Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Teasmann, Mark W.||Keim, Robert E., 1929-

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Home Economics


Families; Deviant behavior


This thesis outlines a process for reviewing the research literature investigating relationships between family interaction patterns and the existence of deviant behavior in one or more family member. An examination of previously published reviews of this literature led to the identification of 11 dimensions along which studies differ in their approach. Of these eleven dimensions, four relate to factors which identify a well-designed, internally consistent study; five are dimensions which lead to difficulty in cross-study comparisons; and two relate to the sociological context of the research. A total of 93 research articles were examined and rated on the 11 dimensions. Two kinds of results were presented. First, a series of7C? analyses were performed and the following differences were discovered: (a) a significant improvement in methodological soundness in the past ten years over the previous ten years; (b) a significant difference indicating that psychiatry and family therapy journals publish more articles investigating schizophrenia than do psychology journals; (c) there has been a significant trend away from schizophrenia studies, but no significant trend away from family investigations in general in the past ten years as opposed to the previous ten years. The second set of results related to a sorting of studies which revealed a group of 18 studies which rated high on methodological soundness, which analyzed data separately by the sex of the child and which observed the behavior of at least three family members. Results were discussed in light of the difficulties in interpretation presented by General Systems Theory (GST) and possible alternative models for interpreting family patterns were presented.


Includes bibliographical references.


iv, 82 pages




Northern Illinois University

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