Bachelor of Science in Child Learning and Development

Child development practitioners and researchers focus on providing better ways to foster the intellectual and emotional development of children. The child learning and development major focuses on the fundamental processes of child and adolescent development within the contexts of families, schools, peer groups and larger cultural surroundings. The degree provides undergraduate students a rigorous science-based curriculum that immerses them in the theories, findings, research methods and best practices that the scientific study of child development has to offer. Opportunities for supervised and independent research, as well as field placements that involve working with children, families, schools and social services, are provided in addition to formal schoolwork.

Careers in Child Learning and Development

The child learning and development degree prepares students for a wide range of careers in education, psychology, social work, family medicine, public health, family law and public policy.

The major is especially well suited for students seeking elementary teacher certification. Students who elect to add teacher certification will develop a strong foundation in child development as well as accumulate clinical teaching skills and field experience. The University’s Career Center is an important resource for students pursuing their careers. Professional career counselors are available to help clarify career goals, provide strategies for mastering job interviews and writing professional cover letters and resumes and help students connect with campus recruiters.

Child Learning and Development at UT Dallas

UT Dallas offers two undergraduate degree plans in child learning and development:

  • The BS in child learning and development requires 120 hours to graduate: 42 hours from the University’s core curriculum, 36 hours of child learning and development courses and 41 hours of electives and a one-hour seminar.
  • The BS in child learning and development with the EC-6 teacher certification requires a minimum of 45 additional hours of coursework that can be completed within the free elective hours.


Junior and senior child learning and development majors with at least a 2.5 GPA are eligible to receive college credit for a volunteer internship in the community.

Fast Track

The Fast-Track program enables undergraduate students to take up to 15 hours of graduate courses that will count toward both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in applied cognition and neuroscience, communication disorders, or human development and early childhood disorders. Students must have at least 90 credit hours and meet the graduate admission requirements to qualify.