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What Can I Do With a Degree in MFHD?

A master's or doctorate in the family sciences prepares students for careers in leadership positions in administration, education, and research. A background in family systems, family science methods, theory, and practice enables students to master the skills needed for a successful career in a variety of employment sectors, including:


  • Federal, state and local government agencies: Departments of Health, Education, Welfare, Nutrition, and Cooperative Extension
  • Social service agencies: such as mental health agencies, child protection agencies, women's clinics, health, promotion agencies, and domestic violence centers.
  • Family policy: think tanks, lobbyist for national organizations, advocacy work
  • Business: human resources, training, or family and employee mediation
  • Entrepreneur: family life educator, consultant to established businesses as a trainer, writer, or problem solver


  • Social service agencies, extension service, religious organizations, military, consulting and self employment
  • Teaching opportunities are available in high schools, community or 2-year colleges, and 4-year colleges and universities.


  • Universities, state, federal, or local public agencies, businesses, research institutions, advocacy organizations or in the non-profit sector (Universities and 4-year colleges frequently require researchers to teach)

Master's DegreeA doctorate is necessary to teach at a college or university but some community colleges allow individual's with a master's degree to teach. Research opportunities are available for individuals with either a master's or a PhD.A professional with a master's degree is prepared for employment as a family life educator; extension agent; and positions of leadership in child, adolescent, and adult services, family social services, public policy, child care and early childhood education and gerontology.

PhDA doctoral program prepares students for careers through extensive training in research methodology and statistics; theory and conceptual frameworks; content related to family systems; and the skills to communicate this knowledge through writing, presenting, and teaching.A PhD in the family sciences can lead to careers in research, to college or university teaching, to leadership positions in public or private institutions, or to a variety of government positions.