Pre-conference Workshops


Morning Workshops

Translating Family Research to Practice and Policy: Examples from practice environments in three countries

Unpacking the Illness Beliefs Model: What do we know from practice-based evidence about healing families?

Facilitating Family Caregiving: Theory-Driven Intervention Development and Evaluation

Afternoon Workshops

Using Adaptive Leadership Framework and Trajectory Science Methods for Research in Family Health

Integrating Spirituality into Family Nursing Practice:  “Do I need to? Do I want to? What clinical skills would I need?”

Teaching Family-Focused Nursing Care Using Simulation

Translating Family Research to Practice and Policy: Examples from practice environments in three countries

Suzanne Feetham, PhD, RN, FAAN, Milwaukee, Wisconsin USA
Pam. S. Hinds, PhD, RN, FAAN, Washington, DC USA
Regina Szylit Bousso, PhD, RN, São Paulo Brazil
Maiara R Santos, RN, Ms. PhD Student, São Paulo Brazil
Patricia Vendramim, MsN, RN PhD Student, São Paulo Brazil
Kathleen J. Sawin, PhD, CPNP-PC, FAAN, Milwaukee, Wisconsin USA
Karen S. Gralton, MSN, RN, PCNS-BC, Milwaukee, Wisconsin USA
Norah L. Johnson PhD RN CPNP, Milwaukee, Wisconsin USA
Naohiro Hohashi, PhD, RN, PHN, LSN, Kobe Japan

Translating research to practice is essential to advance the care of families in all clinical settings. Learn from experiences that brought research to practice within years and not decades.

Nurses learning the processes to inform policy have said “ I did not realize how important it was to know the origin and understand how policy affects everything I do”. “ Now I know how to use my clinical and research knowledge to change practice through policy”

Nurses at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin after reviewing the Family Self-Management Discharge Preparation Intervention (FSM-DPI) for parents of Hospitalized Children, delivered via an iPAD application said “this project has changed the way I think about discharge” ; ” I haven’t asked parents these questions on child development before, but I think I should have.” And ” This app helps the family think forward for what it will be like when they go home.”

Based on research on contemporary families in a variety of cultures, nurses from Japan developed the “Concentric Sphere Family Environment Theory (CSFET)”. Learn about the application of this innovative assessment and intervention model that is guiding care delivery to families in Japan.

Nurses at Children’s National in Washington DC have developed a process for translating clinical research to practice moving from study team members to an interdisciplinary translation team. Learn from staff nurses examples about the development of clinical models and tools to assist nurses at the point of care to address pressing clinical care challenges with the care of children and their families.

Nurses in Brazil have used visual metaphors to translate Human Caring Theory of clinical research into practice. Join us and learn how the unit staff nurses, managers and advanced practice nurses were involved in the development of a research-based intervention. One program participant described the program saying:

“The initiative to transfer knowledge into practice brings the possibility of empowering nurses, by applying scientific, evidence-based knowledge to everyday care practice. This experience helps nurses in decision making regarding family centered care”

Level of workshop: Intermediate


Chesla CA Translational research: Essential contributions from interpretive nursing science. Research in Nursing & Health. (31) 4, August 2008, 381–390.

Feetham S. (2011) Historical overview of the importance of the relationship of family to health. In Craft-Rosenberg, M &Pehler, SF (Eds) Encyclopedia of Family Health Vol 1, Thousand Oaks, California, Sage Publishing p xxxi-xxxvi.

Hinds, PS., Feetham S., Kelly, KP, Nolan, M (2012) ‘The Family Factor’ Knowledge Needed in Oncology Research Editorial Cancer Nurs. Jan-Feb: 35(1):1-2.

Hohashi, N., & Honda, J. (2011). Development of the Concentric Sphere Family Environment Model and companion tools for culturally congruent family assessment. Journal of Transcultural Nursing, 22(4), 350-361.

Ryan, P. A. & Sawin, K. J. (2009). The individual and family self-management theory: Background and perspectives on context, process, and outcomes. Nursing Outlook, 57(4), 217-225. E6

Sawin, K.J., Gralton, K.S., Harrison, T.M., Malin, S., Balchunas, M.K., Brock, L.A., Cavegn, B., Cisler-Cahill, L., Graves, S.M., Mussatto, K.A., O’Brien, M.E., Sherburne, E.C., &Schiffman, R.F. (2010). Nurse researchers in Children’s Hospitals. Journal of Pediatric Nursing, 25(5):408-417.

Unpacking the Illness Beliefs Model: What do we know from practice-based evidence about healing families?

