Learn to advocate for change on behalf of children and families in the online Bachelor of Arts in Human Services program with a concentration in Child and Family Services. You'll explore how social issues affect the well-being of families and their communities and the federal and state policies that impact the delivery of services.
SNHU's online BA degree in human services will prepare you to provide case management services, such as assessment, relationship building, collaborative development and evaluation of treatment plans, and the referral of clients to necessary community service providers. At the end of the day, your ability to ethically and effectively link families with much-needed community resources will improve families and entire communities.
The child and family services concentration within the BA degree in human services is designed for those with a particular interest in child welfare, schools, juvenile corrections, family court, family support agencies, domestic violence agencies, and other child and family organizations. Ideal candidates will work well with at-risk clients, are comfortable working with a multi-disciplinary team, have good written and oral communication skills, are culturally sensitive and can respect a rigid code of ethics.
Child development is a key focus, as is the impact of stress and trauma, public policy and the court system on service provision. Proficiency in these areas will help you develop intervention strategies that improve the well-being of families and their communities.
As a private, nonprofit university, SNHU has one mission – to help you see yourself succeed. The benefits of earning your BA degree in human services online at SNHU include:
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for social and community service managers is projected to increase by 16% through 2026.* This is due in large part to our aging population and the increased demand for substance abuse treatment and mental health and health-related services.
Human services professionals work in community, residential care or institutional settings. You may find yourself providing direct services such as leading a group, organizing an activity, or counseling or advocating for those struggling with mental illness, substance abuse, domestic violence and health conditions. You may handle administrative support tasks, too. Job titles include:
Earning an online human services degree is also an excellent segue to a master's degree in human services, social work, psychology, sociology, public health, public administration and related degrees.
In the online BA in Human Services program with a concentration in child and family services, you'll practice and apply what you learn so you have the confidence and proficiencies to become a human services professional. Major courses cover assessment, evaluating client outcomes, advocating for policy change, developing a care plan and finding a career in human services. Concentration courses provide an in-depth look at child cognitive development, family and community systems, impact of trauma on children and families, and ethics and laws in child welfare.
The bachelor's in human services requires the completion of a capstone experience. The capstone will challenge you to demonstrate how your new skills can be applied in a real-world setting.
SNHU's bachelor's in child and family services program includes:
General Education Program
Our programs are designed to equip you with the skills and insights you need to move forward. In recent years, employers have stressed the need for graduates with higher order skills - the skills that go beyond technical knowledge - such as:
All bachelor's students are required to take general education classes. Through foundation, exploration and integration courses, students learn to think critically, creatively and collaboratively, giving you the edge employers are looking for.
The purpose of this course is to engage students in meaningful exploration of theories, basic concepts, and research methodologies in psychological development. Students will gain an understanding of patterns of human development from conception through death, including the biological, cognitive, and social-emotional development and the interplay between these areas. This course will also explore the roles of environmental and genetic factors, culture and history, continuity and change in development.
This course offers students an opportunity to better understand human behavior. It also studies the similarities and differences between normal and abnormal reactions to environmental stimuli.
Students in this course analyze contemporary social problems in America and other societies. Issues include economic limitations, class and poverty, race and ethnic relations, sexism, ageism, and environmental and population concerns.
This course provides an overview of the historical development of human services and an introduction to the many settings, roles, and functions of the human services professional. Students will gain an understanding of the knowledge and skills needed to help support others toward living a more fulfilling life with particular attention given to behavioral and social theories, common social problems, service delivery systems, ethical behavior, and personal values.
This course provides students with the knowledge and skills to effectively, efficiently, and compassionately communicate both orally and in writing. Emphasis will be given to the tools of communication as well as how to clearly articulate the issues, deal with conflict, and establish rapport. Human services professionals function in many settings requiring the ability to communicate the needs and issues of their clients, programs, and organizations to a broad variety of people.
This course prepares students to function effectively within organizations, as most human services work involves interactions with multiple private and public organizations. Students develop an understanding of organizational structure and functions through an overview of common organizational structures and management systems and the principles of organizational behavior that influence the work environment. An introduction to the strategic planning and budgeting cycle is provided including the process of grant funding. Basic concepts of personnel management and common techniques and procedures for outcome measurement and program evaluation will also be presented.
Students in this course will become acquainted with human services policies and the legislative and private sector processes of policy development. Students will further discover the role of advocacy in influencing social welfare programs for a variety of populations. Students learn the skills needed to act effectively in developing policies and for planning an advocacy campaign.
Students in this course will learn about the laws and regulations that govern human services practice. Specific topics will include confidentiality, parity, involuntary commitment, mandated reporting, duty to warn, minor and parental rights, guardianship, and advanced directives. The course will also discuss the ethical principles that guide human services practice as well as the conflicts that arise between the ethical principles and the law.
Students will learn fundamental theories, concepts, and practices related to the delivery of human services. Topics covered in this course will include client engagement, interviewing, models of service delivery, ethics and professional responsibility, group dynamics and facilitation, boundaries, and formal/informal client-centered support systems. Students will apply course work to real life situations by assessing the needs of clients and designing goal-based care plans. Additionally, students will plan and design interventions, utilize community resources, and assess client outcomes.
This capstone course is the culminating experience for the B.A. in Human Services program. The aim of the capstone is to assess students' ability to synthesize and integrate the knowledge and skills they have developed throughout their coursework, rather than introducing new concepts. This course is structured to support student success in fulfilling program requirements.
This course offers a broad introduction to research methods in the social sciences, including surveys, case studies, experiments, and quasi-experiments. Students learn to spot design flaws in research intended to generate scientifically sound conclusions about social phenomena, and to evaluate critically the interpretations of social science research results by third-party observers, such as reporters. Students also learn how to draft a research proposal that would satisfy the requirements of peer review within the community of professional social scientists.
Human service professionals must be prepared to work with and provide proper support to children and adolescents. This course focuses on child development from birth through adolescence with an emphasis on the physical, cognitive, social, and emotional components of normal development. Additional attention will be given to those situations where normal development does not occur, factors which influence or impede development, and community and school-based resources available to assist families.
In this course, students will gain the knowledge and skills to help families negotiate the complex system of organizations in their communities that provide services. Programs and organizations that provide support to families will be profiled, including community medical and mental health providers, non-profit organizations, the Department of Human Services, and the Family Court. In addition, tools that are frequently used in understanding family systems are presented including Socio-grams, Eco-maps, and Genograms.
This course prepares students to provide services to children and families in highly emotionally charged and legally complicated situations. The short and long term influence of physical and psychological trauma on children and families are explored including domestic violence, substance abuse, neglect, sexual assault, and prenatal trauma. In addition, the course will explore the role of a human services professional and complying with legal responsibilities and limitations, safety, secondary trauma, and ethical considerations.
This course prepares students to navigate the legal and ethical complexities of family problems involving children . This course focuses on the state and federal laws, regulations, and ethical principles that establish the framework for Child Welfare programs. Specific issues covered include child protection programs, child abuse and treatment laws, parent and child rights and responsibilities, education law, and emancipation laws. In addition, the course will examine child custody, foster care, adoption and the child "best interest" standards.
Total Credits: 120
Tuition rates for SNHU's online degree programs are among the lowest in the nation. We offer financial aid packages to those who qualify, plus a 30% tuition discount for U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty.
*Tuition Rates are subject to change and are reviewed annually.
No Application Fee, $150 Graduation Fee, Course Materials ($ varies by course)
Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges as well as several other accrediting bodies. More...