CMAS Minor


Child Maltreatment and Advocacy Studies Minor

The undergraduate education minor in Child Maltreatment and Advocacy Studies (CMAS) is a new minor designed to give students a broad overview of child protection and advocacy including detection, treatment, and prevention of child maltreatment.

The CMAS minor includes course work from several disciplines and helps enhance the professional skills of students planning to work in professions that serve and protect children including, but not limited to, counseling, law enforcement, health, research, social work, education, forensic sciences, child welfare, and law.

Students successfully completing the minor will receive formal CAST (Child Advocacy Studies) Certification. CAST is a widely recognized certificate that helps enhance competitiveness for entry-level jobs within child welfare agencies and it is beneficial when applying to a multitude of graduate programs.

Enrollment for the first course, CMAS 258 (HD FS 258) Introduction to Child Maltreatment and Advocacy Studies, is now open.

CMAS 258 (HD FS 258): Introduction to Child Maltreatment and Advocacy Studies

This course focuses on the identification, investigation, service, prosecution, and prevention of child maltreatment, as well as the treatment of adverse health outcomes for children who have been maltreated.


Students interested in declaring the minor should email Cheri McConnell at to obtain appropriate information on coursework.

Please put CMAS Minor in your subject line, and include information about your

  • Major
  • Semester status


Requirements for the Minor

Students are required to complete a total of 18 credits. The core program consists of 12 credits of prescribed courses and students are expected to enhance their specific field of study by taking 6 credits from the supporting courses (for a total of 18 credits). A grade of C or better is required for all courses.

Special Considerations

For this minor CMAS 258 (HD FS 258) is a prerequisite for the prescribed courses. In addition, the supporting courses may have prerequisites.


The CMAS minor is an interdisciplinary minor designed to allow Penn State students majoring in any discipline to engage in the understanding of child protection and well-being. Supporting course selection may be influenced by the experience and educational background of the student in consultation with their academic adviser.


The minor is open to any Penn State student who is enrolled at the University Park campus and who has declared a major field of study (students from any department or college in the University are eligible to apply).

Prescribed Courses (12 Credits)

CMAS 258 (HD FS 258) Introduction to Child Maltreatment and Advocacy Studies (3) Introduction to the multidisciplinary field of child maltreatment.

CMAS 465 (HD FS 465) Child Maltreatment: Prevention and Treatment (3) Advanced examination in approaches for preventing child maltreatment and treating its consequences.
Prerequisite: CMAS 258 (HD FS 297A)

CMAS 466 (NURS 466) Systems and Community Responses (3) An exploration of the multidisciplinary response to child maltreatment. .
Prerequisite: CMAS 258 (HD FS 297A)

CMAS 493 Child Maltreatment and Advocacy Studies: Capstone Experience (1-3 per semester) This course serves as the capstone experience for students enrolled in the Child Maltreatment and Advocacy minor.
Prerequisite: CMAS 258 (HD FS 297A) 
Concurrent: CMAS 465 (HD FS 465)CMAS 466 (NURS 466)

Supporting Courses (6 credits)

BBH 146 Introduction to Health and Human Sexuality
BBH 301 – Values and Ethics in the Human Development Professions
BBH 446 – Human Sexuality as a Health Concern

CN ED 422 – Foundations of Addictions Counseling
CN ED 431 – Counseling and Teaching Youth at Risk 

CRIM 012 – Criminology
CRIM 422 – Victimization
CRIM 423 – Sexual and Domestic Violence
CRIM 441 – The Juvenile Justice System

ED PSY 010 – Individual Differences and Education

HD FS 129 – Introduction to Human Development and Family Studies
HD FS 229 – Infant and Child Development
HD FS 239 – Adolescent Development
HD FS 432 – Developmental Problems in Childhood and Adolescence
HD FS 453 – Family Participation and Involvement in Child Services
HD FS 455 – Development and Administration of Human Services Programs

NURSING 111 – Nursing roles
NURSING 230 – Introduction to the Fundamentals of Nursing
NURSING 245 – Violence and the Impact on Society
NURSING 409 – Intro to Forensic Nursing

PSYCH 212 – Introduction to Developmental Psychology
PSYCH 243 – Introduction to Well-being and Positive Psychology
PSYCH 270 – Introduction to Abnormal Psychology
PSYCH 410 – Child Development
PSYCH 412 – Adolescence
PSYCH 414 – Social and Personality Development
PSYCH 445 – Forensic Psychology
PSYCH 474 – Psychological Intervention in Childhood
PSYCH 476 – Child Psychopathology
PSYCH 497H – Human Development, Health, and Education from a Global Perspective

RHS 300 – Introduction to Rehabilitation and Human Services
RHS 301 – Introduction to Counseling as a Profession
RHS 400W – Case Management and Communication Skills
RHS 401 – Community Mental Health Practice and Services
RHS 402 – Children and Families in Rehabilitation Settings and Human Services

SOC 005 – Social Problems
SOC 430 – Family in Cross-Cultural Perspective