Eileen J. Porter, PhD, RN, FGSA

Eileen-PorterProfessor Emerita

E-mail: PorterEJ@missouri.edu

Nursing Specialty

Gerontological nursing; public health nursing

Interest Area(s)

Health-related experiences of older women who live alone at home


  • BSN, Fort Hays Kansas State College, Hays, Kan.
  • MA, Nursing, University of Washington, Seattle, Wash.
  • PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wis.

Area of Doctoral Study

Older adults and their families; phenomenological research

Program of Research

My research program is focused upon describing the health-related experiences of older women who live alone. In NIH-funded projects, I’ve studied the experiences of living alone at home, home care and reaching help quickly.

Selected Grants and Awards

  • Old Homebound Women’s Intention of Reaching Help Quickly — (R01) National Institutes of Health $856,785, 2003-2007

Selected Publications

  • Porter, E. J. (2008). The personal impact of home-care nursing: An alternative perspective to home-care satisfaction.Research in Gerontological Nursing, 1, 105-115.
  • Porter, E. J. (2007). ‘Recognizing my risk’ and ‘envisioning an intrusion event’: A phenomenological approach to perceived risk of intrusion. Critical Criminology, 15, 223-242.
  • Porter, E. J. (2007). Problems with preparing food reported by frail older women living alone at home. Advances in Nursing Science, 30, 159-174.
  • Porter, E. J. and Lasiter, S. (2007). Handling the ‘people who are trying to get to you’: Incidents with troublesome visitors reported by older women living alone. Advances in Nursing Science, 30, 108-122.
  • Porter, E. J. (2007). Scales and tales: Older women’s difficulty with daily tasks. Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences, 62B, S153-S159.
  • Porter, E. J. (2005). Older widows’ experience of home care. Nursing Research, 54, 296-303.
  • Porter, E. J. (2005). A phenomenological perspective on older widows’ satisfaction with their lives. Research on Aging, 27 (1), 80-115.
  • Porter, E. J. (2004). Sources of systematic error in instruments measuring satisfaction with home care. Home Health Care Services Quarterly, 23 (3), 19-39.
  • Porter, E. J., Ganong, L. H., Drew, N., and Lanes, T.I. (2004). A new typology of home-care helpers. The Gerontologist, 44, 750-759.
  • Porter, E. J. (2003). Moments of apprehension in the midst of a certainty: Some frail older widows’ lives with a personal emergency response system. Qualitative Health Research, 13, 1311-1323.

Presentations and Lectures

  • Porter, E. J. (2007, September). Enabling the intentions of older frail women to reach help quickly. 17th Annual Caring for the Frail Elderly Conference, MU Interdisciplinary Center on Aging, Columbia, Mo.
  • Porter, E. J. (2006, November). Scales and tales: Difficulty of older women with daily tasks. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Dallas.
  • Porter, E. J., Lasiter, S., Kristek. (2004). Figuring out whether they can be trusted: older widows’ intentions relative to non-professional, paid home-care helpers. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Midwest Nursing Research Society, St. Louis.

Honors and Awards

  • Faculty-Alumni Award for Excellence, MU Alumni Association (2007)
  • Fellow, Gerontological Society of America (affiliated with Behavioral and Social Sciences Section) (2006)
  • Fellow, MU Interdisciplinary Center on Aging (2006)
  • Outstanding Advanced Qualitative Researcher Award Qualitative Research Section, Midwest Nursing Research Society (2003)
  • Recognition Award for Service as Editor of MNRS Connection, Midwest Nursing Research Society (2000)


  • Midwest Nursing Research Society (MNRS): Editor, MNRS Connection (April 1997–December 1999); Chair, MNRS Resolutions Committee (appointed); 1996–1997); Chair, Nominations Committee (elected by MNRS membership) (1995–1996)
  • Gerontological Society of America: Member, Rural Aging Interest Group (1996–2008); Abstract reviewer, GSA annual meeting, Behavioral and Social Sciences Section (2002–2008)
  • Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing: Alpha Iota Chapter, MU (1995–present); Chair, Research Committee (2000–2003)