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Health Promotion and Disease Prevention


Entry requirements

Only open to master’s students in Psychology with specialisation Health Psychology (mandatory) or Occupational Health Psychology (elective).


Students will learn how to develop an intervention program to promote health behavior, based on a systematic evidence-based approach. During the lectures, theories on the determinants of health behaviour (change) will be presented including recent insights in health promotion research, and vivid examples from practice. During the practical sessions, students will work in subgroups to design an intervention aimed at preventing the onset and/or continuation of health-compromising behaviours (e.g., smoking, alcohol abuse, snacking) or by encouraging health-enhancing behaviours (e.g., exercise, fruit and vegetable consumption). Students will perform a literature search to establish a state-of-the-art summary of the relationship between this behaviour and relevant health outcomes. They will then design an intervention model including determinants of the behavior and methods of change, based on theoretical and empirical considerations. Following this, they will develop an intervention program and implement and evaluate part of the intervention among students at a high school.

Course objectives

On completion of the course students

  • Have an understanding of planned intervention development

  • Have experience with the application of theory and evidence with respect to understanding and changing health behaviour.

  • Are able to recognize the promises and pitfalls of intervention development.


For the timetables of your lectures, work groups and exams, please select your study programme in:
Psychology timetables



Students need to enroll for lectures and work group sessions.
Master’s course registration


Students are not automatically enrolled for an examination. They can register via uSis from 100 to 10 calendar days before the date. Students who are not registered will not be permitted to take the examination.
Registering for exams

Mode of instruction

During the course the whole process of intervention planning will be introduced and illustrated. Students will learn how to systematically design and implement an intervention. The course consists of 4 2-hour lectures, 8 work group sessions (3 hours each), and 1 or 2 lessons at a high school.

Assessment method

Final grade is based on:

  • Attendance during work group sessions (full attendance is mandatory)

  • Group assignments

  • Presentations during most of the work group sessions

  • Active participation

  • Individual assignment

The Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences has instituted that instructors use a software programme for the systematic detection of plagiarism in students’ written work. In case of fraud disciplinary actions will be taken. Please see the information concerning fraud.

Reading list

  • Bartholomew, L.K., Parcel, G.S., Kok, G., Gottlieb, N. & M.E. Fernandez (2011). Planning Health Promotion Programs. An Intervention Mapping Approach. 3rd revised edition. Jossey-Bass

  • Course reader

Contact information

Dr. Winnie Gebhardt