Family and consumer science or home economics,
involves the study of nutrition, cooking, parenting, interior
decoration, textiles, gardening, and other useful aspects
of home management.
Keeping the home in good working order remains a demanding,
time-consuming task. Today, societies are arguably underrating
the skill involved in keeping the home.
Most of the best, most highly skilled homemakers never studied
"family and consumer science" or even knew it by
that name. Some have developed their skills at a finishing
Family and Consumer Sciences may be represented under the
Social Sciences category for its emphasis on the well-being
of families, individuals, and communities, or under the hard
sciences for its emphasis on Nutrition and Textile Science.
The field as it is today originated from Home Economics;
it began at land grant universities after women appealed to
have their own niche while the men studied things like agriculture.
Over time Home Economics as we know it today has split into
its own branches. Among these include Food Sciences and Human
Development (but keep in mind that both of these branches
go by many other names, as noted above). Human Development
has evolved to be more closely related to Sociology and Psychology
than its Home Economics roots; indeed many of the theories
Human Development is built upon are taken from older social
sciences like Psychology and Sociology.
While Food Sciences does involve cooking and Nutrition, and
Human Development involves the study of parents and families,
very rarely does either of these fields consider such things
as gardening, textiles, or interior design. Gardening is studied
in the field of horticulture, and interior design and textiles
are usually branched in their own field (which tends also
to include apparel and fashion).