Diploma of Health Promotion

The course covers general Public Health units at the beginning of the course focusing on the concepts of Health Promotion, Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Health Service Management, Nutrition and Food Safety and how these have affected the health of individuals, family and communities in Solomon Islands as well as international communities.

Admission Requirements


The admission requirements for the Diploma of Public Health (Health Promotion) would be given to those with a Certificate in Health Education, Diploma of Nursing and Public Health serving officers of the MHMS, NGOs and other stakeholders. Those with the Diploma of Teaching with 3 years experience will also be considered.
Other admission criteria would be successful completion of Form 6 and 7 with good grades. Criteria for mature students; especially direct employees, they will be considered with at least reaching Form 5 level of education and not more than 40 years of age and having worked in the field for more than 5 years.

Course Structure


Course Code: HDPH
Course Name: Diploma of  Health Promotions
Duration: 2 years
Core Units: 20 Units
Total Credit Points: 240
Campus: Kukum

Unit CodeUnit TitleSemester OfferedPrerequisitesCredit Points
HP612Introduction to Behavioural Science & Environmental Science112
This unit is intended to develop in students the importance of psycho-social ecology of people living in communities and the factors which influence physical and psychological health and illness. Special emphasis is placed on the role of cultural beliefs, socio-economic factors, environmental factors and their influences on physical and mental health. Health belief and behavioural changes models will also be taught in this unit to assist health professional in their role as care provider as well as better equipping Public Health workers with environmental health related topics.
HP681Basic Applied Epidemiology112
This unit introduces students to the theories and concepts of Epidemiology and its application in the calculation of incidence and prevalence of disease or injury in a specified population. The practice of Epidemiology is directly related to the intervention programs for communicable and non-communicable disease control and the maintenance of health in a community or defined population.
HP631Communication & Teaching Skills112
This unit will introduce and discuss important aspects and concepts in communications and practical teaching in health care. Two different aspects of communications will be addressed: human communications with regards to peers and patients, and management communications with regards to information and policy within an organizational setting. The unit will discuss theory and principles that determine good communication practices. The teaching part of the unit will demonstrate how health professionals can deliver quality health information to the general communities and individuals.
HP632Principles of Health Promotion112
The unit will examine the role of Public Health within the context of the New Public Health, and trace its development from the Ottawa Charter, Jakarta Declaration, Adelaide Recommendations and the Healthy Islands Policy of the Yanuca and Rarotonga meetings. Upon completion of the unit students should be able to describe: the historical rise of health promotion and its major approaches and models; the provisions of the Alma Ata Declaration; Ottawa Charter, Adelaide, Recommendations; Yanuca Islands Declaration and Rarotonga Agreement; basic communications, education, health information investigation and evaluation in health promotion.
HP613Introduction to Computing in Health112
This unit is designed to meet the needs of Public Health Practitioners to use computers and information. Candidates would be expected to: write reports, memos and proposal using word processing software (MS Word) and know how to create and use master document; make slides for presentations using power point; use spreadsheet (MS Excel) for various needs including some data analysis and presentations. These include: most commonly used statistical analysis like calculating the mean, median, mode, standard deviation etc. and presentation of data in graphical forms like bar graph, pie-chart, histograms, etc. Create databases for research data storage in MS Access and get familiarized with the Internet Explorer.
HP682Basic Biostatistics for Health2HP68112
This unit is designed to provide understanding on statistical methods used in the public health, biological and medical sciences. It builds on the knowledge of statistics and provides an overview of biostatistician concepts and practices. Like almost all fields of study, statistics has two aspects: theoretical and applied. Theoretical or mathematical statistics deals with the development, derivation, and proof of statistical theorems, formulae, rules, and laws. Applied statistics involves applications of those theorems, formulae, rules and laws to solve real life problems. In this unit, the focus is on applied statistics. On completion of this unit, students will realize how easy it is to organize, analyse and interpret research data in health and other settings.
HP633Basic Health Services Management2HP631 & HP63212
