BS in Developmental Psychology

The College of Liberal Arts offers a bachelor of science (BS) in developmental psychology that is administered through the Institute of Child Development, a premier center of scholarship, teaching, and outreach devoted to the understanding and fostering of child development. Further, students benefit from the knowledge and expertise of the number one ranked developmental psychology program in the nation (U.S. News and World Report).

Current CLA students can declare their major by emailing Meghan Allen Eliason at
Non-CLA students must first be admitted to the College of Liberal Arts.


Developmental psychology focuses on behavioral development from the prenatal period to maturity in the areas of cognition, ethology, genetics, language, learning, perception, and social behavior. 

The bachelor of science program places a strong emphasis on coursework within the major. BS students are not required to fulfill a second language requirement, but instead complete more developmental psychology courses. Students pursuing a BS in developmental psychology are also required to complete directed research. This opportunity allows students to receive first-hand experience conducting research in the field of developmental psychology. The BS prepares students for a career or graduate study in psychology, education, medicine, law, sociology, and other behavioral sciences.

The directed research requirement within the BS degree requires that students complete a minimum of 6 credits of directed research by working in a lab with faculty members. Working in a research lab is a great way to gain practical research experience, build career skills, and develop a personal relationship with a child psychology faculty member.

However, the Institute of Child Development offers many other options for undergraduate students to engage in research. Students may volunteer to receive academic credits, take on a paid position, or participate in the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP). With these many different options, there is a research experience that will fit your interests.

Research opportunities connect you with some of the leading researchers on topics such as adversity, trauma, maltreatment, stress, cognitive development, language development, executive functioning, learning, neuroscience, and social-emotional development. The ability to participate in research will help you prepare for an advanced degree or future research.

The College of Liberal Arts also offers a bachelor of arts (BA) in developmental psychology as well as a minor in developmental psychology