Invitation to the Life Span Canadian Edition

Invitation to the Life Span Canadian Edition

Kathleen Stassen Berger (Bronx Community College, CUNY) , Susan Chuang (University of Guelph)

  • ISBN-10: 1-4641-4198-3; ISBN-13: 978-1-4641-4198-0; Format: Paper Text

Dear Colleagues,

I am the Canadian author to the textbook, An Invitation to the Life Span, Second Edition by Worth Publishers. I would like to take this opportunity to provide you with a brief background about myself and my teaching philosophy, which will hopefully give you some insights into this Canadianized textbook.

Since 2006, I have been teaching Human Development (seven times in class, twice as an online class). I also revamped the online human development class when I started teaching it in the fall of 2012. My current in-class enrollment is close to 500 students, ranging from all majors and all levels.

My areas of expertise include parenting, parent-child relationships, fathering, immigration and settlement, child and youth development in various sociocultural contexts. I organize international conferences on immigrant families, and the sixth conference will be this October 2014. In addition, my volunteer community service includes conducting various workshops on parenting and youth development for various organizations where the audiences are youth and adults of various ethnic backgrounds.    

With this background, I agreed to Canadianizing this textbook, under-estimating the complexities of the project! Thinking that I could complete the project in no more than four months, I signed contracts.

More than one and a half years later, here it is! Not only did I include Canadian statistics, and Canadian researchers who used Canadian samples, I also was mindful of the current events that were going on around the world. I revised the American text by including additional information as well as examples that may be more memorable for Canadian students. I also personally hired and trained the undergraduate and graduate students to revise the Testbank and LearningCurve (online chapter quizzes). I approved all of the questions. More difficult questions were purposely added to the test bank.

Here is my teaching philosophy as I revised the textbook: (1) students will not remember everything; (2) many students may only take this one class in social sciences so the information needs to be accessible, meaningful, and insightful to their professional and personal lives; (3) it needs to be exciting so that they will continue to take more classes in this field; and (4) examples need to be concrete and memorable so that they can be more reflective and critical of their learning and how they view human development. 

This textbook is unique in that Canadians’ lives are clearly the center of the textbook. Broadly, the various theories are explicitly discussed throughout the textbook, there is a deliberate focus on Aboriginal children and families, French Canadians and bilingualism, and many of the “Opposing Perspectives” were changed to focus on Canadian issues.

Susan Chuang
University of Guelph