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Elms at University Park campus.

A scientific discipline that studies the size, composition, and territorial distribution of individuals, families, and area populations — and the dynamic processes that explain the changes in each — expertise in demography is an excellent complement to HDFS training for students with interests in studying how changes in policy, social trends, and resources affect populations.

By combining HDFS with the in-depth study of births, deaths, income, or the incidence of disease — key points that often dictate the changing structure of human populations — you’ll gain meaningful insight into new areas of interest and opportunity. For example, you might examine the impact of neighborhood and population composition through population science scholarship and multi-level population modeling, or you might focus on analyzing large, nationally representative population data sets to understand the broad issues underlying family policy and research.

Penn State is one of the leading research universities in the United States.