Human Development Program

[ requirements | minor | courses | faculty ]

5320 AP&M, Muir College

All courses, faculty listings, and curricular and degree requirements described herein are subject to change or deletion without notice. Updates may be found on the Academic Senate website:

The Human Development Major

The scientific study of human development focuses on issues of growth, development, and behavioral change across the lifespan. The Human Development Program is interdisciplinary, incorporating courses from the Departments of Anthropology, Biology, Cognitive Science, Communication, Ethnic Studies, History, Linguistics, Literature, Psychology, Sociology, Education Studies, and Urban Studies and Planning Program. The curriculum is designed to emphasize the idea of development as an essential perspective from which to understand human behavior. The courses cover a broad spectrum of issues in human development: from brain and perceptual development, to reasoning and problem solving, to social interaction and the evolution of cultural systems. The Human Development Program unifies and coordinates the excellent research and teaching resources currently available on campus in this area and profiles the factors that influence the ways in which humans develop and change.

Human development is a very large field, but there is a set of basic questions that serve to define and integrate it: What underlies the development of human knowledge? To what extent is the capacity to know, indeed the concepts themselves, encoded in the genes? How is the role of learning and environmental influences accounted for? How do we learn? What are the ways in which children become competent participants in their social groups? What is the origin and nature of social interaction and organization?

The study of human development has become increasingly central to a wide range of important issues affecting infants, young children, and adolescents, as well as the changing structure of the American family and public policy on children and education. An understanding of the processes that underlie human development is crucial to our evaluation of these issues and to our ability to offer avenues for remediation of the attendant problems. The three major areas of study within the Human Development Program are: biological development, ontogenetic development, and sociocultural development. These areas consider issues that pertain to development of specific neural and cognitive processes and development within a larger social and cultural context.

Career Guidance

A degree in human development offers training of special interest to those considering admission to graduate or professional schools and careers in medicine, law, education, counseling, clinical psychology, public health, public policy, public administration, or social work. Students who are interested in these areas are advised to see a Human Development Program adviser for assistance in selecting elective and major courses. A major in human development is designed to impart fundamental skills in critical thinking, comparative analysis, research analysis, and written expression.

A human development major can offer preparation for teaching in elementary schools. However, if you are interested in earning a California teaching credential from UC San Diego, contact the Education Studies Program (EDS) for information about prerequisite and professional preparation requirements. It is recommended you contact EDS as early as possible in your academic career.

Education Abroad

Students are often able to participate in the UC Education Abroad Program (EAP) and UC San Diego’s Opportunities Abroad Program (OAP) while still making progress towards the major. Students interested in studying abroad should see a Human Development Program adviser to discuss curriculum plans and appropriate courses. It is strongly recommended that students obtain HDP preapproval for EAP courses that are intended to count toward the major. Information on EAP/OAP is detailed in the Education Abroad Program section of the UC San Diego General Catalog. Interested students should contact the Programs Abroad Office in the International Center and visit the website at Financial aid is applicable and special study abroad scholarships are available.

Prerequisites for Human Development Majors

A bachelor of arts degree in human development will be given to students who satisfactorily complete the general-education and graduation requirements of Marshall, Muir, Revelle, Roosevelt, Sixth, or Warren College in addition to the Human Development Program requirements. In accordance with UC San Diego academic regulations, upper-division courses used to satisfy major requirements cannot be applied towards minors (please note there is some overlap permitted for double majors). See college adviser and major adviser for questions and restrictions.

Applying for the HDP Major

Students who wish to declare the Human Development Program major must meet premajor requirements and apply for entrance into the major. All lower-division requirements must be fulfilled before applying for the major. All lower-division courses must be completed with a grade of C– or better. The cumulative GPA for the eight lower-division courses must equal or exceed 2.75. Students must meet with an HDP adviser and obtain approval to declare the human development major, no later than the second quarter of the student’s junior year.

Grade Requirements for the Major

A minimum grade point average of 2.0 is required in the major. Students must receive a grade of C– or better in any course counted toward fulfillment of the major requirements. All courses taken to satisfy the program’s lower- and upper-division requirements must be taken for a letter grade. HDP 1, HDP 150, HDP 181, and HDP 191 must be taken in residence. No substitutions will be approved.

