Marriage and Family Systems: Foundations, Models and Techniques – DBMF 400

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 02/02/2022

Course Description

This course provides an overview of marriage and family dynamics, specifically looking at various foundations and models for effective people helping. A wide range of marriage and family issues and definitions are examined. Ethical concerns and multicultural factors are also considered.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


There’s never been a more dramatic attack on marriages and the family than we are currently experiencing today. In addition, there has never been a more difficult time to be a parent. The 21st century has brought with it a host of challenges fighting for the heart of the traditional family. Yet, research consistently shows the necessity of a stable family system to bring about healthy children and ultimately, healthy societies. It is important to present effective marriage and family models to help marriages and families lay a solid biblical foundation and navigate the difficult issues. This course is offered in an eight-week format and includes extensive readings, experiential observations, exams, a research paper, and interactions with other students via Discussion Board.

Theme Scripture

“For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.” Genesis 2:24 (NASB)

Course Assignment

Textbook Readings and Lecture Presentations.

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview. 

Discussions (4)

The student will complete 4 Discussions in this course. Each initial thread of the Discussion will require the student to answer questions with a minimum of 250 words based on the Learn material from that particular Module: Week: (Dr. Dobson’s works and/or the core text), as well an outside scholarly source. The student will then be required to post at least two (2) replies of 150 words each to other students’ threads in the same Module: Week. (Meets CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6).

Movie Review Assignments (2)

The student is to complete 2 Movie Review Assignments by watching a movie of his/her choosing that has a strong marital/family theme. The student must then complete a 2-3 page critique of the movie as it relates to the topic of marriage (the page count does not include the title page). The student must pay particular attention to how the ideas presented in this movie might be used to give helpful advice to couples/parents in a marital/family setting. These assignments must have a title page with the student’s name, the course number, the instructor’s name, the assignment title (ie. Movie Review: Family Theme Assignment), and the date. The reviews must be written in current APA format. (Meets CLOs 1, 6).

4-MAT Review Assignments (2)

The student will complete 2 4-MAT Review Assignments during the course of his/her study. The reviews will be written using any two of the three assigned texts for this course. The critiques must be written in current APA format. (Meets CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6).