Master of Arts in Learning, Developmental and Family Sciences, Mile High Early Learning Partnership

School of Education & Human Development


Degree: MA

Classroom Type: Online and on campus classes

Designed for individuals who wish to lead and excel in organizations that serve urban and diverse families, their preschool age children, and communities. Offered through a partnership with Mile High Early Learning.

Application​ deadlines

April 1 to start Summer 2020, June 1 to start Fall 2020

Program Details

Interest Categories: Education & Counseling

Campus: CU Denver

What you’ll learn

In this master’s degree program, students will develop a deeper understanding of children's learning and development, family systems and dynamics, and culturally responsive practices. The program provides students with hands-on experiences, opportunities to collaborate with colleagues, and the skills necessary to pursue leadership opportunities in organizations that serve urban and diverse families, young children and their communities.

This 30-credit hour degree is designed to be completed in two years with the program beginning summer term each year. Some students may choose to complete their courses beyond two years in order to balance working full-time and being a student.

About CU Denver’s School of Education & Human Development:

CU Denver is recognized for preparing professionals who are passionate about families, education, diversity, equity and social justice. Additionally, CU Denver’s School of Education & Human Development is one of the highest ranked graduate schools in the nation according to U.S. News & World Report. Our faculty are directly connected to the policies and issues facing diverse families and community organizations today.

About Mile High Early Learning:

As Denver’s oldest and largest provider of subsidized high-quality early childhood education, Mile High Early Learning offers year-round programs in seven early learning centers and two drop-in centers that serve Denver’s poorest neighborhoods, and engages parents and informal child care providers through community education programs such as Babies Ready for College. Through its Professional Learning Center, Mile High Early Learning provides training with hands-on practical experiences to early learning professionals. The organization serves over 9,000 children and families annually and collaborates with other early childhood programs to expand access to and increase the quality of early childhood education.

About CU Denver and Mile High Early Learning’s Partnership:

This partnership combines the expertise of CU Denver’s faculty with Mile High Early Learning staff’s real world know how of fostering the achievement and well-being of diverse urban children and families. Together, we provide students with deep theoretical background combined with practice-based experiences and knowledge.


Program Core Courses (21 credits)

All students in the MA program are required to complete each of the following core courses. As one of the core courses, students will be required to complete an applied project in their last semester of the program. A faculty member will be assigned to each student to advise through completion of the project.

  • HDFR 5180: Family, Schools and Community Partnerships
  • EDHD 6100: Socio-cultural Contexts of Child Development
  • EDHD 6750: Designing Environments for Learning & Development
  • EDHD 6600: Motivation in Context
  • EDHD 5110: Human Learning
  • RSEM 5120: Introduction to Research Methods
  • EDHD 6919: Applied Project

Elective Courses (9 credits)

Student will select three of the following elective courses to complete nine credits.

  • HDFR 5002: Family & Life Community Programs
  • HDFR 5003: Leadership & Organizations
  • HDFR 5004: Grants and Funding
  • HDFR 7260: Family Diversity and Social Justice
  • HDFR 5075/4075: Family Policy and Law
  • HDFR 5020: Black and Latino Children in Families and Schools

Recommended Completion Time:2 years

Required Credits for Completion:30 Credits

Admission Requirements

Participants should already hold a bachelor’s degree and must have the ability to attend classes in Denver. The application deadline has been extended with two application deadlines. For those wanting to begin the program in Summer 2020 (June), please apply by April 1. For those wanting to begin the program in Fall 2020 (August), please apply by June 1. An application fee of $50 is due at the time of application submission. No GRE is required. You will apply for the MA in Learning, Developmental and Family Sciences and select the Mile High Early Learning option.

Tuition rates and fees are listed under the graduate school rates for the School of Education & Human Development.

Please contact the Continuing and Professional Education department to learn more about the program or for assistance with your application.