Lower-Division Requirements

1. Introduction to Human Development: HDP1

2. One statistics course selected from the approved list: PSYC 60, COGS 14B (formerly COGS 14), BIEB 100, ECON 120A, POLI 30, or MATH 11

3. One formal skills course selected from the approved list: PHIL 10, PHIL 12, LIGN 17, or one course from the MATH 10 sequence or MATH 20 sequence

4 and 5. Two biological sciences courses selected from the approved list: ANTH 2, BILD 1, BILD 2, BILD 3, BILD 7, BILD 10, BILD 12, BILD 18, BILD 20, BILD 26, BILD 38, COGS 11, COGS 17, PSYC 2

6 and 7. Two social sciences courses selected from the approved list: ANTH 1, ANTH 3, CAT 1, CAT 2, COMM 10, COGS 1; One course from the HILD 7A, B, or C sequence (only one allowed), LIGN 4, LIGN 7 LIGN 8, LIGN 101, MMW 11 (formerly MMW 1), MMW 12 (formerly MMW 2), MMW 21, MMW 22, PSYC 1, PSYC 3, PSYC 6, PSYC 7, SOCI 1, SOCI 20

8. One computer literacy course selected from the approved list: MAE 5, COGS 3, COGS 8, COGS 18, CSE 3, CSE 5A, CSE 11

Upper-Division Requirements for the HDP Major

  1. Two Methods courses
  2. Four Core Series courses
  3. Six Development courses
  4. HDP 150
    (Full information follows)

A. Methods Courses

  1. HDP 181 (Students are encouraged to take this course their junior year.)
  2. HDP 191 (Students are encouraged to take this course their junior year.)

B. Core Series Courses

(Four courses selected from the approved list required, one from each DOMAIN)

Domain 1: The biological basis of human development

HDP 110. Brain and Behavioral Development

ANBI 111. Advanced Principles of Human Evolution

BIPN 144. Developmental Neurobiology

Domain 2: Ontogenetic—the social-cognitive and linguistic basis of human development (Two required—one from each area)
A. Social-Cognitive Development (One required)

HDP 121/COGS 110. The Developing Mind

HDP 122. Social Development

PSYC 187. Development of Social Cognition

B. Language Development (One required)

HDP 120. Language Development

COGS 156. Language Development

LIGN 171. Child Language Acquisition

Domain 3: The sociocultural basis of human development

HDP 133. Sociocultural Foundations of Human Development

ANSC 126. Childhood and Adolescence

ANSC 168. The Human Condition

HITO 126. History of Childhood

C. Development Courses

(Six courses required; at least one from each area of focus)

Biological Development

ANBI 116. The Evolution of Primate Reproduction

ANBI 140. The Evolution of the Human Brain

ANBI 159. Biological and Cultural Perspectives on Intelligence

ANBI 173. Cognition in Animals and Humans

ANTH 102. Humans are Cultural Animals

BICD 100. Genetics

BICD 130. Embryos, Genes, and Development

BICD 134. Human Reproduction and Development

BIPN 144. Developmental Neurobiology

COGS 115. Neurological Development and Cognitive Change

COGS 184. Modeling the Evolution of Cognition

PSYC 168. Psychological Disorders of Childhood

Ontogenetic Development

COGS 154. Communication Disorders in Children and Adults

COMM 100A. Situated Practices

COMM 168. Bilingual Communication

COMM 110E. Language, Literacy, and Communication: Learning to Read

COMM 110I. Language, Literacy, and Communication: Social Organization, and the Individual

EDS 119/LIGN 119. First and Second Language Learning: From Childhood through Adolescence

LIGN 179. Second Language Acquisition

PSYC 101. Introduction to Developmental Psychology

PSYC 136. Cognitive Development

PSYC 146. Language and Conceptual Development

PSYC 156. Cognitive Development in Infancy

PSYC 168. Psychological Disorders of Childhood

PSYC 172. Psychology of Human Sexuality

PSYC 180. Adolescence

PSYC 187. Development of Social Cognition

PSYC 190. Parenting

Sociocultural Development

ANBI 159. Biological and Cultural Perspectives on Intelligence

ANSC 125. Gender, Sexuality, and Society

ANSC 126. Childhood and Adolescence

ANSC 127. Discourse, Interaction, and Social Life

ANSC 167. Rituals and Celebrations

COMM 126. Children and Media

EDS 115. Cognitive Development and Education

EDS 117. Language, Culture, and Education

HDP 115/COMM 102C. Media and Design of Social Learning Contexts

HDP 135/COMM 102D. Practicum in Child Development

HDP 171. Diverse Communities in a Life Span Approach to Human Development

LTWL 114. Children’s Literature

LTWL 116. Adolescent Literature

PSYC 180. Adolescence

PSYC 190. Parenting

SOCI 117. Language, Culture, and Education

SOCI 116/LIGN 174. Gender and Language in Society

SOCI 129. The Family

SOCI 131. Sociology of Youth

SOCI 159. Special Topics in Organizations and Institutions (Only when topic is approved for HDP major)

SOCI 161. Sociology of The Life Course

USP 145. Aging—Social and Health Policy Issues

D. HDP 150. Senior Seminar

(HDP students should enroll in this course in their senior year.)

