An interest area
The fields of healthcare and health education are increasingly important in our society. To support these emerging career fields is the need to understand how “health” is communicated to us and how that communication impacts our views and behaviors concerning health. How do health providers and patients impact each other? Why are some health campaigns effective while others are not? How do politics impact our health? What role do our family experiences play in our health decisions? Where do we get our health information? These are just some of the issues you will examine as part of the Health Communication interest area.
You will learn how that our concept of health is influenced by many factors – politics, past experiences, family relationships, interactions with health providers, communities we live in, access to health information, to name just a few. Through the Health Communication interest area, you will also learn how to identify the relationships that multiple factors have on health, design messages to impact health knowledge and behaviors, improve health communication between individuals of different ages, ethnicities, genders, and other demographics, and understand the role that technology and personality characteristics play in health information. Furthermore, you will learn the skills to use this knowledge to improve health on a personal, relational, and community level.
Future careers, post-grad opportunities
Study and research in Health Communication is fundamental to many successful career opportunities in healthcare. Many of our graduates go on to work in areas specific to facilitating communication within the healthcare industry, from improving health behaviors in the general public, through public relations, health research, health campaign promotion, consulting for health organizations, nonprofits, and various governmental agencies.