About The Human and Family Development Minor


The purpose of this program is to equip students with a general knowledge of issues relevant to normal and abnormal patterns of human and family development and to provide them with some practical skills and insights which will enhance their abilities in a variety of professions which deal with developmental and family issues. The program also supports students to develop practical skills and insights that will enhance their abilities in a variety of professions dealing with issues of human and family development. The curriculum is interdisciplinary and reflects four specific goals:

  1. Provide students with an extensive knowledge base of theory and research concerning lifespan development and the role of the family in development
  2. Train students to be critical consumers of research and evaluation results in the human and family development areas
  3. Provide students with practical experience in at least one applied service discipline in the human and family development areas
  4. Provide students with the opportunity to take topical courses in normal and atypical development of the individual and family.

Kassie Gahagan

Kassie Gahagan, HFD Minor The Human and Family Development minor has a unique blend of coursework and practicum options that make it the perfect fit for me. I am a Psychology major at the UM and am able to use this minor's diverse coursework to dabble in other interesting classes which I would have otherwise neglected.

"The practicum has helped me to gain valuable real-life experience that have already proved applicable. My experience working with children in the practicum led to to gain a job as a summer camp counselor. I am pleased with the opportunities the HFD minor has already given me and can't wait to see where else it takes me."

Areas and emphasis

The Human and Family Development minor is an interdisciplinary program of study, encompassing a broad range of ages and areas including:

  • Early Intervention
  • Early Child Development
  • School-Age Development
  • Adolescence
  • Gerontology
  • Family Processes

The HFD minor emphasizes the view that:

  • Human growth is a valid subject of scientific study; and
  • Knowledge of the processes and contents of psychological, social and biological growth of the individual separately and within the family context will benefit the quality of life of both the student/investigator and the public.