Pat Sims, Chair
118 College Drive, #5035
Hattiesburg, MS 39406-0001
Adams, Blackwell, Grames, Herring, Hinton, Jeanfreau, Kimberly, Rollins, Sims, Williams, Wright
Child and Family Studies
In addition to the general education core, course work in child and family studies has a family systems perspective and focuses on developmental observations. A broad knowledge of the child and family is acquired through courses in family dynamics, communication, psychology, developmental disabilities and contemporary issues affecting quality of life. Students take courses in infant and child development, curriculum activities, behavior and guidance of children, parenthood and supervised work through practicum or internship experiences. Graduates who complete the course requirements for a child and family studies degree with an emphasis in family relations may be eligible for provisional membership in the National Council on Family Relations' Certified Family Life Education Program. Students majoring in Child and Family Studies specialize in one of the following areas: child development or family relations.
The undergraduate programs in child and family studies are accredited by the Council for Accreditation of the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences.
Child development graduates work as teachers and administrators of child care and preschool programs or as child development specialists who plan and implement developmentally effective activities with children in other settings. Child development students may also pursue their educator licensure to teach pre-kindergarten through kindergarten in the public school system. Students who plan to obtain their educator licensure are encouraged to complete their supervised practicum experience in a public school setting and must pass the Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching-Early Childhood exam (5621/0621) in the semester prior to their practicum experiences. To obtain licensure through the Mississippi State Department of Education, students are additionally required to pass the Praxis II Education of Young Children exam (5021/0021) as part of the licensure application requirements.
Family relations graduates work in human service organizations such as child abuse prevention agencies, parent and family resource centers, departments of human services, justice courts, community mental health centers and agencies on aging. Graduates are also prepared to work with the Cooperative Extension Service.
Offerings for Non-majors
A number of courses offered within the Department of Child and Family Studies do not have prerequisites and are excellent choices for electives. A minor is also available in child and family studies.
CD 350 - Child Development
FAM 150 - Social and Professional Development
FAM 151 - Personal Development and Interpersonal Relationships
FAM 351 - Marital and Family Relationships
FAM 352 - Families and Adolescents
FAM 442 - Personal and Family Financial Management
FAM 450 - Sexuality in the Family System
FAM 452 - Parenthood
FAM 455 - Family Theories
Laboratory and Field Experiences
Laboratory and field experiences, as well as academic work, are integral to students' preparation. The Center for Child Development offers all students opportunities to observe and participate in directed experiences with infants, toddlers and preschoolers. Students with an emphasis in family relations gain valuable knowledge through field experiences in human services or community agencies.
Special Program Requirements
Students must work closely with an academic adviser in selecting an emphasis and elective courses best suited to their interests and career goals.
Students must earn a grade of C or better in all courses required for the major area of study, specialization area and any courses substituted for major and specialization area courses in order to graduate.
Students must have a cumulative GPA of 2.0 to transfer into child and family studies.
In cases where students claim to have mastered the concepts covered in courses for which no College Level Examination Program (CLEP) equivalent exists, faculty will design examinations covering content in those courses to provide a venue for students to prove mastery.
Laboratory experiences are required in most circumstances, even if a student is able to pass a challenge examination over the lecture material. Faculty designing challenge examinations can require students to produce additional evidence of mastery, including projects that were a part of previous course work or additional documentation that provides a more complete assessment of the student's experience.
ProgramsBachelor of ScienceNon-degree