M.S. in Applied Human Development and Family Sciences (AHDFS)

What is Applied Human Development and Family Sciences (AHDFS) program?

The AHDFS program offers a Master of Science degree. The 30-credit hour graduate program focuses on the study of human development, family dynamics and their relations with the broader ecological context across the life span. This program offers students with a theoretical foundation and practical applications to promote well-being and healthy development of individuals, families and relationships. Graduate are prepared for professional positions in working with children, adolescents, families.  The degree program also prepares students who wish to pursue doctoral studies in a related area.

Is the GRE required for admission?

The GRE general test (Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing) is required of all applicants.

What is the difference between the AHDFS graduate program without a specialization, the AHDFS program with the Specialization in Marriage and Family Therapy (SMFT) and the AHDFS program with the Specialization in Leadership in Aging Studies (SLAS)?

AHDFS offers three graduate pathways for those interested in studying human development and family relations across the life span.

AHDFS: provides you with the most up-to-date knowledge, practical skills and hands-on experience to promote and improve wellbeing for individuals and families. This program provides you the opportunity for doctoral studies in the future.

Specialization in SMFT: offers you both theoretical foundations and clinical experience in the training of becoming a Marriage and Family therapist to assist individuals, couples, parents and families in resolving problems. The program prepares you to pursue a license for marriage and family therapists (LMFT).

Specialization in SLAS: provides you the academic and filed training and experience to pursue leadership positions in aging, including long-term care, social services, service management and research and evaluation. It is also designed for the preparation to sit for the Illinois Nursing Administrator’s License.

What is the typical length of the AHDFS Master’s program?

Since full-time enrollment in graduate school is 9 credit hours per semester, a student can complete the AHDFS Master’s program in two years as a full-time student. Students can take courses in the fall, spring and summer semesters.

Is an internship required for this program?

Students are encouraged to gain practical experiences through internships. The program offers a variety of different internship opportunities; it depends on which path you are taking. The program also offers a college teaching course to provide college teaching experience for those who are interested in pursuing college teaching as a career path.

Is thesis required for this program?

Students can choose between writing a thesis (6 credits) or taking the written comprehensive examination.  Students should make a decision between the thesis and comprehensive examination options early in their program, the decision should depend on the student’s strengths, interests and future career goals.