Health  Vol.8 No.4 , February 2016
Family Health History and Behavioral Change among Undergraduate Students: A Mixed Methods Study
Abstract: Background: We examined family health history (FHH) as a public health intervention tool in undergraduate students. We hypothesized that the FHH assignment would positively relate to students’ FHH knowledge and health and healthcare-seeking behavioral change. Methods: Health professional students’ (n = 103) pre/post-test surveys and research papers were collected in 2011-2012, from a mid-western and southern university in the United States of America, using mixed methods research. Results: The majority of students were aged 18 - 30, women, White, had healthcare access and health insurance, and awareness of the term FHH. Significant logistic regression relationships existed between: 1) helping students understand important strengths and weaknesses in their health and quality of life and outcomes of talking with family and doctors about FHH; and 2) improving students’ understanding of what they needed to do to maintain their health and the outcome statement “FHH tells you about inherited genes.” Key themes from the research papers included actions and FHH and proposed behavioral changes. Conclusions: Quantitative findings supported the relationship between students’ assignment evaluation and knowledge change, while qualitative findings supported relationships between assignment evaluation and knowledge and behavioral change. This study highlights regional differences in students’ FHH and the need to address family support barriers to behavioral change.
Cite this paper: Rooks, R. and Ford, C. (2016) Family Health History and Behavioral Change among Undergraduate Students: A Mixed Methods Study. Health, 8, 325-335. doi: 10.4236/health.2016.84034.

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