Family Studies & Social Services

Academic Programs

A Family Studies and Social Services degree provides students with a choice of emphasis: the Marriage and Family program or the Social Work program. A final departmental exam is to be passed by all majors at a grade level of C or above before graduation. The major objectives of the family studies and social services degree are:

1) to explore and develop a knowledge of behavioral theories, therapeutic models, research, and helping skills in marriage and family and social work fields (academic);

2) to acquire practical skills within the helping profession in order to be prepared for a variety of careers within the social services field (vocational);

3) to explore the impact of Christianity on the helping profession and to learn the importance as well as challenges of integrating faith within the social services field (Christian);

4) to a create a passion for civic engagement by gaining an appreciation for American ideals and the connection to the traditional family (patriotic)

5) to utilize a systemic approach in understanding the influence and interconnection of family, culture, and social structure on human behavior (cultural)


Dr. Stephen Bell is an Associate Professor of Family Studies and Social Services. Dr. Bell earned his Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Louisiana at Monroe. He earned his MS (Marriage and Family Therapy) and BBA (Professional Sales) Degrees from Harding University. Dr. Bell is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist.

Dr. Bell’s passion is to help create the next great leaders in the mental health field. His passion for teaching has been recognized through 2 teaching awards: Nerd Scholar’s national professor award “40 Under 40: Professors Who Inspire” and "The Eugene Charles Wittick Teaching Excellence Award". Dr. Bell’s focus is to strengthen the community one marriage/family at a time. In addition to Dr. Bell’s work at the College of the Ozarks, he is a lead intensive therapist/speaker for Focus on the Family National Institute of Marriage and he is Co-Founder of Family Fanatics, LLC. Family Fanatics offers various services to strengthen marriages/families across the Ozarks.

Stephen Bell, PhD LMFT



Mrs. Tracy Bell is an Assistant Professor of Family Studies and Social Services. Mrs. Bell earned her MSW in Social Work from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. She earned her BA in Family Life Counseling from Ouachita Baptist University. Mrs. Bell is a Missouri Licensed Social Worker and is a Nationally Certified Life Coach.

Mrs. Tracy Bell has a heart for children. Her training and work experience has focused on unprivileged, traumatized children. Mrs. Bell teaches most of the social work program courses. Two of these courses focus on the traumatized child. Her goal is to train the next generation of young clinicians with knowledge of how trauma impacts a child’s brain development and to equip students with skills to help promote healing within God’s precious gifts, children. She continues to make this endeavor a major focus of her continued education. She recently began her certification in Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics from the Child Trauma Academy in Houston, TX. In addition to her responsibilities at the College, Mrs. Bell is a speaker for Focus on the Family National Institute of Marriage.  

Tracy Bell, MSW LMSW     


Student Groups

FS (Family Studies and Social Services) Club:

The FS Club provides students an opportunity to begin experiencing the helping profession in various ways from community service projects to professional conferences.  The FS Club strives to be one big family.  The goal is to create friends/colleagues for life so the Club meets regularly throughout the semester and has annual dinner functions off campus like Christmas and graduation.  Many former students help one another after graduation through professional networking.   

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