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Undergraduate Programs

Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies

*A reading specialization is part of each Interdisciplinary Studies emphasis with the exception of Middle School Math/Science.

**A Special Education endorsement may be added to Middle School certification.

The Department of Curriculum and Instruction offers the Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies (IS) as the degree leading to teacher certification at the elementary level of Early Childhood through Grade 6, at the middle level of Grades 4 through 8, and All Level Special Education as well as a con-certification degree in Child and Family Studies. Through this degree, students obtain a broad based preparation in the academic areas that comprise the elementary school curriculum with a strong emphasis on language arts and reading. At the middle school level, certification areas include Generalist, Math, Science, Language Arts/Social Studies, and Math/Science.  English as a Second Language (ESL) certification is included in the BS Interdisciplinary Studies degree with EC - 6, All Level Special Education, and Middle School certification except Math/Science. The Child and Family Studies program prepares students in multiple areas of child and family development and prepares students to work in ares such as Child Life, Child Protective Services, Head Start, and Child Advocacy Centers.

Advising Assignment Information

This section contains the Program Sheets/Degree Plans and Typical Curriculum forms for all the areas of emphasis for a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. Students must first be granted admission status to the university before they can be assigned an advisor. It is necessary to fill out a "Request for Advisor" form that can be obtained in the main office (E.J. Howell Building, room 320). At that time, office staff will assign the student a specific academic advisor. Please make appointments directly with your advisor when you need help. Check registration dates in the semester class schedules for registration and open advising times.

Undergraduate Admissions Information

This page defines the admissions requirements students must meet as well as the application process to be admitted to Tarleton State University's Interdisciplinary Studies for initial teacher preparation.

Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies

  • Child and Family Studies Program (non-certified)

            Program Sheet

            Typical Curriculum

Child and Family Studies is a course of study that looks at the various stages of development of both the child and the family. Courses are offered that study the child from conception to the completion of elementary school. Information is presented on families including various family formations, parenting, relationships and the life span of the family. Students are prepared for careers in the child care field (both directing child care centers and working for regulatory agencies), human service agencies devoted to children and family, as a Child Life Specialist, educational agencies such as Head Start and other preschool programs, parenting programs, and numerous other positions involving connection with children and families.

Teacher Education Program

Teacher Education is one of the major programs at Tarleton State University. It emphasizes broad general education as a foundation for mastery of teaching skills and specialized knowledge in an academic discipline. The primary purpose of teacher education is to prepare highly qualified teachers for Texas and the nation.


Formal application for admission to the Teacher Education Program should be made by the student during the first semester of the junior year while enrolled in EDU 320. Deadlines for applications are October 15, February 15 and June 15. Formal admission to this program shall be prerequisite to taking any professional development courses beyond EDU 320.

Strict criteria must be met for admission to the Teacher Education Program as an Interdisciplinary Studies major. A list of criteria can be found in the University Catalog and also in the Handbook for Teacher Certification which is required text for EDU 320.

Program Goal

The goal of the Tarleton State University Teacher Education Program is to develop teachers who:

  • possess appropriate knowledge and abilities in specific content areas of teaching fields;
  • communicate effectively with students, parents, and other professionals;
  • apply the principles of instructional planning in the development of curriculum;
  • utilize effective teaching practices;
  • formally and informally evaluate student performance and use the results of such assessment in the instructional decision-making process;
  • promote critical thinking and participatory citizenship;
  • are skilled in the use of instructional technology;
  • are proficient in mathematical skills;
  • operate within the legal guidelines and uphold the ethics of the teaching field;
  • demonstrate concern for the general welfare of students and are committed to continued professional growth and development.

Secondary and All-Level Education

Students working toward secondary and all-level certification will pursue a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree with a major and/or minor, if applicable, in academic disciplines. Students will also take professional education courses to meet certification requirements. While not offering a major in secondary education, the Department of Curriculum and Instruction does offer the courses required to obtain secondary- and all-level certification.

Students obtain academic advisement for secondary and all-level certification programs in the department of their major. Application for admission to the Tarleton Teacher Education Program must be made during the first semester of the junior year while enrolled in Education 320. Requirements for admission, retention, and admission to student teaching are described in the University Catalog and in the Handbook for Teacher Certification. To be admitted to the teacher education program, students must complete the THEA requirements.

Certificate and Degree Plans

Certificate and Degree Plans are not formally completed and filed until students apply to the Teacher Education Program. A Degree Plan outline may be obtained from the main office. Students may also refer to the University Catalog which also has the same information concerning course requirements and typical curriculum by semester for a degree in IS.

Child Development Center and After School Program

The Tarleton State University Child Development Center (TSU CDC) and After School Program (TSU ASP) was established to provide quality child care programs aimed at helping parents fulfill work, study, and family responsibilities without sacrificing their occupational or educational goals or the quality of their family life. With that goal in mind, the TSU CDC and TSU ASP services multiple roles for staff, faculty, and students at Tarleton as well as the community of Stephenville. The mission of the Tarleton State University Child Development Center and After School Program is to provide a learning experience for University students engaged in the study of child development and education, and to provide a pleasurable learning experience for children enrolled in these programs. The programs and policies are designed to be consistent with the University mission as an institution of higher education, while placing as foremost the quality of care received by the children enrolled.

One role of the TSU CDC and TSU ASP is to provide an environment that facilitates research and learning opportunities for faculty and students. This environment will not compromise the quality of the program that children experience or intrude upon the privacy of children or their families. The staff of the TSU CDC and TSU ASP may participate in research activities with a variety of faculty and students across campus.

An additional role of the TSU CDC and TSU ASP is to provide the community with a model of high quality, professional childcare. This model includes provisions of a curriculum that reflects the current understanding of the best child care practices. Professional staff of the TSU CDC and TSU ASP is expected to be active in the childcare community by participating in professional associations and sharing their expertise with other child care groups in the community.

THE TSU CDC and TSU ASP administrative staff, teachers, and faculty work as a team to make recommendations concerning programming, planning, and other functions. We encourage parents to discuss their concerns with teachers and directors whenever questions or problems arise. As part of the annual program evaluation, parents are asked to complete a questionnaire rating their satisfaction with various aspects of program operations. We look forward to working with you to provide a positive experience for children.

Dr. Kimberlee Spencer, Director, Tarleton State University Child Development Center and After School Program, Box T-0380
Stephenville, TX 76402        CDC Foyer:  254-968-9788     CDC Kitchen: 254-968-9433     Fax: 254-968-9728

If you have any questions or comments, please email Elizabeth Stephens at