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Undergraduate Programs

Graduate Programs

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Student Organizations

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Family and Consumer Sciences

Apparel Product Design & Merchandising Program

Family Resources Program

Human Nutrition, Food, and Animal Sciences

Molecular Biosciences and Bioengineering

Natural Resources and Environmental Management

Plant and Environmental Biotechnology Program

Tropical Plant and Soil Sciences


Family and Consumer Sciences

Apparel Product Design and Merchandising
Miller 201
Tel: (808) 956-8133

Family Resources
Krauss Annex 7
Tel: (808) 956-6519

2515 Campus Road
Honolulu, HI 96822

E-mail: FCS@ctahr.hawaii.edu
Web: www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/FCS


*Graduate Faculty

B. W. K. Yee, PhD (Chair)—Asia and Pacific Islander adult development and aging women’s health, Southeast Asians, minority career paths
R. A. Caulfield, PhD—infancy, childhood, human development
M. Cheang, PhD—public health
D. R. Ching, PhD—agricultural leadership
J. L. Chong, MEd—adult and youth volunteer and leadership development
D. L. F. Chung, MEd—fashion design
M. A. Cristi, MS—merchandising management; consumer behavior & sociology
*C. D’Angelo, MFA and MA—costume museum management, fashion history and illustration
D. H. Davidson, PhD—cross-cultural child rearing, life span development
B. De Baryshe, PhD—parenting, family resilience
C. A. Dickson, PhD—fashion merchandising, international textile products markets
J. W. Engel, PhD—family relations and culture
G. F. Fong, EdD—family resource management
A. M. Fontes, MS—leadership and personal development
C. S. Ikeda, MEd—technology and education
L. J. Kawamura, MPh—4-H youth development, foods and nutrition
D. K. Keala, MS—youth, family and community development, intergenerational programs
S. Y. Kim, PhD—Asian American families
P. Kutara, MS—consumer economics
S. Lin, PhD—apparel product development, computer applications in fashion industry
M. I. Martini, PhD—parenting and family relationships across cultures
D. M. Masuo, PhD—consumer and family economics
M. A. Morgado, MA—fashion merchandising, fashion and culture
C. M. Nakatsuka, MEd—community service learning, 4-H
R. W. Saito, MS—4-H youth development
M. K. K. L. Spotkaeff, MS—youth education and coordination
R. W. Wall, PhD—family financial planning
R. Whittington, DSW—family science
L. A. Yancura, PhD—stress & aging, research methodology
R. M. Yoshino, MA—community services
J. S. M. Young, MA—leadership and volunteer development
S. Yuen, PhD—human and family development

Degrees Offered: BS in apparel product design and merchandising (textiles and clothing), BS in family resources, MEd in early childhood education

The Academic Program

The Department of Family and Consumer Sciences has been an integral part of the land-grant system and of UH since 1907. The department offers two bachelor of science degree programs: Apparel Product Design and Merchandising (APDM) and Family Resources (FAMR).

The APDM program integrates theoretical and applied knowledge regarding apparel design, consumer textiles, historic costume, and apparel production with apparel marketing and merchandising theory and practice, both domestic and international. The program fosters the development of professionals prepared for management-level positions in business and industry. Positions include apparel designer, buyer, merchandise manager, sales representative, costume designer, manufacturer, and store owner. An internship providing work experience related to a student’s career interests is required. Majors may specialize in apparel design, apparel merchandising, or they may develop individualized programs in consultation with an adviser.

The FAMR program focuses on child and family studies. The FAMR curriculum emphasizes the study of child, adolescent, and adult development; family development (such as marriage and parenting); family resource management (such as consumer and family economics and family management); community needs; and leadership in human services occupations. The program requires an internship providing work experience related to a student’s career interests. Students are prepared for bachelor-level careers in human and family services and for graduate training in child and family studies, early childhood education, human development, family-life education, family and consumer sciences, and marriage and family therapy. With supplemental course work, students may pursue graduate training in other social science disciplines such as social work, educational counseling, public health, and psychology.

In addition to courses offered in the department, there are opportunities for leadership experience and networking through professional and honorary organizations. Phi Upsilon Omicron is a national honorary society in family and consumer sciences with membership by invitation. Friends of the Family (FOF) provides service and professional experiences for FAMR majors while Innovators of Fashion (IF) does the same for APDM majors. Majors from any discipline are welcome to join FOF and IF.

