Human Development

Human Development: The UDC Edge

Located in the heart of the nation’s capitol, the University of the District of Columbia is an affordable and high quality educational option, attentive to your needs and committed to your success.

At UDC, a shared multicultural perspective among students and faculty shapes the learning environment. Our students are acutely aware of the impact of health disparities among lower income, minority populations. To that end, they often commit their careers to working with underserved and underrepresented populations, caring for and educating children and families from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Bachelor’s Degree (BA) in Human Development

Our children are our most valuable resource, and ensuring their proper development is a top priority. If you enjoy working with kids and want to make a difference in their lives, a bachelor’s degree in human development can give you the skills to help and the opportunity to advance in the field.

The human development bachelor’s degree 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 humans grow, develop and learn across a range of settings. We will equip 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.

Our program is built around four cornerstones:

  • Connecting Families with Practice
  • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity
  • Inclusion
  • Accountability for Results


Curriculum and Requirements in the UDC Human Development Program

The bachelor’s degree in human development requires completion of 120 credit hours, with:

  • 42 credit hours in core/foundation courses
  • 24 credit hours in either the preschool or infant/toddler option
  • 48 credit hours in general education requirements
  • Six credit hours of general electives

Our curriculum draws from psychology, education, sociology and speech and language.

You will also complete a capstone field experience and seminar, including an electronic portfolio and a cumulative course, Current Practices in Early Childhood Education. The field experience consists of teaching full-time in either an infant/toddler or preschool setting, depending on which program option you have chosen.

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

Core courses include:

  • History and Philosophy of Early Childhood Education
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Child in the Family
  • The Family
  • Introduction to Exceptional Children in Early Childhood Education
  • Child Study and Assessment
  • Language Acquisition
  • Child Health and Nutrition
  • Human Development Practicum
  • Children in Multi-cultural Society
  • Advanced Practicum

Preschool option courses include:

  • Child Development: Neuro-Science and The Developing Child
  • Curriculum Content in Early Childhood Education
  • Special Topics in Early Childhood
  • Play: Learning and Reading
  • Emergent Literacy I
  • Emergent Literacy II
  • Adaptive Learning and Teaching
  • Current Practices in Early Childhood Education

Infant/toddler option courses include:

  • Child Development: Neuroscience and the Developing Child
  • Infant Education I: The Learning Environment
  • Infant Education II: Biological Development
  • Play: Learning and Relating
  • Emergent Literacy
  • Emergent Literacy II
  • Prevention and Intervention in Infant Development
  • Current Practices in Early Childhood Education

Student Organizations and Activities in the UDC Human Development Program

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

Faculty Spotlight: UDC Human Development Program

Dr. Sean T. Coleman, visiting associate professor and interim program coordinator, previously served as a performance officer and assessment committee chairperson at the D.C. Public Charter School Board (PCSB), as well as director of evaluation and training at Capstone Institute at Howard University. His research interests relate to effective transactional strategies that facilitate students’ motivation, engagement and positive, affective and cognitive academic outcomes.

Career Pathways and Prospects

The Human Development program is designed primarily to prepare 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.

Contact info:

E: | T: 202.274.5194 | F: 202.274.5589