MSc in Human Development: Scope, Universities, and Career

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The field of Human Development is a captivating journey into understanding the complexities of human life, growth, and behavior. Human development is influenced by a variety of factors, including genetics, environment, and culture. Pursuing a Master of Science (MSc) Human Development opens doors to a world of knowledge that can lead to fulfilling careers. In this blog, we will walk through this domain and find out everything that we want to understand about the course.

What is Human Development?

Human Development is the study of how individuals grow, develop, and change over their lifespans. It encompasses a wide range of topics, including physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development. Understanding these dynamics is crucial for improving the quality of life and promoting well-being in diverse populations.

A MSc in Human Development (MSHD) is a postgraduate degree that provides students with the knowledge and skills to work with people of all ages to support their development and well-being. MSHD programs typically cover a wide range of topics, including:

  • Developmental psychology
  • Lifespan development
  • Social and emotional development
  • Cognitive development
  • Physical development
  • Family dynamics
  • Cultural influences on development
  • Research methods in human development

Also Read – MA in Development Studies

Why Study an MSc in Human Development?

There are many reasons to study human development. For one, it is a fascinating field that can help us to understand ourselves and others better. Human development also has important implications for public policy, education, and social work.

  1. Impactful Careers: An MS in Human Development opens doors to careers in counseling, education, research, and policy-making.
  2. Holistic Knowledge: Gain a holistic understanding of human growth and behavior.
  3. Make a Difference: Apply your knowledge to improve the lives of individuals and communities.
  4. Develop the skills to help people of all ages. Human development graduates are equipped to work with people of all ages, from infants to older adults. They can help people to overcome challenges, reach their full potential, and live happier and healthier lives.

Top Universities Offering MS in Human Development:

Here’s a list of renowned universities offering this program, along with approximate fees and course names:

InstitutesQS World University Ranking of 2024FeesCourse Name
Harvard University04$50,000Master of Education in Human Development 
University of Michigan33$35,000Master of Science in Human Development
University of Pennsylvania12$45,000Master of Science in Education in Human Development
University of Oxford, UK03£39,900MSc in Developmental Psychology
University of Toronto, Canada21CAD 21,000Master of Science in Human Development 
University of Melbourne, Australia 14AU$35,000Master of Human Development 
University of Otago, New Zealand 206NZ$35,000Master of Science in Human Development 
University of Auckland, New Zealand68NZ$39,000Master of Science in Human Development
University of Queensland, Australia43AU$33,000Master of Human Development
University of Maryland, College Park 169$30,000Master of Science in Human Development

Admission Procedure

The admission process for MS in Human Development varies from university to university. However, there are some general requirements that most programs share. These typically include a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as psychology, education, or social work


To be eligible for MS in Human Development, you must have –

  • A bachelor’s degree in a related field
  • You should also have a strong GPA score of up to 4.0 
  • Proof of English Language Proficiency Test like IELTS score of about 8 bands and TOEFL upto 110 scores.
  • Some programs may also require other standardized tests, such as the MAT.

Also Read – Career in Child Development

 Application Process: 

The application process for MSc Human Development varies from university to university. However, there are some general steps that most programs follow. These typically include:

1. Submitting an online application

2. Paying an application fee

3. Submitting official transcripts

4. Submitting GRE scores (if required)

5. Submitting letters of recommendation

6. Submitting a personal statement

7. Apply for a Visa

Documents Required: 

The documents required for MSc Human Development applications vary from university to university. However, most programs require the following:

Cost of Studying and Living

The cost of studying MSc in Human Development varies from university to university. However, most programs cost between $30,000 and $55,000 per year.

The cost of living varies depending on the location of the university. However, students can expect to spend between $1,500 and $2,500 per month on living expenses.

Scholarships to Study MS in Human Development:

Many universities offer scholarships and financial aid. There are a number of scholarships available to students who are interested in studying human development. Some common scholarship providers include:

  •  The National Science Foundation (NSF)
  •  The Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD)
  •  The American Psychological Association (APA)
  •  The National Association of Social Workers (NASW)
  •  The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

In addition to these national scholarships, many universities and colleges also offer their own scholarships for human development students.

Also Read – Career in Family Studies

Career Scope:

Human development graduates have a wide range of career options available to them. They can work in a variety of settings, including:

  • Schools
  • Social service agencies
  • Healthcare organizations
  • Businesses
  • Research institutions
  • Academia
  • Counseling and therapy
  • Policy analysis, and advocacy

Top Companies that Recruit Graduates:

Companies and organizations like UNICEF, World Bank, academic institutions, and healthcare agencies often seek professionals with expertise in human development. Some of the top companies that recruit human development graduates include:

AppleMcKinsey & Company
Boston Consulting GroupBain & Company
PwCErnst & Young

Job Profiles and Salary

Here are some specific job titles that human development graduates may hold:

School counselorSocial worker
Human resources specialistEducation consultant
Child psychologistDevelopmental psychologist
Policy analystResearch scientist
ProfessorChild Development Specialist
Family therapistMarriage therapist

The average salary for MSc human development graduates varies depending on their job title, experience level, and location. Salaries can vary widely based on location and experience but typically range from $50,000 to $80,000 per year.

An MS in Human Development is a dynamic and rewarding path that equips you with the knowledge and skills to improve lives and make a meaningful impact on society. With the right education, you can embark on a fulfilling career that contributes to the well-being of individuals and communities worldwide.


What is the typical background required to apply for an MS in Human Development?

While specific requirements may vary by university, most MS in Human Development programs typically seek applicants with a bachelor’s degree in a related field. This can include degrees in psychology, sociology, education, social work, or other related disciplines. However, some programs may consider applicants from diverse academic backgrounds, provided they can demonstrate a strong interest in human development through relevant coursework or experience.

Are there any standardized tests, like the GRE, required for admission to MS in Human Development programs?

The requirement for standardized tests like the GRE (Graduate Record Examination) varies among universities and programs. Some institutions may require GRE scores as part of the application, while others may offer test-optional admission. It’s essential to check the specific admission requirements for each program you’re interested in to determine whether GRE scores are necessary. 

What career opportunities are available after completing an MS in Human Development?

An MS in Human Development opens doors to a wide range of career opportunities in various fields. Graduates can pursue careers in areas such as counseling, social work, education, research, policy analysis, and human resources. Some specific job titles include child development specialist, family therapist, school counselor, research analyst, and program evaluator. The versatility of this degree allows graduates to work in diverse settings, including schools, healthcare institutions, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and private companies, making it a valuable credential for those who want to make a positive impact on individuals and communities.

If you are planning to pursue MSc Human Development, but are not sure about the process then reach out to us at Leverage Edu where the experts will provide assistance at every step of the admission process. You can also attend a brainstorming counselling session by booking 30 minutes of free career counseling with our study-abroad experienced professionals!

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