Undergraduate Study


Apparel Product Design and Merchandising
Miller 201
2515 Campus Road
Honolulu, HI 96822

Tel: (808) 956-8133
E-Mail: fcs@ctahr.hawaii.edu

Family Resources
Krauss Annex 7
2515 Campus Road
Honolulu, HI 96822

Tel: (808) 956-6519

Students are encouraged to come for initial advising before registering for the first year at UH Manoa or prior to their application for admission as a transfer student.

As part of the College Program requirements, all APDM and FAMR degree candidates must fulfill one of the following Symbolic Reasoning courses: BUS 250, ECON 301, ICS 141, ICS 241, MATH 100, MATH 111, MATH 140*, MATH 203*, MATH 215*, MATH 241*, NREM 203, PHIL 110, or PHIL 111. (Please note that MATH 103, 104, and 135 do not fulfill the symbolic reasoning requirement for APDM and FAMR.)

* Math Department's Precalculus Assessment required.

Apparel Product Design and Merchandising Program

Apparel Product Design and Merchandising (APDM) is a comprehensive undergraduate program whose mission is to prepare students with appropriate knowledge and skills for career positions in apparel and fashion-related industries. Classroom work is enhanced by the largest costume collection at a university in the U.S. giving students and faculty a rich source of items to draw upon for their classes and projects. New storage facilities and computerization make access simple. In addition, students have the opportunity to use web-based technologies to supplement classroom activities. Access to modern computer labs within the college make learning to do fashion illustration fun and challenging. Opportunities to study at other universities and to participate in study tours to fashion centers of the world are another plus. A strong foundation for graduate study in apparel and its related areas is provided.

All APDM majors take a core set of courses that provides them with:

  • An understanding of and appreciation for the impact of global production and distribution of apparel;
  • The ability to plan, develop, and merchandise apparel product lines and to evaluate apparel quality;
  • An understanding of the role of dress and fashion in their lives and the lives of others;
  • An understanding of the design, manufacture, marketing, retailing, and consumption of textile and apparel products;
  • The ability to demonstrate personal attitudes and skills appropriate to career positions in apparel.

Career Focus Areas

In addition to taking a core of UH and APDM courses, students work with an adviser to develop a program of study that will provide the basis for a future career in apparel.

Apparel Design. The apparel design focus prepares students for careers in the apparel industry as designers, assistant designers, fashion stylists, and manufacturers. Students have a unique opportunity to study the theoretical and applied aspects of apparel design and costume history in a multicultural environment enhanced by a major costume collection; computerized fashion illustration software; and some computer-aided design systems.

Apparel Merchandising. The apparel merchandising focus offers a combination of fashion theory, marketing, and product information relative to retail and wholesale operations. Graduates are prepared for apparel management careers as buyers, merchandise managers, sales representatives, and fashion coordinators for the local, national, and international markets.

Individualized Programs. In addition to the programs described above, majors may work with an adviser to develop a curriculum focus of their own choosing. Examples of such programs include historic costume, theater costume, fiber/apparel arts, and a combination of design and merchandising.

Entrance Requirements

New students may be admitted directly into the program when they apply to UH Manoa. Students transferring from other colleges within the UH system or from other universities must have a minimum GPA of 2.5 to be considered for admission to APDM.


The merchandising minor gives students the opportunity to gain the required theory and applied skills to understand the merchandising/retailing function and skillfully employ techniques that encourage consumers to interface with products and services locally or internationally. Merchandising/retailing is the largest private employer segment of Hawai‘i’s business community, and it is hungry for educated retailers.

Degree Requirements

A summary of degree requirements is available in Miller 201, (808) 956-8133 or Miller 110, (808) 956-8105.


From the core courses required of all APDM majors, students will develop:

  1. the ability to evaluate textile and apparel product quality in terms of fiber and fabric performance, product standards and specifications, and consumer needs and preferences;
  2. the ability to conduct comprehensive analyses of aesthetic elements in textile and apparel products and in merchandising and marketing fashion-related products, to understand the design process as a problem-solving experience, and to estimate the effect of design decisions on target consumer markets;
  3. the ability to describe current issues in textile and apparel design, production, and distribution systems; to assess the impact of global textile and apparel production and distribution practices on workers, consumers, and the environment; and to relate theories regarding markets, trade, and economic development to issues in the production, consumption and disposal of textile products;
  4. the ability to apply theories, concepts and principles to predict the direction of fashion change, to plan seasonal apparel product lines for discrete consumer groups, and to generate creative solutions to design and/or apparel merchandising and marketing problems;
  5. an understanding of concepts, theories and principles regarding the impact of dress on human behavior and its role in sustaining culture and in reflecting and fostering social change, and the ability to analyze and identify aspects of dress in historic and socio-cultural context;
  6. the ability to identify, locate, analyze and synthesize relevant information and to effectively communicate ideas in written, oral and visual forms using appropriate technologies;
  7. the ability to demonstrate personal attitudes and skills appropriate to career positions in fashion-related business and industry, and in related education and service organizations.

