BS in Education & Human Development

At BU Wheelock, we are dedicated to transforming systems (educational, social, health-related, legal, and economic) that create equitable outcomes for children and families. The BS in Education & Human Development is designed for students who want to work directly with or on behalf of children and families. Its exploratory design and field-based learning experiences allow students the time and space to immerse themselves in interdisciplinary coursework in education and human development before selecting a specialization prior to their junior year.  

Human development is an applied form of developmental psychology focused on how people grow, develop, and adapt to life’s stages from birth through old age. Students will learn about child, adolescent, and adult development by studying and applying theories of cognitive, social, emotional, physical, and cultural development. They will also consider sociological perspectives of human development and the impact of ecological systems on development.

Students will be introduced to a range of potential careers including those as educators, mental health counselors, youth justice advocates, Deaf education support specialists, child policy analysts and researchers, and educational designers and social entrepreneurs. Students interested in pursuing teacher licensure or earning a license in school or mental health counseling are encouraged to speak with their academic advisors early about their interest and pursue a related specialization prior to their junior year and may be eligible for preferred admission into one of our several master’s degree licensure programs.  

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • Develop disciplinary knowledge of historical and contemporary theories, research, and practices in education and applied developmental psychology.
  • Apply an ecological model of development to children and families by considering their psychological, social, emotional, physical, cognitive, and cultural needs.
  • Develop policy recommendations for complicated, real-world problems facing youth and families in Boston, in neighboring communities, and beyond.
  • Design and implement a community-based research project within the city of Boston that has a positive impact on a school, health organization, neighborhood, museum, or community-based organization.
  • Build knowledge and develop anti-oppressive practices to disrupt unequal systems of power, privilege, and access for children and families through coursework focused on self (positionality, intersectionality).
  • Use design-based thinking and learning principles to help create effective solutions to social problems that affect children and families.
  • Represent BU Wheelock’s equity and access mission when working with or on behalf of children and families in field-based learning experiences and research-related internships.
  • Study the history, language, education, and culture of the Deaf community in the United States.

Academic Requirements

Students must successfully complete the below series of core courses and signature courses, select a specialization, and fulfill their BU Hub requirements to complete the 128-credit Bachelor of Science in Education & Human Development at BU Wheelock.

All BU undergraduate students, including both entering first-year and transfer students, will pursue coursework in the BU Hub, the University’s general education program that is integrated into the entire undergraduate experience. BU Hub requirements can be satisfied in a number of ways, including coursework in and beyond the major as well as through cocurricular activities. Students majoring in Education & Human Development will ordinarily, through coursework in the major, satisfy BU Hub requirements with a unit in Philosophical, Aesthetic, and Historical Interpretation, most units in Scientific and Social Inquiry, most units in Diversity, Civic Engagement, and Global Citizenship, most units in Communication, and most units in the Intellectual Toolkit.

Core Courses (40 credits)

  • SED CE 342 Anti-Oppressive Practice: Education & Applied Psychology (4 cr)
  • SED ED 120 Exploring Professions that Impact Lives I (4 cr)
  • SED ED 121 Exploring Professions Field Seminar I (2 cr)
  • SED ED 130 Exploring Professions that Impact Lives II (4 cr)
  • SED ED 131 Exploring Professions Field Seminar II (2 cr)
  • SED ED 220 Theme-Based Approaches to Studying Complex Issues of Language in Education and Human Development (4 cr)
  • SED ED 230 Introduction to Design as Educational Inquiry (4 cr)
  • SED ED 431 Child Policy (4 cr)
  • SED HD 120 Life Design 1: Developing Your Personal Brand (2 cr)
  • SED HD 121 Life Design 2: Launching Your Personal Brand (2 cr)
  • SED HD 265 Social Science Research for Community Impact (4 cr)
  • SED HD 306 Introduction to Human Development (4 cr)

Signature Courses (16 credits)

  • SED DE 300 Introduction to the Deaf World (4 cr)
  • SED ED 200 Introduction to Justice Based Education (4 cr)
  • SED ED 300 Learning as a Cultural Process (4 cr)
  • SED YJ 360 Positive Youth Development (4 cr)

Specialization Declaration Process

Prior to the start of their junior year, all students must submit the Specialization Declaration Formprocessed through Data & Enrollment Management to identify which of the following required specializations they will focus on in their studies: