The Major Program

Human development explores the developmental process in humans throughout the life cycle. Biological, cognitive, and personality/sociocultural aspects of development are studied. Please also visit the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. 

The Program

Human development majors complete a group of preparatory courses in anthropology, general biology, genetics, history, philosophy, physiology, psychology, and statistics. Upper division students can design their programs in consultation with a faculty member to emphasize a particular interest. For instance, students can study the cognitive, social, and biological aspects of human development while emphasizing child or adult development.

Internships and Career Alternatives

One practicum course is required, and internships can be used to fulfill the restricted elective requirement for the major. Students can intern in schools, early childhood education or senior centers, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, probation offices, group foster homes, mental health clinics, or as tutors for handicapped or bilingual students. Human development graduates fill a wide variety of positions in preschools, elementary and special educational settings, programs designed for parents, families, and the elderly, as well as governmental jobs related to social services for people of all ages. Students who emphasize biological aspects of human development can apply to medical school or pursue training for positions in the health sciences. Human development prepares students to pursue advanced degrees in behavioral and social sciences, education, social work, family law, or health sciences.

Entry Requirements

UC Davis students who wish to change their major to Human Development must complete the following courses with a combined grade point average of at least 2.500. All of the following courses must be taken for a letter grade:

  • Psychology 1
  • Statistics 10 or 13 or Psychology 41 or Sociology 46A and 46B
  • One course from Anthropology 1, 2 or 15
  • One course from Biological Sciences 2A, 10, 101; Microbiology 10; Molecular and Cellular Biology 10; or Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior 10, 12 or 101

Graduate Study

Graduate study is available through a Master of Science degree in child development, and a Ph.D. degree in human development. See also Graduate Studies.