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April 1977

On the Classification of Families: A Progress Report

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychiatry, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester, NY.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1977;34(4):424-433. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1977.01770160058004

• A review of the literature over the last 20 years on family classification is presented with an aim toward integration of existing approaches. Family schemas are organized into the following groups: (1) style of adaptation, (2) developmental family stage, (3) initial problem or diagnosis of the identified patient, (4) family theme or dimension, and (5) types of marital relationship. Six family types are presented based on a descriptive comparison of the schimas as grouped above, and implications for clinical course and prognosis are summarized. A multidimensional as opposed to a typological model for family classification is suggested.

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