What’s Love Got to Do With It?




Randall, G. Kevin

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


Family Science Review


Looking back over the last 20 years of co-learning with my students in the university classroom, I see some things have radically changed while others have stayed fairly constant – both for them and for me. There is no question that each year students in my marriage and family class believe “love” is a necessary precursor to one of life’s major transitions, marriage. However, as they ponder their own life course, and as I have lived mine, what “love” is by definition and how it develops may be different for individuals sharing the same age or birth cohort, necessitating at least a “love primer” for a class on close relationships. Also, what the future holds regarding a lifetime of love has become increasingly salient, as it seems to be conventional wisdom today (albeit quite the conundrum) that marriage may well be a risk factor for love. This article outlines an assignment on the definition and development of love that continues to be rated very highly by students on anonymous, end-of-semester evaluations. In addition, I share some insights gleaned over the years as to how I introduce the topic and particularly how I try to help students glean pertinent information from the existing literature on love. It’s hoped readers will build upon this work and adapt it for their own classrooms.


This article was originally published by Family Science Review


teaching, love, life course


Randall, G. K. (2014). What’s love got to do with it? Family Science Review, 19(2), 64- 69.