Senior Seminar Requirement HDP 150

Seminar for graduating HDP seniors. Readings and discussion of special topics in human development. Provides advanced-level study on subfields of human development. Topics vary quarterly. Prerequisites: HDP 1, HDP 181, HDP 191, senior standing, and department approval one quarter prior to enrollment.

Field Research Requirement HDP 191

This course provides students with the opportunity to participate jointly in a research project in conjunction with a mentor/collaborator from a local service site. This applied research experience allows students to design and conduct research projects in a variety of settings ranging from laboratory research settings to service oriented placements. In addition to literature research and a final paper at the end of the quarter, students will participate at an off-campus site for a minimum of four hours per week. Research sites are prearranged one academic year in advance (see the student affairs office or the HDP website for enrollment information). Students’ interests and future career plans are considered for site placement. Various research orientations and methodologies are reviewed in class. Prerequisites: HDP 1 and department approval one academic year prior to enrollment.

Honors in Human Development HDP 194A-B-C

The Human Development Program offers an honors option for those students who have demonstrated excellence in the human development major. The honors program allows eligible undergraduates to explore advanced issues in the field through an honors thesis on a topic of their choice and under faculty supervision. In order to be admitted to the honors program, students must have 1) junior standing and 2) maintained a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.2, and a 3.5 GPA for courses taken in the human development major. Interested students need to apply for departmental honors in spring quarter of their junior year. Students in the honors program are expected to complete the following additional requirements:

  1. an advanced course in statistics or methods design (See the HDP student affairs office for more information.)
  2. HDP 194A-B-C, a yearlong independent research project, which results in an honors thesis
  3. attendance of the Center for Human Development Seminar Series (when offered)

Petitioning Courses

There are three circumstances under which petitions to receive credit for courses not explicitly approved for the major will be considered (all approved courses are detailed in the UC San Diego General Catalog, HDP section): Requests from transfer students, requests from students planning to study abroad, and exceptional courses identified by a student. In all cases, students are required to submit a petition in writing that clearly describes the course for which they wish to receive HDP major credit, and to attach to the petition as much information as possible about the content of the course (e.g., syllabus, course description, etc.). With the exception of courses petitioned by transfer students, ALL REQUESTS FOR APPROVAL OF COURSES NOT EXPLICITLY LISTED IN THE UC San Diego General Catalog SHOULD BE SUBMITTED BEFORE THE COURSE IS TAKEN BY THE STUDENT.

Transfer students. Students transferring from a community college or other university must petition for HDP credit for courses taken at their previous institution. For students transferring from the California Community College System, articulation agreements for many courses have been developed that facilitate the petition process. Transfer students should make an appointment with an HDP adviser to review courses for which they will most likely receive credit and fill out a written petition for each course.

Education Abroad. Students planning to study abroad may receive credit toward the major for courses taken in another country. IT IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED THAT STUDENTS RECEIVE PRELIMINARY APPROVAL (BEFORE LEAVING THE COUNTRY) FOR COURSES THEY ARE CONSIDERING TAKING DURING THEIR TIME ABROAD. While the preliminary approval does not guarantee that the actual course will be approved, the great majority of courses for which preliminary approval has been obtained are approved when the actual petition is submitted upon the student’s return.

Other courses. Occasionally students identify a UC San Diego course that has the potential to fulfill an HDP requirement. Students may petition in writing to request credit for such courses. However, it is important to note that very few such petitions are successful, and students are strongly cautioned to petition and receive approval for such a course BEFORE ENROLLING IN THE COURSE.

Note: Courses are not officially approved for credit until the written petition has been approved by the HDP Executive Committee and signed by the HDP director.

The Minor Program

(Courses must be discussed with and approved by a Human Development academic adviser.) A total of seven courses are required to complete a minor in human development. These include Introduction to Human Development (HDP 1), and six developmental courses, one from each major area of study from the developmental course list. All courses for the HDP minor must be taken for a letter grade.

Finish-in-Four Plan

Students interested in a particular career field should see the student affairs office for more specific finish-in-four plans for their particular college.