Family Science Major
The Family Science major provides an interdisciplinary focus on the study of families, health and the problems they face in contemporary society. The major offers excellent training in scientific methods to understand family development, behavior, strengths and challenges. Students learn to describe, explain, and improve the quality of family life through education, applied research, legal and policy analysis, and human services program management. Majors acquire skills in writing, speaking, and computing across the Family Science curriculum. As part of the required research course, all students design a study, collect data, prepare, and present an empirical research project prior to graduation.
The Family Science major prepares students for many career paths in areas including family therapy, public health, family life education, social work, law, policy analysis, human services, and family mediation. A wide variety of employment opportunities exist for Family Science graduates in direct service and management positions in government, non-profit, and private agencies. The major also provides excellent preparation for graduate study in family science, marriage and family therapy, social work, professional schools such as medicine, dentistry and law, public health, psychology, human resource management, and other social science disciplines.
Courses offered by this department are listed under the acronym FMSC.
Admission to the Major
Upper-level students who wish to change or declare a major in Family Science can only do so through a Change of Major Workshop. To register for a workshop, visit https://sph.umd.edu/content/become-sph-major. Students must register in advance in order to attend a Change of Major Workshop. Freshman or admitted high school seniors may declare the FMSC major at orientation.
Program Learning Outcomes
- Students evaluate policy and programmatic interventions to address social and behavioral factors that influence family well-being.
- Students demonstrate the principles of cultural competence that shape the experiences and disparities of vulnerable families and populations.
- Students create a hypothesis, conduct research, prepare data and present a research project that addresses a significant issue of family well-being.
- Students demonstrate basic knowledge of family theories and apply the knowledge to diverse contexts, including experientially in the required workshop.
- Students analyze and critique the range of social structures and systems including health, legal, and economic that affect family well-being.
All students must earn a grade of "C-" or better in all courses applied toward completion of the major.
|Required Courses - Major Subject Area|
|SPHL100||Foundations of Public Health||3|
|FMSC302||Research Methods in Family Science||3|
|FMSC310||Maternal, Child and Family Health||3|
|FMSC330||Family Theories and Patterns||3|
|FMSC332||Children in Families||3|
|FMSC381||Poverty, Affluence, and Families||3|
|FMSC383||Delivery of Human Services to Families||3|
|FMSC432||Adult Development and Aging in Families||3|
|FMSC477||Internship and Analysis in Family Science||3|
|FMSC487||Legal Aspects of Family Problems||3|
|Required Courses - Department Electives|
|Select six additional FMSC departmental credits 1||6|
|Additional Courses Required of All Majors|
|PSYC100||Introduction to Psychology||3|
|Select one of the following:||3|
|Principles of Microeconomics|
|Principles of Macroeconomics|
|EDMS451||Introduction to Educational Statistics||3|
|or STAT100||Elementary Statistics and Probability|
|SOCY100||Introduction to Sociology||3|
|or SOCY105||Introduction to Contemporary Social Problems|
|Select one of the following:||3|
|Foundations of Oral Communication|
|Oral Communication: Principles and Practices|
|Introduction to Interpersonal Communication|
|Critical Thinking and Speaking|
FMSC105 and FMSC298F cannot be used to meet this requirement unless they are taken before the student completes 60 credits. For questions about independent studies and fieldwork, please consult an advisor.