Chronic Illness Affects the Entire Family

There are three goals of this assignment:

to personalize the experience of chronic illness,
to examine chronic illness from a family systems perspective, and
to tie what you have learned from your interviewee to the course material.
woman taking notes while interviewing manYou will interview someone who has a chronic illness or someone who has lived with a family member with

chronic illness. To ensure confidentiality, do NOT use the person’s name (use only first names, initials, or pseudonyms). Please do not

interview a person in your own immediate family. The interview should include questions concerning how the illness changed the person and the


Please address the following questions in your paper:

What is the chronic illness?
What symptoms are characteristic of this condition?
What is the prognosis?
How old is the individual?
When was the person diagnosed?
Address at least two (2) more questions from either the list below OR your own questions that came up in the course of your interview.

What particular aspects of the illness present problems in terms of managing day-to-day activities?
Are there any aspects of the physical environment that have had to be modified? Which ones? Why?
Are there any financial changes that have occurred as a result of the diagnosis?
Did any of the person’s and/or family’s relationships change? If so, in what ways?
Did the person turn to others for formal and/or informal social support?
If they turned to others for support, have others in the social network been helpful? Why or why not?
Have there been any positive consequences associated with the experience?
Tips for Success

Don’t forget to mention the age of the person; coping strategies may be different at different developmental levels.
Avoid having so many quotes from your interviewee that the paper reads like a transcript. A good rule of thumb is no more than a few. Be sure to

write out all information in paragraph form.
If you are quoting from a scholarly source, be sure to use APA style which requires that you include the page number.
This assignment should be 3 full pages (cover page, 3 full pages in the body, and reference page) and following the guidelines of APA style. You

can write more than 3 pages with no penalty. APA style asks that your paper have 1 inch margins in addition to being double spaced and font

should be Times New Roman 12.

The rubric used to grade these assignments can be viewed here: Written Assignment Rubric

Additional Resources
Your written assignment is intended to test your understanding of important concepts and to sharpen your intellectual skills of analysis,

synthesis, evaluation, and application. The intent of the written assignment is to provide an opportunity to more fully describe, explain, and

analyze the books and other sources. Be sure to cite any and all sources correctly so that your academic integrity is not called into question.

Throughout this course, these resources will enable you to successfully complete written assignments: