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Family and Consumer Sciences

Master of Family and Consumer Sciences (M.F.C.S.)

The College of Human Sciences offers a nonthesis master’s degree program that might appeal to individuals with a bachelor’s degree in family and consumer sciences/home economics subject area or related disciplines. This program is considered to be a professional master’s degree. For students interested in further graduate study beyond the MFCS, the nonthesis degree program may mean additional requirements before completion of a Ph.D. or other terminal degree graduate program.

Students select either a comprehensive option or a specialization option. The comprehensive option requires 36 credits covering a variety of family and consumer sciences subject matter. Off-campus courses are offered via the World Wide Web (WWW). Specializations are available in Nutrition; Dietetics; Human Development and Family Studies; Hospitality Management; and Apparel, Merchandising, and Design.

In addition, students may select a 42-credit specialization in Family Financial Planning (FFP), a 36-credit specialization in Gerontology or a 36-credit specialization in Dietetics. The FFP, Gerontology, and Dietetics specializations, offered in collaboration with six to eight other universities in the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance, are offered exclusively through courses on the Web. The FFP program has been approved by the Board of Examiners of the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards as a program with the competencies required to permit those completing the degree to sit for the CFP® Certification Examination. CFP® is a certification mark owned by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards.

The Program of Study committee, in consultation with the student, establishes the courses to be taken and the acceptability of transfer credits. The major professor is selected from the discipline in which the concentration of coursework will be taken. Written and oral final integrative examinations are required in lieu of a thesis or creative component. A thesis or creative component could be included on mutual agreement of the student and major professor, with approval of the Graduate College.

Admission requirements for the MFCS include a bachelor’s degree in a family and consumer sciences/home economics subject area or related disciplines, Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores (not required for the FFP and Geron specializations), official transcripts, three letters of recommendation, a goal statement, and graduation in the upper one-half of class with a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or graduation in the upper one-half of class from a recognized foreign institution. Non-English speaking international students are required to have a TOEFL score of at least 550 at time of admission.

Graduate Certificates

An 18-credit graduate certificate in Family Financial Planning is offered for students who do not need a master’s degree and want to obtain the educational requirements of the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards CFP® Certification Examination.

A 21-credit graduate certificate in Gerontology is offered. For additional information, students should contact the Research and Graduate Education Office, E262 Lagomarcino, Ames, Iowa 50011-3191, .