How to Apply

Students are admitted ONLY during fall semester. We only accept applicants to our Master’s program in Child Life, Master's program in HDFS ONLY for those in the Double Dawgs Pathway program, our Doctoral program in HDFS, and the doctoral program with an emphasis in Couple and Family Therapy. Applications are due December 1, 2023. 

M.S. Child Life applicants will be notified by December 21, 2024 if they are invited to interview.  Interviews for selected applicants will be held by zoom on Thursday, January 9 and Friday, January 10, 2025. Applicants accepted into the program will be notified by January 17, 2025, and invited to visit campus in February before finalizing their decision.

M.S. HDFS (Double Dawg Pathway), Ph.D. HDFS, and Ph.D. HDFS/CFT applicants will be notified by December 21, 2024 if they are invited to interview.  Interviews for selected applicants will be held by zoom between January 13-24. Applicants accepted into the program will be notified by February 17, 2025.

Application Requirements

Only complete applications submitted to the University of Georgia Graduate School will be considered. Read all the directions to apply, provided below, before submitting an application to the University of Georgia Graduate School.

The GRE is not required for M.S. Child Life, M.S. HDFS (Double Dawg Pathway), Ph.D. HDFS, and Ph.D. CFT applicants.

The HDFS graduate program faculty approach the review and admissions process holistically. We assess each applicant’s unique experiences, alongside traditional measures of academic achievement such as grades, reflecting the applicant’s academic readiness, contribution to the incoming class, and potential for success both in school and later as a professional.

Admission to our graduate program is highly competitive. We look forward to reviewing your application!

M.S. Child Life

Below are instructions for applying to the M.S. Child Life program. If you have questions about the program, please contact Dr. Diane Bales. If you have questions about the application process, please contact hdfsgradadmissions@uga.edu.

Application requirements:

  1. Resume or CV
     
  2. TOEFL or IELTS scores are required of applicants whose native language is not English. See UGA's English Language Profieciency Requirement for International Students for more information.
     
  3. Transcripts for all institutions attended (unofficial transcripts are accepted). For more information visit Transcripts & Academic Records.
     
  4. Three signed recommendation letters. If you have completed a practicum in child life, please have your practicum supervisor serve as one of your three recommenders.
     
  5. Statement of Purpose (Limit to 2000 words). This statement is an important part of your application for admission to the Master of Science in Child Life program in the Department of Human Development and Family Science. This statement will help us evaluate your understanding of child life and your motivation for Master’s study. Applicants should incorporate answers to the following questions into their statement:
    • Describe the role of child life. Explain its importance for children and families.
    • A Master's degree is not required to practice as a child life specialist. Why do you want to complete a Master’s in Child Life degree?
    • What do you expect to gain from Master’s study in child life?
    • What experiences have you had that have prepared you for Master’s study in child life?
    • Please elaborate on how your academic and/or professional goals relate to creating and/or implementing evidenced-based knowledge that fosters the positive development and well-being of different individuals, families, and communities. What personal and professional experiences position you to work with different communities?
       
  6. Optional: Applicant Video. Applicants may choose to submit a video (5-minute max) addressing the following questions: (1) Why are you pursuing a Master’s degree in Child Life? (2) How do you plan on using this degree in the future? (3) What personal attributes would you bring to the educational experience?  Applicants should use an internet-based service (e.g. YouTube, Vimeo) to host the video and make sure settings allow people with the video URL to view the video (i.e., unlisted setting). Upload a word document with a link to the video.  This video is not required but can be used to supplement written application materials

Apply

M.S. HDFS (Double Dawg Pathway Only)

Below are instructions for applying to the M.S. HDFS program for those in the HDFS BS/HDFS MS or Psychology BS/HDFS MS Double Dawgs Pathway. If you have questions about the program, please contact Dr. Ted Futris. If you have questions about the application process, please contact hdfsgradadmissions@uga.edu.

IMPORTANT! When completing the application, select the appropriate “Intended Program:”

  • M.S. Thesis option: MS, Human Development and Family Science [MS_HDFS]
  • M.S. Non-Thesis option: MS, Human Development and Family Science Non-Thesis [MS_HDFS_NT]

Application requirements:

  1. Resume or CV
     
  2. Transcripts (unofficial transcripts are accepted) demonstrating achievement in your coursework, including a 3.3 Overall GPA, and grades of a “B” or better in the 6000-7000 HDFS pathway elective courses required during your first year in the pathway program. Students will be required to have completed, or be in the process of completing 90 course credit hours.
     
  3. Three signed recommendation letters.
     
  4. Statement of Purpose (Limit to 1500 words). This statement is an important part of your application for admission to any graduate program in the Department of Human Development and Family Science. Please elaborate on how your long-term professional goals fit within the mission of the department and of the HDFS Program and how your goals enhance the well-being of diverse families in a changing the world through scholarly research, teaching, clinical engagement and/or outreach.
    • If applying for the MS THESIS option, specifically address:
      • What content areas of research and methods do you hope to pursue as a Double Dawgs Master's student and beyond (i.e., specific problems or issues, research questions, types of families/relationships, types of research methods/approaches)?
      • What types of research experiences have prepared you to successfully complete a master's thesis program in Human Development and Family Science? Be sure to include your experience working with current HDFS faculty.
      • Please elaborate on how your academic and/or professional goals relate to creating and/or implementing evidenced-based knowledge that fosters the positive development and well-being of different individuals, families, and communities. What personal and professional experiences position you to work with different communities?
      • Please list at least two graduate faculty members with whom you hope to work and briefly describe how your research goals and interests fit with the expertise of these faculty.
    • If applying for the MS NON-THESIS option, specifically address:
      • What content areas in Human Development and Family Science align with your career goals.
      • What additional courses you plan to complete, and how those courses might prepare you to achieve your career goals.
      • Please elaborate on how your academic and/or professional goals relate to creating and/or implementing evidenced-based knowledge that fosters the positive development and well-being of different individuals, families, and communities. What personal and professional experiences position you to work with different communities?

