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EIU Master of Science
in Human Services

Frequently Asked Questions









About the MS in Human Services Program

The Masters of Science in Human Services (formerly Family and Consumer Sciences) graduate program supports students’ learning through human services focused content, an applied focus, experiential learning opportunities, and faculty mentoring. Coursework addresses public policy, grant-writing, current global issues, program planning and assessment, leadership in diverse family and cultural settings, family financial resource management, resilience in individuals and families across the lifespan, and family life education programming in communities. 




Program Requirements

There following courses are required:
HSL 5450 Leadership and Administration in Human Services Programming
HSL 5460 Current Issues and Trends in Human Services
HSL 5846 Public Policy and Grant Writing for Human Services Programming
HSL 5850 Theories of Human Development and Family Life
HSL 5852 Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood
HSL 5900 Research Methods in Human Services

Fifteen hours of electives are selected in consultation with the Human Services Graduate Coordinator. 

The program concludes with a Capstone Experience, completed by selecting one of the following options for a minimum of three and a maximum of six semester hours: 
HSL 5950 Thesis
HSL 5980 Internship
HSL 5990 Independent Study

The Master of Science in Human Services requires 33 semester hours of coursework, 3-6 of which are use for the capstone. In many cases the program can be completed in one year of full time enrollment.




Undergraduate Deficiency Requirements

The MS in Human Services requires a prerequisite knowledge and understanding of family relations and lifespan human development. Students that do not have an undergraduate degree in Human Services or Human Services , may have to complete a foundational course in addition to that required of the degree to ensure content knowledge in these topics.

The graduate coordinator will evaluate student transcripts and determine  whether courses in lifespan human development, family relations, child development or similar content will be required. Any coursework that is required to meet the prerequisite expectations will be in addition to the 33 hours required for the MS in Human Services. Graduate students completing undergraduate deficiencies must receive a grade of a B or higher in order to remain a degree-seeking graduate student within Human Services.




Flexibility is Key to the MS in Human Services  

The program can be completed entirely online, or through hybrid, or face-to-face formats. All required courses are offered in online and face-to-face formats on a regular basis.




What happened to the MS in Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) program?

The Department of Human Services was reorganized in the Summer of 2018. The MS in Human Services Program Development replaced the MS in Family and Consumer Sciences program in Fall 2019. Course work now focuses specifically on human services programming from a family life perspective.




Is the GRE or MAT required?





What is the GPA requirement?

Students must have at least a 2.75 cumulative GPA to be fully admitted. If the GPA is under 2.75, students can apply for provisional admittance.




How long will it take to complete the Master’s degree in Human Services?

The program can be completed in three semesters or one full calendar year; however, there is a great deal in variation for each student and their timeline. Most students take 1 ½ to 2 years to complete the program but students have up to six years to do so.




What is the Capstone Experience?

The MS in Human Services culminates in a capstone experience that showcases an area of interest through dissemination of a research, educational, or community-based project. The capstone is completed by selecting one of the following options for a minimum of three and a maximum of six semester hours: 
HSL 5950 Thesis
HSL 5980 Internship
HSL 5990 Independent Study 




Is a thesis required?

No, but it is one of the options for the Capstone Experience




Where are graduates from the program employed?

Graduates of the program excel in administration, teaching, and leadership in positions such as divorce education, addiction treatment, child care administration, court advocacy, hospice care, programming for the incarcerated, senior case management, domestic violence shelter administration, rape crisis support, child and youth community programming, and reproductive education. 




How can I obtain secondary teacher certification for Human Services?

If you have completed a bachelor’s degree, contact the College of Education and Professional Studies at 217-581-2524 to arrange a transcript evaluation for Illinois state teacher certification requirements.

Related Pages

Contact Information

Dr. Kathleen O'Rourke
MS in Human Services, Graduate Coordinator

Dept. of Human Services
Eastern Illinois University
600 Lincoln Ave.
Charleston, IL 61920-3099

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