Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP)

Scientific Rating:
Not able to be Rated
See scale of 1-5
Child Welfare System Relevance Level:
See descriptions of 3 levels

About This Program

The information in this program outline is provided by the program representative and edited by the CEBC staff. Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP) has been reviewed by the CEBC in the areas of: Placement Stabilization Programs and Resource Parent Recruitment and Training Programs, but lacks the necessary research evidence to be given a Scientific Rating.

Target Population: Prospective foster and adoptive families in both public and private agencies

For parents/caregivers of children ages: 0 – 18

Brief Description

TIPS-MAPP is a 30-hour preparation and selection program for prospective foster and adoptive parents. Each component of TIPS-MAPP is designed to enable participants to develop ability and skills to be effective and satisfied foster parents or adoptive parents, as well as to assess their willingness and readiness to assume the roles. Additionally, the components provide the agency with information for the family's decision-making. The TIPS-MAPP is designed to help prospective adoptive and foster families develop abilities that are essential for foster parents to promote children's safety, permanence and well-being. These families are supported through a mutual selection process, which emphasizes open communication and trust between prospective foster families, adoptive families and child welfare workers, using common criteria for assessment and a problem-solving approach to areas of concern. The TIPS-MAPP approach emphasizes shared decision making, problem solving and mutual selection, all of which are integral to building mutual trust and teamwork.

TIPS-MAPP evolved from PS-MAPP which was updated in 2013, with the guidance of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN), to include trauma-informed practice methods. PS-MAPP was a comprehensive preparation and selection program for foster and/or adoptive parents developed after the passage of the Adoption and Safe Families Act in 1997. PS-MAPP was created out of consultations with the National Foster Parent Association Board of Directors and out of years of experience with the MAPP (Model Approach to Partnerships in Parenting) family of programs.

Program Goals:

The goals of Trauma Informed PS-MAPP (TIPS-MAPP) are:

  • Foster and adoptive parents meet the developmental and well-being needs of children and youth coming into foster care, or being adopted through foster care
  • Foster and adoptive parents meet the safety needs of children and youth coming into foster care, or being adopted through foster care
  • Foster and adoptive parents share parenting with a child's family
  • Foster and adoptive parents support concurrent planning for permanency
  • Foster and adoptive parents meet their family's needs in ways that assure a child's safety and well-being

Essential Components

The essential components of Trauma Informed PS-MAPP (TIPS-MAPP) include:

  • Assessment and Development Tools of TIPS-MAPP:
    • Because TIPS-MAPP is both a preparation and selection program, it includes the following family and individual assessment and development tools. Descriptions of the TIPS-MAPP Family Profile, EcoMap, Family Map, and Strengths Approach-Strength/Needs Assessment tools are in the Homework section of this program entry.
  • A description of the TIPS-MAPP components follows:
    • TIPS-MAPP Meetings: The ten TIPS-MAPP meetings are designed to mutually prepare, assess, and make selection decisions with prospective resource families based upon the family's willingness, ability, and commitment to develop and use five core abilities. Each individual learns specific critical skills, which are practiced during the development process. The focus on skills building assures that preparation/selection workers can see the skills in action in order to document the skills in the home-study. More importantly, the preparation/selection workers are trained to provide developmental feedback to prospective resource parents, so that the parents can actually learn new skills or determine for themselves that they are unable or unwilling to perform the essential required skills.
    • TIPS-MAPP Family Consultations: The TIPS-MAPP Family Consultations between the TIPS-MAPP Leader and members of the prospective resource family offer private time for the prospective foster family and TIPS-MAPP Leader to discuss strengths, progress and family needs and plan ways to meet identified needs.
    • Professional Development Plan: The Professional Development Plan is a document, as well as a process, where a family opting to defer fostering and/or adopting can develop a plan for growth while becoming a resource family or child welfare advocate.
    • Summary and Recommendation: Although this document summarizes the TIPS-MAPP process of a prospective resource family, it is also a development tool in that the family and the TIPS-MAPP Leader mutually negotiate its content. This document is designed to mutually create a summary of the family's behavioral strengths and needs at the completion of the TIPS-MAPP program and to clearly state next steps for professional development.

Parent/Caregiver Services

Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP) directly provides services to parents/caregivers and addresses the following:

  • Prospective foster and adoptive families in both public and private agencies

Delivery Settings

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • Community Agency
  • Community Daily Living Settings


Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP) includes a homework component:

TIPS-MAPP Family Profile: Completed by the members of a prospective resource family, the TIPS-MAPP Family Profile describes and assesses the prospective family's strengths and needs in the family's own words.

Eco Map: The Eco Map, which was created by Ann Hartman, describes and assesses the family's sources and expenditures of energy. Each family completes an Eco Map. The Eco Map, also called a sociogram, which was created by Ann Hartman, is a visual assessment tool depicting the relationships between a family and its social network. As the name signifies, therapist and client together map out connections between the family and its ecological environment.

