Psychology of Health and Community

Unit code: APM7008 | Study level: Postgraduate
(Generally, 1 credit = 10 hours of classes and independent study.)
Footscray Park


This unit is designed to apply theories and principles of clinical health and community psychology to individual, group and community settings. Emphasis is given to community-based strategies and social policy initiatives in health promotion and public administration contexts in their application to health issues. With consideration of the role of the lived experience, social health issues will include family violence, violence against women, child sexual assault, socioeconomic status and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identity. Learning will include intervention strategies for the promotion of mental health and wellbeing and prevention of illness in those impacted by acute and chronic medical conditions and disability. Consideration will be given to psychosocial determinants of health and life stage applying an ecological framework lens.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Explicate the relationship between theoretical frameworks and models and the social determinants relevant to health psychology;
  2. Exhibit an understanding of the promotion of mental health and wellbeing, and the maintenance of health in the context of social determinants;
  3. Contextualize the psychological impact of physical illness and the effect of psychosocial determinants in the course of living with illness; and
  4. Critically examine psychological interventions in a cultural and community context, including within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.


For Melbourne campuses

Assessment type: Exercise
Grade: 20%
Written exercise regarding how social determinants impact mental health and wellbeing (1000 words)
Assessment type: Assignment
Grade: 30%
Report based on interview (1200 word report)
Assessment type: Report
Grade: 50%
Reflection on learning on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health topic (indicative 1800 words)

Required reading

Resources, Journal articles and texts will be available via VU Collaborate.

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following course(s):

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