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BME1130 - Health and human behaviour

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Leader: Associate Professor Ken Jones (Psychological Medicine)


Clayton First semester 2007 (Day)
Clayton Second semester 2007 (Day)


The complex relationships between health and illness and behaviour of the individual, beginning with an introduction to concepts of health and psychological well-being, illness, disease and disability. Normal and abnormal reactions to illness are covered and students will study an individual with a chronic medical condition. Physical, cognitive, emotional and behavioural reactions are considered, and the biological factors and psychological processes - such as perception, learning, memory, cognition and emotion - that underlie these. The impact of behaviour - particularly habits - on health and well-being is covered, as well as illness prevention and health promotion.


At the conclusion of the unit, students should be able to:

  1. describe the major features of human growth and development; psychological processes, health and illness, society and culture, and professional ethics;
  2. recognise the variety of social, cultural and ethical perspectives that may legitimately be taken with regard to health and issues related to the biomedical sciences;
  3. obtain and record information from and about an individual by use of appropriate behaviour observation and basic interviewing skills;
  4. obtain appropriate material from library and other archival resources;
  5. think critically about psychological, socio-cultural and ethical issues;
  6. integrate information obtained by observation with basic science knowledge and theory; and
  7. present oral and written reports.


Written examination: 50%
Essay (2500 words): 35%
Tutorial assignments: 15%

Contact hours

2 hours lecture/demonstration, one 1-hour workshop and up to three hours of project work per week