Family Life Now Census Update, Books a la Carte Plus NEW MySocLab with eText -- Access Card Package / Edition 2

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A candid and thoughtful conversation about family life.

Welch’s text combines the personal touch and scholarly expertise of an outstanding teacher.

Family Life Now Census Update 2e explores the ways that family members and intimate partners interact, and examines how families adapt to stresses, changes, and everyday challenges. As products of our families of origins, who we are and who we become is influenced by our family lives, a central theme woven throughout the book.

This book follows the Family Life Education framework to examine marriages, families, and intimate relationships. Throughout the text, theories from the fields of sociology, family studies, psychology, lifespan human development, and other social sciences are integrated so that they can be applied to real life situations. The text also presents enough biological science to explain some of the physical realities of who we are and why we behave as we do.

The Census Update program incorporates 2010 Census data into a course—simply and easily. The components of the Census Update Program include an updated census edition with all charts and graphs—to reflect the results of the 2010 Census. In addition, A Short Introduction to the U.S. Census is available and an updated MyFamilyLab.

Teaching & Learning Experience

  • Personalize Learning —MyFamilyLab delivers proven results in helping students succeed, provides engaging experiences that personalize learning, and comes from a trusted partner with educational expertise and a deep commitment to helping students and instructors achieve their goals.
  • Improve Critical Thinking — Learner-centered pedagogical elements are found at the beginning, middle, and end of each chapter.
  • Engage Students — Application exercises and questions help students apply material to their own lives.
  • Explore Theory— Principles of Family Life Education and an interdisciplinary approach are woven throughout the text.
  • Support Instructors - Written activities and assessment in MyFamilyLab offer instructors supplemental materials to help their students succeed.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Family Life Now is the best family relations book on the market."
Beckie Adams, Ball State University

"Excellent Text. I have reviewed many and taught from many, and this is the best one."
Victor Harris, Utah State University

Writing Style

"I think the author's writing style is one of her most important assets. She writes as if the student is attending an interesting lecture with humor and applicable examples. I can see undergraduates excited to read the material."
Alan Taylor, East Carolina University

"The writing style is relevant, diverse, and engaging!"
Joanne Sommers, Bowling Green State University

"I always like the vignettes the author uses to attract the reader to learn more."
Alan Taylor, East Carolina University

"The author has done an excellent job in defining terms and explaining concepts. This is especially seen in her presentation of theories."
Denise Bodman, Arizona State University


"The research is current, relevant, and accurate."
Joanne Sommers, Bowling Green State University

"I love the topics in the chapter on Commitment. This is by far the most up-to-date chapter I've seen. Students will love the 'nowness' of it."
Denise Bodman, Arizona State University

"The most current research is used where helpful and relevant, but still-critical classics haven't been cut."
Erica Yaeger, West Virginia University

"I think the updates that have been implemented to the current edition are well worth students' money and time."
Heather Von Bank, Minnesota State University


"The boxes are excellent ways to engage the students and explore their own values and beliefs"
Joanne Sommers, Bowling Green State University

"The additional features, such as 'Own It', 'Family Life Now' 'Family Table', etc, are excellent ways to create classroom or small group discussions."
Beckie Adams, Ball State University

"I really like the concept of the 'Own It!' boxes. These are a great opportunity for students to think critically about how they view things in their own life."
Jeremy Boyle, Kansas State University

"'Family Life Now' is relevant and informative. I especially like the bullet format that allows the student to make a quick evaluation of the relative positions of either side, then engage with the material through the questions below."
Erica Yaeger, West Virginia University


"The topics fit well together and there's a natural flow."
Beckie Adams, Ball State University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205915187
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 11/9/2012
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 672
  • Product dimensions: 8.30 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Kelly Shea Welch teaches in the School of Family Studies and Human Services at Kansas State University. A native of Kansas, she received her Ph.D. in Family Studies at Kansas State University after working for many years as a doula, a professional birth attendant who provides emotional, physical, and informational support to the childbearing woman and her partner. Still today her research interests marry women’s health issues with family studies. Over the past 10 years, she has taught the large, introductory human growth and development course which enrolls a little more than 1,000 students per semester. The author of the interactive learning CD Roms, Development: Journey of a Lifetime, and Development: Journey through Childhood and Adolescence, she recognizes and emphasizes the value of active and learner-centered pedagogy that allows students to organize, integrate, and generate knowledge. In addition to teaching the human growth and development course, she also teaches the Family Relationships class that enrolls approximately 300 students each semester. She is a recipient of numerous teaching awards, including the Presidential Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching, and nominations for the United States Professor of the Year and the United States Distance Educator of the Year. These teaching awards and nominations recognize her distinct, innovative, and energetic teaching style—students consistently indicate that this unique teaching style puts them “on the edge” of their seats and holds their attention.

