PSY289 Health Psychology

Faculty of Social Studies
Spring 2019
Extent and Intensity
0/0/0. 4 credit(s). Type of Completion: z (credit).
doc. Mgr. Steriani Elavsky, Ph.D. (lecturer)
doc. Mgr. Steriani Elavsky, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology - Faculty of Social Studies
This course is designed as an introductory undergraduate course in the area of Health Psychology. Students will become familiar with the Health Psychology field broadly, including current status and topics in the field, research methods used, and applied issues in practice.
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is also offered to the students of the fields other than those the course is directly associated with.
The capacity limit for the course is 30 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 27/30, only registered: 0/30, only registered with preference (fields directly associated with the programme): 0/30
Fields of study the course is directly associated with
there are 9 fields of study the course is directly associated with, display
Course objectives
1. To become familiar with the history, aims, current topics and the future of the Health Psychology field.
2. To gain an understanding of the key influences on health, ranging from macro-social and cultural issues to individual-level factors, and how they may interact.
3. To become acquainted with current health behavior theories and models and empirically‐supported principles of health behavior change.
4. To understand the role of health/disease-related cognitions, individual difference characteristics, and context in the disease process.
5. To become familiar with factors associated with quality of life, sources of coping and resiliency in both health and chronic disease.
Learning outcomes
After course completion, students will be able to: - define the field of health psychology - define terms health and disease and understand the multiple factors (psychological, social, cultural) impacting health - understand key health and disease-related cognitions and the psychological processes involved in health and disease - discuss contemporary study topics and challenges in the field of health psychology - discuss current theoretical approaches to health behavior and health behavior change - select/use evidence-based procedures and theories to develop effective intervention strategies in different health-related contexts - apply theoretical knowledge in the process of creating individual recommendations to clients/patients or in the context of health promotion programming -apply psychological theories of human behavior to increase motivation for health behavior change in the context of individual counseling
  • The course content will be organized into four units:
  • Unit 1: Introduction to Health Psychology • Defining the field • Social ecological model • Macro-social influences on health, Health disparities • Mind-body connections, Biopsychosocial model • Methodology and research methods in health psychology
  • Unit 2: Health beliefs, behaviors, behavior change • Health beliefs • Addictive behaviors • Eating behavior • Exercise behavior • Health promotion – changing health behaviors
  • Unit 3: Becoming ill • Illness cognitions • Health care access and services • Stress and illness • Pain theories • Coping and resilience
  • Unit 4: Being ill • Behavior and chronic disease • HIV, cancer • Obesity • Women’s health • Men’s health • Quality of life issues
  • The detailed topics may vary slightly from semester to semester based on instructor´s discretion and/or student preferences.
    recommended literature
  • Marks, D. F., Murray, M., Evans, B. & Estacio, E. V. (2011). Health Psychology: Theory, Research and Practice Sage: Thousand Oaks, CA. ISBN-13: 978-1-84860-622-7
  • Ogden J. (2012). Health Psychology: A Textbook. 5th edition. Open University Press.
  • Brannon, L., Feist, J., Updegraff, J.F. (2010). Health Psychology: An Introduction to Behavior and Health 8th Edition
Teaching methods
This course will be a mixture of lectures, student‐centered activities, and class discussion. Students will also work in groups on selected assignments.
Students are expected to complete assigned readings (prior to coming to class), ask questions, engage in critical thinking, and are encouraged to take alternative viewpoints, present well thought-out arguments, and generally make themselves a presence in the class.
Assessment methods
Students will be required to complete assigned readings prior to class. A detailed list of required readings will be provided. Student evaluation will be based on attendance and active participation in class, assignments (individual and group), final project, and final exam, accordingly: Class attendance 10% (20 points) Discussion participation 10% (20 points) Assignments (5 with 4 counting towards evaluation) 30% (60 points) Final project 25% (50 points) Exam 25% (50 points) To receive credit for the course, students must earn 70% (140 points) of the total possible points across the semester.
Language of instruction
Further comments (probably available only in Czech)
Study Materials
The course is taught: in blocks.
General note: předmět bude vyučován blokově.
The course is also listed under the following terms Spring 2017, Spring 2018.
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