University of Utah
Educational Psychology 396
Peer Educators for Community Action (3 credits)
Kari Ellingson, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor
QUARTER TAUGHT: Fall, Winter, Spring (to begin Spring 1996)

Method in Which Serive-Learning Course Requirenents are Met:

1 Needed Service: Students in the course will provide a needed service by working on projects either directly or indirectly related to one of three areas: Substance Abuse, Sexual Health or Violence. Sufficient need for these services exists both on-campus and off pus. Projects will be proposed by the students and/or by the instructors who represent the campus agencies directly responsible for education in these areas. This may entail working with the Alcohol & Drug Education Center, Office of Health Promotion or the Women's Resource Center. Outside agencies may include Rape Recovery Center, Odyssey House, AIDS Foundation, YWCA or PWA Coaltion.

2: Students will be learning the relationship between an individual's health and the health of their community. "Health is neither achieved nor compromised in isolation. An individual's health and the health of his or her environment and society are inextricably interrelated" (Fabiano, 1994). As they learn information about this interaction, they will also be learning about critical issues related to mental and physical health.

3. Class contemplates through service: Discussions will be integrated in the weekly classes. Each student will be responsible for presenting information to the class with regards to the facts and the feelings generated through their work. Students will also keep journals detailing their learning process. A final report with recommendations will be required.

4. Assessing Learning: As mentioned above, the content of the course is directly geared toward a community focus. To successfully complete the course, students must show learning from the experiential as well as didactic portion of the course. Grading will be as follows: Journals 20%, Critical Evaluation of Advertising 10%, Videotape of Communication Skills 10%, Midterm 20%, Service Learning Evaluations 20%, Service Learning Final Paper 20%.

5. Evaluation of Service: Each project which the student chooses will be evaluated although the method of evaluation will differ depending on the recipient. The sponsoring agency will be asked for feedback to the instructor and directly to the student. Other methods of evaluation will differ depending on the project. Students will also receive evaluation from the instructor involved with the specific project and from other students. All students will be required to turn in a Final Project Paper.

6. Civic Education: The purpose of the course is civic education, as reflected in the quote in #2. The purpose of the service is to make "real" the class material and learning. The journals will allow the student to reflect the interaction of their service and experience with the community. In the Final report, students will explain how they feel they affected their community and how they believe they can continue to be an integral part of that community.

7. Knowledge Enhances Service: The focus of this class is service. As the students work with professionals in the areas listed above and with the clients in their specific projects, they will be able to more fully understand their commitment to themselves is interrelated to their commitment to their community. Health and mental health cannot be learned in a vacuum and the service will help the students carry this learning to other areas of their life, continuing to impact others. Following the class, interested students will apply to work as Peer Educators.

8. Learning from other Class Members: Even the in-class portion of the class is very experiential. The basis of learning will be done through discussions and presentation of the projects undertaken. Furthermore, many of the projects will be done in teams with two or more students working together. The last class period will be devoted to students reporting on their service-learning projects. The purpose of the class is to train a cadre of concerned citizen who feel a commitment not only to individual responsibility but to social responsibility. The final project presentation should describe what they have learned through this experience.

Fabiano, P. (1994). "From personal health into community action: Another step in peer health education" _Journal of American College Health, 43_, 115-121.

Educational Psychology

Course Process Goals:

To provide a safe and caring class environment for students to explore personal and social concerns related to their personal and community health, both physical and psychological.

Actively create a classroom community among the participants, promote an understanding--and perhaps change--in their normative behaviors

To actively promote dialog and critical thinking about issues of concern for self and college students.

Course Outcome Goals:

To prepare students to become educators with a high degree of commitment to personal physical and psychological health and a strong understanding about the connections between their individual health and the health of their community. 1

Prepare students to build community, change cultural norms, and model healthy behavior.2

Provide students with the knowledge, skills and motivation to become agents of change both in their own lives and in the life of their community. 1


Describe the interaction between the health of the individual and the well-being of the community.

Identify factors that influence personal and community health. Define a cultural norm and discuss how they affect behavior choices. Identify one topic and service learning project of interest for practical experience. Demonstrate understanding and proficiency in the basics of communication skills and Carkhuff s "Core Qualities" of the helping relationship.

  1. Fabiano, P.M. (1994). From personal health into community action. Journal of American College Health, 43.
  2. Gould, J.M. (1995). Designing enhanced peer education training. Enhancing Peer Education Programs (ACHA).



Course Outline

Week 1
Team Building Exercise
Introduction to Course Outline
Prejudice Reduction Workshop
Introduction of Concept of Service Leaming

Begin Journals

Week 2
A. Exercise to identify individual versus community responsibility for health issue

B.       The Empowerment Model
C.       Power and limitations of responsibility
D.       Survey sample of campus regarding health issues

E. Components of behavior change.

Read Hawkhurst's "Empowerment Model"
Read Sloane & Zimmer's "The Power of Peer Health Education' Choose Service-Project

Week 3
Media's messages about wellness
More immediate messages:

1.       Society
         a. Utah
         b. Campus
2.       Family
3.       Friends/Peers
4.       Relationships

Self messages
Define a cultural norm in the class.
How would we change it?

Cricial Evaluation of Advertising

Week 4
Community Wellness
Brainstorm what defines a healthy community. Exercise in which students break into groups and plan a program of change for a community with
various problems (e.g., drugs, school drop-outs, high unemployment, etc.)
Lecture on Community Mental Health and Public Health Models) Discussion of Service Learning Projects

Week 5
Components of the Helping Relationship
Helper Characteristics (Carkhuff)
Attending and Listening Skills
The Awareness Wheel
Role-playing exercises

Read excerpts from Egan's "Skilled Helper" Video-tape skills with partner

Week 6
Clarifying and Problem Solving Skills
Role-playing exercises
Componets of Becoming a Peer Opinion Leader Discussion of Peer Educator Options on Campus Basics of Health Promotion and Prevention Strategies

Read excerpts from Egan's "Skilled Helper" Attend program of PEER, SHOWME, TOPS

Week 7
Facts and figures about sexual health/STDs Facts and figures about date rape
Brainstorm ways students could serve as change agents Role-play helping skills in dealing with above situations

Read Grossberg et al "Training Opinion Leaders to Promote Safer Sex" Read Simon's "Complex Issues Sexual Assault Peer Programs" Self-evaluation of skills

Week 8
Facts and figures about alcohol & drug abuse Facts and figures about A & D in relation to violence, date rape, and sexual health
Brainstorm ways students could serve as change agents Role-play helping skills in dealing with above situations

Read excerpts from Presley, et al. "Alcohol and Drugs on American College Campuses"
Self-evaluationof skills

Week 9
Facts and figures about eating disorders Relate to sexual health, date rape, and substance abuse. Brainstorm ways students could serve as change agents Role-play helping skills in dealing with above situations

Self-evaluation skills

Week 10
Student Reports on Service-Leaming Projects What next?

Final Project Paper
Journals Due

Date: Fri, 26 Jan 1996 14:19:51 MST
From: Renee Buchanan <