sociology, and Women's & Gender Studies.

A B.A. in Human Development will help prepare students for professional, managerial, service, and educational careers in human development and human services serving infants, children, adolescents, families, and elders. The degree in Human Development will also complement students' preparation for graduate studies in traditional fields such as psychology, sociology, anthropology, or human development. Our Career & Grad School Info page provides career and certificate, credential and graduate school options for students who earn a B.A. in Human Development, as well as tips for requesting letters of recommendation.

Program Learning Outcomes

Human Development Majors will master the following learning outcomes by the time they graduate:

  1. Recognize the way in which the life course comes to be culturally shaped as well as inflected by social positions such as gender, race, sexuality and class.
  2. Evaluate the variety of concepts and theories that shape scholarship and practice in human development, including from biological, social, cultural and psychological perspectives.
  3. Experience designing, undertaking, and presenting research that is empirically rigorous as well as ethically and methodologically sound.
  4. Identify the way that human development knowledge informs practices in applied settings focused on issues such as learning and education, health and wellness, social justice and community advocacy, and the social contexts of disability.
  5. Critically reflect on how human development knowledge can be used to facilitate positive change in the life course, especially in contexts of inequality and structural violence.