Health promotion and disease prevention

Dit vak wordt in het Engels aangeboden. Omschrijvingen kunnen daardoor mogelijk alleen in het Engels worden weergegeven.

Doel vak

General aims
1. To provide a solid basis in understanding elementary aspects of
evidence- and theory-based development and planning of health promotion
and disease prevention programs.
2. To write a scientific study protocol about the planned development
and evaluation of a preventive health intervention.

Learning objectives
After the course, students:
- Are able to describe and apply the elementary aspects of evidence- and
theory-based development and planning of health promotion and disease
prevention programs using an intervention mapping approach
- Are able to apply theoretical methods that can help to change
important determinants of the environment and or health behaviors
(lifestyle factors)
- Have knowledge about and is able to apply strategies that provides
opportunities and challenges for the development and implementation of
preventive health interventions, such as:
o Environment, habits and self-regulation
o Community action
o Interventions in public space
o Evaluating effects
- Are able to describe, understand and discuss the fundamental aspects
of quality of life such as measurements, types and criteria
- Are able to describe the principals and perspectives of implementation
and process-, effect and economic evaluation of health promotion
- Are able to integrate the acquired knowledge of the course in writing
a study protocol

Inhoud vak

This course, fits in the program of the specialization Prevention and
Public Health. Within this specialization you are trained to become a
health promotor who is able to work in a theory- & evidence-based way
and is able to link research, practice and policy. The courses within
this specialization are structured according to the six steps of
Intervention Mapping. These steps are: 1) Needs assessment, 2) Preparing
matrices of change objectives, 3) Selecting theory-informed intervention
methods and practical applications, 4) Producing program components and
materials, 5) Planning program adoption, implementation, and
sustainability and 6) Planning for evaluation. The course Health
Promotion and Disease Prevention will introduce you to the six steps of
Intervention Mapping. Specific emphasize will be put on step 2 and 3
with a focus on primary prevention.

This course focuses on lifestyle/ health behaviors and environmental
differences related to health and diseases among individuals and
populations. The ultimate goal is to improve peoples' health status and
quality of life by health promotion interventions. Some examples of the
topics that will be addressed are:
• Intervention mapping; designing theory- and evidence-based health
promotion programs.
• Theory-based intervention methods and strategies; theoretical methods
that can help to change several of the most important determinants of
health behaviors.
• Environmental influences on health. The physical environment and
health interact. The importance of environmental interventions and their
effect on health are postulated.
• Health-related quality of life; the role of perceived mental and
physical health status in the development of interventions.
• Effect and process evaluation; principals, perspectives on process
evaluation, and determining the effects of health promotion programs.

Core element in this course is writing a study protocol in English,
describing the design of a health promoting or disease preventing
intervention trial.


This course is rewarded with 6 ECTs and runs in Nov-Dec 2019. Health
Promotion and Disease Prevention is a part-time course, this means that
21 hours a week are necessary to pursuit the goals of this course.

Teaching activities include: Lectures, tutorials, guest lecturers, group
assignment (study protocol), peer review sessions and self study.


Grades will be based on the assignment (study protocol) and a written
exam that includes multiple choice and open-ended questions. The final
grade is being determined by the study protocol (30%) and written exam
(70%). The study protocol as well as the written exam must have a grade
5.5 or higher.

Vereiste voorkennis

At the start of this course, we expect you to master knowledge, insight,
attitude and skills at a level which is comparable to the final
qualifications stated by the Bachelor Health Sciences at the VU.


The following book is required for students who follow the
specialization Prevention and Public Health. Bartholomew, Eldredge,
Parcel, Kok, Gottlieb, Fernandez (eds) Planning health promotion
programs: an intervention mapping approach; fourth edition(2016).
Jossey-Bass, San Fransisco. ISBN:978-1-119-03549-7 Chapters which are
applicable to this course will be announced through Canvas. In addition,
students will use a course manual, and additional course materials are
provided via Canvas.


The course ‘Health promotion and disease prevention’ is an compulsory
course within the Master Health Science specialization Prevention and
public health, and an elective course for students of other
specializations of the master Health Sciences. Students with a Bachelor
degree or pre-masters in Health Sciences with interest in the field of
prevention and public health.

Overige informatie


Afwijkende intekenprocedure

Registration for this course via VU-net. Registration for the assignment in subgroups via Canvas.

Aanbevolen voorkennis

Students are expected to comprehend the knowledge of the VU bachelor
health science courses ‘Preventie’ and ‘Gezondheidscommunicatie’, or the
VU premaster health science course ‘Preventie en volksgezondheid’ or
similar courses on other universities.

Algemene informatie

Vakcode AM_470811
Studiepunten 6 EC
Periode P2
Vakniveau 500
Onderwijstaal Engels
Faculteit Faculteit der Bètawetenschappen
Vakcoördinator dr. M.C. Adriaanse
Examinator dr. M.C. Adriaanse
Docenten dr. M.C. Adriaanse

Praktische informatie

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Werkvormen Hoorcollege, Werkgroep*

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