Janice M. Bell, RN PhD, Okanagan Centre, British Columbia Canada
Lorraine M. Wright, RN, PhD, Calgary, Alberta Canada

This preconference workshop offers you a unique opportunity to enhance your practice skills with families experiencing illness suffering. Updated news and resources about the Illness Beliefs Model ( will be presented by the co-developers of this practice model. Lorraine Wright ( and Janice Bell ( will offer practice-based evidence of ways to be helpful to families by addressing beliefs that are at the heart of illness suffering.

Level: Advanced Practice

Feedback from Previous Workshop Participants:

“Suffering is an integral part of my practice and this workshop will help me significantly to help my families”.

“The video clips added greatly to my understanding of the Illness Beliefs concepts. Love the stories – both facilitators are wonderful story tellers”.

“It was wonderful to see a team of clinicians so ‘in tune’ with one another”.

“Your welcoming generosity and interest in us as individuals and as a group were remarkable – you were affirming!”

More Resources: A curated Scholarship of Practice with Families Bibliography includes all of our publications along with the known publications of our Family Nursing Unit faculty colleagues and former graduate students:

Facilitating Family Caregiving: Theory-Driven Intervention Development and Evaluation

Gwen R. Rempel, PhD, RN, Edmonton, Alberta Canada
Laura G. Rogers, MScRS, OT(C), Edmonton, Alberta Canada
Vinitha Ravindran, PhD, RN, Vellore, India

The Facets of Parenting model ( provides direction for 5 areas of intervention. Based on Gwen’s extensive research with families of children with congenital heart disease (, this model is ready for you to “test drive”. Laura will show how the model works with families of children with autism. Vinitha will apply to the model to families of children who have been burned. Then it is your turn to reflect on the intervention needs of your clinical population.

Providing information (Expert parenting), mobilizing family support (Supported parenting) and facilitating peer support (Uncertain parenting) are common family nursing practices in child health. What about interventions to address vigilance and hypervigilance, Survival parenting with children with a range of illness and disability? How do we address attachment issues (Hands-off parenting), especially when diagnosis and treatment occurs fetally and neonatally?

Gwen, Laura and Vinitha co-present regularly at Thinking Qualitatively (; their workshops always have a wait list and are known for being hands on, relevant and responsive to needs of participants.

“Thanks for going where the questions led … really great.”

“Great examples drawn from you own work.”

“Excellent enjoyable session. Approachable instructors.”

“I enjoyed the exercises and that we discussed your study as an example – the passion came through and ignited my interest as well as stimulated my thinking.”

“Your presentation ability to be open for questions was great.”

Using Adaptive Leadership Framework and Trajectory Science Methods for Research in Family Health

Sharron Docherty, PhD, CPNP (AC/PC), Durham, North Carolina, USA
Ruth A. Anderson, PhD, MSN, MA, RN, FAAN, Durham, North Carolina, USA
Donald E. Bailey, PhD, RN, FAAN, Durham, North Carolina, USA
Debra H. Brandon, PhD, RN, CCNS, FAAN, Durham, North Carolina, USA

This workshop will introduce researchers to a timely and novel lens through which to conceptualize and design studies focused on ameliorating symptoms associated with chronic illness within families. The Adaptive Leadership Framework focuses on strengthening the provider-family relationship so that both work towards symptom management. Using research examples from across the family life-span we will demonstrate how this approach distinguishes between chronic illness symptoms that can be addressed by the provider (technical) and those that can be addressed, with training and teaching, by patient and family (adaptive) through increasing adaptive capacity. Novel person-centered trajectory, mixed-method, and visualization techniques provide powerful analytic models through which to search for patterns and trends in the complex data.

Level: Intermediate Research

Feedback from Previous Participants:

This content-rich and engaging workshop is a “must” for anyone serious about conducting mixed-methods and mixed-methods case study research, in particular. The data visualization techniques Dr. Docherty and Dr. Brandon have developed to integrate diverse types of data constitute a significant methodological contribution. (Margarete Sandelowski, Cary C. Boshamer Distinguished Professor)

“I have had an opportunity to preview this exceptionally innovative approach to family research. The methods this team has developed to capture the complexity of family change provide a powerful tool for family researchers who want to understand the array of factors that shape family response to a health-related challenge. I am eager to learn more at the upcoming conference”. (K. Knafl, PhD, Francis Hill Fox Distinguished Professor and Associate Dean for Research)

“The adaptive leadership framework is stimulating to methodologists on many fronts. Thinking through how one might measure the constructs of adaptive challenges and adaptive work is one challenge. Another, and perhaps the most stimulating, is how to measure the relationships between the extent of adaptive challenges and the work that adaptive leaders might do to mitigate the challenges. Anyone who has cared for a family member with a long term illness is painfully aware of the need for this type of research. The day to day challenges of the patient and their families are very often not consistent with the challenges that the medical providers address.” (J. Levy, PhD, Assistant Professor and Statistician)