Family Map: The Family Map, which was created by John Williams, describes and assesses the family's boundary, power, and authority systems.

Strengths Approach - Strengths/Needs Assessments: The program utilizes the Strengths Approach to family assessment and development. The Strengths Approach helps the TIPS-MAPP Leader and the family to focus on strengths related to the critical skills required of foster parents and to frame problems or challenges, as professional development needs. Both TIPS-MAPP Leaders and prospective resource parents are responsible for assessing strengths and needs.


Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP) has materials available in a language other than English:


For information on which materials are available in this language, please check on the program's website or contact the program representative (contact information is listed at the bottom of this page).

Resources Needed to Run Program

The typical resources for implementing the program are:

  • Space to meet with prospective foster and adoptive families

Minimum Provider Qualifications

Certification in the program

Education and Training Resources

There is a manual that describes how to implement this program, and there is training available for this program.

Training Contact:
Training is obtained:

Provided onsite

Number of days/hours:

Eight 6-hour training days to certify leaders

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research

This program has been reviewed and it was determined that this program lacks the type of published, peer-reviewed research that meets the CEBC criteria for a scientific rating of 1 – 5. Therefore, the program has been given the classification of "NR - Not able to be Rated." It was reviewed because it was identified by the topic expert as a program being used in the field, or it is being marketed and/or used in California with children receiving services from child welfare or related systems and their parents/caregivers. Some programs that are not rated may have published, peer-reviewed research that does not meet the above stated criteria or may have eligible studies that have not yet been published in the peer-reviewed literature. For more information on the "NR - Not able to be Rated" classification, please see the Scientific Rating Scale.

Child Welfare Outcomes: Not Specified

Show relevant research...

Lee, J. H., & Holland, T. P. (1991). Evaluating the effectiveness of foster parent training. Research on Social Work Practice, 1(2), 162-174.

Type of Study: Nonmatched comparison group
Number of Participants: 17 MAPP and 12 comparison


  • Age — Not specified
  • Race/Ethnicity — Not specified
  • Gender — Not specified
  • Status — Participants were foster parents in training and members of the Clarke County Foster Parents Association.

Location/Institution: Georgia

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
Participants who had completed MAPP (now called Trauma Informed PS-MAPP) training were compared with foster parents who had not on the Adolescent/Adult Parenting Inventory (AAPI), which assesses developmental expectations, value on physical punishment, parent-child roles, and empathy towards child’s needs. No pretest/posttest differences or between group differences were found on any analyses. All participants’ scores fell within norms established for the AAPI. The authors suggest that results may have been influenced by self-selection biases and drop-outs from training, the validity of the AAPI as a measure, and training implementation, as well as by a small sample size.

Length of postintervention follow-up: None.

Puddy, R. W., & Jackson, Y. (2003). The development of parenting skill in foster parent training. Children and Youth Services Review, 25(12), 987-1013.

Type of Study: Nonmatched comparison group
Number of Participants: MAPP/GPS: 62 foster parents; Comparison group: 20


  • Age — 21-54 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Not specified
  • Gender — MAPP-GPS: 85% Caucasian, 13% African American, 2% other; Comparison group: 90% Caucasian and 10% African American
  • Status — Participants were foster parents.

Location/Institution: Kansas

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
Foster parents in-training who received the Model Approach to Partnerships in Parenting/Group Selection and Participation of Foster and/or Adoptive Families (MAPP/GPS) curriculum (now called Trauma Informed PS-MAPP) were compared to untrained foster parent on the basic knowledge goals of the MAPP/GPS program. A questionnaire was developed and used for this study with the assistance of MAPP/GPS trainers. Parenting knowledge was also assessed using the Parenting Skills Questionnaire and a parenting behavior measure created to measure basic parenting skills. Results showed significant improvements from pretest to posttest on all goals for MAPP/GPS training participants and on six of the PSQ scales. Scores on Communication showed a significant decrease. MAPP/GPS participants also showed gains over the comparison group in four skill areas: Know Your family, Work in Partnerships, Make an Informed Decision, and Assure Health and Safety. On the PSQ, the MAPP/GPS was lower on Communication skills and higher on Punishment/Consequences. They were also higher on Rewards skills and Predict Future Behaviors skills and lower on Identify Behaviors skills. Limitations include lack of matching or random assignment to study groups, high attrition in the MAPP/GPS group and small sample sizes.

Length of postintervention follow-up: None.


No reference materials are currently available for Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP).

Contact Information

Name: Denise Gibson, MA
Title: Training Director
Agency/Affiliation: Children’s Alliance of Kansas
Department: National MAPP Program
Phone: (785) 235-5437 x2
Fax: (785) 235-8697

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: February 2015

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: April 2016

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: June 2013