The Human Development Ph.D. program provides students with a broad base of knowledge in the science of psychology, and human development in particular. Students learn to conduct cutting-edge developmental research, understand and analyze developmental change within complex systems, work with diverse populations, and appreciate both basic and applied research.

This doctoral program, which offers the M.A. degree as an integral component, prepares students for careers as researchers, teachers, advocates, and more. Students in the program will be expected to be actively involved in developing their research interests and working with their mentors on research projects.

Students may earn a concentration in children, families, and cultures (CFC), which prepares them to contribute to the welfare of children and families within our multicultural society. Our mission is to assist students in becoming well informed about the developmental and sociocultural issues impacting children and families today, design and conduct theoretically grounded research, and translate knowledge into useful applications and policy. The CFC faculty is committed to progressing toward these goals by providing quality training, coursework, research and mentorship.


  • 53 credit hours
  • Doctoral comprehensive exams
  • Doctoral dissertation
  • Empirical M.A. thesis
  • Research apprenticeship
  • Two semesters as a departmental teaching assistant and/or instructor
  • Conference presentation and grant submission


  • Transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate work
  • Statement of purpose or “personal statement”
  • Curriculum Vitae or resume
  • Three letters of recommendation, along with Recommendation Rating Form
  • GRE (the subject test in psychology is strongly recommended).