Health, Physical Education And Recreation | Dynamics of Adoptive Family Systems
F317 | 3512 | Dr. Deborah Fravel


F317: Dynamics of Birth- and Adoptive Family Systems. This course
offers students an understanding of dynamics in family systems that
include adoption, examining risks and opportunities for adoptive and
birth families as variant family types. Current research and theory
provide a framework for learning about the diverse experiences of
these families. Students examine processes and reciprocal
relationships within adoptive- and birth family networks, and learn to
address the mutual interdependencies between these family networks and
their environments.  The course specifically addresses diversity in
birth and adoptive families, in terms of both composition and cultural
influence.  The course includes active learning experiences, small and
large group discussion, and integrative lectures by the instructor and
guest speakers.  The course embraces both scientific knowledge and
personal awareness. It prompts each student to address the tension
between the scientific and the personal, to examine his or her own
assumptions and the values that underlie his or her study.  Therefore,
the development of critical thinking skills is a course goal that
exists alongside mastery of course content. Students spend some time
addressing theories of human development and family studies, along
with research that supports or refutes various perspectives on
adoption. Students also have opportunities to develop skills for
evaluating the views, misinformation, and “folk wisdom” that exist in
contemporary society concerning adoption.