Child and Family Studies Minor

Students may complete a Child and Family Studies Minor as an adjunct to any major at Bryn Mawr or Haverford, pending approval of the student’s course­work plan by the Child and Family Studies advisor in the student’s major department.

           Leslie Rescorla, Director of CFS and Professor of Psychology

The Child and Family Studies (CFS) minor provides a curricular mechanism for inter-disciplinary work focused on the contributions of biological, familial, psychological, socioeconomic, political, and educational factors to child and family well-being.  The minor will not only address the life stages and cultural contexts of infancy through adolescence but will also include issues of parenting; child and family well-being; gender; schooling and informal education; risk and resilience; and the place, the representation, and the voice of children in society and culture.

Inquiries concerning the minor should go to the CFS Director Leslie Rescorla (

Requirements for the Child and Family Studies Minor

The minor comprises six courses: one gateway course (PSYCH 206 Developmental Psychology, PSYCH 203 Educational Psychology, EDUC 200 Critical Issues in Education, or SOCL 201 Study of Gender in Society), plus five additional courses, at least four of which must be outside of the major department and at least one of which must be at the 300 level. Advanced Haverford and Swarthmore courses typically taken by juniors and seniors that are more specific than introductory and survey courses will count as 300 level courses. No more than two courses may be double-counted with each major, minor, or other degree credential.

Students will craft a pathway in the minor as they engage in course selection through ongoing discussions with their advisor. Sample pathways might include: political science/child and family law; sociology/educational policy; child and family mental health; depictions of children/families in literature and film; child and family public health issues; social work/child welfare; anthropology/cross-cultural child and family issues; gender issues affecting children and families; social justice/diversity issues affecting children and families; economic factors affecting children and families.

The minor also requires participation in at least one semester or summer of volunteer, practicum, praxis, community-based work study, or internship experience related to Child and Family Studies, with reflections to be recorded in a journal, which will be part of the student’s portfolio. Students are expected to discuss their placement choices with their minor advisor.

To foster the inter-disciplinary nature of child and family studies, students enrolled in the minor must also complete the following requirements:

  • Attendance at a minimum of two CFS-related formal events per year, for which reflections/comments will be recorded in a journal, which will be part of the student’s portfolio.
  • Attendance four times per semester for two semesters at a “brownbag” 1-hour seminar, comprised of individual workshop/discussion sessions facilitated by a range of individuals, including the students themselves, affiliated faculty and staff, and guest speakers
  • Participation during senior year in an annual CFS Poster Session during which students will share highlights of their CFS campus and field-based experiences.

Courses that can be counted toward the Child and Family Studies Minor

(Note: it is important to check the Trico course guide for updated course information.  In some cases, courses relevant to the CFS minor will have changed, or been added.  Students should explore freely and consult with their advisor on curricular choices)

Bryn Mawr College Courses and Seminars

ANTH 212 Primate Evolution and Behavior

ANTH 253 Childhood in the African Experience

ANTH 281 Language in the Social Context

ANTH 312 Anthropology of Reproduction

ANTH 341 Cultural Perspectives on Marriage & Family

EDUC 200 Critical Issues in Education

EDUC 210 Special Education

EDUC 250 Literacies and Education Spring

EDUC 266 Schools in American Cities

EDUC 275 Teaching English Learners in U.S. Schools

EDUC 301 Curriculum and Pedagogy

EDUC 302 Practice Teaching Seminar

EDUC 311 Field Work Seminar

POLS 375 Gender, Work & Family

PSYC 203 Educational Psychology

PSYC 206 Developmental Psychology

PSYCH 209 Abnormal Psychology

PSYC 250 Autism Spectrum Disorders

PSYCH 322 Culture & Development

PSYCH 340 Women’s Mental Health

PSYC 346 Pediatric Psychology

PSYC 351 Developmental Psychopathology

PSYCH 352 Advanced Topics I Developmental Psychology

SOCL 205 Social Inequality

SOCL 217 The Family in Social Context

SOCL 225 Women in Society

SOCL 258 Sociology of Education

SOCL 266 Schools in American Cities

SOWK Poverty and Inequality

SOWK Child Welfare

SOWK Social Determinants of Health and Health Equity

SOWK Public Education: Issues in School Social Work Practice

SOWK Education Law for Social Workers

SOWK Global Public Health

Haverford College Courses and Seminars

ANTH H209 Anthropology of Education

ANTH H263 Anthropology of Space: Housing and Society

BIOL H217 Biological Psychology

COML H289 Children’s Literature

EDUC H200 Critical Issues in Education

EDUC H210 Perspectives on Special Education

EDUC H260 Multicultural Education

PSYCH H213 Memory and Cognition

PSYCH H215 Introduction to Personality Psychology

PSYCH H225 Self and Identity

SOCL H235 Class, Race & Education,

Swarthmore College Courses and Seminars

Ed 14 Introduction to Education

Ed 17 Curriculum and Methods Seminar

Ed 21/Psych 21 Educational Psychology

Ed 23/Psych 23 Adolescence

Ed 23A Adolescents and Special Education

Ed 26/Psych 26 Special Education

Ed 41 Educational Policy

Ed 42 Teaching Diverse Young Learners

Ed 45 Literacies and Social Identities

Ed 53 Language Minority Education

Ed 61 Gender and Education

Ed 64 Comparative Education

Ed 68 Urban Education

Ed 70 Outreach Practicum

Ed 121 Psychology and Practice Honors Seminar

Ed 131 Social and Cultural Perspectives Honors Seminar

Ed 151 Literacies Research Honors Seminar

Ed 162 Sociology of Education

Ed 167 Identities and Education Honors Seminar

HIST 079 Women, Family, and the State in China

PSYC 27 Language Acquisition and Development

PSYC 35 Social Psychology

PSYC 39 Developmental Psychology

PSYC 41 Children at Risk

PSYC 42 Human Intelligence

PSYC 43 Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience

PSYC 50 Developmental Psychopathology

PSYC 55 Family Systems Theory and Psychological Change

PSYC 135 Advanced Topics in Social and Cultural Psychology