Nursing Theory and Research -Paradigm and Metaparadigm

Inquiry, Expert, Health care


According to Polit and Hungler (1997) paradigm is a "way of looking at natural phenomena that encompasses a set of philosophical assumptions and that guides one's approach to inquiry" (pg. 463). Metaparadigm, on the other hand, "is a statement or group of statements identifying its relevant phenomena" (Fawcett, 1984, pg. 84).

The metaparadigm has four central concepts to the discipline of nursing and they are interrelated although they have different meanings. They are:

* Person,

* Environment,

* Health, and

* Nursing (caring)

This assignment has two parts:

A. How Fawcett (1984) describe Nursing (caring);

B. Explore how nursing (caring) is expressed in Christensen's (1990) nursing partnership model. I will include some specific examples from Christensen's work to support my discussion

What is nursing (caring) according to Fawcett (1984)?

Nursing is defined by American Association (1980) as "the diagnosis and treatment of human responses to actual or potential health problems" (cited in Fawcett, 1984, pg. 84). Diagnosis, according to the nursing process is when the nurses identify the actual problems and find out how to treat them in order to prevent any potential problems. According to Walker, 1971) nursing is establishing limits or boundaries in terms of the person providing care; person with health problems receiving care; the environment in which care is given and an end-state, well-being (cited in Fawcett, 1984). This is related to what I mentioned before that the four concepts are interrelated; they cannot work on their own. The connections among the four metaparadigm concepts were clearly identified by Donalson and Cowley (1978) which states that "nursing studies the wholeness or health of humans, recognizing that humans are in continuous interaction with their environments" (cited in Rolfe, 1996, pg.6). This statement may be considered the major proposition of nursing's metaparadigm.

B: Christensen's (1990)...
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