Science of Unitary Human Beings - Martha E Rogers

Nursing theories

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Science of Unitary Human Beings

Martha E Rogers


  • Theorist - Martha E Rogers
  • Born :May 12, 1914, Dallas, Texas, USA
  • Diploma : Knoxville General Hospital School of Nursing(1936)
  • Graduation in Public Health Nursing : George Peabody College, TN, 1937
  • MA :Teachers college, Columbia university, New York, 1945
  • MPH :Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, 1952
  • Doctorate in nursing :Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, 1954
  • Fellowship: American academy of nursing
  • Position: Professor Emerita, Division of Nursing, New York University, Consultant, Speaker
  • Died : March 13 , 1994
Publications of Martha Rogers
  • Theoretical basis of nursing (Rogers 1970)
  • Nursing science and art :a prospective (Rogers 1988)
  • Nursing :science of unitary, irreducible, human beings update (Rogers 1990)
  • Vision of space based nursing (Rogers 1990)

Overview of Rogerian model

  • Rogers conceptual system provides a body of knowledge in nursing.
  • Rogers model provides the way of viewing the unitary human being.
  • Humans are viewed as integral with the universe.
  • The unitary human being and the environment are one, not dichotomous
  • Nursing focus on people and the manifestations that emerge from the mutual human /environmental field process
  • Change of pattern and organization of the human field and the environmental field is propagated by waves
  • The manifestations of the field patterning that emerge are observable events
  • The identification of the pattern provide knowledge and understanding of human experience
  • Basic characteristics which describes the life process of human: energy field, openness, pattern, and pan dimensionality
  • Basic concepts include unitary human being, environment, and homeodynamic principles

Concepts of Rogers model

Energy field
  • The energy field is the fundamental unit of both the living and nonliving
  • This energy field "provide a way to perceive people and environment as irreducible wholes"
  • The energy fields continuously varies in intensity, density, and extent.
  • The human field and the environmental field are constantly exchanging their energy
  • There are no boundaries or barrier that inhibit energy flow between fields
  • Pattern is defined as the distinguishing characteristic of an energy field perceived as a single waves
  • "pattern is an abstraction and it gives identity to the field"
Pan dimensionality
  • Pan dimensionality is defined as "non linear domain without spatial or temporal attributes"
  • The parameters that human use in language to describe events are arbitrary.
  • The present is relative, there is no temporal ordering of lives.

Homeodynamic principles

  • The principles of homeodynamic postulates the way of perceiving unitary human beings
  • The fundamental unit of the living system is an energy field
  • Three principle of homeodynamics
    • Resonancy
    • Helicy
    • integrality
  • Resonance is an ordered arrangement of rhythm characterizing both human field and environmental field that undergoes continuous dynamic metamorphosis in the human environmental process
  • Helicy describes the unpredictable, but continuous, nonlinear evolution of energy fields as evidenced by non repeating rhythmicties
  • The principle of Helicy postulates an ordering of the humans evolutionary emergence
  • The mutual, continuous relationship of the human energy field and the environmental field .
  • Changes occur by by the continuous repatterning of the human and environmental fields by resonance waves
  • The fields are one and integrated but unique to each other

Nursing Paradigms

Unitary Human Being (person)
  • A unitary human being is an "irreducible, indivisible, pan dimensional (four-dimensional) energy field identified by pattern and manifesting characteristics that are specific to the whole and which cannot be predicted from knowledge of the parts" and "a unified whole having its own distinctive characteristics which cannot be perceived by looking at, describing, or summarizing the parts"
  • The environment is an "irreducible, pan dimensional energy field identified by pattern and integral with the human field"
  • The field coexist and are integral.
  • Manifestation emerge from this field and are perceived.
  • "an expression of the life process; they are the "characteristics and behavior emerging out of the mutual, simultaneous interaction of the human and environmental fields"
  • Health and illness are the part of the sane continuum.
  • The multiple events taking place along life's axis denote the extent to which man is achieving his maximum health potential and very in their expressions from greatest health to those conditions which are incompatible with the maintaining life process
  • Two dimensions Independent science of nursing
    1. An organized body of knowledge which is specific to nursing is arrived at by scientific research and logical analysis
    2. Art of nursing practice:
      • The creative use of science for the betterment of the human
      • The creative use of its knowledge is the art of its practice
  • Nursing exists to serve people.
  • It is the direct and overriding responsibility to the society
  • The safe practice of nursing depends on the nature and amount of scientific nursing knowledge the individual brings to practice…….the imaginative, intellectual judgment with which such knowledge is made in service to the man kind.

Rogerian theories-Grand theories

  • The theory of paranormal phenomena
  • The theory of rhythmicities
  • The theory of accelerating evolution
Theory of paranormal phenomena
  • This theory explains precognition, déjàvu, clairvoyance, telepathy, and therapeutic touch
  • Clairvoyance is rational in a four dimensional human field in continuous mutual, simultaneous interaction with a four dimensional world; there is no linear time nor any separation of human and the environmental fields
The theory of accelerating evolution
  • Theory postulates that evolutionary change is speeding up and that the range of diversity of life process is widening.
  • Higher wave frequencies are associated with accelerating human development
Theory of Rhythmicity
  • Focus on the human field rhythms (these rhythms are different from the biological, psychological rhythm)
  • Theory deals with the manifestations of the whole unitary man as changes in human sleep wake patterns, indices of human field motion, perception of time passing, and other rhythmic development

Theories derived from the science of unitary human beings

  • The perspective rhythm model (Patrick 1983)
  • Theory of health as expanding consciousness (Neuman, 1986)
  • Theory of creativity, actualization and empathy (Alligood 1991)
  • Theory of self transcendence (Reed1997)
  • Power as knowing participation in change (Barrett 1998)


  1. George B. Julia , Nursing Theories- The base for professional Nursing Practice , 3rd ed. Norwalk, Appleton & Lange.
  2. Wills M.Evelyn, McEwen Melanie (2002). Theoretical Basis for Nursing Philadelphia. Lippincott Williams& wilkins.
  3. Meleis Ibrahim Afaf (1997) , Theoretical Nursing : Development & Progress 3rd ed. Philadelphia,  Lippincott.
  4. Taylor Carol,Lillis Carol (2001)The Art & Science  Of Nursing Care 4th ed. Philadelphia,  Lippincott.
  5. Potter A Patricia, Perry G Anne (1992) Fundamentals Of Nursing –Concepts Process & Practice 3rd ed. London Mosby Year Book.

This page was last updated on: 30/11/2020