Family and Consumer Sciences

Family and Consumer Sciences empowers students with 21st century skills to be successful in our socially and economically diverse world. The unique focus on family, health and relationships ensures that all students are prepared for college and a career. Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) is the comprehensive body of skills, research, and knowledge that helps people make informed decisions about their wellbeing, relationships, and resources to achieve optimal quality of life. The field encompasses many areas including human development, personal and family finance, housing and interior design, food science, nutrition and wellness, textiles and apparel, and consumer issues.

About Our Program

The Family and Consumer Sciences Program, offered through the School of Education, leads to New York state certification, valid for Family and Consumer Sciences, all grades. This program is designed to blend on-campus preparation with field experiences in a variety of school settings, culminating in full-time student teaching. Literacy, multicultural education, and information technology are integrated through all aspects of the program. The program conforms to the New York State Learning Standards in Physical Education, Health and Family and Consumer Sciences as well as Career Development and Occupational Studies.

Program Components

  • 37 semester hours
  • 100 hours of field experience prior to student teaching
  • Full-time student teaching
  • Hofstra University field placement services
  • Technology-rich curriculum
View the Full Program

Students admitted to the Master of Science in Education program for Family and Consumer Sciences should possess a bachelor’s degree with a major specialization in one of the following areas: clothing and textiles, food and nutrition, business, family studies, consumer economics and public policy, health and wellness, culinary arts, food service, fashion design, elementary education, or child psychology. Applicants must have completed specific requirements as follows:

Child Development/Human Development

3-6 s.h.

Interpersonal, Family or Career Studies

3-6 s.h.

Nutrition, Health and Wellness

3-6 s.h.

Food Science and Food Production

3-6 s.h.

Business Management, Marketing, Entrepreneurship or Consumer Studies

3-6 s.h.

Fashion, Clothing and Textiles

3-6 s.h.

Interior Design and Environmental Studies

3-6 s.h.

Early Childhood, Elementary/Childhood or Adolescent Education

3-6 s.h.


TOTAL: 37 s.h.

If one or more of the above content areas are missing from any student’s transcript, those content areas must be completed prior to completion of the graduate studies. Six credits of content studies taken at the graduate level can be applied toward the elective category of the degree program.

Where academic subject matter deficiencies in the specific major are so great as to prevent completion of requisite work within the 37 s.h. master’s program, additional course work may be required. Matriculated students must complete a minimum of 30 s.h. of the M.S.Ed. program in-residence at Hofstra. No more than 6 s.h. may be transferred into the program. Student teaching may be used to meet the residency requirement.

A maximum of 12 s.h. of graduate course work leading toward the M.S.Ed. may be completed prior to matriculation in the program. To register for courses in the program other than SED 205, 213, or 264, a student must (1) be matriculated in the program, or (2) have written permission of the course instructor or departmental chairperson prior to the beginning of the course. 

General Education Core Prerequisites

Prospective teachers seeking New York state Initial certification must complete a specified set of General Education Core requirements including, Artistic Expression, Communication, Information Retrieval, History/Social Science, Language Other Than English, Science, Mathematics, and Literature/Written Expression (6 s.h.). A minimum 2.75 GPA is required for the total course work in the General Education Core.

Program Requirements – Total Semester Hours: 37

Students must maintain a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 while in the program. Grades of D or lower will not be counted toward the graduate degree but will be included in determining the grade-point average. Students must receive grades of B- or higher in all required (non-elective) courses in the program.

  • Introductory Courses – Semester Hours: 12
  • General Methods Courses – Semester Hours: 9
  • Special Methods Courses and Curriculum Courses – Semester Hours: 7
  • Student Teaching and Corequisite Seminar – Semester Hours: 9

For a sample plan of study, please visit Advisement.

View detailed information about the Family and Consumer Sciences, MSEd program.

Getting Started

Student Resources

Career Outlook

The Forecast is Bright… Middle-level Family and Consumer Sciences education is delivered through the state-mandated course, “Home and Career Skills.” Fifty-five percent of all active Family and Consumer Sciences educators are eligible for retirement in the next ten years. * According to the U.S. Department of Education, there is a shortage of Family and Consumer Sciences educators in New York state.** Only a small number of Family and Consumer Sciences teacher preparation programs exist in New York state. * Source: New York State Basic Education Data System (BEDS) ** Source: Teacher Shortage Area Nationwide listing, 2010


What is Family and Consumer Sciences?
Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) is the comprehensive body of skills, research, and knowledge that helps people make informed decisions about their well being, relationships, and resources to achieve optimal quality of life. The field encompasses many areas including human development, personal and family finance, housing and interior design, food science, nutrition and wellness, textiles and apparel, and consumer issues
Source: American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences
What do students receive from a proper education in Family and Consumer Sciences?
Family and Consumer Sciences Education empowers individuals and families across the life span to manage the challenges of living and working in a diverse global society. the unique focus is on families, work, and their interrelationships.
Source: New York State Department of Education
Who do I contact for more information?
For more information about the Family and Consumer Sciences program, please contact:
Marsha Iverson
Director - Family and Consumer Sciences and Business Education Programs
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Phone: (516) 463-7284
E-Mail: Marsha.W.Iverson[at]
What subjects are taught by family and consumer science educators?
At the middle school level, Family and Consumer Sciences educators teach the New York State mandated Home and Career Skills course.  School districts configure the course in various ways.  In some, it is a half-year course taught in either 7th or 8th grade.  In others, it is offered in modules for shorter periods of time.

At the high school level, Family and Consumer Sciences educators teach a wide range of courses.  Schools may choose to offer courses in Clothing and Textiles, Gourmet Foods, Food and Nutrition, Psychology, Child Development, Early Childhood Education, among others.
What New York State Certification does a graduate of the programs secure?
Graduates of the programs secure Business/Marketing K-12 provisional certification from New York State. Graduates will be prepared to apply for certification in most other states as well. While the certification is a K-12 certification, most business educators teach only at the high school level. The Work-Based Learning certificate is also awarded as an extension of the certification to enable you to place students in a variety of work-based learning activities such as career exploration, internships, cooperative work experience, and community-based work experience programs.
Can I continue to work while in the program?
Yes, you can continue to work either part or full -time until the semester of student teaching, the capstone course in the program. Student teaching is a full-time responsibility. Our graduate course schedule accommodates students who are employed as most classes are offered at either 4:30-6:20 pm or 6:30-8:20 pm and only meet once each week during the fall and spring semesters.
Is there scholarship money available?
The Program Director has scholarship funds to award to full-time graduate students. Full-time graduate students carry 9 credits in a semester. In addition, other scholarship opportunities exist. Full-time students also qualify for financial aid.

Hear from Our Students and Alumni!

Arielle Panzarino

Arielle Panzarino, M.S.Ed. in Family and Consumer Sciences, '13 Oceanside, NY

How did you decide you wanted to become certified in Family and Consumer Sciences? I always knew that I wanted to be involved in... | more |

Meet our Program Director

Marsha W. Iverson

Dr. Marsha Iverson
P:  516-463-7284