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B.S. Child Development and Family Studies


The B.S. in Child Development and Family Studies is designed for students who want to work with children and families outside of the public school setting. The degree’s three tracks help students tailor their education to their desired career path and provide them with the necessary background to obtain specific certifications upon graduation.

Degree plans 

Designed With You in Mind

Our program is designed to provide students with a strong foundation of knowledge, leadership skills, and cultural competence to work with children and families. This is a hybrid/blended program with courses offered in a face-to-face, hybrid, or online setting, with all CHFS courses offered online at least once every two years to serve our outreach students.


Related Programs

Plan Your Future

Student playing with children

Early Childhood Track

Students will gain hands on experience working with young children in a classroom setting. Upon graduation, students will be prepared to work with children in child care or preschool settings as teachers and directors, early childhood intervention, and state licensing. Through a combination of work experience and education, students can obtain a Director Licensure for Licensed Child Care programs or an Early Intervention Specialist certification as desired.

Student working with children

Family Life Track

Family Life Education courses focus on parenting, family resource management, and human intimacy and sexuality. Graduates go on to work in advocacy, adoption/foster care, or family life education, and they are eligible to test for their Certification in Family Life Education through the National Council on Family Relations.

Little boys playing with toys

Child Life Track

The Child Life track contains coursework and experiences that prepares students to become a certified Child Life Specialist through the Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP) upon successful completion of the prescribed coursework as well as the ACLP practicum, internship, and certification exam.

Program Objectives

The goals of the Child Development and Family studies program at Tarleton State University are to:

  • Provide students with a strong foundation for working with children and families in a variety of capacities.
  • Promote diversity and multicultural education.
  • Tailor each student’s education to their desired career.
  • Enhance each student’s writing and critical thinking skills.
  • Use and model best practices in all areas of our program.

Coursework Highlights

Class Number Class Name
CHFS 1304 Infant and Toddler Development
CHFS 3300 Child Development
CHFS 3316 Human Intimacy
CHFS 3333 Family Financial Management
CHFS 4309 Parenting
CHFS 4317 Environments in Early Childhood
CHFS 4345 Child Life

For more information on courses, please refer to the university catalog.

Facilities and Features

Student playing with children

Texans Assisting Parenting Students

The TAPS program provides resources for students who are also parents on the Stephenville and Fort Worth campuses. Family-based activities for parenting students are held throughout the year.

Student working with children

Service Day

Each spring, the CHFS program hosts at least two Service Day projects that benefit children and families in many communities. Students on the Stephenville campus will have the opportunity to perform service in person, and distance learners are offered a project that allows them to participate near where they live.

Students interacting with children


The CHFS Club provides opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students to socialize, provide community service, and learn more about the overall field of child and family studies.