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School of Education & Social Policy

Major in Human Development

The Human Development program accommodates students with interests in a variety of types of human service, including but not limited to education and psychology.

The Human Development major is a perfect choice for students wishing to gain an understanding of development across the lifespan. This major is strongly encouraged for those students interested in becoming early childhood or elementary education teachers.

The Human Development major provides a solid foundation for students interested in graduate programs and/or future careers in education, human services and social sciences. The Human Development Program is truly an interdisciplinary major as students will take courses in education, psychology and across the liberal arts and sciences.

Program Structure & Areas of Concentration

All Human Development majors take a set of Core courses: a series of Foundational courses, a series of courses in Approaches to Inquiry, and specific courses addressing Developmental Progressions and Processes in a variety of different psychological domains. Additionally, all students choose an area of concentration in one of the following areas: (1) Psychology; (2) Early Childhood Education (3) Elementary Education and (4) School and Society. Finally, all students fulfill a capstone experience, either through their practicum (student-teaching), senior thesis, or field experience component.

  • The Psychology concentration supports students’ understanding of key life span issues within and across multiple psychological perspectives and areas of inquiry.
  • The Elementary and Early Childhood Education concentrations all lead to a teaching license in that particular area of focus.
  • The School and Society concentration supports students’ understanding of key issues within human development through the perspective of the role and function of schools in our society.

Students who major in Human Development, like all other Merrimack College students, take additional courses that fulfill Institutional and Distribution requirements. Students in the Education concentrations will also take a set of courses that are required for State licensure.

Please attend advising hours to find out if the Human Development major is a good choice for you.

Deborah Margolis, Ph.D.
Chair, Education & Associate Professor
Director, Human Development Program