ICT Literacy in Family/Consumer Sciences


Compiled by Dr. Lesley Farmer, California State University Lon Beach




  • Key terms: child development, consumer sciences, culinary arts, family relations, food science, health, home economics, housing, human development, human ecology, human sciences, interior design, nutrition, parenting, tourism
  • Disciplines: Business, Science and technology, Social sciences 
  • See Subject-Specific Literacy in Counseling, Fashion, Health sciences: 








  • Ask students to interview family and consumer sciences personnel about their career development, including educational experiences. 
  • Ask students to survey peers or other populations about the sources they use to find family and consumer sciences information (narrow the topic to one issue such as parenting, diets, health, elder care) and analyze the responses. 
  • Ask students to develop an education plan based on their analysis. 
  • Ask students to interview family and consumer sciences professionals about their information-seeking practices. 
  • Ask students to interview family and consumer sciences professionals about their use of information technology. 
  • Ask students to research the same topic in two database aggregators (e.g., ABI/INFORM, CINAHL, ERIC, PsycInfo) and compare the process and results. 
  • Ask students to analyze family and consumer sciences collections in different libraries (e.g., school, community college, university, public). 
  • Ask students to locate and analyze family and consumer sciences education programs in their communities (e.g., public libraries, community centers, health centers, senior centers). 
  • Ask students to create family and consumer sciences presentations for community fairs. 
  • Ask students to analyze television commercials about family and consumer sciences issues. 
  • Ask students to analyze a television sit-com in terms of family and consumer sciences issues. 
  • Ask students to create online tutorials on a family and consumer education topic. 
  • Ask students to locate codes of ethics for family and consumer sciences professions.   

 Consumer education: 

  • Ask students to analyze and compare consumer education program standards in different states. 
  • Ask students to research children and advertising policies in the U.S. and other countries. 
  • Ask students to research advertising strategies to attract consumers. 
  • Ask students to research how credit ratings are determined. 
  • Ask students to research the basis for a product recall, the process of recalling a product, and the regulations about product recalls. 
  • Ask students to create learning activities for K-12 students about consumerism.   


  • Ask students to critically analyze community parenting classes. 
  •  Ask students to identify trends over time in parenting research. 
  • Ask students to create a podcast on a parenting tip. 
  • Ask students to analyze an early childhood literacy program. 
  • Ask students to compare child rearing practices in different countries. 
  • Ask students to create a timeline about public housing programs or legislation.   

Food science: 

  • Ask students to create a timeline of food science advancements.
  •  Ask students to debate about the health or ecological benefits or organic versus inorganic foods. 
  • Ask students to create a week’s nutrition plan, noting food label nutrition information. 
  • Ask students to compare online diet programs. 
  • Ask students to create diet plans for people of different ages. 
  • Ask students to create a timely of food preservation advances.   


  • Ask student to create graphic novels or fotonovelas about health literacy. 
  • Ask students to compare health insurance plans.
  •  Ask students to create a consumer health information website. 
  • Ask students to compare online advice about vaccines in general, and about vaccines relative to autism spectrum disorder. 
  • Ask students to map a town in terms of asthma, and draw conclusions from the mapping. 
  • Ask students to create an infographic about health-promoting behavior. 
  • Ask students to research possible relationships between ICT literacy and health status.  

 Interior Design: 

  • Ask students to create a visual virtual “museum” or photo album of interior design trends over time.
  •  Ask students to research the science of ergonomics in interior design. 
  •  Ask students to flowchart the design and manufacturing processes of an interior design product such as drapes, chairs, dinnerware, etc. encourage them to use videos. Ask students to create videos on home safety. 
  • Ask students to research the chemicals and their relative safety used in interior design products.   


  • Ask students to compare different travel booking sights in terms of search strategies, “hits”, pricing, and other services. 
  • Ask students to collect, analyze and compare travel brochures in terms of probably target audience, content, images, pricing; compare quantity and quality of the elements.
  •  Ask students to compare travel brochure information with website and video products by the same company. 
  • Ask students to examine the organizational structure of a tourism or hospitality company. 
  •  Ask students to trace the history of theme parks. Ask students to create a photo collection of hotels and motels over time.