Health psychology

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Essay Titles 2014-15
Choose 4 titles from the following 8. Each answer should be 500 words long and has a maximum of 25 marks assigned – equating to 2000 words overall. You will receive feedback in the form of a standard feedback sheet (see below) 1. What are the strengths and weaknesses of The Theory of Planned Behaviour model in predicting condom use to prevent sexually transmitted disease?

Theory of planned behaviour is a theory that attempts to relate health attitudes directly to behaviour (Ajzen, 1991). This essay will discuss strengths and weaknesses of Ajzen’s theory of planned behaviour model in predicting condom use and to prevent sexually transmitted diseases. Sutton, McVey and Glanz (1999) used the theory of planned behavior to predict the condom use intentions of young English people, and TPB does not only predicts the majority of the population it can also predict the condom usage behaviours minorities such as immigrants (Salabarria-Pena, Lee, Montgomery, Hopp & Muralles, 2003), yet the meta-analysis of Albarracin, Johnson, Fishbein and Muellerleile (2001) argued that TPB is efficient at predicting wide-range of health behaviours except for condom use because there is not enough considerable evidence. On the other hand the findings of Armitage and Conner (2001) suggests that TPB predicts between 21 and 36 per cent in actual behaviour for either health or non-health-related behaviours and between 40 and 50 per cent of variance in behavioural intention, however condom usage requires relational/coordinative decision making and social pressures influences this decision whereas TPB explains human behaviours on an individual rationality (Cho, 2008). TPB is not the only social health model that predicts health behaviours when TPB is compared with, the health belief model (HBM), HBM offered a better prediction of condom use behaviour because HBM explains human behaviours with cognitive elements such as outcome expectation, perceived threat and self-efficacy (Becker, 1974) but Wandersman and Boyd (1991) claimed that personal normative belief is an important predictor of condom use behaviour, yet critics of social cognition theories have argued that the theories are effectively irrefutable and tautological (Ogden,2003). Moreover, Marks (2006) suggested that the published studies used null hypothesis elimination with small samples of university pupil or smaller samples of patients and the validity, power, generalizability and power of these studies is questionable. Flowers, Sheeran, Beail and Smith (1997) theorizes sexual activity as social activity and in order to determine one`s choice of sexual acts context of the activity should be taken into account, also Rhodes (1995) draw attention to the situations where constraints and habits prevent the possibility of calculated decision making. Coleman et al., (2001) made a contemporary input and said that gay men shows compulsive behaviour and they prioritize the emotions rather than avoiding sexually transmitted disease. TPB has methodological flaws that might cause problems in predicting condom usage behaviours. The studies examining the capability of the TPB usually address only a specific health behaviour (Bryan, Fisher and Fisher, 2002) and majority of the research about the theory of planned behaviour do not considers the importance of performing a health behaviour on a long-term basis, however health behaviours are not immediately observable, health behaviours have to be performed repeatedly in order to increase the benefits. (Rivis & Sheeran, 2003) Also, it is argued that past behavior determines the current behaviours rather than the cognitions described by TPB (Sutton, 1994). Lastly, Spring et al. (2004) argued that using self-selected participants in studies related to TPB can bias the study towards positive findings and interfere with the generalizability. References

Albarracin, D., Johnson, B. T., Fishbein, M., & Muellerleile, P. A. (2001)....
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