Jul 15, 2024  
2015-2016 Academic Catalog 
2015-2016 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Child Development B.A.

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View information for the Child Development Program , including Learning Objectives.

The Child Development Major is organized around six broad competencies—child development knowledge/foundations; the research process; legal, ethical, and pragmatic issues; professionalism and leadership; child guidance; and integration of a personal/professional worldview.  Students are introduced to these competencies in CDEV 3000 - Professional Issues in Child Development , at the beginning of their program, and compile a professional portfolio to document their progress throuhought the academic program.  These portfolios are presented at the end of the program in CDEV 4965 - Child Development Senior Seminar .

State of California Children’s Center Permits

California requires that individuals who serve as teachers and administrators of funded child development programs hold permits issued by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. See your academic adviser for coursework that is likely to meet these requirements. Applications for the Child Center Permit may be picked up at the University Credential Processing Center.

The Major

The program leading to a Bachelor of Arts, Child Development provides students with a background of knowledge and skills in child growth and development. The degree is delivered by the Department of Psychology. Courses are selected from child development and related fields, and include laboratory and field experiences at the CSU Stanislaus Child Development Center as well as other applied settings.  The Child Development major is designed to prepare students for professional occupations with children and families as well as to prepare students to pursue advanced studies or research careers.

All students are expected to:

  1. Complete the prerequisites to the major;
  2. Complete a professional development class;
  3. Complete a core of required courses;
  4. Complete one of the tracks described; and
  5. Complete a capstone senior seminar and corequisite internship.

Program Tracks

Three professional tracks are designed to provide students with specialized knowledge and abilities:

  1. Child Development Early Childhood Track—prepares professionals as teachers and administrators of child development programs, curriculum specialists, program evaluators, etc.
  2. Child Development Middle Childhood Track—prepares students for careers as elementary teachers and administrators, recreational leaders, and other work with children and families in the community.
  3. Child Development Services Track—prepares professionals to meet the social welfare and guidance needs of young children, parents, families, and the community in agencies, parent education programs, foster care, etc.

A General Track is available for those students who wish to tailor their academic programs to a particular developmental focus. A general track plan of thematically related units must be developed with the student’s academic adviser and submitted for the Child Development Committee’s approval prior to completion of coursework.  The requirements for the General Track are shown in the catalog sections that follow and on the general track plan form.

Senior Capstone Experience

The Child Development major culminates in a senior seminar and internship experience related to the student’s career goals.  These classes provide opportunities for students to work side-by-side with professionals while developing a worldview and documentation of their accomplishment of program competencies.  It should be noted that Senior Seminar and Internship are required assessment courses for the Child Development Major. These courses culminate the student’s educational plan; students may not take these courses until they have met all prerequisites.

Students should take Senior Seminar in the last semester of coursework and should consider carefully the amount of time that will be required to complete successfully the course and internship.  Students should plan for participation in a field site for approximately 6 hours per week throughout the entire semester, strict class attendance, and group participation on arranged time with classmates and professional persons. Finally, students should consider that the semester project includes the preparation and presentation of individualized professional portfolios, demonstrating individual achievement of the program’s competencies. See departmental information regarding prerequisites and enrollment procedures for these classes.

Elementary, Secondary, and Special Education

Students pursuing teaching in public elementary or secondary schools or special education should consult the College of Education or the University Catalog for the most current information regarding credential requirements and prerequisites to be completed concurrent with or upon completion of the baccalaureate.


1. Complete University General Education requirements for the Bachelor of Arts degree.

(51 units minimum)

Click here to view General Education requirements. 

2. Complete the 6 lower-division prerequisites to the major, the major core 29 units, and a track of 14-15 units as outlined.

3. Community college transfer students with an Associate of Arts in child development or early childhood education

upon advisement, may petition to complete a Fast Track CDEV Major by completing a Fast Track Departmental Petition.  Follow the instructions in the catalog and on the Fast Track Departmental Petition form.  The Fast Track Major has a reduced number of units in the Major core. 

4. All students must complete CDEV 3010, Child Abuse and Neglect, prior to enrollment in the following lab courses:

CDEV 3020, CDEV 3181, CDEV 3320, CDEV 3440, CDEV 3550, CDEV 4000, CDEV 4180, CDEV 4280, CDEV 4380, CDEV fieldwork, or CDEV internships.  Community college transfer students who qualify to complete a CDEV Fast Track Major must complete CDEV 3010 if they have not completed a course of at least one unit on Child Abuse and Neglect.

5. Child development majors must take all courses counted toward the major for a letter grade if the letter grade option is available.

In addition, no more than 6 units of credit-graded coursework may apply toward the major.

6. A maximum of 6 units of combined coursework in fieldwork and internships,

exclusive of CDEV 4948 - Child Development Senior Internship , may be counted toward the major with approval by the major adviser.


  1. Courses listed in the tracks are offered on a rotation. Students should check with advisers/departments for scheduled semesters and times.
  2. Prior to Winter 1996,  Child Development courses were noted by a PSYC prefix.
  3. Prerequisites to the Graduate program in Child Development at CSU Stanislaus include a minimum of 12 units of upper-division child development coursework with a GPA of 3.0.  Suggested content includes statistics, upper-division child development theory, developmental research methods, and prevention and reporting of child abuse.  Child development laboratory courses or supervised professional work experience is desirable.

The Major

(37 units)

Complete the following prerequisites to the major:

(6 units)

1. Complete the following required upper-division core:

(may not cross count with any other part of CDEV major)

(29 units)

2. Complete one of the following tracks:

(14-15 units)

a. Child Development Early Childhood Track

(15 units)

b. Child Development Middle Childhood Track

 (15 units)

c. Child Development Services Track

 (14 units)

d. Child Development General Track

A general track plan of 15 thematically-related upper-division units must be developed with the student’s academic adviser and submitted for the Child Development Committee’s approval prior to completion of coursework.  The general track plan must include a minimum of 9 units with a CDEV prefix and at least 2 units of fieldwork or upper-division application.  Program coursework may be selected from the list of approved CDEV electives; other coursework may be approved by departmental petition (track coursework may not cross count with any other part of the CDEV major).  Follow the instructions on the general track plan form.


The Fast Track Child Development Major

Community College transfer students with Associate of Arts Degrees in Child Development or Early Childhood Education, with appropriate articulated prior coursework, may complete the Fast Track core in partial fulfillment of the Child Development major requirements.  Students must complete a Fast Track Petition form to seek approval to complete the fast track major.

Click here to view the Fast Track Child Development Major  requirements.

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