The bachelor degree in Childhood Studies prepares practitioners and beginning scholars to understand childhood in interdisciplinary contexts. Graduates have the analytical skills necessary to work effectively with children, an appreciation of the diversity of paths through childhood and adolescence, and a commitment to the welfare of children throughout the world.

Declaring a Childhood Studies Major

Students may declare themselves as a major in Childhood Studies by going to the Office of the Registrar (1st floor, Armitage Building) and indicating their choice.  Once declared, new majors should review the department’s Advising page and contact their faculty advisor to set up an appointment.

Childhood Studies Curriculum (36 credits)

The 36 credit total is comprised of 21 required credits and 15 elective credits. 

Required credits include: Introduction to Childhood Studies (3) and the Senior Seminar (3), as well as coursework in three content areas: Childhood in Global and Intercultural Contexts (6), Childhood and Social Institutions (3), and Methods in Childhood Studies (6). 

In addition to these required credits, Childhood Studies majors will take an additional 15 credit hours of electives from a wide variety of courses that may span many different departments, including (but not limited to) Psychology, Sociology, English, History and Criminal Justice. Any course work done in Childhood Studies beyond the required credits may also count toward elective credits.

The department has also created a worksheet to help you keep track of your progress through the Childhood Studies major. You can print the Childhood Studies worksheet here. If you fill in your sheet as best as you are able, and write down any remaining questions that you have, we’ll be much better able to help.

Required Credits (21 credits)

  • Introduction to Childhood Studies 163:101 (3 credits) — must be successfully completed before enrolling in the Senior Seminar.
  • Senior Seminar in Childhood Studies 163:480  (3 credits)
  • Children in Global and Intercultural Contexts (6 credits)
  • One of the following:
    Children and Migration (163:370)  
    Global Childhoods (163:371)  
    Ethnographies of Childhood 163:372
    Youth Identities and Urban Ecology (163:383)
  • One of the following:
    History of Youth (163:320)
    Youth in a New Nation (163:325)
    Kids’ Media Cultures (163:350)
    Children’s Books and Illustrations (163:360)
    Literature of Childhood (350:360)
    Young Adult Literature (163:361)
    Children’s Literacies (163:362) 
  • Childhood and Social Institutions (3 credits)
  • One of the following:
    Urban Education (163:382) or
    Gender and Education (163:382)
    Children’s Geographies (163:388)
    Service Learning in Childhood Studies (163:481/491) 
  • Methods in Childhood Studies (6 credits)
  • Statistics 830:250, 960:183 or 960:283
  • Understanding Childhood Through Statistics (163:460)

Elective Credits (15 credits)

Elective coursework must be on topics related to children and childhood. Your elective coursework should range across disciplines and not be confined to one department. Courses of interest that may be applied to your major include any Childhood Studies (163) course that is not being counted toward the required courses, and any of the following courses.

This is a comprehensive, but not exhaustive, list of offerings. If you find a course that you believe fits the criteria for the major, please discuss it with your advisor and seek approval before you take the class.

  • Juvenile Justice (202:322)
  • Family Ethics (840:340)
  • Sociology of the Family (920:306)
  • Psychology of Childhood (830:226)
  • Psychology of Adolescence (830:326)
  • Childhood and Culture (070:308)
  • Sociology of Childhood and Adolescence (920:323)
  • Educational Psychology (830:301)
  • Family and Gender in Historical Perspectives (512:371)
  • American Child in Literature (352:347)
  • Literary Constructions of Childhood (350:361)
  • Children’s Literature in Print and Film (350:362)
  • Education in America (512:230)