Year
2020
Units
4.5
Contact
1 x 2-hour workshop weekly
Prerequisites
1 HLPE1540 - Foundation Studies in Health Education
2 9 units of HLTH topics
Must Satisfy: ((1) or (2))
Topic description
This topic will examine the concept of mental health from the vantage point of the social determinants of health. We will first examine the concept of mental health, and the manner in which definitions of mental health have been contested culturally, historically, and socially. Special attention will be paid to the concept of "normality", and the manner in which "normality" versus "abnormality" serves to advantage or disadvantage individuals, groups, and societies. The topic will then examine the concept of mental illness, the phenomenology of mental illness, and the manner in which the social determinants of health influence an individual's risk for mental illness. The topic will conclude by examining health educational strategies for discussing issues related to mental health in schools. Special attention will be paid throughout the topic to perspectives from positive psychology and the distinction between health and well-being.
Educational aims
This topic aims to:

  • introduce students to the concepts of mental health, mental well-being, mental illness, abnormal psychology, and positive psychology

  • develop student appreciation for the macro, meso, and micro-level influences on mental health and well-being

  • facilitate student development of educational philosophies mindful of issues of learners' mental, emotional, and psychological well-being

  • foster critically self reflexivity through authentic assessment and reflective journaling
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic students will be able to:

  • define mental health and mental well-being, and the social, political, structural, economic, familial, and personal influences that influence those concepts

  • describe various forms of psychopathology and analyse the manner in which concepts related to psychopathology are contested

  • critically differentiate between the concepts of mental health, mental well-being, using perspectives from positive psychology and the critical public health

  • develop curricula that address current issues in learners' mental well-being and exemplify best educational practice in the development of those curricula

  • critically analyse relevant policy documents and peer-reviewed literature in the field of mental health, and critique that literature with regards to issues of inclusion, social justice, and best educational practice

  • engage articulate the role of learner well-being in their philosophies of teaching, and engage in critical self reflexivity with regards to issues of curriculum development and learner well-being