Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP)

NR  — Not able to be Rated
NR  — Not able to be Rated

About This Program

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

Program Overview

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. The program has been updated in 2018 to include “reasonable and prudent parenting “standards as well as case examples that are relevant to the most current challenges in child welfare. Additionally, TIPS-MAPP has a culturally responsive version that addresses specific needs of Native American children and families.

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

Logic Model

The program representative did not provide information about a Logic Model for Trauma Informed PS - MAPP (TIPS-MAPP).

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.

Program Delivery

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

Recommended Intensity:

The program is optimally conducted in weekly 3-hour training meetings. Additionally, a minimum of two family consultations are conducted with each prospective family. Family consultations are generally conducted in 2 to 3 hours, depending upon the size and needs of the family, as well as state and local policies and regulations.

Recommended Duration:

During the 10 sequential weeks of the program, leaders have direct contact through group sessions and family consultations at least 12 times.

Delivery Settings

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • Community Daily Living Setting
  • Community-based Agency / Organization / Provider


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

Manuals and Training

Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications

Certification in the program

Manual Information

There is a manual that describes how to deliver this program.

Training Information

There is training available for this program.

Training Contact:
Training Type/Location:

Provided onsite

Number of days/hours:

Eight 6-hour training days to certify leaders

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed 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 basic study design, measures, results, and 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 controlled 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 basic study design, measures, results, and 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 controlled postintervention follow-up: None.

Additional References

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

Contact Information

Denise Gibson, MA
Title: Training Director
Agency/Affiliation: Children's Alliance of Kansas
Department: National MAPP Program
Phone: (785) 235-5437 x102
Fax: (785) 235-8697

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: May 2018

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: March 2018

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: June 2013