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Developmental and Family Science

Purdue University in West Lafayette

The Developmental and Family Science curriculum allows students to take an interdisciplinary approach to studying families and human development across the lifespan. Students receive a broad education in human development and family studies, with optional concentrations in child development or family and community health. The major culminates in a capstone experience, designed by the student from among three choices: an internship, a research thesis, or a study abroad experience.

The home of the Developmental and Family Science major is the Department of Human Development and Family Science, located in Hanley Hall and Fowler House.  In HDFS, all undergraduate students experience great academics, personal attention, and real-world experience. 

Developmental and Family Science majors are eligible to pursue either the accelerated five-year Master of Public Health (MPH) or Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) degrees. Developmental and Family Science majors can also pursue a Certificate in Gerontology.

Plan of Study

Developmental and Family Science, BS
Developmental and Family Science Webpage

Transfer to Developmental and Family Science

Purdue admits to individual majors. Transfer students must meet Purdue's overall transfer criteria, as well as any major-specific requirements. Before you apply, check the closed programs page to confirm this major is open to transfer students. If it is, refer to the information below for major-specific transfer criteria.

Minimum GPA: 2.5

Contact Information

HHS Undergraduate Student Services
(765) 494-8533

College of Health and Human Sciences

Careers in Developmental and Family Science

Graduates of Developmental and Family Science work with children, adults, and families in a variety of settings. Examples of career paths that Development and Family Science students pursue are:

  • Prevention educator (or prevention/health promotion educator)
  • Program development and evaluation
  • Volunteer coordinator
  • Senior/elder care advocate
  • Community outreach coordinator
  • Family support worker
  • Childcare program coordinator
  • Autism specialists

This degree also offers excellent graduate preparation for graduate programs, including:

  • Public health
  • Applied behavior analysis
  • Law
  • Public policy
  • Gerontology
  • Human development and family studies

If you are interested in a health profession, this major can give you excellent preparation to understand how to treat your patient as a whole person, not just a collection of symptoms. Graduates of this program go on to training in nursing, occupational therapy, medicine, and more.

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