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Graduate Programs in FCS

The Master of Science degree programs in Family & Consumer Sciences provide a specialized focus to the student's selected of which area of academic emphasis within the department.

Deadlines for submission of applications for M.S. Fall 2015:

  • Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Science:  March 1, 2015
  • Apparel Design and Merchandising, Consumer Affairs and Family Studies:  May 30, 2015
  • (Note: Interior Design is not accepting applications for Fall, 2015.)


Click on the program to see the course requirements for the Master Degree.

Apparel Design & Merchandising

Consumer Affairs

Family Studies

Nutrition, Dietetics & Food Science

Grade Point Average and Course Requirements for Entry:

A minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.5 is required for all options except for Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Science, which requires a GPA of 3.0 for admission.

It is possible to do this as a conditionally classified graduate student, as the university will allow students to earn up to twelve units toward the masters' degree before becoming fully classified.

For the Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Science (NDFS) program ONLY, please read the following application instructions carefully as failure to comply will result in denial to the program. 
For Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Science applicants, GRE scores are required for all applicants as part of the application package. 

In your application package, please include all of the following:

  1. Department Admissions Evaluation Form
  2. Resume
  3. Statement of Purpose

A statement of purpose declaring the reasons why the applicant is interested in the M.S. in Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Science in 1000 words or less is required. The statement should also indicate which graduate pathway the student is interested in: M.S. in Nutrition or Food Science only, Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) courses only, or both DPD and M.S. courses. It can also include a description of any previous professional experience and any particular experiences and/or coursework that qualify the applicant for graduate work.

      4. Letters of Recommendation

Three letters of recommendation are required for admission and at least one of the letters must be from an instructor in the student’s undergraduate program, preferably in a science based discipline. Letters should be addressed to the Graduate Coordinator of the program.

     5. Copy of unofficial transcripts

An official report of GRE scores is required with the application (starting with applications for admissions for Spring 15). 

Applicants are responsible for submitting all application materials listed above in one packet prior to the application deadline. Applicants who do not provide all materials in one packet by the NDFS deadline will not be considered for admittance.

Applicants denied admittance based on academic or program capacity, reapplying for a future application term must resubmit all new materials. No materials submitted from prior terms will be kept for further terms. This also includes student applicants who choose not to be admitted for term they applied for.

The application packet should be mailed to:

Dr. Yi Cai
Graduate Coordinator, Family & Consumer Sciences
18111 Nordhoff Street
Northridge CA, 91330-8308

Your letter of acceptance to the program will include instructions about meeting prerequisite requirements or setting up an appointment with an advisor for further information.

Elements Required for "Fully Classified" status:

  • A grade point average of 2.5 plus adequate performance on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or a GPA minimum of 3.0.
  • A Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with selected approved upper division courses in Family & Consumer Sciences or the equivalent.
  • The satisfaction of any other University requirements for classified status.
  • Formal approval by the department based upon the total record of the student.

Requirements for degree completion:

Satisfactory completion of a minimum of 30 units of approved graduate work composed of the following:

Required courses:

  • FCS 681 Research Methods (3)
  • FCS 682 Research Applications (3) and
  • At least 24 additional units of approved graduate courses. (12 units of these may be at the 400 level)

Also required:

  • Thesis: FCS 698 (1-3) or
    Project: FCS 698 (1-3) or
    Comprehensive Examination: FCS 697 Directed Comprehensive Studies (No Credit) (Grade of "B" or better required on examination)

Download a checklist and guide to graduation.
Dowload the latest Family & Consumer Sciences Graduate Handbook