Impact of College Health Education and Physical Education Courses on Personal Wellness

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Wellness Perspectives: Research, Theory, and Practice


This research was conducted to ascertain the effect of health education and physical education teaching strategies on overall wellness levels. The study proposed to identify the impact among college level courses on individual wellness. Subjects selected attended a large public university in the Great Lakes region. Students attending this university are required to complete a 3 credit hour course in health education and three 1 credit hour physical education activity courses. Subjects were administered the Stevens' Point Wellness Assessment the first and last days of the quarter.

Of the five teaching methods in this research study, only the general health education lectures course and the goals course realized significant increases in wellness scores (t=-6.003, p<.01' and t=-3.367, p<.01, respectively). It appears that health education courses do have an impact on improving students' wellness. It addition, it seems that select physical education courses have little impact on students' wellness. The assumption that becoming physically active automatically means improved wellness needs to be questioned. For individuals in charge of "wellness" programs, the heaviest emphasis of the course should be on the content typically covered in a general health course.