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Child Development and Family Studies Minor

The Child Development and Family Studies minor is offered as a fully-online minor to prepare individuals to work with children in a variety of settings including nursery schools, preschools, Early Start, Head Start, child care centers, juvenile care centers, and human service agencies. Students will concentrate on courses that address topics such as the physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development of children, as facilitated by families, educators, child care professionals, and others.

The minor consists of 6 courses (18 credit hours) offered through WVU Online and Extended Campus. At least 9 hours must be at the 300 level or above.

This minor is available three categories of students:

  1. Traditional students enrolled at WVU in majors other than Child Development and Family Studies who might want to minor in this area of study
  2. Students enrolled in the Multidisciplinary Studies (MDS) program
  3. Non-traditional adult learners enrolled in the Regents Bachelor of Arts (RBA) program

Minimum Performance Standards

  • minimum grade of ā€œCā€ or better in required and chosen courses
  • cumulative GPA of at least 2.5 in all CDFS minor coursework


CDFS 110: Families Across the Life-Span

Explores the physical, psychological, and cognitive developmental changes of individuals who are functioning in family systems that change across the life span. (3 credit hours)

Select two of the following:

CDFS 210: Introduction to Parenting

Introduction to terminology, descriptions, and explanations of the parental role and parent-child interactions. Emphasis on social and personal definitions of the parental role and on the problems and changes in parent-child relationships. (3 credit hours)

CDFS 211: Infant Development

Developmental characteristics and environmental effects on the child during the prenatal period and the first two years with implications for guidance and care, which includes practical experience working with children. (3 credit hours, prerequisite CDFS 110)

CDFS 212: Early Childhood Development

Physical, social, emotional, and cognitive development of children from three-to-seven years of age with implications for guidance and care in practical settings. (3 credit hours, prerequisite CDFS 110)

Select three of the following:

CDFS 412: Adolescent Development

The adolescent in contemporary American culture, including normative physical, social, and personality development; relationships within various typical social settings (e.g., family, school, community, peer group). (3 credit hours, Jr/Sr standing or consent)

CDFS 413: Contemporary Issues in Family Relations

Study of the recent research findings in the major areas of family relationships. Topics include effects of family violence, substance abuse, poverty, and health. (3 credit hours, Jr/Sr standing or consent)

CDFS 415: Family Interaction and Communication

The family as a social group; processes related to well-being for a variety of family relationships. (3 credit hours, Jr/Sr standing or consent)

CDFS 421: Developing and Administering a Child Care Center

Focuses on skills necessary for developing and implementing sound program management of different types of early childhood education centers. (3 credit hours, Jr/Sr standing or consent, summer only)