Human Development

Human Development: The UDC Edge

The BA program in Human Development prepares students to be  reflective practitioners and skilled in the care, education and service of  children and their families from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.  Our students will know and understand how humans grow, develop and learn, in a variety of settings, and will be able to successfully guide children and their families toward the types of experiences and interactions that produce long-term, positive benefits in the areas of social/emotional development, academic achievement and school readiness.

Human Development: Bachelor of Arts Degree

Our children are our most valuable resource and ensuring their healthy development is a top priority. If you enjoy working with children and want to make a difference in their lives, the Bachelor of Arts degree in Human Development can provide skills and the opportunity for you to achieve your professional goals.

The Human Development program at the University of the District of Columbia focuses on the comprehensive care and education of children from birth to 5 years and professional interaction with their families.  You will learn how human beings grow, develop and learn across a range of learning environments. We will prepare you to successfully guide children and their families toward experiences and interactions that influence positive social, emotional and cognitive development, as well as school readiness.  We emphasize responsiveness to the development and cultural uniqueness of each child as you learn to design, implement and evaluate curricular activities and learning environments.

There are four cornerstones of the Human Development Program::

  • Connecting Families with Practice
  • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity
  • Inclusion
  • High Quality Education for all young children

Student Learning Objectives

Upon completion of requirements in the Human Development program, students will be able to:

  1. Identify and explain the multidisciplinary approaches to understanding education and care experiences for children and families in a variety of setting.
  2. Explain strategies in the areas of social/economic development, academic achievement and school readiness that are designed to improve the experiences of children and their families.
  3. Demonstrate proficiency in writing and technology.
  4. Demonstrate skill-sets and apply knowledge associated with the professional practice of early child care and career pathways in Human Development.


Curriculum and Requirements in the UDC Human Development Program

Program of Study - Option I | Program of Study Option II

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Human Development offers two options: Infant/Toddler and Preschool.  Students must complete 120 credit hours, including 42 credits in core/foundation courses and 24 credits in one of the options. You can learn through a core curriculum and plan of study that is comprised of courses Psychology, Education, Sociology, and Speech and Language. Students also complete a capstone field experience/practicum that consists of teaching full-time, depending on their option, in either an infant/toddler or preschool setting.

The preschool option of the program fulfills the requirements of the Pre-K Enhancement and Expansion Amendment Act of 2008 that mandates all teachers of three- and four-year-olds in a community-based and Head Start programs to obtain a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education or a related field.

Student Organizations and Activities

  • Early Childhood Education Club
  • Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education
  • Student National Education Association (SNEA)

Faculty Spotlight: UDC Human Development Program

Faculty teaching in the program is jointly shared   primarily with the Early Childhood Education program and Speech-Language Pathology program, Division of Education, Health & Social Work;  and the Sociology and Psychology programs, Division of Social & Behavioral Sciences.

Career Pathways and Prospects

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Human Development prepares students for careers in teaching in community-based childcare settings, early childhood education centers, Head Start, private, and some public charter schools.  The program permits students to select the age range (Infants/ Toddlers or Preschool) to focus course content and guided experiences to respond to the increasing specialized settings for children. Graduates often pursue graduate studies in Psychology, Counseling, Early Childhood Education, Social Work or a related discipline.

Graduates often pursue graduate studies in psychology, counseling, early childhood education, social work or a related discipline.

Contact info:

Dr. Shiela Harmon Martin, Chair, Division of Social & Behavioral Sciences
E: | T: 202.274.5787