Department of Counseling, Development and Higher Education

Main Office
Stovall Hall, 155
P.O. Box 311337
Denton, TX 76203-1337
(940) 565-2910
Fax: (940) 565-2905
Web site:

Michael Altekruse, Chair


The Department of Counseling, Development and Higher Education provides programs designed to prepare professionals for leadership positions in community services, preschool facilities, schools, colleges, universities and the public sector.

The Center for Higher Education was created in the Department of Higher Education in 1983. The central purpose of CHE is to monitor and interpret the impact of major trends and legislation as they affect higher education. The office also engages in research activities for other agencies that are concerned about higher education issues at the state, regional and national levels.

The Center for Parent Education was established to meet the needs of families through parent education research and training, as well as to act as a conduit for information about trends and research related to parent education. The program collaborates with faculty in the development and family studies master's degree program and the child development undergraduate program, and with other university faculty who have an interest and expertise in parent education.

The Center for Play Therapy exists to facilitate the unique development and emotional growth of children through the process of play therapy. The center carries out this commitment by providing graduate courses in play therapy, a play therapy summer institute, an annual play therapy conference, research, scholarships, a directory of play therapy training in the United States and Canada, a bibliography of play therapy literature, an international clearinghouse for play therapy literature, play therapy for children and training for parents.

The Child Development Laboratory is an accredited preschool program for young children ages 3 through 5. In addition, it serves as a model, an observation site and a training center for undergraduate and graduate students in fields related to young children. Research related to early childhood issues is conducted by graduate students and faculty members from across the university.

The Counseling and Human Development Center (CHDC) is an instructional facility in which master's and doctoral level counselors-in-training provide counseling under faculty supervision. The CHDC serves individuals of all ages, couples, families and groups. Fees are based on a sliding scale, making counseling affordable to a segment of the population that otherwise might not have access to mental health services.

The Maturational Assessment Clinic is devoted to the study and research of child growth and development, and assessment for proper school placement and school readiness. It is solely a diagnostic clinic and provides assessment and diagnosis in routine behavioral evaluation for ages 21/2 through 9 years; school readiness, ages 4 through 6; and proper school placement, ages 31/2 through 9.

Counseling Education

Advising Office
Stovall Hall, 155
(940) 565-2910


Professors Altekruse, Berg, Chandler, Engels, Holden, Landreth. Associate Professors Bratton, Durodoye, Kern, Norton. Assistant Professors Coy, Gieda, Harris, Ray.

Minor in Counseling Associate Studies

A minor in counseling associate studies is available to undergraduate students who have completed 60 semester hours toward a bachelor's degree and have a 2.75 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Students must register their intent to complete the counseling associate studies minor with the program coordinator in the counseling program prior to beginning the program.

The counseling associate studies course of study begins in the fall semester of the student's junior year. Counseling associate studies minors must complete the following 18 hours: EDSS 3610, 3620, 3630, 3640, 4610 and 4620.

Graduate Programs

Counseling education offers programs in the following areas:

For further information, consult the Graduate Catalog.

The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) [5999 Stevenson Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22304; (703) 823-9800 x301], a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council on Post-secondary Accreditation (COPA), has conferred accreditation to the following areas of study for the degree in counseling and student services in the Department of Counseling, Development and Higher Education at the University of North Texas:

* Name change pending final approval by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Courses of Instruction

See Graduate Catalog for Courses of Instruction.

Development, Family Studies and Early Childhood Education

Student Advising Office

Matthews Hall, 105
(940) 565-2736
Career Advising
Matthews Hall, 119
(940) 565-4646
Web site:


Professors Dixon, Lawhon, Morrison. Associate Professors Glover, Jacobson, Schertz. Assistant Professors O'Donnel, Robles-Goodwin. Lecturers Drobek, C. Gillespie, Hagen.


Development, Family Studies and Early Childhood Education provides students a program of study and career opportunities in a selected emphasis area focusing on foundations in developmental and/or family studies. Emphasis areas include: Administration and Training, Early Childhood Development and Intervention, Family and Community and Human Development.

A graduate completing required courses in Family and Community may file a short application and be approved as a provisional Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE) through the National Council on Family Relations Academic Program review process. A student completing required courses in Early Childhood Development and Intervention may pursue credentialing as an Early Intervention Specialist Professional with the Texas Interagency Council on Early Childhood Intervention.

Programs of Study

The department offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the following areas:

Students interested in pursuing teacher certification in early childhood education (EC-4) should consult the information regarding the Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies offered through the Department of Teacher Education and Administration (see section regarding Admission to Teacher Certification also in this catalog).

Bachelor of Science in Development and Family Studies

Degree Requirements

1. Hours Required and General/College Requirements: A minimum of 127 semester hours of which 42 must be advanced, and fulfillment of degree requirements for the Bachelor of Science degree as specified in the "General University Requirements " in the Academics section of the catalog and the College of Education requirements.