In this unit students will be given an introduction to concepts, definitions, principles, and the main functions that are important in Health Services Management. This unit will guide students towards good management practices that will be vital at district level of health care. The unit will also endeavour to put management theories and concepts into practical examples and exercises for students to understand what happens in lower to mid-level management of the health services system. Topics that will be covered include development and functioning of health teams, community participation, resources management, and management of primary health care services.
HP683Surveillance, Disease Control & Prevention & Disaster Management2HP68112
This unit begins with the essential pre-requisite to the identification of outbreaks of disease and the surveillance systems. Basic principles of surveillance and the different types of public health surveillance systems will be examined including the techniques of evaluating these systems. These techniques will be applied to the current public health surveillance systems in the Pacific to assess their utility and identify areas for improvement. Students will be oriented towards the epidemiological criteria that signal an epidemic, as early as possible in its development, and towards the correct use of specific nomenclature. Students will be guided by a set of steps that form the management or control of an epidemic such as: interruption of transmission; case management; data gathering for investigative “tools of the trade”; preventive measures; consolidation of data and finalization of a report.
HP634Community Development & Training Methods for Health Professional2HP631 & HP63212
The primary focus of this unit is to empower communities in defining goals, developing and implementing health related plans as well as to providing related skills, knowledge and understanding in training of primary health resources, personnel and community workers.
Community development empowers a community to raise its standard of living thus providing a direct influence on the maintenance of health and furthermore promote healthy living. The unit further focuses on “training of trainer” to help facilitate the transfer of knowledge and skills in Health Promotion in any Healthy Island setting. It provides basis for health education services and other outreach work that is designed to help facilitate the improvement of knowledge and skills which is an identified action area under health promotion.
HP614Nutrition & Food Safety2HP61212
This unit provides a wider understanding of human nutrition, food safety and hygiene. The unit creates an integrated overview of the physiological requirements and functions of nutrients (protein, energy, and the major vitamins and minerals) that are determinants of health and diseases in human populations. It investigates factors involved in food choices and healthy eating, distribution of nutrients in the diet, metabolism, and the role of diet in the development of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, obesity, cancer, diabetes, etc. It provides complimentary skills for people involved with food and health across a wide range of vocations (health or fitness professionals through to chefs and those engaged in catering in institutions such hospitals, schools, commercial restaurants and other food outlets). The unit further examines food safety and hygiene through food industries to familiarize students on labelling and reading of imported food products that a health Promoter needs to know.
HP635Setting Approach & Strategies in Health Promotion3HP631, HP632, HP633 & HP63412
This unit dwells deeply on the Setting approaches in Health Promotion since the Ottawa Charter in 1986 that has been revolutionized in search of the most appropriate intervention strategies that best serve the health needs of the population. The historical and definitional basis of what constitutes Health Promotion Setting, specific examples drawn from the South Pacific of settings such as villages, schools, workplaces, market places and health care facilities will be studied within the overall context of the Healthy Islands Context. Upon completion of the unit, students will be able to: - Understand the historical development of the settings approach;
- Become familiarize with the different types of setting and their characteristics;
- Explain the role of the settings approach within the Ottawa Charter;
- Explain, with specific examples health promotion in villages and settlements, schools, workplaces and health care facilities.
HP611Basic Applied Physiology3HP61212
This unit introduces the study of selected physiology of the human body system normality and its application. The selected body systems are studied beginning with the; Respiratory, cardiovascular, urinary, lymphatics, endocrine, nervous, digestive, muscular, and reproductive systems and disease pathophysiology will also be examined.
HP684Epi Info & Research Data Management3HP681, HP682 & HP68312
This unit aims to introduce free electronic resources that can be useful when planning and implementing public health projects in resource-poor settings. The primary resource emphasized in this course is Epi-Info™, a basic database and statistical analysis software program created by the Centres for Disease Control (CDC). Students will learn how to use Epi-Info™ for calculating sample size for a research study, entering research data, and performing basic analysis on their results. In addition, students will be introduced to the Demographic and Household Survey (DHS) online data that is collected regularly from countries throughout the developing world. DHS Online will be used for finding data and performing basic analysis on the results.
