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Oklahoma State University

Admissions Information

Prerequisites for Admission to HDFS Graduate Programs:

Prerequisite Courses Required for Full Admittance to the PhD program:

Students who have not completed the HDFS MS Core Courses (or the equivalent) before admission to the doctoral program are required to complete the prerequisites noted below. These prerequisites listed here meet the HDFS MS Core requirements.


  • HDFS 5253 (Social and Emotional Development: Theory and Research)
  • HDFS 5293 (Developmental Contexts of Normative Behavior Problems
  • HDFS 5513 (Issues in Family Science)
  • HDFS 5523 (Family Theory)
  • HDFS 5133 (Research Methods)
  • REMS 5953 (Elementary Statistics or equivalent graduate level introductory course)
  • A thesis or equivalent must be completed in addition to the requirements for the doctoral degree if a thesis was not required as a component of the applicant's MS program

Recommended Prerequisite:

  • REMS 6003 (Analysis of Variance) or PSYC 5304 (Quantitative Methods in Psychology- I)

Outstanding students with an earned bachelor’s degree may be considered for admission to the 90 hour PhD program. Please contact the Graduate Coordinator for additional information.

Prerequisite Courses Required for Full Admittance to the MS Program:

Admission to the MS program requires the completion of a bachelor's degree in Human Development, Family Science, Child and Family Services, Early Childhood Education, or a related area.

OSU Graduate College Admission Requirements (for All Applicants):

Please refer to the OSU Graduate College Admissions Requirements for additional information regarding admission requirements.

Documents to Submit for Your Application:

All application materials are submitted online to the OSU Graduate College.  Applicants should submit the following items as part of their application materials:

  1. Official online OSU Graduate College Application (and pay the application fee)
  2. Transcripts with bachelor’s degree conferred or pending, as well as transcripts for any graduate coursework or degree(s)*
  3. GRE score report** - for applicants to the (a) PhD program, (b) Developmental and Family Sciences MS option, or (c) Marriage and Family Therapy MS option. (Note: OSU's GRE institution code is 6546.)  The exam must have been taken within the past five years.
  4. All international applicants must also submit scores from the TOEFL exam*** or the IELTS (academic stream) exam; the exam must have been taken within the last two years.
  5. Statement of professional goals
  6. Names and email addresses for three references. References will receive an email requesting completion of an online recommendation form.
  7. Curriculum Vitae/Resume

*A minimum GPA of 3.0 in all undergraduate, graduate, and professional school coursework is required to be considered for full admission.

For admission to the PhD program, a minimum GPA of 3.5 in previous graduate coursework is preferred, and a minimum 3.25 GPA in previous graduate coursework is required.

**For prospective PhD students, minimum scores of 150 for the verbal section, 147 for the quantitative section, and 4.0 for the analytical writing section are preferred.

For prospective MS students (in Developmental and Family Sciences option and Marriage and Family Therapy option), minimum scores of 150 for the verbal section, 147 for the quantitative section, and 3.5 for the analytical writing section are preferred.

***A minimum TOEFL score of 79 is required for admission. 

Admission Deadlines:

Fall Semester Admission:

  • December 15: Application deadline for the Marriage and Family Therapy MS option; students in this option are ONLY admitted to begin study during fall semester.
  • January 10: Application deadline for the PhD program and the Developmental and Family Sciences MS option.
  • April 1: Application deadline for the Applied Human Services MS option, Early Childhood Education MS option, and Gerontology MS option.

Spring Semester Admission:

  • October 15: Application deadline for all on-campus degree programs.  (Note: The Marriage and Family Therapy MS degree option does not admit students to begin study during spring semester.)

For online MS options offered online through the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance (IDEA), which include the Family and Community Services MS option and the online Gerontology MS option, the admission deadlines are rolling.

Admission Process:

Once an application is complete, the HDFS graduate faculty will review the application and make an admission recommendation. We suggest that PhD program applicants review the list of faculty research areas and contact potential advisors. Official notification regarding admission is sent by the OSU Graduate College via the online application system.

More Information:

For questions regarding admission to the Human Development and Family Science graduate program, please contact:

Graduate Program Coordinator – Stillwater campus
Dr. Michael Criss

Graduate Program Coordinator – Tulsa campus
Dr. Karina Shreffler

Assistant to the Graduate Program Coordinator
Ragan Jessell

Oklahoma State University
233 Human Sciences
Stillwater, OK 74078
Phone: 405-744-6231