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The Linked Lives Research Lab is directed by Dr. Heather Fuller-Iglesias, assistant professor in the department of Human Development and Family Science at NDSU. The Linked Lives Lab is located in EML 283E & J. For more information, please contact Dr. Heather Fuller-Iglesias at heather.fuller@ndsu.edu

“Linked Lives” are the social ties that connect us to one another.

Human development is a process of growth and change across the entire lifespan, from infancy to old age. Our research focuses on the role of social support in that developmental process throughout adulthood. Social support from family, friends, neighbors, colleagues, and communities is an integral factor influencing human development. We do not develop alone; our lives are linked, and through those links we influence each other’s development and well-being. The Linked Lives Lab seeks to better understand how our interpersonal connections influence adult development and well-being.

General Research Focus:

o Social relationships and well-being across the lifespan

o Intergenerational family relationships

o Adult development and Aging

o Social development in Cross-cultural contexts

Current Studies

Graduate students share research on healthy aging

Published January 16, 2015

People are living longer and want to know how to live better.

A group of four NDSU graduate students recently took the latest research on healthy aging to residents at Bethany Retirement Living in Fargo. The students created a one-hour, interactive program to reinforce healthy habits and introduce new ways to remain mentally and physically fit.

Developmental science students Courage Mudzongo, Meagan Jones and Zhen Yang, and communications student Whitney Anderson used their knowledge of the Theory of Successful Aging to design the program. The theory highlights behaviors and adaptations that can maintain health as people age.

Heather Fuller-Iglesias, assistant professor of human development and family science, said the program was important because it contradicts the more passive prevailing model that focuses on treating illnesses later in life. The students highlighted research that promotes active ways to live a happy, healthy life. 

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North Dakota Compass..Measuring progress. Inspiring action.

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Published January 2015

The Importance of Recognizing the Role of Social Support in Human Development Across the Lifespan

Heather Fuller-Iglesias is an Assistant Professor in the department of Human Development and Family Science at NDSU. She received her doctoral degree in Developmental Psychology from the University of Michigan in 2009. Her research broadly focuses on the influence of social relationships and cultural context on development across the lifespan, including a specific focus on intergenerational and family relationships in late-life. She directs the Linked Lives Research Lab at NDSU.

As a developmental psychologist, I am frequently asked questions about parenting young children such as “How should I handle my daughter’s tantrums?” or “How do I get my son to eat his vegetables?”. While these questions related to raising young children are clearly important (especially for those of us in the trenches with young children!), in recent decades researchers in the field of human development have come to realize that the important questions of human development extend far beyond childhood and into the entire lifespan. In fact, we now highlight the importance of understanding growth and changes in human development starting in the prenatal period and lasting through the process of dying at the end of life; thus, as humans our development occurs from “womb to tomb”. Moreover, though our first (and arguably the most influential) intimate relationship is the parent-child relationship, it has become quite salient that human development is influenced by a variety of interpersonal relationships that change over our lifespan. The significance of interpersonal connections for development and well-being across the lifespan is the focus of my research as director of the Linked Lives Research Laboratory at NDSU.

Link to read full article

People

Heather Fuller Iglesias


Heather Fuller-Iglesias is an assistant University. She received her doctoral degree in Developmental Psychology from the University of Michigan in 2009. Her research broadly focuses on the influence of social relationships and cultural context on development across the professor of human development and family science at North Dakota State lifespan, including a specific focus on intergenerational and family relationships in late-life.

Arlene Pelayo


HDFS Graduate Student

Samjhana Rajbhandari


HDFS Graduate Student


Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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Published by North Dakota State University

Last Updated: Thursday, January 22, 2015 8:43:30 AM