Family and Lifespan Development Emphasis

The Family & Lifespan Development emphasis area prepares students to understand and support individuals, families, and relationships throughout the lifespan and in a variety of contexts. Our graduates will:

PROMOTE POSITIVE RELATIONSHIP AND FAMILY DYNAMICS

Identify key relationship processes that contribute to the well-being of individuals, couples, and families as they interact in various contexts

ENCOURAGE SUCCESSFUL DEVELOPMENT ACROSS THE LIFESPAN

Apply research and theory about the influences and variations of development across infancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood, and late life

ADVOCATE FOR INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES IN DIVERSE CONTEXTS

Recognize the role that cultural, structural, and socioeconomic factors, as well as variations in family structure, gender, health, and more, play in lives of individuals, relationships, and families

Build your skills in a practical, hands-on way

  • Combine understanding of research and theory to gain broad knowledge of development and relationships
  • Choose among many HDFS elective courses to suit your interests and professional goals
  • Build experiential learning through field training and internships in a variety of community settings of your choosing
  • Collaborate with faculty and contribute to hands-on research to answer important questions about youth and adult development, family relationships and interactions, intimate relationship formation and maintenance, the influence of health, and the experiences of diverse youth and families
  • Graduates may qualify for the Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE) credential from the National Council on Family Relations

Degree Requirements and Sample Program

Graduates from FLD are prepared to work with children, adults, families, and communities in a variety of roles and settings. Supporting the positive development of individuals and families is an essential part of everyday life.

  • Relationship and parenting education
  • Afterschool/youth development programs
  • Cooperative Extension
  • Military youth and family services
  • Crisis shelters and centers
  • Foster care and adoption
  • Older adult support programs
  • Family/social service agencies
  • Child/family policy analysis and advocacy
  • Refugee and immigrant support programs

For more career information, visit the National Council on Family Relations 

older adult holding baby

FLD brochure PDFClick image to open brochure

Allie Freese

"Adoption and foster care is often stressful and unpredictable, and I frequently use what I learned as an HDFS student about how everyone is shaped by their own experiences to help families cope with the changes."

ALLIE FREESE | KANSAS CITY, MO
FAMILY & LIFESPAN DEVELOPMENT (BS) ‘18

Chelsea Drake

"I use what I learned when I engage with new audiences to discuss difficult topics related to inclusion, equity, and social justice... so I can connect with people across different culture, age, life stage, and their own personal development."

CHELSEA DRAKE | COLUMBIA, MO
FAMILY & LIFESPAN DEVELOPMENT (BS) ‘12

HDFS FLD Advisor

Kelly WarzinikKelly Warzinik
Phone: (573) 882-3521
E-mail: warzinikk@missouri.edu