Family Studies Major

Program highlights
Multiple program formats
Regional locations
Extensive career opportunities

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Program description

The family studies major is an interdisciplinary program for students who desire positions in public or private human service organizations or programs related to children, families and individuals. Recent graduates hold positions with Healthy Families, Planned Parenthood, Big Brothers/Big Sisters and Senior Services; in state government; and as family court workers, substance abuse assessment specialists, preschool staff, and volunteer and activity directors.

This is not a teachable major. Information for students seeking a teaching certification should see Teaching, Learning and Educational Studies.

Learning Pathways

There are three ways to complete classes in this major:

  1. Face-to-face
    You may attend all classes at the main campus
  2. Online
    You may complete all classes online
  3. Hybrid
    You may complete classes through a mix of online and on-campus methods

prospective students

Prospective students are invited to contact Melinda Holohan in the FCS department for additional program information.


View information on career opportunities in family science, provided by the National Council on Family Relations. Our recent graduates have found work in positions as:

  • Activities Directors—Senior Residential Communities
  • Extension Children, Youth and Family Agents
  • Family Educators
  • Family Service Field Associates
  • Family Specialists, Even Start
  • Juvenile Court Workers
  • Parent Involvement Specialists
  • Scout/Youth Organization Executives
  • Residential Services Coordinator


This program has been approved by the National Council on Family Relations and graduates may choose to become Certified Family Life Educators (CFLE). This certification enhances employment opportunities and verifies professional credibility for educators who work with families.


For class listings, program guides and other resources, visit the advising page for the family studies major.


Internship/field experience

The Professional Experience Program allows students to extend their academic work with on-the-job training in child care, human service and nonprofit organizations. The program is supervised by WMU faculty in cooperation with management personnel in the field. Students independently locate sites that fit with their long-term career goals.


Qualifying students can accumulate up to 12 credit hours toward the Master of Arts in Family and Consumer Sciences while enrolled as undergraduates in the Family Studies major, the Child and Family Development major, or the Youth and Community Development major. View AGDP admission criteria for more information.