Apply

HDFS Ph.D.

Below are instructions for applying to the HDFS Ph.D. program. If you have questions about the program, please contact Dr. Ted Futris. If you have questions about the application process, please contact hdfsgradadmissions@uga.edu.

Application requirements:

  1. Resume or CV
     
  2. TOEFL or IELTS scores are required of applicants whose native language is not English. See the UGA's English Language Profieciency Requirement for International Students for more information.
     
  3. Transcripts for all institutions attended (unofficial transcripts are accepted). For more information visit Transcripts & Academic Records.
     
  4. Three signed recommendation letters.
     
  5. Statement of Purpose (Limit to 1500 words). This statement is an important part of your application for admission to any graduate program in the Department of Human Development and Family Science. Please elaborate on how your long-term professional goals fit within the mission of the department and of the HDFS Program and how your goals enhance the well-being of diverse families in a changing world through scholarly research, teaching, clinical engagement and outreach. Specifically address: 
    • What content areas of research and methods do you hope to pursue as a doctoral student and beyond (i.e., specific problems or issues, research questions, types of families/relationships, types of research methods/approaches)? 
    • What types of research experiences have prepared you for a doctoral program in Human Development and Family Science?
    • Please elaborate on how your academic and/or professional goals relate to creating and/or implementing evidenced-based knowledge that fosters the positive development and well-being of different individuals, families, and communities. What personal and professional experiences position you to work with different communities?
    • Please list at least two graduate faculty members with whom you hope to work and briefly describe how your research goals and interests fit with the expertise of these faculty. 
       
  6. Writing Sample. Include a sample of your writing (e.g., a research paper or term paper) in English that you feel best reflects your abilities. 
     
  7. Optional: Applicant Video. Applicants may choose to submit a video (5-minute max) addressing the following questions:  (1) Why are you pursuing a Ph.D. in HDFS? (2) How do you plan on using this degree in the future? (3) What personal attributes would you bring to the educational experience?  Applicants should use an internet-based service (e.g. YouTube, Vimeo) to host the video and make sure settings allow people with the video URL to view the video (i.e., unlisted setting). Upload a word document with a link to the video.  This video is not required but can be used to supplement written application materials

Apply

HDFS Ph.D. CFT

Below are instructions for applying to the HDFS Ph.D. program with an emphasis in Couple and Family Therapy. If you have questions about the program, please contact Dr. Elizabeth Wieling. If you have questions about the application process, please contact hdfsgradadmissions@uga.edu.

IMPORTANT! When applying, after selecting your Intended Program (PHD, Human Development and Family Science), be sure to also select "Couple and Family Therapy" as your Area of Emphasis.

Application requirements:

  1. Resume or CV
     
  2. TOEFL or IELTS scores are required of applicants whose native language is not English. See the UGA's English Language Profieciency Requirement for International Students for more information.
     
  3. Transcripts for all institutions attended (unofficial transcripts are accepted). For more information visit Transcripts & Academic Records.
     
  4. Three signed recommendation letters.
     
  5. Statement of Purpose (Limit to 1500 words). This statement is an important part of your application for admission to any graduate program in the Department of Human Development and Family Science. Please elaborate on how your long-term professional goals fit within the mission of the department and of the Couple and Family Therapy Program and how your goals enhance the well-being of diverse families in a changing world through scholarly research, teaching, clinical engagement and outreach. Specifically address: 
    • What content areas of research and methods do you hope to pursue as a doctoral student and beyond (i.e., specific problems or issues, research questions, types of families/relationships, types of research methods/approaches)? 
    • What types of research experiences have prepared you for a doctoral program in Human Development and Family Science with a specialization in Couple and Family Therapy?
    • Please elaborate on how your academic and/or professional goals relate to creating and/or implementing evidenced-based knowledge that fosters the positive development and well-being of different individuals, families, and communities. What personal and professional experiences position you to work with different communities?
    • Please list at least two graduate faculty members with whom you hope to work and briefly describe how your research goals and interests fit with the expertise of these faculty. 
       
  6. Clinical Autobiographical Statement (Limit to 500 words). Please address the following questions in your autobiographical statement:
    • What factors/experiences have influenced your development and your decision to become a couple and family therapist? 
    • Describe your experience working with individuals, couples, and families. 
    • What experiences do you believe prepare you to pursue advanced clinical training as a couple and family therapist?
    • How are these clinical experiences linked to your research interests?
       
  7. Writing Sample. Include a sample of your writing (e.g., a research paper or term paper) in English that you feel best reflects your abilities.
     
  8. Optional: Applicant Video. Applicants may choose to submit a video (5-minute max) addressing the following questions:  (1) Why are you pursuing a Ph.D. in HDFS/CFT? (2) How do you plan on using this degree in the future? (3) What personal attributes would you bring to the educational experience?  Applicants should use an internet-based service (e.g. YouTube, Vimeo) to host the video and make sure settings allow people with the video URL to view the video (i.e., unlisted setting). Upload a word document with a link to the video.  This video is not required but can be used to supplement written application materials.

Apply

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