Majors in the School of Human Ecology seek to improve the lives of children, families, consumers, and communities. We value study abroad as a high impact experience that helps students understand the interconnectedness of people and systems that impact us on a global scale.
Prospective Human Development and Family Studies Students
You may choose to study abroad at any point after your first semester of your first year at UW-Madison. We strongly encourage you to consider study abroad in your sophomore or junior year, in particular. HDFS 362/Ed Psych 320/Psych 460 is a pre-requisite to many other major requirements, so it’s helpful to complete that before studying abroad.
Human Development and Family Studies Course Considerations Abroad
Human Development and Family Studies students typically focus on general education requirements and elective credits abroad. Elective credits are credits you pick based on interest rather than something required for your major. There are no restrictions to what you can choose for electives. HDFS students can also fulfill their high impact experience requirement abroad (the final requirement on the DARS report and curriculum checksheet).
Mapping Your Study Abroad Experience as a Human Development and Family Studies Major
There is no best time to study abroad as a Human Development and Family Studies major. We strongly encourage you to consider study abroad in your sophomore or junior year, in particular. While completing some of your core classes (HDFS 362/Ed Psych 320/Psych 460, HDFS 363) before you go will give you a foundation in the field and help you compare topics from those classes to what you learn abroad, doing so is not required. If you are also majoring in another discipline or you are following a pre-health plan, you will ultimately want to determine what works best for both of your programs by consulting with your academic advisors as early as possible in your time at UW-Madison.
Questions to Ask
Your Academic Advisor:
- What classes must I complete for my degree (breadth/depth, major requirements, etc.)?
- Do I need to be on UW-Madison’s campus for any courses in my major?
- How many electives do I have outside of my major?
Your Study Abroad Advisor:
- What classes can I take abroad?
- How and when do I select courses for my program?
- When will I know course equivalents for my program?
- What is the class structure like abroad?
Identifying Programs That are Right for You
The following list of programs is meant to be a starting point and should not limit you as you consider your program options. Past SoHE students have participated in these programs, and some have relevant major or elective coursework. However, courses offered as part of these programs may not be guaranteed to be the best fit for you depending on where you are in the major.
Australia: IES Direct Enrollment – University of New South Wales
China: UW Art, Design and Wellness in China
Czech Republic: CIEE Central European Studies in Prague
Denmark: DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia
Spain: IES Barcelona (Liberal Arts & Business track)
United Kingdom: University of Westminster
The above is not an exhaustive list of all programs that offer Human Development and Family Studies courses. There may be other programs that are a better fit for your individual needs or interests. Research all approved programs using the Program Search page.