This text provides an overview of concepts, theories, and methods related to the study of household consumption. It summarizes the most recent data on consumption patterns and trends, together with factors that influence consumption--population trends, prices, and distribution of resources--and examines how consumption data are used by business, government, and other organizations. The work will give the student a knowledge of household consumption patterns and an understanding of how to use such knowledge. Its three general purposes, which correspond to the three parts of the book, are: to provide the tools students need in order to use information about household consumption, including major concepts and theories used in the study of consumption, empirical methodologies, and sources of data; to describe current patterns, trends, and problems in household consumption in the United States and other countries; and to show how information about household consumption is used. This text is designed for upper-division courses in consumption economics, consumer science, and family resource management.