Human Services Courses at Ashford University

Human services provide assistance to people coping with a wide range of medical, social, and economic issues. In your Human Services courses, you will examine the history, delivery, processes, theories, and systems associated with human service organizations. These courses form the backbone of both the Master of Arts in Human Services and the Doctor of Philosophy in Human Services at Ashford University.

Human Services Class Descriptions and Credit Information

HUM 5010 Overview of Human Services

3 Credits

This course is designed to introduce the student to the broad field of human services, the types of disciplines represented in the field, the general nature and scope of services provided by the disciplines, the similarities in services provided, and the differences among the disciplines. A major emphasis will be on the ways in which human services professionals can effectively and efficiently interact to enhance service delivery and maximize the use of valuable resources.

HUM 5060 Grant Writing

3 Credits

This course provides students with knowledge of various types of government and private grants, sources of information on funding agencies, grant writing principles and techniques, pre-submission consultation review processes, and the overall grant review process. Practice in researching funding sources and grant guidelines and in proposal preparation are included.

HUM 5100 Integrative Project for Human Services

3 Credits

This course provides the opportunity for students planning careers in human service agencies to apply knowledge and skills obtained throughout the program in a practical way. Students may opt for projects in new program/service delivery design, program evaluation, or grant writing by utilizing quantitative or qualitative research on an issue in human service delivery, or other appropriate areas, approved by the instructor. HUM 5100 is intended to be a capstone course in the student's program. Prerequisite: completion of all required coursework. (This course may not be transferred in.)

HUM 5210 Recruiting & Coaching Volunteers

3 Credits

This course is designed to provide students with working knowledge of volunteer use in human service agencies. Sources and methods of volunteer recruitment, legal issues in the recruitment and use of volunteers, screening issues, methods of training, and techniques for coaching, securing and maintaining on-going commitment, and effective use of volunteers are areas of focus.

HUM 5220 Non-Profit Principles & Practices

3 Credits

This course provides students with the common issues and principles surrounding non-profit agencies and organizations. Background and philosophy, rules and regulations, tax implications, principles of philanthropy, the role of grants and other sources of external funding are emphasized.

HUM 5300 Human Services Delivery Skills & Processes

3 Credits

This course provides students with a broad overview of the laws and regulations that govern delivery of services in the various human services disciplines. Cross-disciplinary regulations, policy development and review in agencies, and methods to impact policy /regulation development and revision at the state and national level are areas of emphasis.

HUM 5500 Human Services Administration

3 Credits

This course draws from the concepts of organizational behavior and leadership theory and human services policy to present the students a conceptual framework for leading a human services organization. Leadership issues unique to human services settings will be discussed, with the focus on developing effective leadership styles, promoting self-care practices, and using mindfulness-based strategies to enhance self-awareness and improve organizational effectiveness in human services agencies.

HUM 6100 Group Theories & Human Systems

3 Credits

This course will explore group theories and groups as human systems. Students will study how large and small groups are utilized in human service organizations. The students will also gain an understanding of group dynamics and functionality for the application of research and theory relating to large and small groups and human social systems for the enhancement of service delivery. The emphasis is on integrating theory and concepts from the behavioral and social sciences as a basis for understanding group systems theory and human behavior within human services and society.

HUM 7100 History & Systems of Human Services

3 Credits

This entry point course provides the historical context and development of the human services field. This course examines the historical context and the evolution of health and human services professions. Students will study the origins of the profession and evaluate ways in which philosophical and ideological perspectives have defined the fields of practice throughout its history. Students will analyze the ways service delivery and social policy has changed in response to political influence and societal needs. Students will explore the differing political, social, and economic perspectives and their influence on health and human services professions.

HUM 7140 Socio-Cultural Determinants in Society

3 Credits

In this case study-based course on social determinants of human services and aspects of diversity, students will examine the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work, and age in varying US and global social systems and demographics. Students will explore social constructs, correlates of behavior, impact of social and community structure on status, and disparities within diverse communities. Students will apply social and behavioral theories of human service resources, strategies, methods, ethics, and public policy.

HUM 7160 Organizational Operations & Human Services Administration

3 Credits

Students will apply advanced critical thinking skills in this course designed to expose them to a broad range of essential organizational operations and extend students' existing knowledge base on the workings of human services administration. In addition to exploration of volunteer recruitment, retention and management, marketing, cross-disciplinary regulations, development and implementation of policy, change management, fund-raising, the critical focus will apply to leadership theories and organizational behavior aimed at positions of leadership within an organization.

HUM 7170 Financial & Grant Management

3 Credits

This financial and grant management course critically examines and identifies various accounting and financial knowledge related to the establishment and monitoring of financial strategies, policies, and tools within a government or private human services organization or service. In addition, financial management roles and responsibilities, advanced grant writing principles and techniques, and ethical financial practices and accountability will be explored and developed.

