Master of Science in Human Services

The Master of Science in Human Services program is designed for professionals who are committed to improving the quality of life for all people in the growing field of human services.* The program is designed to prepare current professionals for leadership positions in a variety of nonprofit, government, or private agencies that help drive positive change for families and communities. Earning this degree can help you advance in a position or pursue a leadership career within the human services field.

The program adheres to the curriculum standards of the Council for Standards in Human Services Education and offers two degree concentrations:   

  • Family and community services
  • Organizational and social services

Both core courses and concentration courses provide a comprehensive education in theory and practice. You will work on developing critical-thinking and problem-solving skills that will assist you in meeting your personal and professional goals in your chosen specialization area.

Master of Science in Human Services Program Highlights

The curriculum prepares human services professionals to pursue leadership positions and to become advocates for change. You'll focus on the delivery of services; accessibility; the design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions; as well as the planning, administration, and coordination of programs.

This program is designed to help you:

  • Examine broad organizational roles and functions and various methods of advocacy
  • Apply appropriate strategies using a theoretical and philosophical framework built on values of the human services profession
  • Assess information related to service delivery, including data analysis, and the interpretation and evaluation of findings
  • Evaluate personal expectations, values, ethics, and self-care strategies as they relate to professional practice
  • Analyze scope of populations served and appropriate methods of service delivery based on individual needs
  • Apply skills, strategies, and knowledge related to design, implementation, and evaluation of human services programs

Master of Science in Human Services Concentrations

The Master of Science in Human Services program offers two degree concentrations. Focus on an area of interest that best suits your career goals.

Family and Community Services: Learn to address the complexities of developing and administering services for children and families. This specialization includes an emphasis on human development, resiliency, family theories, and advocacy.

Organizational and Social Services: Gain the knowledge and skills to work with diverse funding sources, influence policy, supervise staff, and develop and administer programs or interventions that address community needs.

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Master of Science in Human Services Courses

Below are some courses our program offers:

HN 521: Developing and Delivering Family Services-This course provides an in-depth look at the development, implementation, and management of family service programs. You will be introduced to the organizational structure of communities and learn how an understanding of these structures and resources can help to develop the required knowledge of global influences on human service delivery, social policy, and  community assessment for leaders in the field of human services.

HN 530: Research, Grant Writing, and Funding-This course provides an understanding of the basic components of writing a grant proposal, including how to write an effective executive summary, needs statement, and accurate budget. An emphasis is placed on how to locate resources necessary to write a grant proposal and secure funding. The role of program planning and design as well as the necessity of performing a comprehensive community-needs assessment is examined. The different methods of program evaluation, including quantitative and qualitative, are also explored.

HN 532: Organizational Nonprofit Management-This course provides an overview of the theory and skills needed to manage nonprofit organizations. You will analyze the history and theoretical foundations of organizational structure, the theories of leadership, and the role of leaders in effectively governing nonprofit organizations. You will evaluate the role of organizational and strategic planning.

HN 598: Master's Internship in Human Services-This course will provide students in the Master of Science in Human Services with practical experience in a professional field. It provides an opportunity to combine academic theory with new, career-related experience. At least 15 hours per week must be devoted to tasks that apply theory and academic content in a professional setting for a minimum of 150 out-of-class hours. Tasks must be delineated in the Learning Contract, which demonstrates an advanced application of academic theory in the workplace.

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Higher Education at the Highest Standards

Kaplan University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and committed to the highest standards. Our specific programs hold additional industry-relevant approvals and accreditations.

What are the Career Opportunities?

The Master of Science in Human Services is designed to help you advance or pursue leadership positions in the human services field. Career opportunities include working as a social or community service manager, development director, program manager, executive director, nonprofit manager, or grant writer in a variety of organizations including state, government, nonprofit, or private sector organizations. 

With America's expanding population of seniors, and nearly 15% of people currently living in poverty§, there is an increasing need for experienced human and social services professionals.# These "need-based" populations will demand greater services and leaders who can ensure that these populations get the best support  and care backed by evidence-based research.

How Do I Get Started?

Kaplan University offers multiple start dates, giving you greater flexibility with your education, life, and work schedules.

18

Oct

Online and Campus Start Date

October 18, 2017

08

Nov

Online and Campus Start Date

November 08, 2017

03

Jan

Online and Campus Start Date

January 03, 2018

31

Jan

Online and Campus Start Date

January 31, 2018

21

Mar

Online and Campus Start Date

March 21, 2018

18

Apr

Online and Campus Start Date

April 18, 2018

06

Jun

Online and Campus Start Date

June 06, 2018

05

Jul

Online and Campus Start Date

July 05, 2018

22

Aug

Online and Campus Start Date

August 22, 2018

19

Sep

Online and Campus Start Date

September 19, 2018

07

Nov

Online and Campus Start Date

November 07, 2018

05

Dec

Online and Campus Start Date

December 05, 2018

Curriculum: All Tracks

  • Major

    Total Major Credits: 30

    Total Program Credits: 45

    • HN 501: HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND HUMAN BEHAVIOR IN CONTEXT Change

      This course provides an overview of theories of human development. Using a developmental framework, the changing nature of human behavior in the context of individuals, families, and society is examined. Human behavior as it relates to the capabilities and limitations possessed by all individuals is explored. The impact of diversity on individuals in a larger social context is also evaluated. An emphasis is placed on applying theory and knowledge to methods of intervention that promote healthy functioning and autonomy in clients.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • HN 502: HISTORY, MULTICULTURALISM, AND DIVERSITY IN HUMAN SERVICES Change