Family Resources Program

The Family Resources (FAMR) Program provides students with a comprehensive education in family development and resource management, including course work and study in the areas of family relations and marriage development, parenting, family economics and resource management, consumer economics, human development, and community leadership and resource development. The curriculum prepares students to work proactively in multicultural settings to enhance the quality of family life. FAMR courses also provide students with knowledge that they can apply to their personal development and family life. The FAMR curriculum provides students with an understanding of:

  • The changing needs and dynamics of families over time;
  • The management of personal, family, and community resources to meet these needs;
  • The growth and development of individuals over the human life cycle;
  • The interrelationship of individuals, families, and communities in the context of diverse socio-economic and cultural systems.

Students gain a social systems perspective of how families operate by studying the theoretical and applied literature that addresses the biological, social, cultural, psychological, and economic well-being of individuals and families and the environments in which they live. Students also study the changing functions of the family, the roles of its members, and the community programs and policies that affect the decisions and well-being of families and consumers. An internship in the student’s area of focus is an integral part of the curriculum.

Entrance Requirements

New students may be admitted directly into the program when they apply to UH Manoa. Students transferring from other colleges within the UH system or from other universities must have a minimum GPA of 2.6 to be considered for admission to FAMR.

Degree Requirements

A summary of degree requirements is available in Krauss Annex 7, (808) 956-6519 or Miller 110, (808) 956-8105.

Goals & Objectives

Students completing the FAMR degree are expected to achieve the following goals and objectives:

Goal 1: Acquire a knowledge base in human development.

Objective 1. Demonstrate criterion level knowledge of stages, processes, and ranges of typical human development

Goal 2: Acquire a knowledge base in family science and resource management.

Objective 1. Demonstrate criterion level knowledge of family diversity in the global community.
Objective 2. Demonstrate criterion level knowledge of family resource management processes.

Goal 3: Acquire a knowledge base of the community context in which family functioning and development take place.

Objective 1. Demonstrate criterion level knowledge of the effects of context (social, economic, political, historical, and cultural environment) on family functioning and development.

Goal 4: Acquire professional skills

Objective 1. Demonstrate criterion level skills in written communication.
Objective 2. Demonstrate criterion level skills in oral communication.
Objective 3. Demonstrate a basic level of computer literacy.
Objective 4. Demonstrate basic competence in “helping” skills.
Objective 5. Demonstrate basic research skills.

Goal 5. Apply knowledge and professional skills to address issues encountered in professional settings.

Objective 1. Demonstrate critical thinking skills and problem solving abilities.
Objective 2. Demonstrate commitment to professional values and ethical behavior.
Objective 3. Demonstrate a satisfactory level of preparation for the world of work and responsibility for continued professional growth.

Additional Opportunities

Provisional Certified Family Life Educator

The National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) has approved the Family Resources undergraduate program as meeting the standards and criteria required for the Provisional Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE) designation. Fully certified Family Life Educators work in the areas of program development, implementation, evaluation, teaching, training, and research related to individual and family well being. Among other activities, they conduct workshops in parenting, marital relationships, and resource management, in hospitals, HMOs, clinics, and schools. FamR graduates who complete the specified courses in ten Family Life substance areas can apply to NCFR for Provisional Certification. Once a graduate has completed two years of work experience in preventive, educational activities related to family well being, the graduate can apply for full CFLE certification. FamR internships, which include documented FLE activities may be used as part of the required work experience.

Master of Education in Early Childhood Education

The Department of Family and Consumer Sciences in the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources and the College of Education Departments of Curriculum Studies and Special Education offer an interdisciplinary program leading to the degree of Master of Education in Early Childhood Education.

MEd in Early Childhood Education requirements are located in the College of Education Departments of Curriculum Studies and Special Education section of this Catalog.