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Child Development & Psychology

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Child Development & Psychology Major

Child development and psychology is a major that typically falls into the Psychology category.

There are 2 programs available throughout the country that offer an associate’s degree in child development, 172 that offer a bachelor’s degree, and 131 that offer a master’s degree. There are also at least 114 schools in the nation where you can get your doctorate degree in the field.

Who Is Getting a Child Development Degree?

In 2017, roughly 8,100 child development and psychology majors graduated with a bachelor’s degree. This makes it #54 in popularity of all the majors we track. The major attracts more women than men. About 78.1% of the recent graduates in this field are female.

Racial Distribution

At the countrywide level, the racial distribution of child development majors is as follows:

  • Asian: 15.2%
  • Black or African American: 6.6%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 16.2%
  • White: 48.7%
  • Non-Resident Alien: 6.1%
  • Other Races: 7.2%
Child Development & Psychology Majors Ethnic Diversity Statistics

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in child development. About 6.1% of those graduating in 2017 were international students. The most popular countries sending child development majors to the U.S. are China, South Korea and Canada.

What Will You Learn as a Child Development & Psychology Major?

An O*NET survey asked people with careers related to child development to rate how important certain subject areas were to their job. The following are some of the results of that survey. Importance was rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Child Development Majors

Child development majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

Important Knowledge Areas for Child Development & Psychology Majors

Skills for Child Development Majors

Child development majors are found most commonly in careers in which the following skills are important:

Important Skills for Child Development & Psychology Majors

Abilities for Child Development Majors

Some of the most crucial abilities to master while a child development student include the following:

Important Abilities for child development Majors

What Can You Do With a Child Development Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with child development:

Careers Related to Child Development & Psychology
Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary

Compliance Managers



Regulatory Affairs Managers



Security Managers



School Psychologists



Neuropsychologists and Clinical Neuropsychologists



Investment Fund Managers



Psychology Professors



Child Development & Psychology Major Salary

Child development majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $85,000 to $96,000. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, the typical high school graduate makes between $29,000 and $57,000 a year. The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $44,000 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,000 and $120,000.

Average Salary for a Child Development Major  ( 85000 to 96000 )
Average Salary for High School Graduate  ( 29000 to 57000 )
Average Salary with Bachelor's Degree  ( 44000 to 99000 )
Average Salary with Advanced Degree  ( 55000 to 120000 )

The area of the country you choose to work in will also affect your career and salary prospects. Getting a graduate degree may open up more options with higher salary potential.

Amount of Education Required for Child Development & Psychology Major Jobs

Some careers associated with child development may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

Find out what the typical degree level is for child development careers below.

Education Levels for Careers Associated With Child Development & Psychology
Level of Education Percentage of Workers

Less Than a High School Diploma


High School Diploma or Equivalent


Post-Secondary Certificate


Some College Courses


Associate's Degree or Equivalent


Bachelor's Degree


Post-Baccalaureate Certificate


Master's Degree


Post-Master's Certificate


First Professional Degree


Doctoral Degree


Post-Doctoral Training


Online Child Development & Psychology Programs

There are 172 colleges that offer a bachelor’s degree in child development and psychology, with 5 of them offering at least some courses online.

Online learners must listen or watch video lectures, participate in group chats or forums, submit papers and assignments electronically, take tests, and meet deadlines.

Many learners are drawn to online programs due to the ease of use and flexibility. Students should be warned that those who enroll in online programs can take longer to graduate than average and are more likely to drop out.

Is a Child Development & Psychology Major Worth It?

The median salary for a child development grad is $88,000 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 127% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $991,800 after 20 years!

child development and psychology salary compared to typical high school and college graduates over a 20 year period


Bureau of Labor Statistics
National Center for Education Statistics
O*NET Online
Image Credit: Lisa R. Rhodes via License

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