Get Your Human Development & Family Studies Degree

Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) draws from multiple disciplines and is designed for students who are intrigued by human nature and the forces that shape it. You'll study how people develop physically, emotionally, and socially across their lifespans and in the context of family and society. Graduates will be prepared to conduct research, serve the public, or attend graduate programs.

Human Development & Family Studies Program Highlights 

  • Columbia College is one of only a few schools in South Carolina to offer a major in HDFS. 
  • Small classes allow for in-depth discussions in a variety of interrelated topics.
  • Students will tailor the course work and senior capstone experience by choosing topics related to their career goals.
  • The HDFS program has established partnerships with numerous organizations in the community so you can learn outside of the classroom.

Modality & Benefits

Get a traditional college experience with lively in-person classroom discussions and close proximity to your professors, mentors, and best friends. 

Start Dates: 

January & August  

  • Semester-Based Timeline
  • Face-to-Face Instruction (some Online options)
  • In-Person Office Hours & Support
  • Relationships & Networking
  • Extracurriculars & Immersive Campus Experience

Human Development & Family Studies Curriculum

Major Requirements

Popular Human Development & Family Studies Classes

  • Theories of Human Development 
    Analyze theories of behavior, cognition, emotions, and relationships. 
  • Interventions for Children and Families
    Learn about development and interventions implemented in school, work, and community.
  • Adolescent Development
    Explore experiences between puberty and the early 20s.

Diverse and Rewarding Career Paths

The HDFS degree prepares you to pursue careers across disciplines and focuses. Many occupations that require a bachelor's degree offer compensation between $40,000 and $60,000 (BLS).


  • South Carolina State Department of Social Services
  • Family Service Coordinator
  • Parent Educator
  • Child Life Specialist (with additional training)
  • Research Coordinator


  • Palmetto AIDS Life Support Services
  • The Benefit Bank
  • The Sickle Cell Association
  • YMCA Boys and Girls Club of the Midlands
  • Harvest Hope Food Bank

Master Your Field in One Year

Your degree in HDFS will prepare you for success in graduate programs for law, health care, or social work. You can also use your momentum with the MHA, MBA, and, leadership, and education master's programs offered right here at Columbia College.

Student Experiences

Student Experiences

"The breadth of material that we cover in the HDFS degree creates students who are curious, humble, and service-oriented. They are excited and prepared to make an impact."

Dr. Mary Jon Barrineau

Program Chair for Human Development and Family Studies


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