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Introductory Guide to Family and Consumer Sciences

Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) is the science and study of the important art of living and thriving in a complex community. It covers a wide range of subtopics, all of which are vital to our families and to building strong and healthy communities. Family and Consumer Sciences covers the following areas:

  • Education and vocational training
  • Nutrition and food sciences
  • Culinary and hospitality
  • Home care and interior design
  • Child development and family studies
  • Individual and family finance management
  • Health and wellness
  • Apparel and textiles

Those who learn about and practice FCS can be found in many different settings, including in our community schools, businesses, government, and health and human services, as well as in our homes. These professionals work in fields that have a focus on health and human sciences, as well as home economics and human ecology. No matter the area of focus, those who study FCS will develop strong leadership skills, strong families, and make meaningful contributions within their communities.

Human Development

Studying human development means study studying human biology and psychology through all life stages, from infancy through older adults. This is also sometimes referred to as developmental psychology. Human development within the family includes early childhood education and child development in preparation for schooling.

Personal and Family Finance

Developing a clear understanding of personal and family finance management is very important. It covers the principles of budgeting, saving, and spending of personal and shared resources. It also teaches us about financial goal setting and prepares us to make financial decisions later in our lives, like what it takes to balance a family budget, purchase, a home and plan for retirement.

Housing and Interior Design

Caring a home is an important skill that needs to be developed in order to make sure that as we grow and establish homes of our own, we are prepared to properly care of them and create a comfortable space that we and our families are happy to come home to. A well organized and cared for home allows us to be more productive and focused, contributing to our overall wellbeing.

Food Science, Nutrition, and Wellness

Alongside caring for our homes, it is also important that we learn to care for ourselves, our bodies, and those that we care for and support. Food science and nutrition education helps to teach us what it means to create healthy, balanced, and nutritious meals safely. Food science helps us to better understand the chemical makeup of our foods and why some foods are considered more nutritious than others based on their composition. Learning more about food processing and preserving, as well as food safety is also vital to our health. Wellness education works complementary to food science and nutrition, teaching us how to maintain our physical health and wellness, supported by a healthy, nutritious diet. Exercise and community engagement may also be concepts learned through studying wellness.

Textiles and Apparel

learning about textiles and apparel helps to prepare students to care for and maintain their clothing and household goods. Learning important skills like hand sewing, machine sewing, mending, tailoring, hemming and more will allow us to get the most use of the things we own and prepare us to make alterations ourselves, as needed, rather than needing to hire someone else to do them.