What Can You Do With a Human Development Major?

A human development major explores the social, cultural, biological and psychological aspects of human growth. Students with a bachelor's degree in human development may choose to enter the human-services workforce or continue on to graduate school in a variety of related fields.

Human Development Major: Career Options

Human development graduates are prepared to enter a variety of service-oriented fields, such as in psychology, public health, public policy, child care, criminal justice and social work. Common employers of human development graduates include non-profit organizations, school districts, colleges and universities, state and local government agencies, federal government agencies and hospitals.


According to PayScale.com 2016 information, the median salary for human development graduates in non-profit organizations and private companies was $34,346 and $69,682, respectively. Those working for schools/school districts and government agencies earned $41,877 and $38,000, while hospital-based employees made $65,496.

Human Development Degree Programs

Human development is an interdisciplinary major that studies the biological, psychological, sociological and cultural characteristics of human growth over the lifespan. Students investigate the interrelationship between the biological, psychological and socio-cultural processes that have an effect on human development and the evolution of culture.

Coursework for this major typically includes anthropology, biology, psychology, gerontology, ethnic studies and sociology. Students study topics such as the biological basis of human, language, and neurological development. Cognitive change and social cognition development is also covered. Additional topics typically involve genetics, embryology, perspectives on intelligence, psychology of sexuality, adolescence, parenting and aging.

Continuing Education Options

Human development majors also prepare students for graduate school. Students can continue their education by earning a master's degree in fields such as marriage, family and child counseling, psychology, anthropology, women's studies, social work and education, among several others.

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