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HDFS 400: Advanced Family Processes

Resources on family system dynamics and processes, with an emphasis on cultural and contextual factors that influence family functioning and well-being over the lifespan

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Welcome to the HDFS 400: Advanced Family Processes course guide

Use this guide to locate sources to use for your course assignments.

  • Find Articles - Key databases, journals for individual & family development or search for a specific journal
  • Find Books - Search the Mason and Washington Research Library Consortium catalogs for resources on individual & family development
  • Find Websites - Professional organizations related to Human Development & Family Science
  • Write & Cite - Examples of how to cite sources in APA format, information on Zotero and contacting the Writing Center for writing assistance
  • Get Help - Chat with a librarian, use How Do I? to get step by step instructions to help you use the Library's resources, or setup an appointment with the Anne Melville, Education Librarian

HDFS 400 Assignment

Family Processes Research Paper

Guided by family theories and conceptual frameworks, students will examine in greater depth the processes, functioning, and well-being of families based on differing family forms or configurations (e.g., single-parent, multigenerational households, two-parent), differing cultural dimensions (e.g., intersections of race/ethnicity and class), and/or differing developmental trajectories across the lifespan (e.g., families with preschoolers, aging parents).

  • Students will choose their topics, provide a framework for their investigation, and conduct a review of the relevant literature. For example, a student might 1) explore homeless families, parenting practices, and child well-being guided by an ecological perspective, or 2) examine African immigrant family stress, coping, and mental health outcomes using the Double ABCX Model, or 3) explore refugee families’ experiences navigating a new society using the resiliency framework. 
  • Students should explore both the challenges facing these contemporary families and their strengths and resilience characteristics.
  • Students should also examine extant evidence- and family-based practices and interventions designed to promote family resilience and well-being and provide suggestions for future intervention work.

These 8 to 10 page MAX papers require clear writing, critical thinking, and incorporation of peer-reviewed journal articles and other sources in the family research literature. APA format required.

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