James Madison University

Family Studies

Terry Fernsler, Family Studies Adviser
Email: fernslts@jmu.edu
Office: HBS Bldg., Rm. 2073
235 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way

Nancy Poe, Coordinator

The interdisciplinary minor in Family Studies is designed for undergraduates seeking enhancement of their major and career potential, desiring to increase understanding of self and relationships, and seeking to make a positive contribution to society. A substantial knowledge of family related issues, family processes, polices, laws, services and the interrelationship of families and societies will enhance majors in many fields including anthropology, elementary education, health sciences, management, nursing, psychology, secondary education, social work, special education and sociology. The minor encourages students to make connections between their major field and family studies, thereby adding value to the major.

Students complete a minimum of 18 credit hours with no more than six credit hours in the student's major. One introductory course is required: Family 133 Contemporary Family or SOCI 276 Sociology of the Family. One course must be selected from each of the following areas: Families in Society, Family and Intimate Relationships, and Human Development in the Family. A capstone course, FAM 400, Family Issues and Applications, is also required.

For information about specific courses that fulfill requirements for the Family Studies minor, please go to the James Madison University undergraduate catalog for 2018-2019 found at https://www.jmu.edu/catalog/ and put Family Studies in the search box.

Interested in the Family Studies Minor?


Deadline to declare the minor this semester is October 15, 2018
See below for Fall 2018 details!

Students must:

  • review the online requirements in the Undergraduate Catalog and determine if the Minor is feasible in their academic plan. The minor requires completion of 18 credit hours (6 approved courses) and usually takes a minimum of 3 semesters.
  • attend an Information and Welcome meeting (see dates below). At this meeting, students will
    • learn about the minor and course requirements;
    • map a plan for completing the Minor,
    • be assigned a Capstone cohort and/or wait list
    • learn how to track their progression through the Minor
    • receive information about registration for approved courses
  • submit a Declaration of Minor change on MyMadison
If you are interested in the Family Studies Minor you must attend one of the informational meetings being offered this semester: 
  • Monday, October 1
    HBS Conference Room 2043 from 4:00 – 5:00 pm
  • Thursday, October 18,
    HBS Conference Room 2043 from 10:00 – 11:00 am
  • Friday, November 2
    HBS Room 2095 from 1:00 – 2:00 pm
  • Tuesday, November 6
    HBS Room 2099 from 11:15 am – 12:15 pm
  • Tuesday, November 13
    HBS Room 3034 from 3:30 – 4:30 pm