Health Promotion and Communication

High-quality information and data about health risks is often difficult to find – especially for populations without access to the Internet or reliable medical sources. Students concentrating in health promotion and communication task themselves with finding innovative ways to educate a wide variety of populations about health risks. Students in this concentration study different models for sexual education in public schools, or compare approaches to nutritional promotion in different communities.

Sample Courses

This course prepares students to design, lead, or collaborate in advocacy efforts around sexual and reproductive health policy. Emphasis will be placed on examining the frameworks that are used in public health research to understand reproductive and sexual health, and how these frameworks affect the types of programs and interventions developed. Students focus on an array of issues related to sexual health, and use multiple frameworks to argue their positions for purposes of advocacy.

Health communication is as much about the public health professional’s tools as it is about the ability of his or her audience to understand the message. This course is a practical review of writing and revision, enabling students to develop clear, fluent, and readable styles. Students learn how to develop effective health communication campaigns that bring about behavioral change among target audiences and influence health policy issues at the local, state, national, and international level.

This course is designed to prepare the graduate student or professional student to apply social marketing concepts to inform health behavior change programs and policies. Major topics to be covered include theoretical foundations; research methods; strategy development; program design and implementation, material pretesting, and ethics. The course will bridge theory and practice by exposing students to best practices in the areas of social marketing.