“Working with this exceptional team of researchers, I found the Adaptive Leadership framework to be a very useful lens to reach a deeper understanding of the intricacies of family members’ responses to the transition from curative to palliative care in the intensive care unit. I plan to continue to use this framework in my research as a tool to understand how health care professionals can best support family members making this difficult transition.” (J. Adams, PhD Candidate)

More Resources:

Adams, J.A., Bailey, D.E. Jr., Anderson, R.A., & Galanos, A.N. (2012). Adaptive leadership: A novel approach for family decision-making. Journal of Palliative Medicine, Epub ahead of print June 2012. Pubmed # 22663140 .

Bailey, D.E. Jr., Docherty, S.L., Adams, J.A., Carthron, D.L., Corazzini, K., Day, J.R., Neglia, E., Thygeson, M., & Anderson, R.A. (2012). Studying the clinical encounter with the Adaptive Leadership Framework. Journal of Healthcare Leadership, 2012(4), 83-91.

Thygeson, M., Morrissey, L., & Ulstad, V. (2010). Adaptive leadership and the practice of medicine: a complexity-based approach to reframing the doctor-patient relationship. [Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t]. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, 16(5), 1009-1015. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2753.2010.01533.x

Integrating Spirituality into Family Nursing Practice:  “Do I need to? Do I want to? What clinical skills would I need?”

Lorraine M. Wright, RN, PhD, Calgary, Alberta Canada

Would you like to learn 7 spiritual care practices that have are useful in softening suffering and opening spiritual conversations with families? If so, then this Pre-conference workshop is for you. Lorraine Wright ( will also present her Trinity Model as a framework for the interconnection between spirituality, illness suffering, and illness beliefs. Be prepared to learn that illness suffering opens the door to spirituality, whether we want to go there or not.

Level: Intermediate Practice

Feedback from Previous Participants:

“I had never made the connection before between spirituality and suffering. This will definitely change my practice.”

“I worried if I was not religious myself, how could I address spiritual issues. Making a distinction between spirituality and religion was very helpful to me and made sense.”

“Now I have specific skills and not just abstract theory to really be able to help families who are suffering about the meaning of their lives with a serious illness”.

More Resources:

Wright, L.M. (2005). Spirituality, suffering, and illness: Ideas for healing. Philadelphia: PA, FA Davis.

Wright, L.M. (2007). Spirituality, suffering, and illness: Conversations for healing. [DVD]. Calgary, Canada:

Teaching Family-Focused Nursing Care Using Simulation (Pre and Post Conference Workshops available)

Angela Christian, DNP, RN, Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Stacey Van Gelderen, DNP, RN, Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Colleen Royle, MSN, RN, Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Mary Ann McKenna Moon, MSN, RN, Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Norma Krumwiede, EdD, RN, Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Patricia Young, PhD, RN, Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Sandra Eggenberger, PhD, RN, Minneapolis, Minnesota USA

These pre and post conferences provide an overview of how one undergraduate nursing curriculum integrates family-focused nursing care using high-fidelity simulations. Simulations incorporating family constructs and competencies that purposefully guide student learning outcomes are demonstrated. Participants will learn how simulations are effective tools to teach students to “think family” in their nursing practice. Minnesota State University, Mankato faculty and students participate in the simulations. Participants will receive written and audio materials to operationalize two simulation scenarios used in teaching family-focused nursing care.

A student who participated in family focused simulation provided this feedback:

“A family can be very intimidating when their loved one’s health is at risk. Simulation helped me build communication and critical thinking skills. It opened my eyes to the importance of family members and the significant impact they have on my patients’ health. Simulation gave me the confidence and skills to communicate with family members. I know the importance of including family in care decisions and assessing their needs as well. Through simulation I recognized that family members are the support systems, information holders, and care givers of my patients. Families also need my care.” – Brittany Frank, Undergraduate Nursing Student at Minnesota State University Mankato

A hospitalized patient who received family nursing care from a student taught with simulation provided this evaluation:

“I was so fortunate to have an MSU (Minnesota State University, Mankato) nursing student working in the hospital when my third child was born. She was thorough with her evaluations of my newborn, and in an emergency situation was discreet yet professional in taking him to the head nurse for observation. Later, she talked with me about the severity of his situation–she was concerned for the baby AND for my well-being. This is such a fine example of family nursing. Brittany was prepared to be my nurse.” – Andrea Lassiter, Recipient of Family Nursing Care