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Some of the simplest definitions of a model describe it as, "a representation of reality" (McFarlane, 1986a), or a simplified way of organisnig a complex phenomenon (Stockwell, 1985). Other authors have elaborated on both these descriptions. Fawcett (1992) states that a model is a s set of concepts and the assumptions that integrate them into a meaningful configuration. Rambo (1894) believes that a model is a way of representing a situation in logical terms in order to show the structure of the orginal idea or subject. (McKenna, 1997, p. 12).
Models, therefore are conceptual tools or devices that can be used by an indivisual to understand and place complex phenomena into perspective. It gives the viewer an indication of what the real thing is like. (McKenna, 1997, p. 12).
McKenna, H.P. (1997). Nurisng theories and models. New York, NY: Rutledge.
Components of nursing models
At a basic level, there are three key components to a nursing model:
An important first step in the development of ideas about nursing was to try and identify the core concepts central to nursing, then to identify the beliefs and values around those. After extensive debate, there was some favour shown to the idea that nursing consists of four key concepts: person; health; environment; and nursing (see Box 1).
Box 1. Central concepts of all nursing models (Fawcett, 1995)
Nursing models may have these four concepts as their cornerstones but each describes them a little differently. For example, the sets of beliefs and values might be different and hence the goal of nursing and the knowledge and skills required might vary.
Murphy, F., Williams, A., & Pridmore, J. A. (2010). Nursing models and contemporary nursing 1: their development, uses and limitations. Nursing times, 106(23), 1820.
Finding nursing models within the UW Library Catalog: Models, Nursing
Finding nursing models within CINAHL: Searchthe phrase "nursing model" within "CINAHL Headings".
CINAHL will give you different models to choose from: "Nursing Model, Theoretical", "Models, Biological", or Models, Psychological". When you click on the CINAHL heading "Nursing Model, Theoretical" you will see a variety of potential theories to search. Clicking on any one of the sub-theories will reveal a list of individual theories, such as the ones listed below. More often than not, you will need "Nursing Model, Theoretical"; however, you can select all three, making sure the "OR" option is selected in the search box on the right, and then click the "Search Database" button to broaden your search.
Benner's Professional Advancement Model
Corbin and Strauss Chronic Illness Trajectory Framework
Cox Interaction Model of Client Health Behavior
Fitzpatrick Life Perspective
Gordon's Functional Health Patterns
Henderson Nursing Model
Johnson Behavioral System Model
King Open Systems Model
Leininger's Theory of Culture Care Diversity and Universality
Leventhal and Johnson's Theory of Self-Regulation
Levine Conservation Model
Marker Nursing Model
Mishel Uncertainty in Illness Theory
Neuman Systems Model
Newman Health Model
Nightingale's Nursing Theory
Orem Self-Care Model
Orlando's Theory of the Deliberative Nursing Process
Parse's Theory of Human Becoming
Paterson and Zderad's Theory of Humanistic Nursing
Pender Health Promotion Model
Peplau Interpersonal Relations Model
Rogers Science of Unitary Human Beings
Roper's Activities of Living Model
Roy Adaptation Model
Rubin's Theory of Maternal Identity
Watson's Theory of Caring