MS in Human Development and Family Science

Programs are structured to provide students with an integration of theoretical perspectives, empirical research training, and practical experiences.

Degree Requirements

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
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 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
H_D_FS 9090Research in Human Development and Family Science3-6

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Master’s of Science students must complete a thesis (H_D_FS 9090). Students who wish to pursue the thesis must petition the department’s graduate faculty for approval. The thesis requires testing a hypothesis or exploring a research question. Student will submit and orally defend the thesis to their committee. For more detailed information, please refer to the HDFS Graduate Handbook found on the HDFS website (

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 (

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.

Admission Criteria for Campus Programs

Fall deadline: January 1

Minimum TOEFL scores:

Internet-based test (iBT) Paper-based test (PBT)
61 Effective July 1, 2015 must have score of 80 500 Effective July 1, 2015 must have score of 550
  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 for last 60 hours
  • Application form
  • 3 letters of recommendation 
  • TOEFL score for international applicants
  • Personal statement
  • Résumé or curriculum vitae
  • Unofficial transcripts

Admission Contact Information

Ashlie Lester,
106C Gwynn; Columbia, MO 65211

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