Human Development: The UDC Edge

The Human Development program 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

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 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.

Human Development: Vision, Mission, Goals & Student Learning Objectives


To  prepare students to become nationally recognized leaders in urban early childhood care and human development across the lifespan.


The cornerstones of the Human Development Program are  Connecting Families with Practice;  Cultural and Linguistic Diversity;  Inclusion; and  High Quality Education for all young children.



  • Prepare students to be reflective practitioners and skilled in the care, education and service of developing children and their families from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
  • Provide learning experiences through which students develop proficiency in analytical, writing, research and technology skills.
  • Provide experiential opportunities designed to model professional and career pathways as well as prepare students for emerging job market demands.
  • Increase the number of graduates assuming professional roles in the fields of early childhood care and human development across the lifespan.
  • Prepare students for post-baccalaureate study in graduate studies, professional schools and entry into the public and private sectors.

Student Learning Objectives

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

  • Analyze relevant concepts, institutional structures, theories, and methods in the discipline of Human Development.
  • Analyze multidisciplinary approaches to education and care experiences for children and families in a variety of setting.
  • Analyze 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.
  • Demonstrate discipline related writing, analytical, communication, and technological proficiency.
  • Demonstrate skill-sets associated with the professional practice of early child care and career pathways in Human Development.


Curriculum and Requirements

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. The core curriculum and plan of study are comprised of courses in Psychology, Education, Nutrition, and Speech 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

Dr. Annette Miles, Assistant Professor of Human Development, specializes in the growth and development of children from infancy to third grade.  She is a retired educator who has experience working with students across the lifespan in the metropolitan area, especially those with disabilities. She volunteers with teens and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders.  Her area of research focuses on public policy issues impacting children.

Other faculty teaching in the program are jointly shared   primarily with the Early Childhood Education  and Speech-Language Pathology programs, Division of Education, Health & Social Work;   the  Psychology program, Division of Social & Behavioral Sciences; and the Nutrition & Didactic Dietetics  program, College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (CAUSES).

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.

Contact info:

Dr. Annette Miles, Program Coordinator, Human Development Program, Division of Social & Behavioral Sciences
E: | T:202.274.6573