Mizzou’s on-campus Master’s degree in Human Development and Family Science prepares you to critically consume research, translate research to practice, and make empirically-supported decisions. This degree prepares you to work in a variety of settings to support the lives of individuals and families.


Research the development, diversity, and resilience of individuals, couples, families, and communities in context and across the lifespan.


Create your personalized plan of study and capstone experience to specialize in the area most relevant to your career or educational goals.


Join research teams, support undergraduate instruction, and engage with the community through student organizations.

Degree Requirements

Courses are selected from:

  1. Statistics, research methods, and professional development (7 hours)
    HDFS 8200: Research Methods
    Any advisor-approved statistics course 7000 level or above
    HDFS 8087: Professional Seminar I
  2. Theory (6 hours)
    HDFS 8210: Theories of Human Development
    HDFS 8220: Family Theories
  3. Diversity (6 hours; additional courses may be taken to fulfill electives requirements)
    HDFS 7300: Black Families
    HDFS 7610: Stress in Families
    HDFS 8087: Poverty
    HDFS 8300: Advanced Seminar on Multicultural Families
  4. Electives (12-15 hours)
    HDFS 7001: Contemporary Issues in Family Science
    HDFS 7001: Contemporary Issues in Human Development
    HDFS*: Infancy and Childhood
    HDFS 7640: Interpersonal Relationships
    HDFS *: Adult Development and Aging
    HDFS 8012: Family Dynamics and Intervention
    HDFS 8450: Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood
    HDFS 8640: Family Interaction
    *course numbers not yet set
    Or any advisor approved graduate level course
  5. HDFS 8090: Project (3-6 hours)
    HDFS 8972: Internship (3-6 hours)
    HDFS 8999: Exam (no course credit is assigned)
    HDFS 8090: Thesis (3-6 hours)****Students must petition the graduate committee to complete a thesis and earn a Master of Science degree.

*36 credit hours are required to earn a Master’s degree

Choose a capstone experience to support your goals

  • Internship: Acquire hands-on experience in a setting of your choice
  • Project: Develop programming or policy to make a difference in your community
  • Thesis: Hone research skills and contribute to a body of knowledge



Graduates from the on-campus Master’s program work in a variety of settings that support adaptive development and relationships.

  • Human services agencies
  • Family advocacy programs
  • County Extension offices
  • Emergency shelters / Crisis centers
  • Public policy / Government agencies
  • Early childhood centers
  • Assisted living centers