      This course explores the historical roots of human services and the need for advocacy and social change. In addition, the awareness of multiculturalism and diversity for human service professionals is emphasized as it relates to social policy and legislation that affects service delivery in a global society.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • HN 505: SKILLS AND PRACTICE IN HUMAN SERVICES Change

      This course provides an overview of comprehensive application of skills and practice within the human service field. This course provides skills within the human service field with a focus on applications related to the needs and services for diverse populations and settings. These skills include initial intake and assessment skills used to work with individuals, families, and groups. You will apply knowledge to analyze, integrate and resolve issues within the human service field.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • HN 510: PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND PERSONAL VALUES Change

      This course provides an overview of integrity in the human services profession. The course offers an introduction to professional ethics and the framework for applying these principles in a professional setting. You will explore personal values and the impact on ethical decision-making, as well as applying the knowledge to a variety of real world situations.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • HN 598: MASTER'S INTERNSHIP IN HUMAN SERVICES Change

      This course will provide students in the Master of Science in Human Services with practical experience in a professional field. It provides an opportunity to combine academic theory with new, career-related experience. At least 15 hours per week must be devoted to tasks that apply theory and academic content in a professional setting for a minimum of 150 out-of-class hours. Tasks must be delineated in the Learning Contract, which demonstrates an advanced application of academic theory in the workplace.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      Application approval and permission from the Department Chair

    • HN 599: MASTER'S CAPSTONE IN HUMAN SERVICES Change

      This course is the culminating experience for the Master of Science in Human Services degree. The course builds on all of the skills and knowledge learned throughout the degree program. You will integrate and synthesize the knowledge and skills acquired throughout the coursework, conducting research related to current topics and challenges in the field of human services in order to demonstrate mastery of program outcomes.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      Last term or permission of the Dean

  • Specialization Courses

    Total Specialization Courses Credits: 15

    Total Program Credits: 45

Curriculum: Concentration

Concentration
Select a Concentration
  • Select a Concentration
  • Family and Community Services Specialization
  • Organizational and Social Services Specialization
  • Please Select a Concentration Above
  • Family and Community Services Specialization

    Total Family and Community Services Specialization Credits: 15

    Total Program Credits: 45

    • HN 520: FAMILY RESILIENCE ACROSS THE LIFE SPAN Change

      This course provides an overview of the theory and skills needed to be able to work with family and community services. You will focus on skills needed to provide direct services to individuals, families, and groups. You will delve into family theory, systems theory and resiliency theory in order to explore approaches to case management, and individual and group counseling. Emphasis will be placed on helping students to choose the least intrusive interventions in the least restrictive environment.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      HN 505

      Specialization courses are completed within the open electives requirement of the degree plan.

    • HN 521: DEVELOPING AND DELIVERING FAMILY SERVICES Change

      This course provides an in-depth look at the development, implementation and management of family service programs. You will be introduced to the organizational structure of communities and learn how an understanding of these structures and resources can help to develop the required knowledge of global influences on human service delivery, social policy and community assessment for leaders in the field of human services.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      HN 505

      Specialization courses are completed within the open electives requirement of the degree plan.

    • HN 522: ADVOCACY FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES Change

      This course provides the required knowledge to become an advocate for change. Emphasis is placed on advocacy work for individuals, families, and groups at all levels, including community development, community organizing, and global activism. You will learn the importance of advocating for client self-determination as well as the importance of establishing a rapport with clients, colleagues, and constituents.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      HN 505

      Specialization courses are completed within the open electives requirement of the degree plan.

  • Organizational and Social Services Specialization

    Total Organizational and Social Services Specialization Credits: 15

    Total Program Credits: 45

    • HN 530: RESEARCH, GRANT WRITING, AND FUNDING Change

      This course provides an understanding of the basic components of writing a grant proposal, including how to write an effective executive summary, needs statement, and accurate budget. An emphasis is placed on how to locate resources necessary to write a grant proposal and secure funding. The role of program planning and design as well as the necessity of performing a comprehensive community-needs assessment is examined. The different methods of program evaluation, including quantitative and qualitative, are also explored.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      HN 505

      Specialization courses are completed within the open electives requirement of the degree plan.

    • HN 531: PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT AND ADMINISTRATION Change

      This course provides an overview of the conceptual and theoretical topics related to the development and administration of human service programs. Skills needed to effectively develop and administer programs in the field of human services will be discussed. You will learn the tenets of program planning, implementation, and evaluation.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      HN 505

      Specialization courses are completed within the open electives requirement of the degree plan.

    • HN 532: ORGANIZATIONAL NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT Change

      This course provides an overview of the theory and skills needed to manage nonprofit organizations. You will analyze the history and theoretical foundations of organizational structure, the theories of leadership, and the role of leaders in effectively governing nonprofit organizations. You will evaluate the role of organizational and strategic planning.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      HN 505

      Specialization courses are completed within the open electives requirement of the degree plan.

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*Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-2017 Edition, Community and Social Service Occupations, www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/home.htm. National long-term projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.

Kaplan University cannot guarantee employment or career advancement.

The Master of Science in Human Services program is a member of the Council for Standards in Human Services Education (CSHSE); however, it is not accredited by this agency.

§Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2014 Highlights, www.census.gov/hhes/www/poverty/about/overview/index.html

#Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-2017 Edition, Social and Community Service Managers, www.bls.gov/ooh/management/social-and-community-service-managers.htm. National long-term projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.