Choosing between a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science Degree

The Human Development Program now offers the option of completing a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree. Academically, a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Bachelor of Science degree are equally valued. Both offer the students who earn them the opportunity to continue their education at the graduate degree level. Most academic or professional tracks will not require one degree over the other -- it is far more important that you focus on the specific classes you need for your future academic preparation and choose the program which has the right fit for you. Typically, Bachelor of Arts degrees in any discipline allow students to sharpen their communication and writing skills. By comparison, a Bachelor of Science degree typically fosters analytical skills and a detailed understanding of subject matter. All of the courses listed within the Human Development BS -- such as the methods elective -- can be taken for BA elective credit, so the BS degree is not required to take advantage of advanced research opportunities. For information about the difference in corsework between the Bachelor of Arts and the Bachelor of Science degree please see the table below.

Bachelor of Arts vs. Bachelor of Science Requirements Overview

Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of Science
HDP Pre-major (Lower-Division Requirements)
(7 courses):
HDP Pre-major (Lower-Division Requirements)
(8 courses):
  • Introduction to Human Development (HDP 1)
  • One statistics course
    • (Selceted from: PSYC 60, COGS 14B, BIEB 100, ECON 120A, POLI 30, or MATH 11)
  • One formal skills course
    • (Selected from: LIGN 17, PHIL 10, PHIL 12, or one course from the MATH 10 or MATH 20 sequence)
  • Two biological sciences courses
    • (Selected from: ANTH 2, BILD 1, BILD 2, BILD 3, BILD 7, BILD 10, BILD 12, BILD 18, BILD 20, BILD 26, BILD 38, COGS 11, COGS 17, PSYC 2)
  • Two social sciences courses
    • (Selected from: ANTH 1, ANTH 3, CAT 1, CAT 2, COMM 10, COGS 1, FPMU 40, FPMU 50, one course from the HILD 7A, B, or C sequence - only one allowed, LIGN 4, LIGN 7, LIGN 8, LIGN 101, MMW 11, MMW 12, MMW 121, MMW 122, PSYC 1, PSYC 3, PSYC 6, PSYC 7, SOCI 1, SOCI 20)

 

 

Includes the seven preparatory requirements of the BA—with targeted selections in biology and statistics—plus an additional quarter of calculus or computer programming for a total of eight courses.

  • Introduction to Human Development (HDP 1)
  • One statistics course
    • (Selceted from: PSYC 60, COGS 14B, or MATH 11)
  • Two formal skills courses
    • (Selected from: Option 1 - two courses from the MATH 10 or MATH 20 sequence or Option 2 - one course from the MATH 10 or MATH 20 sequence and one computer programming course from the following list, CSE 7, CSE 8A, CSE11)
  • Two biological sciences courses
    • (Selected from: ANTH 2, BILD 1, BILD 2, BILD 3, BILD 12, BILD 20, BILD 26, BILD 38, COGS 17)
  • Two social sciences courses
    • (Selected from: ANTH 1, ANTH 3, CAT 1, CAT 2, COMM 10, COGS 1, FPMU 40, FPMU 50, one course from the HILD 7A, B, or C sequence - only one allowed, LIGN 4, LIGN 7, LIGN 8, LIGN 101, MMW 11, MMW 12, MMW 121, MMW 122, PSYC 1, PSYC 2, PSYC 3, PSYC 6, PSYC 7, SOCI 1, SOCI 20)
HDP Major (Upper-Division Requirements)
(12 courses):
HDP Major (Upper-Division Requirements) 
(13 courses):
  • HDP Core Series (4 upper-division courses)
    • Biological Basis of Human Development
    • Social-Cognitive Basis of Human Development
    • Linguistic Basis of Human Development
    • Socio-cultural Basis of Human Development
  • HDP Development Series (5 upper-division courses)
    • Courses selected from Biological Development, Cognitive & Linguistic Development, and Socio-Cultural Development (at least one from each category).
  • HDP Senior Seminar (HDP 150)
    • Special topics seminars, providing advanced-level study on subfields of human development (must be taken in-residence).
  • HDP Methods of Research (HDP 181 and HDP 191)
    • Courses designed to introduce students to the philosophy and methods of developmental research in both laboratory and real-world settings (must be taken in residence).

  

 

   

 

 

Includes the 12 major requirements of the BA—with targeted selections in biology—plus an additional research study (see below) for a total of 13 courses.

  • HDP Core Series (4 upper-division courses)
    • Biological Basis of Human Development
    • Social-Cognitive Basis of Human Development
    • Linguistic Basis of Human Development
    • Socio-cultural Basis of Human Development
  • HDP Development Series (5 upper-division courses)
    • Courses selected from Biological Development, Cognitive & Linguistic Development, and Socio-Cultural Development (at least one from each category).
  • HDP Senior Seminar (HDP 150)
    • Special topics seminars, providing advanced-level study on subfields of human development (must be taken in-residence).
  • HDP Methods of Research (HDP 181 and HDP 191)
    • Courses designed to introduce students to the philosophy and methods of developmental research in both laboratory and real-world settings (must be taken in residence).
  • Self-Designed Research Study/Practicum Experience
    • A third methods/practicum requirement, selected and designed for future professional interests. Options include a variety of courses within traditional lab or field research environments, as well as well as research studies supported within apprenticeships, internships, or professional observations necessary for field specializations.