HP685Health Research, Design & Methodology3HP681, HP682 & HP68312
This unit introduces students to research as an essential tool for knowledge generation in health service delivery. It will cover the traditional quantitative research approach, which looks at disease causation and disease patterns in a society. It will also cover the qualitative approach, which looks at social circumstances and individual behavior as factors determining health and disease. This unit will look into the advantages, the limitations and the application of these approaches. Ethical issues that a health researcher needs to consider when doing research will be discussed in this unit. It will also further develop students’ capabilities in research designs and methodology so that students can undertake small scale research in their work professions.
HP641Health Promotion Practicum 13HP682, HP633, HP683, HP634 & HP61412
This practicum unit is one of the first experiences that students will undertake to develop their roles as health promoter. This health promotion practice comprises a 4 weeks community health profiling and needs assessment experience. This experience demands students to undertake a profiling of a selected community around Honiara along with need assessment whereby recommendations are compiled and presented through a report.
HP686Health Promotion & Research Project4HP681, HP682, HP683, HP684 & HP68512
In this unit students will undertake a Health Promotion Research project of their interest and choice. Students will discuss their interest with the teaching staff, and will be guided by research Supervisors through the steps of proposal formulation, data collection or review, results compilation, formulation of conclusions and eventual recommendations for further studies.
HP636Project Development & Management4HP631, HP632, HP633, HP634 & HP63512
In this unit, students will be taught the principles of Participatory Project Cycle Management (PPCM). The principles of PPCM ensure the blending of the knowledge, experiences and potentials of local people with the views and expertise of government officials, NGO workers as well as international partners. Different development models will be discussed in class, which will illustrate case history. Reference will be made to gender sensitive needs and gender specific strategies. Participatory Rural Appraisal methods are applied within the framework of Project Cycle Management to strengthen the participation of communities in all phases of the development project. The ultimate goal of the unit is to equip students with necessary skills in project development, management and community action. Since the stakes in Project Management are high, students will be taught the various skills in project planning, project scheduling, project controlling and project management techniques. Students will also learn the various skills of strengthening community action and developing the interest for community connections as stated in the Ottawa Charter of Health Promotion. Selected communities will be used for practicing this.
HP637Social Marketing in Health Promotion4HP631, HP632, HP633, HP634 & HP63512
This unit focuses mainly on Social Marketing in Health Promotion. Social marketing and the use of community wide campaigns are important components of any Health Promotion Program. The two strategies are used interchangeably expanding on health education and communications methods with the aim of informing and/changing social norms. Social marketing uses commercial marketing techniques where the consumer (target audience) is the focus of market research, behavioural analysis, product development (IEC materials), advertising and promotion. In this unit students will be required to write one major project paper.
HP638Healthy Public Policy Design & Approach4HP631, HP632, HP633, HP634 & HP63512
Health policy design is a fundamental component of any health services education and a key action area for health promotion. The main aim of health policy design is to create a supportive environment to enable people to lead healthy lives. Such a policy makes healthy choices possible or easier for citizens (WHO – The Adelaide Recommendation).
The unit therefore, intends to discuss the different types of policies and their impact on health. The unit will provide information so as to help students understand the need for policies, particularly in health promotion. The unit will further expand on policy designs and approaches so as to develop students’ ability in policy initiation and formulation in their careers.
HP642Health Promotion Practicum 24HP635, HP611, HP684, HP685 & HP64112
This field placement practicum unit further builds the confidence and the experiences of students to develop their roles as public health professionals. This field placement practice comprises a 4 weeks attachment in public health related government and non-government organization department in the country for their workplace exposure and experiences. This working environment exposure demands students to engage in the normal workplace activities whereby lessons learnt and recommendations are compiled and presented through report.