2. Major Requirements:

DFEC core (16 hours): DFEC 1013, 1023, 2033, 4011, 4023, and 4033. It is recommended that students enroll in DFEC 1013 and 1023 during their first semester in the program.

Core requirements include two 3-hour unpaid practicum (DFEC 4023 and 4033) related to the student's selected emphasis area (see below). Students must complete a minimum of 300 clock hours to meet this requirement. Students should have senior status and have completed DFEC 4011 before beginning a practicum. Liability insurance is required for all practicum students. Students are strongly encouraged to complete both practicums within one 12-month period to avoid additional costs related to insurance. Permission to enroll in a practicum and approval of the practicum site are required. Students must have completed the following courses to be eligible for enrollment in:

Emphasis area: Students must also complete course requirements for one of the following emphasis areas chosen with the advice of a faculty member within the program area:

Administration and Training (42 hours): DFEC 3113, 3123, 3213, 4133, 4223, 4233, 4243, 4333, 4413, 4423, 4253, PSYC/AGER 3480, ATTD 4000, 4440.

Early Childhood Development and Intervention (36 hours): DFEC 3113, 3123, 3213, 4233, 4243, 4253, 4333, 4423, SMHM 1450, SLIS 4420, SPHS 3080, KINE 3500.

Family and Community (36 hours): DFEC 2313, 3113, 3123, 3323, 4133, 4233, 4333, 4413, 4423, PSYC/AGER 3480, ATTD 4000, 4440.

Human Development (21 hours): DFEC 3113, 3123, 3323, 4133, 4233, SMHM 1450, PSYC/AGER 3480.

3. Minor Requirements: A minimum of 18 hours, 6 of which must be advanced, in a field of study outside Development, Family Studies and Early Childhood Education, chosen in consultation with a member of the faculty.

4. Electives: To complete the minimum of 127 hours (6 hours of required electives are specified for students seeking Certified Family Life Educator or Early Intervention Specialist Professional credentials).

5. Other Course Requirements: CECS 1100 or CSCI 1100 or BCIS 2610.

6. Other Requirements: An overall minimum 2.50 GPA and a minimum 2.50 GPA in course work in the development and family studies major are required for graduation. Twenty-four of the student's last 30 hours must be completed at UNT.

Students who are interested in research and preparing for graduate studies are advised to take a research practicum and complete a senior thesis. Any student who is interested in research should meet with a faculty adviser early in the program to plan an appropriate minor and electives and to seek approval for choosing a senior thesis.

Students majoring in development and family studies must contact the Student Advising Office, Matthews Hall, Room 105, to prepare their degree plans.

Minor in Development and Family Studies

An 18-hour minor in development and family studies is suggested for students whose careers or graduate degree plans involve children and families, for students who desire enrichment in family life education and for students in preprofessional studies leading to careers in medicine and family law. Students who choose development and family studies as a minor must meet prerequisite requirements for courses.

Graduate Degrees

The Master of Science with a major in development and family studies or in early childhood education is available at the graduate level, as is the Doctor of Education in early childhood education. Prospective students should consult with a member of the graduate faculty prior to initial enrollment (see also the UNT Graduate Catalog).


The program offers several scholarships designated specifically for students majoring in development and family studies and/or early childhood education (EC-4) at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Early childhood education students may also be eligible for scholarships awarded through the Department of Teacher Education and Administration in Matthews Hall, Room 206.

Applications are available in the program office, Matthews Hall, Room 119. Deadlines for application vary slightly with each academic year, but generally occur in early February, with awards generally being announced in late spring. Check with the department office, Stovall Hall, Room 155, for additional scholarship information.

Courses of Instruction

All Courses of Instruction are located in one section at the back of this catalog.

Course and Subject Guide

The "Course and Subject Guide," found in the Courses of Instruction section of this book, serves as a table of contents and provides quick access to subject areas and prefixes.

Higher Education

Advising Office
Matthews Hall, 119
(940) 565-2045


Professors Baier, Bush, Katsinas, Lumsden. Associate Professor Newsom. Assistant Professor Jacobs. Lecturer Pasco.

Programs of Study

Graduate programs in higher education include:

Detailed information on these programs may be found in the Graduate Catalog.

Courses of Instruction

See Graduate Catalog for Courses of Instruction.

Course and Subject Guide

The "Course and Subject Guide," found in the Courses of Instruction section of this book, serves as a table of contents and provides quick access to subject areas and prefixes.

Top | Undergraduate Catalog College of Education Contents | UNT Undergraduate Catalog Shortcuts | Additional Undergraduate Literature | Graduate Catalog College of Education Contents