Switching from a Bachelor of Arts to a Bachelor of Science

Current Human Development students who are on track for the Bachelor of Arts and would like to switch the to Bachelor of Science should first review the requirement differences between the BA and the BS degree, found below. While reviewing the requirement differences, students should make note of what additional courses they would need to complete to satisfy the BS degree requirements. Students should then schedule an academic advising appointment with an HDP advisor to go over their academic plan for switching from the BA to the BS degree. Please keep in mind that there are admissions requirements that must be met prior to declaring the BS in Human Development. For an overview of these requirements click here.

Specific Differences Between the Bachelor of Arts and the Bachelor of Science Degree Requirements

Lower Division: Statistics Requirement

Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of Science
Statistics: One Course Needed Statistics: One Course Needed

Courses you can take:

PSYC 60 - Introduction to Statistics

MATH 11 - Elementary Probability and Statistics

COGS 14B - Intro to Statistical Analysis

BIEB 100 - Biometry

ECON 120 - Econometrics A

POLI 30 - Political Inquiry 

Courses you can take:

PSYC 60 - Introduction to Statistics

MATH 11 - Elementary Probability and Statistics

COGS 14B - Intro to Statistical Analysis

Lower Division: Biological Science Requirement

Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of Science
Biological Science: Two Courses Needed Biological Science: Two Courses Needed

Courses you can take:

ANTH 2 - Human Origins

BILD 1 - The Cell

BILD 2 - Multicellular Life

BILD 3 - Organismic and Evolutionary Biology

BILD 7 - The Beginning of Life

BILD 10 - Modern Biology

BILD 12 - Neurobiology and Behavior

BILD 18 - Human Impact on the Environment

BILD 20 - Human Genetics

BILD 26 - Human Physiology

BILD 38 - Dementia, Science, and Society

COGS 11 - Cognitive Science: Minds and Brains

PSYC 2 - General Psychology: Biological Foundations

COGS 17 - Neurobiology of Cognition

Courses you can take:

ANTH 2 - Human Origins

BILD 1 - The Cell

BILD 2 - Multicellular Life

BILD 3 - Organismic and Evolutionary Biology

BILD 12 - Neurobiology and Behavior

BILD 20 - Human Genetics

BILD 26 - Human Physiology

BILD 38 - Dementia, Science, and Society

COGS 17 - Neurobiology of Cognition

Lower Division: Formal Skills Requirement

Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of Science
Formal Skills: ONE Course Needed Formal Skills: TWO Courses Needed

Courses you can take:

MATH 10 (A, B or C)

MATH 20 (A, B or C)

PHIL 10 - Introduction to Logic

PHIL 12 - Logic and Decision Making

LIGN 17 - Making and Breaking Codes

Courses you can take:

MATH 10 (A, B or C)

MATH 20 (A, B or C)

CSE 7 - Introduction to Programming with Matlab

CSE 8A - Introduction to Computer Science: Java I

CSE 11 - Introduction to Computer Science and Object-Oriented Programming: Java

Upper Division: Development Series - Domain 1 - Biological Development Requirements

Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of Science

Domain 1 - Biological Development:

Students are required to take at least one course from this category to fullfill the 5 courses need for the developmental series

Domain 1 - Biological Development:

Students are required to take at least one course from this category to fullfill the 5 courses need for the developmental series

Courses you can take:

ANBI 116 - The Evolution of Primate Reproduction

ANBI 140 - The Evolution of the Human Brain

ANBI 159 - Biological and Cultural Perspectives on Intelligence

ANBI 173 - Cognition in Animals and Humans

ANTH 102 - Humans are Cultural Animals

BICD 100 - Genetics

BICD 112 - Stem Cells and Regeneration

BICD 130 - Embryos, Genes and Development

BIPN 134 - Human Reproduction

BIPN 144 - Developmental Neurobiology

BIPN 148 - Cellular Basis of Learning and Memory

COGS 115 - Neurological Development and Cognitive Change

COGS 184 - Modeling the Evolution of Cognition

HDP 160 - Special Topics in Human Development (limitations apply)

PSYC 132 - Hormones and Behavior

PSYC 168 - Psychological Disorders of Childhood

PSYC 171 - Neurobiology of Learning and Memory

Courses you can take:

ANBI 116 - The Evolution of Primate Reproduction

ANBI 140 - The Evolution of the Human Brain

ANBI 159 - Biological and Cultural Perspectives on Intelligence

ANBI 173 - Cognition in Animals and Humans

ANTH 102 - Humans are Cultural Animals

BICD 100 - Genetics

BICD 112 - Stem Cells and Regeneration

BICD 130 - Embryos, Genes and Development

BIPN 134 - Human Reproduction

BIPN 144 - Developmental Neurobiology

BIPN 148 - Cellular Basis of Learning and Memory

COGS 115 - Neurological Development and Cognitive Change

COGS 184 - Modeling the Evolution of Cognition

HDP 160 - Special Topics in Human Development (limitations apply)

Upper Division: Methods Elective Requirement

Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of Science
Not required for the BA Methods Elective: One Course Needed
Courses you can take:

HDP 193 - Advanced Research in Human Development

HDP 194B - Honors Thesis

ANSC 172 - Life-History Seminar and Practicum

COGS 120 - Intro to Human-Computer Interaction Design

COMM 102C - Practicum in New Media and Community Life

COMM 102D - Practicum in Child Development

EDS 131 - Introduction to Early Childhood Education

FPMU 102 - Biostatistics

SOCI 110 - Qualitative Research in Educational Settings