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Policy Interventions for Health Behavior Change

2nd term
Health Behavior and Society
3 credits
Academic Year:
2022 - 2023
Instruction Method:
Synchronous Online
Class Times:
  • Friday,  9:00 - 11:50am
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Undergrads Allowed:
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor:
Joanna Cohen

Examines the major theoretical frameworks that are relevant to the development, enactment, implementation and evaluation of policy interventions that support healthy behavior change. Explores the roles of ideas, interests, institutions, key actors and ethics in the policy process are explored. Discusses how the environment can be influenced to improve the chances of implementing effective interventions to improve the public’s health. Presents case studies to critically explore the strengths and limitations of policy change theories as they relate to current hot topics in the area of health, behavior and society.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Explain at least one major theoretical framework used to understand policy agenda setting and apply it to a policy intervention of interest
  2. Assess the role of ethics as it applies to agenda setting, policy enactment, policy implementation and policy evaluation
  3. Discuss the major influences, including evidence, that can determine which policy interventions receive serious attention by policymakers. Describe how the environment can be influenced to improve the chances of implementing effective policy interventions to improve the public’s health
  4. Consider the major stakeholders involved in developing and implementing policy interventions to support health behavior change and improve health
  5. Identify the key factors that affect the successful implementation of policy interventions. Apply these factors to a policy intervention of interest to analyze how best to implement that policy intervention
  6. Describe primary approaches used to evaluate policy interventions. Construct an evaluation for a policy intervention of interest that assesses its impact on public health and health equity
Methods of Assessment:

This course is evaluated as follows:

  • 100% Assignments

Enrollment Restriction:

Graduate students

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for some students

Consent Note:

Undergraduate students require permission from the instructor.

For consent, contact:

Special Comments:

This is the virtual/online section of a course also held onsite. You are responsible for the modality in which you register.