Advocate for the well-being of children.

Children are our future and the most vulnerable members of society. Unfortunately, there are times when children need adults to speak out on their behalf by protecting their rights and ensuring that the child’s best interest is served. Studying child advocacy generates an understanding of healthy child well-being, the impact of traumatic stress and maltreatment, and strategies to work more effectively to protect against or respond to these incidents.   

UMSL is fortunate to have a fully functioning Child Advocacy Center on campus, giving students access to professors highly connected to current presenting issues in the field and offering training opportunities for students in multiple disciplines while providing forensic interviewing, advocacy and treatment services for citizens of the region.

 

Program type:

Major, BA

Format:

On-Campus

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Overview

Bachelor of Arts in -

Applied Psychology of Child Advocacy Studies

The BA in Applied Psychology of Child Advocacy Studies prepares students to be trauma-informed professionals who respond appropriately to experiences of traumatic stress and maltreatment in children and adolescents. This applicable, innovative and accessible degree prepares graduates to move into a variety of child serving sectors. This interdisciplinary program is enhanced by hands-on skill development, immersive learning experiences and mentoring from professionals in the workforce and is one of the first three majors of its kind in the country.

Outcomes and Career Outlook

Upon completion of the BA in Applied Psychology of Child Advocacy Studies, graduates will be able to develop and demonstrate Trauma Informed Experiential and Reasoning Skills, apply empirical and conceptual knowledge of traumatic stress, think critically about how to respond to childhood traumatic stress to promote resiliency in children and families. Graduates can advocate for trauma-informed policy changes that promote the well-being of all children, including those which prevent child abuse and secondary traumatic stress.

Employment in the Childhood Advocacy field is projected to grow up to 10% to 2029, with a median annual salary of $50,470, according to wage and employment data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Occupational Information Network.



50,470

Median annual salary

10

Employment growth by 2029

Career Opportunities

  • Adoption and Foster Care
  • Case Management
  • Child Protection
  • Child Welfare
  • Early Childhood Development
  • Juvenile Justice
  • Law Enforcement
  • Legal Advocacy
  • Non-Profit Service and Administration
  • Primary and Behavioral Healthcare
  • Public Policy
  • Victim Services

 

Plan of study

Sample Four Year Plan

First Year
Fall Hours Spring Hours
CAST 1000 3 CAST 210 3
PSYCH 1003 3 PSYCH 2268 OR PSYCH 2270
  OR ED PSY 2212
3
INTDSC 1003 1 FGN LANG 1001 5
ENGL 1100 3 GEN ED EXPLORE 3
MATH 1030 3 GEN ED EXPLORE 3
GEN ED CORE 3
13 17
Second Year
Fall Hours Spring Hours
CAST 2200 3 CAST 2300 OR PHIL 2256 3
PSYCH 2201 4 PSYCH 2219 3
PSYCH 2245 3 FGN LANG 2101 3
FGN LANG 1002 5 GEN ED EXPLORE 3
GEN ED EXPLORE 3
15 15
Third Year
Fall Hours Spring Hours
CAST 3290 3 CAST 4398 3

CAST 3650 OR COMM 3332 OR GS/SOC WK 3700
OR NURSE 1000 OR PSYCH 3850


3


GEN ED EXPLORE


3
PSYCH 2211 3 ELECTIVE 3
ENGL 3100 3 ELECTIVE  3
GEN ED EXPLORE 3 ELECTIVE 3
15 15
Fourth Year
Fall Hours Spring Hours
CAST 4498 3 CAST 4598 3
ELECTIVE 3 CAST 4698 3
ELECTIVE 3 CAST 4700 1
ELECTIVE 3 ELECTIVE 3
ELECTIVE 3 ELECTIVE 3
15 13

Non-Missouri Residents: Prospective students are responsible for reviewing the NC-SARA state authorizations page to see if this program is offered in their state throughout their program and to review the licensure or certification requirements for the state in which they reside.

All majors must meet the general education requirements of the university in addition to completing degree-specific curriculum requirements.

Student organizations

From leadership, to cultural, to just plain fun, Recognized Student Organizations at UMSL make it easy to get involved. Students who join RSOs make new friends, learn new skills, and perform better in classes. Plus, with over 120 student organizations on campus, there’s something for everyone! You might like

Honors College

The UMSL Honors College is a certificate program that can be paired with any major without adding extra classes or extending time to graduate. Classes in the Honors College are seminar-style, meaning that they are based in reading, writing, discussion, and critical thinking. This unique class format fosters an intellectual climate centered around democracy, diversity, civility and academic excellence.

Undergraduate research

We encourage and support students as they engage in exciting activities in and outside of the classroom that enrich their academic and professional understanding of their chosen area of study. All majors are encouraged to participate in Undergraduate Research and Scholarship to produce discipline-specific intellectual or creative innovations to their field.