COURSE TITLE: Health Psychology
NAME OF INSTRUCTOR: Danielle Brosseau
CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION: credits 3 (hrs lect 3 - hrs sem 0 - hrs lab 0)
COURSE DESCRIPTION: In this course students will examine theoretical explanations and empirical evidence concerning the influence of psychological factors on health and illness. Students will learn about clinical practice in the field of health psychology and learn how to approach assessment and intervention with knowledge of the biological,psychological, social, and spiritual factors that interact to influence health and illness. Topics of study will include an introduction and brief history of health psychology and three primary modules: stress, illness and coping, health behavior change and health promotion and the management of chronic and life-threatening illness.

Same as PSYC 396.

Prerequisites: PSYC 250 or 251

  • Sarafina, E. P., Smith, T. W., King, D. B., & DeLongis, A. (2015). Health psychology: Biopsychosocial interactions (CDN Ed.). Toronto, Ontario, Canada: Wiley.  
  • Selected chapters/articles will be posted to Moodle and specified in your course outline. 

  • Devenish, S., Dowson, M., & Miner, M. (2012). Beyond well-being: Spirituality and human flourishing. Charlotte, NC, USA: Information Age Publishing. 
  • Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Flourish: A visionary new understanding of happiness and well-being. New York, NY: Free Press. 
Weekly quizzes 15%
Engagement questions and discussions (4) 25%
Proposal for campus health promotion project 5%
Health behaviour change report 20%
Campus health promotion project 35%
COURSE OBJECTIVES: This course will provide you with an introduction to the field of health psychology. You will learn about the fascinating ways in which biological, psychological, social and spiritual factors interact together to influence health. You can expect to develop an appreciation for the diversity within this psychological specialty as we review and critique what psychological scholarship suggests about how to promote and maintain health, prevent and treat illness, and adapt when faced with a chronic illness. You will also begin to apply psychological principles to further
health promotion and maintenance at individual and community levels.

By the end of the course you will be able to:
  • Describe how biological, psychological, social and spiritual factors (the biopsychosocial-spiritual model) interact to influence health 
  • Use the biopsychosocial-spiritual model to explain health-related behaviours
  • Explain the relationship between stress and health using psychological research and theory
  • Describe the reciprocal relationship that exists between psychosocial factors and adaptations to chronic and life-threatening illnesses
  • Discuss empirically-based theories that explain health behaviours
  • Identify relevant theory-based interventions for health promotion at the individual and the community level  
  • Apply psychological principles to promote health behaviour change at the individual and the community level
  • Welcome and introduction to health psychology
  • Body systems
  • Psychological determinants of health
  • Health beliefs
  • Health behaviours
  • Health promotion
  • Stress
  • Coping with and reducing stress
  • Being ill & the healthcare system
  • Pain
  • Coping with illness
  • Heart disease
  • HIV & Cancer
  • Illness and the family
  • Campus Health Promotion Presentations

Required texts, assignments, and grade distributions may vary from one offering of this course to the next. Please consult the course instructor for up to date details.

The King's University
Maintained By Glenn J Keeler

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