Metropolitan State University

PSYC 346 : Health Psychology

A. Course Description
Credits: 4
Prerequisites: PSYC 100 General Psychology  
Lab Hours/ Weeks: Corequisites: None
Lecture Hours/ Week :  
MnTC Goals: Goal LS - Upper Division Liberal Studies , Goal 05 - Hist/Soc/Behav Sci
This course will provide an introduction to the field of health psychology, which is concerned with the roles of behavioral/lifestyle, psychological, and social/cultural factors on health/wellness, illness and chronic disease. The course will address four general subject areas: 1) attitudes, behavior, and lifestyle factors affecting disease prevention and development; 2) stress and the related psychological and social processes associated with disease development and progression; 3) social and psychological factors involved in the illness experience; and 4) long-term social and psychological implications of chronic illness (e.g., heart disease, cancer).
B. Course Effective Dates: 05/04/2011 - Present
C. Outline of Major Content Areas:
See Course Description for major content areas.
D. Learning Outcomes (General)
  1. Acquire an understanding of the components of the field of health psychology.
  2. Be able to assess the credibility of health information dissemination within the media.
  3. Become more aware of cultural differences and similarities in health care attitudes, beliefs, and practices.
  4. Develop an understanding of the scientific methods employed by health psychologists and acquire some basic conceptual skills for interpreting and critically analyzing research.
  5. Gain an appreciation for the importance of cultural context in health and disease.
  6. Learn about evidence for the roles of central psychosocial constructs, such as stress, coping, personality, and social support, in health risks and outcomes.
  7. Learn about the mechanisms through which psychological and social factors (e.g. poverty, culture, racism, sexism, etc.) might influence physical health.
  8. Understand and critically analyze the roles of oppression, culture, and social identities in health behavior and health care access.
E. Learning Outcomes (MN Transfer Curriculum)
Goal LS - Upper Division Liberal Studies
Goal 05 - Hist/Soc/Behav Sci
  1. Employ the methods and data that historians and social and behavioral scientists use to investigate the human condition.
  2. Use and critique alternative explanatory systems or theories.
  3. Develop and communicate alternative explanations or solutions for contemporary social issues.
  4. Examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods and cultures.
G. Special Information