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Bachelor of Arts inFamily Science

Majoring in Family Science involves the study of the way families work and how they can function more effectively. What is the value of education for parenting? What are the effects of policy and legislation on families? How can you teach about sensitive personal issues? You’ll develop lifelong skills in scientific thinking and in understanding human thought, behavior and family interaction as you take 50 credit hours towards a Bachelor of Arts degree. Completion of the major leads to provisional certification as a Certified Family Life Educator by the National Council on Family Relations.

4,500+ Enrollment (1,400 on-campus undergraduates)
1893 the year Concordia was founded
16 Fortune 500 Companies Headquartered in the Twin Cities
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Family Science Curriculum Overview

Students graduating with a Family Science major develop lifelong skills in scientific thinking and understanding human thought, behavior, and family interaction. The educational outcomes in combination with the internship experience prepare students to enter a career of choice or graduate school.

Prerequisites from General Education:
Course ID Course Name Credit Hours
PSY - 101 Introduction to Psychology 4
SOC - 152 Introduction to Sociology 4

This course introduces the scientific study of behavior and mental processes. Psychological, behavioral, cognitive, humanistic, psychodynamic and social-cultural perspectives are explored. Topics such as scientific method, statistical reasoning, neuroscience, learning, cognitive processes, development, psychological adjustment, therapy, social psychology, diversity and community are studied.

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This course provides an introduction to the systematic study of society and social behavior. Investigation will focus on the values and norms shared by society's members, the groups and institutions that compose social structure, and the forces that are transforming social reality.

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Required: 53 credits
Course ID Course Name Credit Hours
COM - 403 Family Communication 4
FAS - 200 Intro to Family Life Ed 3
FAS - 400 Family Systems 4
FAS - 442 Family Decision 3
FAS - 443 Parent Education 3
FAS - 444 Family Law Public Policy 3
FAS - 446 Methodology in Fam Life Ed 3
FAS - 498 Family Life Educ. Internship 0
KHS - 320 Human Life Experience 3
PSY - 210 Child Psychology and Dev 4
PSY - 220 Adolescent Psychology 4
SOC - 253 Marriage and Family 4
SOC - 353 Themes in Adult Dev. & Aging 4

Students examine communication patterns in functional families and interpersonal relationships. Reading and discussion are combined with experiential activities. Course units include diverse family systems, health communication, communicating with aging family members and those with disabilities, communication patterns, family roles, power, decision-making, conflict, stress and coping, ecology, and improving family communication. (Prerequisites: (COM103 or COM212) and COM205)

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This course is an introduction to the field of family life education. Students will explore primary theoretical principles using the Life Span Family Life Education framework and professional issues influencing the practice of family life education. Emphasizing key content areas, the students will be introduced to: content area definitions and objectives; examples highlighting the integration of theory and practice in family life education; key resources; and future Issues and challenges for family life educators.

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This course is an analysis of the family. It investigates the family as a system of relationships which interacts across the family life cycle. It includes a survey of current developments in the study of the family and an analysis of changes in American society and their influence on family life. Also included is a focus on marriage and family therapy from a systems framework.

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This course familiarizes the student with an understanding of the decisions individuals make about developing and allocating resources to meet their goals. The focus of the course is on internal dynamics of family decision-making processes and on the goal-directed behaviors of families in improving their quality of life.

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This course explores how parents teach, guide, and influence their children and adolescents. The course will emphasize parenting as a process, a responsibility and a role that changes across the life span. Variations in parenting practices will be discussed in the context of building on strengths, empowering parents, and remaining sensitive to individual and community needs.

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This course explores historical development of laws and public policy affecting families. Ethics and ethical implications of social change will be explored. Students will understand the legal definition of the family and laws that affect the status of the family. The course will focus on the role of the family life educator as an advocate for the well being of the family. The formation of social values, respect for the diversity of values, and the social consequences of value choices are discussed within a family life education framework.

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This course provides the student with a conceptual framework for programming family life education. Students will apply the methodology of adult learning to the broad principles of family life education. Attention is directed at developing the ability to plan, implement, and evaluate family life education programming. Through the lens of reflective practice, an emphasis is placed on educational methodology and leadership. In addition, networking with community agencies and the resources and challenges of technology in delivering family life education is explored.

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The internship provides the student with an in-depth field experience in a work setting that provides family life education services. The student learns to apply family life education theories and principles. The student in conjunction with the academic advisor selects an appropriate internship site which meets the needs and vocational interests of the student. (Prerequisite: Completion of a minimum of 30 credits in the Family Life Education Major)

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This is a survey course designed to enable students to understand the biological, physiological, psychological, social, and cultural aspects of sexuality and human sexual behavior. Students will approach much of the material from a variety of different learning strategies including, research, games, small and large groups discussions, guest speakers, group activities, small assignments/worksheets, etc.

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A broad sketch of human growth and development is provided from the prenatal stages to the adolescent years. Developmental processes are studied from both a biological and social-cultural perspective to understand physical and perceptual development, cognition and language, personality and social development. Child studies of children at the studentsÀ projected levels of teacher certification are required. (Prerequisite: PSY101)

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This course examines developmental phenomena of adolescence, its physiological, emotional, cognitive, parent-child, social, vocational and religious dimensions, with opportunity for personal exposure to youth's needs and interacting societal institutions. (Prerequisite: PSY101)

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This course considers the family as one of the primary social institutions within the larger social system. It explores the family's internal structure and functioning, how it serves the needs of both individuals and society, how it is changing in contemporary American society, and the societal challenges of families in crisis. (Prerequisite: SOC152)

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This course explores a variety of themes in development throughout the lifespan beginning with youth and ending in the last stages of adulthood including aging, death and dying. Lifespan, sociological, psychological, and family science perspectives will be used to examine a variety of themes. (Prerequisite: SOC152)

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Requirements

Bachelor of Arts degrees at Concordia University, St. Paul consists of a major of typically 32 to 44 credits or two minors, general education courses, and elective courses totaling a minimum of 128 credits.

Meet Your Professors

Dr. Michael Walcheski Associate Vice President for Graduate Studies, Chairperson of Department of Human Services, Professor of Psychology and Family Science

Dr. Walcheski is a nationally recognized expert in Family Science who conducts presentations and professional training sessions at academic conferences and education seminars.

Career Potential

Beyond the classroom, our location in one of the most culturally diverse cities in the nation allows you access to community learning opportunities and internships that let you interact with individuals and families from various cultural backgrounds. And because we design our family science program to be responsive to the exact needs of the marketplace, it will be a relevant major if you’re considering a career in settings that include social service agencies, retirement communities, schools and colleges, community education, church congregations, hospitals, corrections facilities and government agencies.

  • Colleges and Universities
  • Community Education
  • Congregations and Other Religious Settings
  • Corporations
  • Corrections
  • Government Agencies
  • Hospitals
  • Military
  • Junior and Senior High Schools
  • Retirement Communities
  • Social Service Agencies

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