HUM 7175 Program Review & Evaluation

3 Credits

This practical program review and evaluation course for the human services discipline will employ a hands-on approach ultimately culminating in a hypothetical program evaluation and service-level improvement by completing weekly process goals, to include analysis of a completed needs assessment survey. The course will provide students with all materials needed in order to evaluate the complex program presented and complete tasks to ultimately modify it by the end of the term.

HUM 7480 Evidence-Based Practice in Human Services

3 Credits

This course demonstrates the value of evidence-based practice as an integral part of formulating human services research and policy. Course work examines the current definition of evidence-based policy and approaches to move the field forward. The course provides an evaluation of evidence-based literature, including case study examples of the application of evidence-based practices in human services. The course also examines actions to further evidence-based policy, including preparing and communicating data more effectively, using existing analytic tools, conducting policy surveillance, and tracking outcomes with different types of evidence.

HUM 8060 The Non-Profit Executive as Fund Raiser

3 Credits

This advanced seminar examines all recognized methods of fund raising, forecasting fund raising income, and balancing administrative and fundraising expenses in the short term with longer term programmatic and mission goals. Topics include direct mail, planned giving, special events, corporate giving, and foundation grant writing.

HUM 8070 Advanced Seminar: Volunteers & Non-Profit Governance

3 Credits

Non-profit organizations and their governance, depend heavily on sound working relationships among staff, especially executive staff, volunteer officers, and board members. This course explores common issues and concerns related to this governance, especially succession planning, assessing the ability of potential leaders, executive development, and engaging volunteers during and between board meetings.

HUM 8105 Applied Human Services Policy

3 Credits

This course examines cutting edge trends in the formation and execution of human services policy in public and private organizations. Selected topics include the current human services climate, forces driving policy formation and execution, and issues related to the future of human services policy. The topics selected will connect human service policy with culture, existing organizational strategies, and the process of change in future directions. Effective mechanisms to influence policy are emphasized. Major case study examples of human services policy are included in the learning process.

HUM 8115 Theories & Strategies of Community Development & Advocacy

3 Credits

This course examines the theories and research underlying the political, economic, and social structures related to community groups and organizations within contemporary society. Students analyze methods of creating communities and social organizations that empower and support individuals to work together to initiate change, with or without the assistance of outside advocacy. Students develop skills to create and assess community action plans, incorporate persuasive language into client advocacy, and organize political action groups to seek opportunities for themselves and others. There is a focus on social and economic justice within the context of human services' ethics that supports and sustains the well-being of individuals and communities, especially among diverse populations.

HUM 8125 Performance & Quality Management

3 Credits

This course provides students with the opportunity to explore the theories underlying performance evaluation and approaches to evaluation in human services settings. Emphasis is placed on conceptual, methodological, organizational, political, and ethical problems in evaluating both risks and approaches involved in the delivery of human services. Students will learn to identify quality and outcome indicators. They will learn to evaluate research and analyze data associated with the evaluation of the quality of service delivery and the assessment of risk. They will learn construct techniques used to perform the evaluations, strategies for getting human services professionals to be invested in the development of the research and in the outcomes, demonstration of program effectiveness, and dissemination of results to stakeholders.

HUM 8215 Special, Vulnerable, & Underserved Populations in Human Services

3 Credits

This course will apply a hands-on approach to understanding the unique needs of vulnerable and underserved populations in the human services field. Students will explore all of the following and select one to complete a practical project incorporating the study of and recommendations for specific needs of: military members and their families, veterans, homeless individuals and homeless families, immigrants, the geriatric community, medically underserved, chronically and severely mentally ill, single parents, the uninsured, economically disadvantaged children and families, those with human immunodeficiency virus [HIV], racial/ethnic minorities, incarcerated individuals and their families, or any other instructor approved demographic population.

HUM 8225 Human Services Information Technology

3 Credits

This course explores the past, present, and future of various human services information technology modalities from the basics of computer literacy, telecommunications, networking, accounting and administrative applications, to security issues and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). With evolving changes in laws and policies, such as implementation of the Affordable Care Act, this course is recommended for those students interested in staying abreast of the latest in cutting-edge technologies that coincide with this and other legislative initiatives impacting the human services field.

HUM 8519 Advanced Seminar: Ethical Issues in Non-Profit Management

3 Credits

This advanced seminar examines enduring issues in business and professional ethics and applying proven approaches to ethical professional practice and organizational operations in contemporary non-profit organizations. Topics will include social responsibility of for-profit organizations in support of non-profit organizations, program operating budgets vs. long-term financial stability, and ethical concerns related to governance and program priorities.