The Science of Heatlth Promotion Activities

In today's society, we benefit from access to a wealth of research about how different choices and behaviour can affect short and long term health. Reputable information is freely available for a range of health concerns along with corresponding advice about how best to attempt prevention or minimisation of adverse impacts to our health. However, promoting healthy behaviour is more than just providing access to facts and information. Many things influence our behaviour decisions, particularly when it comes to health.

Motivation to participate in "healthy behaviours" is influenced by both internal and external factors. A popular model used by researchers to capture these influences is the "Health Belief Model" (HBM; Rosenstock, 1966; Rosenstock, Strecher& Becker, 1988) This model lists three areas which impact on our decisions around health issues. An outline of the different areas, their implications for health education generally, and examples of how these may apply to hearing health are shown in the table below.

The Hear4Tomorrow programme has been structured with these HBM elements in mind. The programme aims to go past information provision about the mechanics of noise and hearing, to a more cohesive examination of hearing as a health issue. The modules have been designed to assist students to appreciate the value of good hearing health, understand those activities which may threaten hearing, and develop a solid understanding of how to identify and minimise noise risks to which they are exposed. Ultimately, the programme aims to increase students' awareness of hearing health issues, their engagement and motivation to protect their hearing, thereby increasing the likelihood of self guided action.

Shaping Health Behaviours Table

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Rosenstock, I., M., 1966. Why people use health services, Milbank Memorial Fund Quarterly 44 (3), 94–127
Rosenstock, I., M., Strecher, V., J., & Becker, M., H., 1988. Social learning theory and the Health Belief Model, Health Education Quarterly, 15(2), 175-183