Use of Theory in Health Communication Design
The Drug Abuse Resistance Education program is used in nearly 80% of the school districts in the United States, in 54 other countries around the world, and is taught to 36,000,000 students each year. Therefore, it’s important to know if this highly popular program is effective in reducing alcohol and drug use.
–David J. Hanson
Many health communication campaigns are ineffective or unsuccessful. As a health educator, how might you avoid creating an ineffective health communication campaign?
Consider for example that most of the ineffective health communication campaigns have one thing in common. They are not based on any type of theoretical framework or model. This is unfortunate given that there are many effective health education theories and models that can help make your health communication campaign successful.
As a health educator you may be required to develop a health communication campaign that is based on comprehensive applicable conceptualizations such as the social marketing framework regarding the “4 Ps” of marketing (Price, Product, Place, and Promotion) or the Communication-Persuasion Matrix.
Additionally, there are many health behavioral models that may also be integrated to help tailor messages and provide cues to action. Some of the more common behavioral models used when creating health communication campaigns include the Transtheoretical Model (Stages of Change), Theory of Reasoned Action, Social Cognitive Theory, and the Health Belief Model. In reviewing the scientific literature, health educators are able to determine how to use these models for specific health topics and populations.
This week, you examine and review the theoretical frameworks used in creating health communication campaigns. You also create a health communication campaign brochure using the Stages of Change health behavioral model.
Hatchell, A.C., Bassett-Gunter, R.L., Clarke, M., Kimura, S., & Latimer-Cheung, A. E. (2013). Messages for men: The efficacy of EPPM-based messages targeting men’s physical activity. Health Psychology, 32(1), 24–32.
Noar, S. M., & Van Stee, S. K. (2012). Designing messages for individuals in different stages of change. In H. Cho (Ed.), Health communication message design: Theory and practice (pp. 209–229). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.
(Chapter 12 in the course text)
National Cancer Institute. (n.d.). Pink book: Making health communication programs work. Bethesda, MD: National Cancer Institute, Office of Communications.
Making health communication programs work. Retrieved from: http://www.cancer.gov
“Overview” (pp. 11)
“Stage 1: Planning Strategy Development” (pp.15–51)
“Stage 2: Developing and Pretesting Concepts, Messages, and Materials” (pp. 53–89)
Week 5 Discussion
Critiquing Health Communication Materials
In last week’s Assignment, you conducted a literature review examining effective health communication campaigns. As you explored this week, the majority of effective health communication campaigns integrate health behavior theories and models. As a health educator, how will you determine which health behavior theory or model is most appropriate when creating a health communication campaign?
For this Discussion, consider your literature review from last week. Select a stage of change pertaining to your selected health topic. Then, develop a tri-fold brochure for your health communication campaign that demonstrates your selected stage of change. Remember to create a brochure that is appropriate for your target population and includes a health message that will support your overall health communication campaign for the course.
Post by Day 3 a brief description of the brochure that you plan to develop for your selected health topic including the draft of the brochure that you created. Explain why you selected the stage of change and how this stage of change is incorporated into your brochure. Be specific and provide examples.