Human Development and Social Policy

Degree Types: PhD

The Human Development and Social Policy Program (HDSP) studies how public policy affects human development and well-being, how research on human development across the life span informs policy, and how people affect policy.

The core curriculum in HDSP provides interdisciplinary training in human development, qualitative and quantitative methods, and policy development, implementation, and evaluation. Students then specialize in areas such as child development and social policy, adult development and social policy, or human development and education policy.

Depending on their specializations, students receive training for academic positions in basic departments such as psychology, sociology or economics and for multidisciplinary programs such as human development, education, social ecology, public health and family studies. Graduates are also strongly qualified for positions in private and nonprofit social research firms and for government research or policy positions.

Additional resources:

Human Development and Social Policy Courses

HDSP 401-0 Proseminar in Human Development and Social Policy I (1 Unit)  

Conceptual framework for studying human development, socialization, and social policy. Theoretical and empirical studies.

HDSP 402-0 Child Development and Social Policy (1 Unit)  

Major theories and current empirical research concerning cognitive and social/emotional development of children. Interaction of internal maturational factors with effects of families, peers, and schools.

HDSP 403-0 Adolescent Development (1 Unit)  

Biological, cognitive, and social development during adolescence. Social institutions and policies that affect the well-being of adolescents.

HDSP 404-0 Adult Development and Aging (1 Unit)  

Concepts, theories, and research on development and adaptation from early adulthood through aging: age periods, transitions; cognitive, moral, and faith development; psychosocial and ego development; defense mechanisms; death and dying.

HDSP 410-0 Quantitative Methods I: Probability and Statistics (1 Unit)  

HDSP 411-0 Quantitative Methods II: Regression Analysis (1 Unit)  

HDSP 412-0 Quantitative Methods III: Empirical Tools for Causal Quantitative Analysis (1 Unit)  

HDSP 413-0 Theories of Human Development (1 Unit)  

Biological bases and interactions with the social and physical environments as sources of human development. Social, emotional, and cognitive aspects of development. Theorists include Bowlby, Erikson, Piaget, Vygotsky, Mead, and Gardner.

HDSP 415-0 Nature vs. Nurture Revisited (1 Unit)  

HDSP 421-0 Adult Development and Work Careers (1 Unit)  

HDSP 427-0 Sociology of Education (1 Unit)  

Conflicts between offering opportunity to youth and societal imperatives for selecting and preparing youth for future careers; how society and schools deal with this conflict. Approaches to policy reform.

HDSP 428-0 Education Policy: Design, Implementation and Effects (1 Unit)  

HDSP 429-0 Social-Community Interventions (1 Unit)  

Design and implementation of social systems interventions in organizations and communities, especially preventive applications in human service agencies and institutions.

HDSP 430-0 Economics of Social Policy (1 Unit)  

Economic context for social policy (economic crisis, unemployment, poverty); household economics; labor market theory and studies; economic rationales for social policy.

HDSP 432-0 Field Methods (1 Unit)  

The contribution of ethnography to the study of social policy. Strengths and weaknesses of this method for study of governmental programs' impact on clients and participants.

HDSP 433-0 Modern Theories of the State and Social Policy (1 Unit)  

Recent theories of social policy in the context of the welfare state. Analysis of alternative theories and their implications for contemporary problems in social policy.

HDSP 435-0 Advanced Qualitative Methods (1 Unit)  

HDSP 440-0 The Politics of Public Policy (1 Unit)  

Framework for understanding the structure and process of development. How existing social policies can be analyzed and new policies developed.

HDSP 442-0 Social Policymaking and Policy Implementation (1 Unit)  

HDSP 451-0 Topics in Human Development & Soc Policy (1 Unit)  

Topics may vary. May be repeated for credit with change of topic.

HDSP 481-0 Practicum in Human Development & Soc Pol (1-3 Units)  

Specialized fieldwork opportunities. May be repeated for credit.

HDSP 491-0 Readings in Human Development & Soc Pol (1 Unit)  

Specialized study between student and faculty sponsor. May be repeated for credit with change of topic.

HDSP 499-0 Independent Study in Human Dev & Soc Pol (1 Unit)  

SEE DEPT FOR SECTION AND PERMISSION NUMBERS.

HDSP 519-0 Responsible Conduct of Research Training (0 Unit)  

HDSP 590-0 Research in Human Development & Soc Pol (1-3 Units)  

SEE DEPT FOR SECTION AND PERMISSION NUMBERS - Independent investigation of selected problems pertaining to thesis or dissertation. May be repeated for credit.