Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Nursing (M.S.N.)

Degree Program

College of Nursing

First Advisor

Patricia W. Underwood

Second Advisor

Mary Horan

Third Advisor

Helen Erickson


A Family Adaptive Potential Assessment Tool (FAPAT) based on Modeling and Role-Modeling theory has been developed to assist nurses in their holistic approach to nursing. The purpose of this research was to begin to test one of the propositions on which the FAPAT was based: Families are able to identify what will be helpful for them during a time when they are trying to cope with a significant life event.; Families were generally able to identify what would be helpful. A modified grounded theory approach assisted to identify four themes that emerged under external support and three themes under internal support. External support themes were: (a) formal supportive relationships, (b) informal supportive relationships, (c) information, and (d) a supportive health care structure. Internal support themes were: (a) intra-individual family member support, (b) intra-family support, and (c) a supportive family organization.


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