You can follow Dr. Welch on Twitter (drkellywelch), where you can ask questions and learn about intimate relationships and sex.

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Table of Contents





Chapter 1: Family Life Now

Chapter 2: Understanding Families through Research and Theory

Chapter 3: Family Communication, Conflict, and Forgiveness

Chapter 4: Gender in Today’s Society

Chapter 5: Intimacy: Developing and Experiencing Affectionate Bonds

Chapter 6: Love and Loving

Chapter 7: The Path to Commitment: Attraction, Dating, and Parenthood

Chapter 8: Coupling: From Singlehood to Marriage

Chapter 9: You, Sex, and Sexuality

Chapter 10: The Choices and Challenges of Childbearing

Chapter 11: Parenting Choices, Challenges, and Changes

Chapter 12: Work and Family

Chapter 13: Uncoupling: Relationship Deterioration and Divorce

Chapter 14: Rebuilding Family Life Following Divorce

Chapter 15: Family Change: Stress, Crisis, and Transition

Chapter 16: Family Life and Aging


Chapter 1: Family Life Now

What Is Marriage? What Is Family?

Contemporary Families

Families in Cultural Contexts/ Family Life Education: The Study of Families through a Family Lens

Family Life Education

Chapter 2: Understanding Families through Research and Theory

Understanding Families through Research

Understanding Families through Theory

Family Interactions and You

Family Life Education

Chapter 3: Family Communication, Conflict, and Forgiveness

The Communication Process

Communication between Men and Women

Types of Communication

Cornerstones of Communication

Conflict in Relationships

The Role of Forgiveness in Family and Intimate Relationships

Family Life Education

Chapter 4: Gender in Today’s Society

It Matters: The Biology of Gender

It Matters: The Culture of Gender

The Theories of Gender Development

It Matters: The Agents of Socialization

It Matters: Gender and Contemporary Issues

Family Life Education

Chapter 5: Intimacy: Developing and Experiencing Affectionate Bonds

Intimacy: Do We Have A Need To Relate To Others?

Developing Intimacy

Obstacles to Intimacy

Family Life Education

Chapter 6: Love and Loving

Love Is a Cultural and Historical Experience

What Is Love, Actually?

Developing Love

Theories of Love and Loving

Family Life Education

Chapter 7: The Path To Commitment: Attraction, Dating, And Parenthood

“Frisky Business”: Interpersonal Attraction Theories

The Path to Commitment

Non-Marital Cohabitation: Living Together

Family Life Education

Chapter 8: Coupling: From Singlehood to Marriage

Being Single

The Act of Marriage

The Transition to Marriage: Why it’s So Tough

Satisfying Marriages

Family Life Education

Chapter 9: You, Sex, and Sexuality

Learning Sexuality: Cultural Contributions

Our Sexual Selves

Sexually Transmitted Infections

Relationships and Sex

Experiencing Sexual Difficulties

Family Life Education

Chapter 10: The Choices and Challenges of Childbearing

Childbearing Trends: Who’s Having Babies?

Having Children: Now, Later, Or Never?

Being Pregnant and Giving Birth

Unexpected Outcomes

Adoption: By Circumstance or Choice

Contraception and Abortion

Family Life Education

Chapter 11: Parenting Choices, Challenges, and Changes

Parenting Is a Process: Change over Time

The Styles of Parenting

From Partners to Parents: Making the Transition

Today’s Parents

Parenting 101: Best Practices For Parenting

Family Life Education

Chapter 12: Work and Family

Working Families: The Transformation of American Homes

Couples and Work: Just Trying To Make Ends Meet

The Balancing Act: Juggling Family Life and Work

The Government’s Role: Policies for Working Families

Marriage and Money

Family Life Education

Chapter 13: Uncoupling: Relationship Deterioration and Divorce


Emotionally Ending the Marriage

Legally Ending the Marriage: The Formal Divorce

Avoiding Divorce: Getting a Marriage Back On Track

Family Life Education

Chapter 14: Rebuilding Family Life Following Divorce

The Aftermath of Divorce: Transitions

How Divorce Affects Children and Adolescents

Challenges for Single Parents

Transition to Repartnering

Family Life Education

Chapter 15: Family Change: Stress, Crisis, and Transition

Family Change

Family Crisis

Family Coping and Resilience

The Crisis of Family Violence

Family Life Education

Chapter 16: Family Life and Aging

Aging and the Aged

Marriage Experiences through Aging

Intergenerational Ties

Family Changes toward the End of Life

Dying and Death Experiences

Family Life Education

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