MA in Human Development and Family Science

Programs are structured to provide students with an integration of theoretical perspectives, empirical research training, and practical experiences.   Students in the degree program must choose an emphasis area.  Degree Requirements are specific to the emphasis and can be found on those catalog pages.  The number of hours required for each emphasis is as follows:

  • Family and Community Services: 36 hours
  • Gerontology: 36 hours
  • Youth Development: 36 hours
  • Dual MSorMA/JD: approximately 113 hours Research

Degree Requirements

Master of Arts students may complete a comprehensive exam, an internship H_D_FS 8972 for up to six credit hours, or, for on-campus students only, a project  (H_D_FS 8090), for up to six credit hours. The project option is no less scholarly than a thesis, but usually has an applied focus. For instance, a project may involve designing a program and developing curriculum materials (e.g., instructional videotapes, websites, resource manuals). Internships are often conducted off-campus and must be negotiated with the student’s advisor and approved by the student’s faculty committee. Students completing the comprehensive exam option must take additional elective course credit. For more detailed information, please refer to the HDFS Graduate Handbook found on the HDFS website (http://hdfs.missouri.edu/ ).

Courses are selected from the following:
Statistics and Research Methods6
H_D_FS 8200Research Methods in Human Development and Family Science3
Any advisor-approved statistics course 7000 level or above
Theory6
H_D_FS 8210Theories of Human Development3
H_D_FS 8220Family Theories3
Diversity (additional courses may be taken to fulfill electives requirement)6
H_D_FS 7200Latino Families and Youth3
H_D_FS 7300Black Families3
H_D_FS 7610Stress and Resilience in Families3
H_D_FS 8087Seminar in Human Development and Family Science (Poverty)1-99
H_D_FS 8300Advanced Seminar on Multicultural Families3
H_D_FS 8610Remarriage & Stepfamilies: Development, Dynamics, & Intervention3
H_D_FS 8630Gendered Relations in Families3
Electives12-15
H_D_FS 7257Aging and the Family3
H_D_FS 7640Interpersonal Relationships3
H_D_FS 8012Family Dynamics and Intervention3
H_D_FS 8420Cognitive Development3
H_D_FS 8440Social and Emotional Development3
H_D_FS 8450Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood3
H_D_FS 8640Family Interaction3
Or any advisor-approved graduate level course
Independent Effort
H_D_FS 8090Research in Human Development and Family Science3-6
OR
H_D_FS 8972Internship in Human Development and Family Science3-6
OR
H_D_FS 8999: Exam (no course credit is assigned)

Satisfactory Progress

Satisfactory progress is based on the student maintaining a sufficient GPA according to the student’s program or funding guidelines and completing all degree forms and milestones according to departmental timelines. For a detailed description of the department’s description of a satisfactory rate of academic progress, please refer to the HDFS Graduate Handbook found on the HDFS website (http://hdfs.missouri.edu/).

Time Limits for Masters’ Degree Completion

Students working toward the master’s degree have 5 years from the semester the first course is taken in which to complete all degree requirements. Extensions for one additional year to complete the degree may be granted with submission of a detailed plan for completion, including a timetable. Students must be making progress toward completion when they apply for the extension. A maximum of two extensions may be granted.

Background Checks, Health Screenings and Other Required Elements

It is essential that HDFS majors develop professional relationships with vulnerable populations, thus during the course of the degree program and prior to beginning any practical or clinical education experience, students are required to:

  • pass multiple criminal background checks
  • pass mandatory drug screens
  • pass other qualification checks required by the practical or clinical education sites
  • provide proof of health insurance coverage
  • provide proof of required immunizations
  • provide proof of student professional liability insurance coverage

The student is responsible for all costs incurred with these requirements. Failure to provide appropriate documentation, or pass required checks prior to the beginning of practical or clinical experiences may result in dismissal from the degree program in HDFS.

Admission Criteria for Campus Programs

Fall deadline: December 15
Spring deadline: November 1

Minimum TOEFL scores:

Internet-based test (iBT) Paper-based test (PBT)
61 500
Effective July 1, 2015 must have score of 80 Effective July 1, 2015 must have score of 550

Minimum GRE scores:

When did you take the GRE? Verbal Quantitative Analytical
Prior to August 1, 2011 50th percentile 50th percentile 50th percentile
On or After August 1, 2011 50th percentile 50th percentile 50th percentile

*Some exceptions are made

  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 for last 60 hours
    Required Application Materials for Campus Programs (submitted online via the online application system)
  • Application form
  • 3 letters of recommendation from people who can speak to applicant’s potential to do graduate work (e.g., professors, advisors).
  • GRE score (and TOEFL score for international applicants)
  • Personal statement
  • Résumé or Curriculum Vitae
  • Official Transcripts

Admission Criteria for Online Programs

  • No Admission Deadlines (We guarantee processing of complete applications received at least two months prior to the beginning of the expected term of admission. This will give admitted students adequate time to enroll in coursework.)
  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 for last 60 hours

Required Application Materials for Online Programs

submit online via the online application system

  • Application form
  • 3 letters of recommendation from people who can speak to applicant’s potential to do graduate work (e.g., professors, advisors).
  • Personal statement
  • Résumé or Curriculum Vitae
  • Official Transcripts

Admission Contact Information
Ashlie Lester lestera@missouri.edu
411 Gentry; Columbia, MO 65211
573-882-1301