Youth and Community Studies

Youth and Community Studies (YCS) prepares students to work with children or youth in a variety of settings that do not require teacher certification. Students who choose this major have the flexibility to select courses from one of the following professional concentrations: coaching, early childhood, special populations, and youth and social services. Many of our graduates pursue careers in youth programs, parks and recreation departments, day-care centers, after-school programs, government agencies, and non-profit organizations related to childcare or youth development. 

Program Prerequisites

Current students must have a minimum UT GPA of 2.0 to enter the major. *Pending final approvals of the Applied Learning & Development Committee.

Degree Plans

Available Catalogs

Four-Year Guide

The first and second year course listings in these documents are to be used as guides to assist you with selecting a schedule, and should be used with the degree plan. These courses can be taken during the fall, spring or summer terms. Twelve to fifteen hours are recommended during the fall and spring semesters. Please note that these are only meant to be used as guides; you are encouraged to consult with your academic advisor when finalizing your schedule each semester.

View a sample four-year, Youth and Community Studies degree plan. Get Adobe Reader

Create your own four-year plan. Get Adobe Reader

Certificates, Minor, Specialization, or Track

Students in Youth and Community Studies can minor in anything they are able to major in at The University of Texas at Austin except for Education. Some of the most popular minors are Business Foundations, Communication, Psychology/Educational Psychology, and Sociology/Social Work.

Certificates and Minors

The University of Texas at Austin offers various programs that allow students to choose from a set of courses in order to focus on an area of study in addition to their major. Beginning with the 2016-2018 catalog, certificates and minors are recognized on transcripts. University-wide requirements and the available options can be found in the university's Undergraduate Catalog.


Students interested in furthering their education in Kinesiology and Health are encouraged to choose a specialization. The Department of Kinesiology and Health Education offers seven specializations. For details, please visit our KHE Specializations page.


Tracks do NOT appear on UT Austin transcripts or diplomas; they are reflected only on a student's profile record and degree audit. Tracks consist of 15 hours, 6 of which must be upper-division; the list of tracks are available in the advising offices.

Foreign Language Requirement

Students majoring in Youth and Community Studies may choose one of three options to fulfill the foreign language requirement:

  1. Complete second semester proficiency at the college level in any language other than English
  2. Take an exam to reach second semester proficiency in any language other than English
  3. Complete three of the foreign language substitution courses from our approved listGet Adobe Reader

Professional Concentrations

Students will choose from Early Childhood, Special Populations, Coaching, or Youth and Social Services concentrations.

Early Childhood – Coursework deals primarily with child and adolescent development and family relationships.

Special Populations – Coursework comes from such areas as Communication Science Disorders, Kinesiology, and Social Work, providing an overview of communication disorders, increasing cultural awareness, and developing systems for individuals with disabilities.

Coaching - Coursework covers fundamentals of coaching, theory, and practice as well as physiological and psychological aspects of sport.

Youth and Social Services – Required courses cover topics in substance abuse prevention, intervention and treatment. Elective topics range from the psychosocial aspects of aging to juvenile delinquency and criminal justice.