Stephen F. Austin State University

Human Sciences

Human Sciences Undergraduate Advising

The Student Services and Advising Center within the James I. Perkins College of Education has dedicated full time Academic Advisors, who advise students on which courses to take every semester until they graduate from SFA. For the School of Human Sciences, this involves advising for Child Development and Family Living, Family and Consumer Sciences, Fashion Merchandising, Food Nutrition and Dietetics, Hospitality Administration, Interior Design and Interior Merchandising.

For specific detailed information about the School of Human Sciences, please visit their website.


The Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS) program at Stephen F. Austin State University is designed to attract students, to enhance university visibility, and to prepare students to compete in the 21st century. The broad focus of the HDFS program allows graduates to start careers in a variety of fields and positions. The types of locations where a graduate with a degree in HDFS could work include adoption agencies, youth programs, child welfare, patient advocacy, hospitals, marriage and family enrichment programs, nursing homes, and corporate child care. HDFS graduates can work with children and families at all stages of life, as our classes cover topics from child development to gerontology.

HDFS provides an in-depth understanding of growth, change, and development of children, adults, and the family, while integrating a life-span, multi-contextual, and family systems approach. Graduates will find this theoretical knowledge essential for their professional careers in a service-oriented profession.

HDFS Career Opportunities


The Family and Consumer Sciences program is designed with two tracks.

There are three teaching certifications in Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS):

10 Best Degrees for Finding A Job (published Fall 2013)

FCS Career Opportunities


The study of food, nutrition and dietetics offers you entry to a dynamic profession with a myriad of opportunities. Nutrition experts will fill the increasing demand for dietetic professionals. As society embraces healthy eating and preventive illness education, the demand for dietetics personnel increases. SFA's food, nutrition and dietetics program enables motivated students to help fill that need.

The registered dietitian is the nutrition and food expert. To become a part of the growing and vital profession of dietetics, take the following steps:

  1. Complete a baccalaureate didactic degree program that is accredited by the American Dietetic Association such as the program in the School of Human Sciences at Stephen F. Austin State University.
  2. Acquire supervised practice experience by competing for and successfully completing an Accredited Dietetic Internship.
  3. Pass the Registration Examination for Dietitians (RD).

Career Opportunities:


Hospitality and tourism is the world's largest industry. Over 10 million workers, or one in 12, are employed by the industry in the United States. Women and minority workers contribute heavily to the employment base. Hospitality/tourism employs more workers than the agriculture sector and the automotive, electronic, steel and textiles industries combined. The employment outlook is exceptional for graduates of hospitality/tourism programs; the need for people with skills to administer/manage all aspects of the industry continues.

This major requires a selected Concentration for the specified area of study. These are offered in:

Career Opportunities


Interior design is an integrated process applicable to both residential and commercial environments. It includes the design and planning of space for commercial, industrial, and residential areas. The in-depth look at the active, creative processes of programming and space planning can refer to residences, offices, banks, restaurants, hospitals, institutions and other specialized public spaces.

At SFA, students are prepared to enter the professional work force. Interior designers must meet the qualification standards of today's industry. To this end, the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) has developed a two-day examination to measure design competency. The states of Texas and Louisiana, among others, have set high professional standards by requiring interior designers to pass the NCIDQ Exam and thus, meet licensing qualifications. SFA takes pride in providing an academic foundation for future designers that will enable them to pursue a goal of professionalism.

SFA Interior Design faculty have expertise as design practitioners, educators and researchers which provides a well-rounded educational exposure for students. To ensure quality instruction, studios average a student-instructor ratio of 15.1.

Students graduating with a major in Interior Design may seek employment opportunities with architectural and interior design firms, design consulting offices, corporate design departments, and government agencies. Students may specialize in such areas as health care, retail, hospitality, or institutional design. Positions also may be found within a residential firm or retail environment.

For a student with an undergraduate degree in interior design and an average of one year's work experience, the average annual base salary is $27 - 32,000 for the southern region.

Program Introduction

Program Mission

Program Goals and Objectives

Career Opportunities


Merchandising involves all of the activities necessary to provide customers with the fashion apparel and accessories they want to buy, when and where they want it, and at prices they can afford and are willing to pay. This involves understanding and creating business plans, understanding the customer, developing or selecting merchandise, and promoting and selling goods to the customer for the ultimate purpose of making a profit. Merchandise includes apparel and accessories for women, men and children, as well as home fashions, cosmetics and fragrances.

SFA offers a four-year degree program with a major in merchandising. Completion of the program includes:

  1. Fashion Focus: General Business, Marketing
  2. Interior Focus: Interior Design

A minor in merchandising is available. It is compatible with majors in the fields of business, art, communications and social sciences. The minor course work is tailored to meet the demands of todays industry.

The curriculum provides basic knowledge necessary for entry-level positions. A required internship during the senior year provides work experience. Throughout course studies students develop a realistic picture of career possibilities in the fashion industry.

Career Opportunities