College of Education and Human Development - George Mason University

Dr. Bethany Letiecq
PhD, University of Maryland at College Park
Associate Professor
Human Development and Family Science

Contact Information

Send email to Dr. Letiecq

Phone: (703) 993-5076
Fax: (703) 993-4370
Email: bletiecq (

George Mason University
Fairfax Campus
West Building 2102
4400 University Dr.
MS 4C2
Fairfax, VA 22030


Bethany Letiecq is an associate professor in the Human Development and Family Science program--a joint academic program of the College of Education and Human Development and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. She received her PhD in health education/family studies and her MS in family and community development from the University of Maryland, College Park. 

Dr. Letiecq employs community-based participatory and action research approaches to conduct research in partnership with families systematically marginalized by society to promote family health and justice. She is keenly interested in how social policies and practices facilitate or hinder family functioning and health across all families. Currently, she is working on two projects in Virginia: 1) conducting research to establish a partnership with and document the lived experiences of Black families residing in public housing targeted for redevelopment; and 2) conducting research and action with undocumented immigrant families mainly from Central America to document their family and community contexts, including housing and engagement within the public school system. She also continues to work in partnership with Mexican migrants to Montana to support access to health care, education-based services, and migrant justice. With her community partners, she co-founded the Montana Immigrant Justice Alliance (, a statewide nonprofit working for immigrant rights. 

Dr. Letiecq teaches courses on family law and public policy; individual and family development; and family-based human services delivery systems. She serves as an associate editor for the Journal of Family Issues, and has published her research in such professional outlets as Family Relations, Journal of Family Theory and Review, Fathering, Journal of Family Issues, Journal of Intergenerational Relationships, Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health, and Health Education and Behavior. She is affiliated with the National Council on Family Relations (currently serving on the NCFR Board of Directors), the American Sociological Association, the Council on Contemporary Families, and the American Public Health Association. She also serves on the GMU Faculty Senate and as president of the Mason advocacy chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP). 


Research Interests

Family policies, family privilege, and (in)justice

Community-based participatory (action) research (CBPR/PAR) and scholar-activism

Immigration, illegality and deportation regimes, family separation, and trauma

Anti-Blackness, policing in Black family life, and structural change 

Ecosystemic resilience

Recent Publications

Recent Publications:

              Vesely, C., Letiecq, B., & Goodman, R. (in press). “Parenting across Two Worlds”: Low-income Latina Immigrants’ Adaptation to Motherhood in the U.S. Journal of Family Issues.

Letiecq, B. & Anderson, E. (2017). From education to advocacy and activism: Alternative roles for translating family science to policy. Family Relations, 66(4), 729-740. (Special Issue on Translational Family Science).

Vesely, C., Letiecq, B., Goodman, R. (2017). Immigrant family resilience in context: Using a community-based approach to build a new conceptual model. Journal of Family Theory and Review, 9, 93-110.

Goodman, R., Vesely, C., Letiecq, B., & Cleaveland, C. (2017).  Trauma and Resilience among Refugee and Undocumented Immigrant Women. Journal of Counseling and Development, 95, 309-321. doi: 10.1002-JCAD.12145

Letiecq, B. L., Grzywacz, J. G., Gray, K. M., & Eudave*, Y. M. (2014). Depression among Mexican men on the migration frontier: The role of family separation and other structural and situational stressors. Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health, 16, 193-200. doi:10.1007/s10903-013-9918-1

Bailey, S., Haynes, D., & Letiecq, B. (2013). “How can you retire when you still got a kid in school?”: The economics of raising grandchildren in Montana. Marriage and Family Review, 49 (8), 671-693, DOI: 10.1080/01494929.2013.803009

Letiecq, B., & Schmalzbauer, L. (2012). Community-based participatory research with Mexican migrants in a new rural destination: A good fit? Action Research Journal, 10 (3), 244-259. DOI: 10.1177/1476750312443571

Fitzgerald*, M., Roy, K., Anderson, E., & Letiecq, B. (2012). The effect of depressive symptoms on low income men in Responsible Fathering programs. Fathering: A Journal of Theory, Research, and Practice about Men as Fathers, 10(1), 47-65.

Recent Book Chapters/Edited Volumes:

Vesely, C.K., Letiecq, B.L., Goodman, R.D., Marquez, M.*, Alves, L.* Lazo, W.*, & Martinez, M.* (2018).  “What does this mean to you?” Partnering with Amigas de la Comunidad to Analyze the Housing Conditions of Undocumented Latina immigrants.  In A. Humble and E. Radina (Eds.) How qualitative data analysis happensMoving beyond “themes emerged”. Taylor & Francis.

Allen, K. R., Letiecq, B.L., Roberto, K.A., Rosenblatt, P.C., & Wieling, E. (2018). Dialogue about reflexivity. In A. Humble and E. Radina (Eds.) How qualitative data analysis happensMoving beyond “themes emerged”. Taylor & Francis.

Goodman, R. D., Letiecq, B. L. Vesely, C. K., Marquez, M., & Leyva, K. (2017). Community practice with immigrants and refugees.  In A. Hilado & M. Lundy (Eds.), Models for practice with transnational populations: Collaboration, cultural awareness and integrative theory. New York, NY: SAGE.

Goodman, R. D., Vesely, C. K., & Letiecq, B. L. (in press). Counseling refugees. In J. Webber & J. B. Mascari (Eds.), Disaster mental health counseling: A guide to preparing and responding (4th ed.).  Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association Foundation.

Vesely, C., Letiecq, B., & Ewaida, M. (2016). Immigrant families. In C. Shehan (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Family Studies. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Anderson, E.A., & Letiecq, B.L. (2014). Family policy through a human rights lens.  In J. A. Arditti (Ed.). Family Problems: Stress, risks, and resilience. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

Letiecq, B., Anderson, E.A., & Joseph, A. (2013). Social policies and families. In G.W. Peterson & K. Bush (Eds.),  Handbook of Marriage and the Family, 3rd ed. New York: Springer Publishing. (Invited).

Bailey, S., Letiecq, B., Erickson, M., & Koltz, R. (2013). Resilient grandparent caregivers: Pathways to positive adaptation. In B. Hayslip & G. Smith, Resilient grandparent caregivers: A strengths-based perspective. New York: Rutledge Taylor & Francis. (Invited).

Letiecq, B. (2010). African American men rearing children in violent neighborhoods. In R. Coles & C. Green (Eds.). The myth of the missing black father. New York: Columbia University Press. (Invited).