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What is human development—And why should you study it?


November 10, 2017

Categories: Blog

Published: November 10, 2017

If you enjoy psychology, biology, sociology, anthropology—basically any -ology!—the study of human development might be the right path for you.

What is human development?

The simple human development definition is that it’s a field that studies—and strives to optimize—the elements that help people live healthy and fulfilling lives.

The more complex human development definition is that it’s a multi-disciplinary study of the psychological, biological, and sociological factors that impact people from infancy through adolescence to adulthood.

The human development field came to prominence in the 1970s. The human development index was created as an alternative to measuring nations by their GDP. People believed that economy wasn’t enough to reflect was life was like for a nation’s population. The human development index includes health, education, and income. A healthy environment and access to healthcare, educational opportunities, and a decent standard of living are all keys to freedom and self-actualization.

Why study human development?

It’s a broad, multi-disciplinary field. While this expansiveness might intimidate some, it’s a wonderful field to study if you’re interested in how different subjects impact, influence, and relate to each other.

Because human development includes biology, psychology, sociology, anthropology, and economics, you can further your knowledge in all of these areas. Plus, you can also focus on the interplay of these factors. For example, a human development student could study how factors like how access to health care impacts high school graduation rate or whether nutrition has an impact on test scores.

A human development degree also applies to a wide spectrum of career paths. If you obtain a human development degree, you can go on to work in healthcare, education, public policy, business, law, and so on.

You can tailor your human development degree to focus on areas like childhood psychology or organizational psychology. These specializations can help guide you to specific careers like working in child care, social work, community activism, or human resources.

Human development at Pacific Oaks

Pacific Oaks College offers a diverse selection of human development programs. Whether you want to pursue a B.A. or an M.A. or you wish to specialize in social change or early childhood education and development, Pacific Oaks has a program suited for you.

Interested in pursuing a human development degree? Request more information today.

Categories: Blog

For questions or comments on our news stories or releases, or if you are a reporter who would like to speak with an expert in education, human development, or marriage and family therapy, please contact Johanna Atienza at [email protected] or 626.529.8092.