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Oklahoma State University

Child and Family Services

What You Will Learn

Coursework focuses on individual development, family dynamics, family life education, policy, management, and professional skills in the context of the community. The curriculum emphasizes developing skills in critical thinking, scientific investigation, and written and oral communication. The degree program provides flexibility to accommodate your particular area of interest or to meet prerequisites for a professional school.

Career Opportunities

The program prepares individuals for careers in providing services and leadership to children, youth, adults, and their families. Career opportunities are in public and private social services agencies, policy and advocacy centers, and in business and industry. The program also provides preparation for individuals planning to continue their education in graduate programs such as marriage and family therapy, child life, physical therapy, and psychology, as well as medical school, law school, or other specialized graduate programs.

The OSU Distinction

The distinguishing feature of this program is the interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary integration of instruction, research, and application between and among human development, family science, early childhood education, gerontology, and marriage and family therapy.


The Human Development and Family Science Club (HDFS Club) is an organization that helps students explore opportunities by providing occasions for interaction with a variety of professionals, faculty members, and career advisors. This organization enhances a student’s college experience through contact with other students who have similar interests.

A required professional internship provides valuable work experience prior to graduation.


  • Rhonda Ashburn, Executive Director at American Financial Services Association Education Foundation (Washington, DC)
  • Kristen Atchley, Executive Director of Counseling Oklahoma State Department of Education (Oklahoma City, OK)
  • Tamara Cain, Partner at Cain & Cain, Estate Planners for Life (Norman, OK)
  • Mary Beth Carver, Early Care & Education Program Coordinator Canadian Valley Technology Center (Chickasha, OK)
  • Mary Fallin, Governor – State of Oklahoma (Oklahoma City, OK)
  • Tim Gowin, Vice President of Program Operations – Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Oklahoma (Tulsa, OK)
  • Samantha Johnson, Health Education Specialist Youth Services of Tulsa (Tulsa, OK)
  • Annie Akin Jones, Child Life Specialist Wolfson Children's Hospital (Jacksonville, FL)
  • Denise Morris, State FCCLA Adviser at Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education (Oklahoma City, OK)
  • Melissa Oliver, Senior Counselor at Wings of Hope Family Crisis Services (Stillwater, OK)
  • Brittani Phillips, Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher at Putnam City North High School (Oklahoma City, OK)
  • Janie Taylor, Managing Partner and Physical Therapist at Physical Therapy Central (Norman, OK)
  • Brooke Townsend, Director of Community Affairs at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma (Oklahoma City, OK)


The department’s Center for Family Resilience is focused on the promotion of resilience and reduction of risk among individuals, couples, and families across the lifespan in rural and urban areas of Oklahoma through multidisciplinary research, education, and outreach.


While a ranking does not exist for the undergraduate program, the doctoral program was recently ranked #34 in North America for top doctoral programs.