Johnson Behavioral System (JBS) Model In this paper, I am going to summarize the Johnson Behavioral System (JBS) Model (Johnson, 1980, 1990), explain the perspectives for nursing practice, and explore its applicability in nursing practice. First, I am going to talk a little about Dorothy E. Johnson the nurse that wrote the Model. Dorothy E.
Johnson was born August 21, 1919, in Savannah, Georgia (Lobo, 1995). She received her A.A.
from Armstrong Junior College in Savannah, Georgia, in 1938; her B.S.N. from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1942; and her M.P.H. from Harvard University in Boston in 1948 (Conner, Harbour, Magers, and Watt 1994).
Johnson was an instructor and an assistant professor in pediatric nursing at Vanderbilt University School of Nursing from 1944 to 1949. From 1949 until her retirement in 1978 and subsequent move to Key Largo, Florida, she was an assistant professor of pediatric nursing, an associate professor of nursing, and a professor of nursing at the University of California in Los Angeles (Conner et. al. 1994).In 1955 and 1956 she was eligible to go on a sabbatical and went to the Christian Medical College School of Nursing in Vellore, South India, were she was interested in starting a baccalaureate program which was received well (Lobo, 1995).
Dorothy Johnson has had an influence on nursing through her publications since the 1950s. Throughout her career, Johnson has stressed the importance of research-based knowledge about the effect of nursing care on clients. Johnson was an early proponent of nursing as a science as well as an art. She also believed nursing had a body of knowledge reflecting both the science and the art. From the beginning, Johnson (1959) proposed that the knowledge of the science of nursing necessary for effective nursing care included a synthesis of key concepts drawn from basic and applied sciences.In 1961, Johnson proposed that nursing care facilitated the client’s maintenance of a state of equilibrium. Johnson proposed that clients were “stressed” by a stimulus of either an internal or external nature.
These stressful stimuli created such disturbances, or “tensions,” in the patient that a state of disequilibrium occurred. Johnson identified two areas that nursing care should be based in order to return the client to a state of equilibrium. First, by reducing stressful stimuli, and second, by supporting natural and adaptive processes. Johnson’s behavioral system theory springs from Nightingales belief that nursing’s goal is to help individuals prevent or recover from disease or injury.The “science and art” of nursing should focus on the patient as an individual and not on the specific disease entity. Johnson used the work of behavioral scientists in psychology, sociology, and ethnology to develop her theory. The model is patterned after a systems model; a system is defined as consisting of interrelated parts functioning together to form a whole (Conner et. al.
1994). Johnson states that a nurses should use the behavioral system as their knowledge base; comparable to the biological system that physicians use as their base of knowledge (Lobo, 1995).Theory The reason Johnson chose the behavioral system model is the idea that “all the patterned, repetitive, purposeful ways of behaving that characterize each person’s life make up an organized and integrated whole, or a system” (other). Johnson states that by categorizing behaviors, they can be predicted and ordered. Johnson categorized all human behavior into seven subsystems (SSs): Attachment, Achievement, Aggressive, Dependence, Sexual, Ingestive, and Eliminative. Each subsystem is composed of a set of behavioral responses or tendencies that share a common goal. These responses are developed through experience and learning and are determined by numerous physical, biological, psychological, and social factors.
Four assumptions are made about the structure and function of each SS.These four assumptions are the “structural elements” common to each of the seven SSs. The first assumption is “from the form the behavior takes and the consequences it achieves can be inferred what drive has been stimulated or what goal is being sought” (Johnson, 1980). The ultimate goal for each subsystem is expected to be the same for all individuals. The second assumption is that each individual has a “predisposition to act, with reference to the goal, in certain ways rather than in other ways” (Johnson, 1980). This predisposition to act is labeled “set” by Johnson. The third assumption is that each subsystem has available a repertoire of choices or “scope of action” alternatives from which choices can be made.
As life experiences occur, individuals add to the number of alternative actions available to them. At some point, however, the acquisition of new alternatives of behavior decreases as the! individual becomes comfortable with the available repertoire. The fourth assumption about the behavioral subsystem is that they produce observable outcomes-that is, the individuals behavior (Johnson, 1980).
The observable behaviors allow an outsider to note the actions the individual is taking to reach a goal related to a specified SS. In addition, each of the SSs has three functional requirements.First, each subsystem must be “protected from noxious influences with which the system cannot cope” (Johnson, 1980).
Second, each subsystem must be “nurtured through the input of appropriate supplies from the environment.” Finally each subsystem must be “stimulated for use to enhance growth and prevent stagnation.” As long as the SSs are meeting these functional requirements, the system and the SSs are viewed as self-maintaining and self- perpetuating. The internal and external environments of the system need to remain orderly and predictable for the system to maintain homeostasis.
The interrelationships of the structural elements of the subsystem to maintain a balance that is adaptive to that individual’s needs. Johnson’s Behavioral Subsystems The Attachment subsystem is probably the most critical, because it forms the basis for all social organization.It provides survival and security. Its consequences are social inclusion, intimacy, and formation and maintenance of a strong social bond. The Achievement subsystem attempts to manipulate the environment. Its function is control or mastery of an aspect of self or environment to some standard of excellence.
Areas of achievement behavior include intellectual, physical, creative, mechanical, and social skills.The Aggressive subsystem function is protection and preservation. It holds that aggressive behavior is not only learned, but has a primary intent to harm others. However, society has placed limits when dealing with self-protection and that people and their property be respected and protected. The Dependency subsystem promotes helping behavior that calls for a nurturing response. Its consequences are approval, attention or recognition, and physical assistance.Ultimately, dependency behavior develops from the complete reliance on others for certain resources essential for survival.
An imbalance in a behavioral subsystem produces tension, which results in disequilibrium. The The Ingestive and Eliminative SSs “have to do with when, how, what, how much and under what conditions we eat, and when, how, and under what conditions we eliminate”. The Sexual subsystem has the dual functions of procreation and gratification. It begins with the development of gender role identity and includes the broad range of sex role behaviors (Johnson, 1980).When there is an alteration in the “equilibrium” that exists, Johnson’s Model ten …