ERIC Number: ED344265
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
A Challenge for Health Education: The Enactment Problem and a Communication-Related Solution.
Lewis, Laurie K.
An important goal of health education is to change behavior by increasing knowledge, but current theory has not been able to account for the actual health behavior of adolescents. Theoretical and empirical work has been focused on explaining individual health behaviors: for example, risky adolescent behaviors such as drinking, smoking, drug use, and unprotected sexual contact. Such models as the Health Belief Model and Fishbein's Theory of Reasoned Action offer explanations of health behaviors. The focus of these models has been to explain the means by which adolescents use cost/benefit analysis to form intentions to act. However, the problem of enactment, or the acting out of intentions, has not been effectively accounted for by current models. The challenge remaining is to translate knowledge about health issues and healthy intentions into healthy behaviors. Programs might augment their success by utilizing an additional focus on enactment skills. Such skills training must center on making it possible to enact health-promoting choice while maintaining self-presentational goals. Thus, researchers should attempt to develop a theory-based approach to the development of a skills curriculum capable of helping to bridge the gap between intention and enactment. (Forty-nine references are attached.) (Author/HB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Health Attitudes; Health Belief Model; Health Communication; Theory of Reasoned Action
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Speech Communication Association (77th, Atlanta, GA, October 31-November 3, 1991).