Adult and Family Well-Being


  • Understand family relationships and how parent-child sibling ties in the middle and later years impact health and well-being.
  • Uncover the mechanisms that distinguish older adults who continue to do well in late life from those who face cognitive, behavioral or mental health challenges.
  • Social resilience and intervention for older adults.
  • Understand and determine effective strategies and best practices for creating changes in knowledge and behavior for individuals within various communities through partnerships between communities and academic institutions.

Research Projects

  • Examining the interconnectedness of family relationships across time and considers a range of family relationship quality dimensions including conflict, closeness and ambivalence. Employs multilevel-modeling techniques that facilitate the examination of reports of multiple family members.
  • Evaluating predictors and conditions of exceptional longevity and successful aging in late and very late life. Key areas include personality, life events, coping, social support, and well-being.
  • Focusing on the social resilience and intervention for older adults. The first line of inquiry seeks to understand social relationships affecting the well-being of older adults, particularly within the context of caregiving and exchanges of social support. The second line of interest focuses on developing and evaluating programs and interventions designed to help older adults age successfully.
  • Developing, implementing, and evaluating educational networks and individual, informal educational offerings in partnership with communities of various types, such as place, interest, or practice.

Faculty Interests

Megan Gilligan, intergenerational relations, parent-child relations in adulthood, adult siblings, and family caregiving.

Jeonguen Lee, community engagement, future care planning, and successful aging.

Peter Martin, longevity, centenarians, personality, stress, coping, social support, well-being, and aging.

Related Laboratories, Programs, Centers

Gerontology programs

Need More Information?

Graduate Program:
DeAnn Barnes
2330E Palmer Building
2222 Osborn Drive
Ames, IA 50011-1084