2nd Edition

Introduction to Human Development and Family Science

By Bridget A. Walsh, Dana A. Weiser Copyright 2025
    332 Pages 68 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    332 Pages 68 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Now in its second edition, Introduction to Human Development and Family Science was the first text to introduce human development and family studies (HDFS) as inextricably linked areas of study. Pioneers of research paradigms have acknowledged that the family is one setting in which human development occurs, and much work is inherently multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary. This book helps to fortify an understanding of HDFS and subareas within it.
    Key features include:

    • Chapters aligned with Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE) Guidelines.
    • An applied focus, with vignettes exploring diverse family structures and human experience, a brand-new appendix with helpful tips to encourage the effective utilisation of research.
    • Discussion of the wide variety of career paths for HDFS students.
    • Rich pedagogical features, including Challenge: Integration sections, bringing together content from all chapters; Journal Questions, encouraging reflection on content as well as personal experience; and Suggested Resources, listing relevant websites, books, articles and video links for further study.

    Incredibly user-friendly, this is essential reading for students new to Human Development and Family Science.

    A fully developed Instructor and Student Website includes flashcards, self-testing quizzes and discussion questions for students, as well as activities, lecture slides, test banks, and video recommendations for instructors.

    1. Defining Human Development and Family Science

    2. Diverse Families 

    3. Theories

    4. Research

    5. Introduction to FLE and Its Applications

    6. Family and First Years (Prenatal Development, Infancy, and Toddlerhood)

    7. Family and Childhood (Early Childhood and Middle Childhood)

    8. Family and Adolescence   

    9. Family and Adulthood  

    10. Family and Late Adulthood  

    11. Cultivating Strengths

    12. Applied Experiences and Careers

    13. Professionalism and Ethics

    Appendix A. CFLE Content and Practice Guidelines

    Appendix B. Consuming Research   


    Bridget A. Walsh is a Professor of HDFS at the University of Nevada, Reno. She is a CFLE. She obtained her Ph.D. from Texas Woman’s University in Child Development, her master’s degree in Psychology from Villanova University, and her bachelor’s degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from Albright College. Her research focuses on home visiting.

    Dana A. Weiser is a Professor and Chairperson of Human Development and Family Sciences as well as a Faculty Affiliate of the Women’s and Gender Studies program at Texas Tech University. She earned a Ph.D. from the University of Nevada, Reno in Interdisciplinary Social Psychology, a master’s degree in Psychology from California State University, Los Angeles, and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Government from Claremont McKenna College. Her research examines what families and society teach individuals about romantic relationships and sexuality.

    “This textbook is a one-of-a-kind resource for introducing students to human development and family science. The applied focus on human development, family life education, career and professional development, and cultivating family strengths provide students with a nuanced understanding and foundational knowledge needed to enter the family sciences field. The text is exactly what is needed to provide both an introductory and a comprehensive view of family life education.”

    Helyne Frederick, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA.

    “This is the textbook we have needed for our students that recognizes the family as a pivotal context for human development and humanizes the experience of children, families, and professionals. It is full of engaging and rich teaching materials, including vignettes, real-life experiences, student perspectives, concise chapter summaries, an integration section concluding each chapter, and journal prompts to support reflection. If only all textbooks were as accessible and engaging for students!”

    Gina A. Cook, California State University, Stanislaus, USA.