BA in Child Study and Human Development

The undergraduate major in Child Study and Human Development provides students with a strong foundation for developing a deep understanding of children and youth, for working with diverse groups of children, adolescents, and their families, and for carrying out research on applied issues. Students who wish to focus on one area within child, youth, and/or family development may choose a concentration of study within their major. Alternatively, a student may wish to develop an individualized plan of study (IPS), which must be constructed together with the academic advisor.

The following four concentrations of study are offered to undergraduate majors:

  • Child and Family Health/Well-Being
  • Children, Media, and the Arts
  • Identity Development in Global Context
  • Individual Plan of Study

Learn more about Concentrations of Study and the courses in each concentration. 

Program Requirements and Policies

  • For the Bachelor of Arts degree in Child Study and Human Development, a total of ten courses are required.
  • If a student wishes to count a course not listed on our website toward a concentration, they may petition the Undergraduate Programs Committee (UPC), via e-mail, to or 
  • ASL 3 will be offered just once a year in the spring semester. Students planning to use ASL for the language distribution requirements are asked to plan accordingly.  Students with questions about ASL courses should contact their academic advisor.

Course Requirements

  • Two foundational courses:
    • CSHD 1: Introduction to Child Study and Human Development* 
    • *Note:  CSHD 1 may only be waived through demonstration of having taken an equivalent course, through petition to the UPC.  PSY 1 is not accepted as a substitution for CSHD 1.
  • One of the following foundational courses:
    • CSHD 51: Intellectual Development
    • CSHD 61: Personal-Social Development
    • CSHD 62: Childhood across Cultures
    • CSHD 155: The Young Child's Development of Language
      Note: With instructor's permission, undergraduates may take CSHD 151 and CSHD 161 as seniors.
  • CSHD 42: Inquiry and Analysis in Child Study and Human Development
  • Three courses from within the same concentration 
    • Concentration 1: Child and Family Health / Well-Being
    • Concentration 2: Children, Media and the Arts
    • Concentration 3: Individual Plan of Study (see IPS guidelines)
  • One Applied Experience or Research
  • Majors must complete a minimum of 3.0 credits or a maximum of 4.0 credits in either an Applied Experience or Research Experience course. One Applied Experience (can be fulfilled by two half-courses totaling 4 Credits, when applicable.) Students may not double-count courses for both the Applied or Research Experience requirement AND as electives towards their concentration.
  • Courses that count toward the applied/research experience offered in the Spring semester include:
    • CSHD 67 - Resilience in Development
    • CSHD 143-09 Observing Children in Natural Settings
    • CSHD 143-10 Children's Television Project Research
    • CSHD 143-25 Half the History
    • CSHD 169 Creating Children's Media
  • Three Electives (for Concentrations 1 and 2, only ONE of the three electives may be in a related fields course taken outside the CSHD Department; with prior approval from their major advisor, students choosing Concentration 3 may take TWO courses from outside the CSHD Department).  Note:  no related fields course counted if the CSHD major's list includes ASL 2 and ASL 3).