B.A. Degree with a Major in Child and Family Studies, with an Area of Concentration in Child Development
The concentration in Child Development focuses on developmental theories, including the physical, psychological, social, intellectual, and moral development of children. Students explore the common and special needs of children, fundamentals of early childhood education, methods of childhood guidance, and other individual areas of interest. Graduates from this area of concentration are employed in centers for early childhood care and/or education as teachers or directors, as nannies in private homes, with parks and recreation services, with community programs (such as the Boys and Girls Club), in social service agencies (child protective, adoption, or foster-care services), in cooperative extension as 4-H agents, and as part of hospital healthcare teams as child life specialists. Some Child Development graduates have opened their own childcare centers. In addition, students completing this concentration have pursued graduate studies in a variety of related fields, including teacher certification in early childhood education.
Requirements for the Major
A major in Child and Family Studies, with an Area of Concentration in Child Development, is achieved by completion of the following requirements, in addition to the General Education and electives required for a degree:
Required CFS Core Courses
CFS 130, 145, 207 (also WGS), and 221
Required Capstone Course
CFS 480 and 441 (which includes the Home Management House as a laboratory component)
Required Distribution Courses
Four (4) course credits selected from: CFS 217, 245 (formerly 345), 313, 315, 353, 356, 186/286/386/486, 395/495, CFS/EDS 360, 380, or 382, one of which must be 313, 315, or 356. Both CFS 186/286/386/486 and 395/495 must be approved by the CFS Program for this area of concentration. For each of these courses, only one credit shall count toward the major concentration requirement.
Exploring the Major
In addition to taking key General Education requirements, students considering any Child and Family Studies concentration should enroll in CFS 130, 145, 207 (also WGS), and 221 during their first and second years, if possible. If CFS 217 is selected from the list of optional courses, it can be taken during the second year.
Admission to the Major
Admission into the major requires the following: an overall GPA of 2.00; a successful formal interview and positive recommendation by an assigned CFS faculty member (a positive recommendation usually requires that students have completed at least one CFS course and earned a C or better in the CFS courses they have taken); completion of a handwritten, well-constructed essay explaining why the student wants to become a CFS major; successful performance in at least one completed or in-progress CFS course; and a majority vote of acceptance by the CFS faculty. A student who already has been formally accepted into another major at Berea and wants to transfer to a CFS major must make this request in writing to the Program Coordinator of the CFS Program.
Course Sequencing Considerations (in order to complete degree requirements within eight terms)
CFS 130, 145, 207 (alsoWGS), and 221 are prerequisites for upper-level courses and are offered every regular term. Upper-level courses sometimes are offered only once a year or alternate years, so early curricular planning is very important. If a student elects to take CFS 395/495 to fulfill a major requirement, the Internship may be completed after the first year is completed. However, the Program recommends that CFS Internships be completed after the sophomore or junior year. Most CFS Internship placements are during the Summer terms. Students, including those with a dual concentration, may use only one program-approved 186/286/386/486 and/or 395/495 to meet a concentration requirement.
Proficiency Requirements for Retention in and Completion of the Major
The Program recommends that each Child Development student acquire a minimum of 100 hours of approved direct contact with children. This may be met through any combination of labor assignments, teaching practicum, community service, or course-related activities. Verification of successful completion of this experience is placed in the student's file. In addition to completing the core course requirements and specified courses within the area of concentration, each student must satisfy program standards for effectiveness in written and oral communication.
Other Considerations and Recommendations
Two recommended electives for this concentration are, PEH 221, and PSY 213. Also, for students who are planning to pursue a Master of Social Work or Occupational Therapy degree, MAT 104 and BIO 101 are highly recommended. Students who are planning to pursue teacher certification at the graduate level should consider taking additional courses in the child development concentration. These would be above and beyond what is required for graduation but would help prepare them for an early childhood education graduate program.
For students pursuing double concentrations, if the student chooses to complete two Internships or two Special Topics courses, counting one toward each area of concentration, the two courses must be judged qualitatively different by the Program.