Hwang’s research focuses to understand digital communication and family well-being during the pandemic
Woosang Hwang, Ph.D., recently joined the Human Development and Family Sciences (HDFS) program as an assistant professor. Hwang previously served as a visiting assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at the State University of New York at Geneseo from 2018 to 2019 and a postdoctoral fellow in the Aging Studies Institute at Syracuse University from 2019 to 2022. He is currently teaching Contemporary Families, HDFS 3320.
"This course is designed to provide an introduction to family studies in the broader sociological/psychological context," Hwang said. "In this class, students can think more complexly about how they will structure the family context in their own lives."
Hwang's research focuses on the association between intergenerational solidarity with digital communication and family well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States and South Korea. He said the COVID-19 pandemic and consequent social distancing have accelerated trends toward greater use of digital communication between generations, putting the potential benefits of these new forms of interaction into high relief.
"Based on my research projects, we can better understand how intergenerational and digital solidarity is beneficial for parents and adult children's well-being during social distancing and the greater potential for generational separation and loneliness in the Western and Eastern cultural contexts," Hwang said.
Hwang hopes his findings open new avenues of scholarly inquiry in studying intergenerational family relationships supported by digital communication during the pandemic and beyond. The Human Development and Family Sciences faculty members explore various aspects of development and conduct innovative and professional research. Hwang said he enjoys working with the HDFS faculty and graduate students.
"I am lucky to work with good people in the department and talented graduate students," Hwang said. "These are the merits as a faculty in the HDFS department at Texas Tech.
His work has the potential to benefit the local community and students interested in family relations. Hwang's research reflects the College of Human Sciences' goals of improving and enhancing the human condition. Research and education like his are working to educate the next generation of students that will serve their communities.