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Cursus: 201000136
Public Health Psychology
Cursus informatieRooster
Studiepunten (ECTS)5
Contactpersoondr. C.H.C. Drossaert
dr. C. Bode
Contactpersoon van de cursus
dr. C.H.C. Drossaert
dr. C.H.C. Drossaert
dr. M.E. Pieterse
AanmeldingsprocedureZelf aanmelden via OSIRIS Student
Inschrijven via OSIRISJa

After successful completion of the course Public Health Psychology (PHP) the student is able to:
  • understand, describe, and operationalize the main theoretical models and constructs in this field, including models of behavioral determinants and behavioral change techniques (BCT’s)
  • reflect critically on these theories and techniques by addressing their strengths and limitations
  • recognize relevant organizations and resources in the field of PHP both nationally (RIVM, CBS, etc) and internationally (e.g. WHO) and understand their contribution to this field
  • critically judge an existing PHP intervention on its empirical and theoretical foundation and the appropriateness of the BCT’s applied
  • critically judge scientific publications in the field of PHP, and effectiveness studies in particular, accounting for methodological rigor, theoretical soundness, and relevance
  • assess the magnitude of a public health problem with available evidence from recognized resources
  • systematically design a PHP intervention based on theory and empirical evidence, while accounting for financial and practical constraints
  • present the intervention proposal, professionally and convincingly, both in writing and orally
  • systematically identify the stakeholders related to the designed intervention, analyze their aims and counterarguments concerning the intervention and create an attractive perspective for the stakeholders in order to successfully implement the PHP product

Connection to the work field
In this course students get acquainted with many relevant national and international organizations and resources in the field of health promotion. A guest speaker from one of these organizations, is invited to tell the students about their organization, current developments and projects, and how a typical working day looks like. The guest speaker is also invited to elaborate on the qualities that organizations look for in future colleagues, and to provide students with tips and tricks that might help them in the start of their career. The assignment, writing a substantiated intervention plan for a health promotion intervention in a team, is a common and realistic task for professionals working in this field. In the professional skills-component, students are trained in identifying relevant stakeholders and how to negotiate their plans with these stakeholders with their own agendas, which is also an extremely important skill for health psychologists working in this field.
Public Health Psychology (PHP) addresses the field of health promotion with a focus on promoting a healthy lifestyle in the general public. A healthy lifestyle includes behaviors relevant for primary prevention (healthy diet, safe sex, no smoking) and secondary prevention (early detection of disease through participating in cancer screening programs). Specific health issues such as overweight, addictions, infectious diseases, and specific risk groups such as people with lower socio-economic status, elderly, adolescents, will be addressed in this course.

Students will learn to systematically plan and design an evidence-based health promotion (eHealth) intervention, including skills such as: collecting relevant evidence, identifying relevant determinants of health behavior, selecting appropriate behavior change techniques and put such techniques into practice, and achieving successful dissemination of an intervention on a large scale. Students are also acquainted with novel techniques, including innovative web-based technology and cognitive bias modification techniques.

In two assignments students will deepen and apply the knowledge necessary to design and implement interventions. In one brief assignment students focus on a specific behavioral change technique (BCT) and share this with their fellow-students in oral presentations.

In a second and larger assignment students run through the full cycle of intervention design on a given health issue. In this assignment, students also acquire several professional skills. Students will practice to identify stakeholders and analyze their position concerning the designed intervention. Students will learn to negotiate different (possibly opposite) perspectives in order to create win-win situations for all involved stakeholders to finance and implement the proposed intervention successfully.

This course also provides the opportunity to become familiar with the current professional field of public health psychology. Students will meet an inspiring public health practitioner invited as guest lecturer.

The course contents are illustrated by current research on implicit and explicit behavior change techniques from the Self-Management and Health Assessment Lab at the Department of PHT.
Bachelor or pre-master Psychology UT
Participating study
Master Psychology
Verplicht materiaal
Batholomew LK, Bartholomew, C.M. Markham, R.A.C. Ruiter, M.E. Fernández, GJ Kok, GS Parcel. Planning Health Promotion Programs: An Intervention Mapping Approach, 4th edition. Jossey-Bass, 2016. ISBN: 978-1-119-03549-7
Course material
Powerpoint presentations form lectures
Course material
Powerpoint presentations from assignment 1 (BCTs)
Course material
Scientific articles
Aanbevolen materiaal


Lecture & seminar


Project begeleid

Project onbegeleid


Zelfstudie met begeleiding

Written exam, Assignm. & Presentations

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