Today’s free chapter turns the focus on family life to look at “Key concepts and trends within the family” – in basic terms a short introduction to the concept of “families” coupled with an overview of “family trends”. The latter are theorised in terms of both structural and relationship trends and
the chapter covers the following key areas:

• Defining family and household
• Family structures
• Structural trends
• Trends in families and households
• Marriage, cohabitation and divorce trends

As ever you need to be aware that the first thing to date is statistical evidence (the chapter was published in 2012 and the latest statistics included go back a couple of years before this – hard as it may seem to credit, it actually takes quite a bit of time to research and write these chapters before they’re actually published). However, given the easy availability of family statistics on the web it’s relatively easy to update the statistics for your students (or, better yet, get them to research the updates for you).

I’ve chopped the chapter into 4 parts to make it easier for teachers not following the Specification for which it was created (OCR -1) to pick-and-choose the sections they want to use.

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