Emma-Lee Finch (Example iPortfolio)

My Ratings

Graduate Attributes

  • Apply discipline knowledge, understand its theoretical underpinnings, and ways of thinking; Extend the boundaries of knowledge through research.

    Paragraph: Responsibility for obesity prevention

    The paragraph below was an assessment for a Nutrition unit. The assessment required completing a critical reading workbook, an annotated reference and constructing a paragraph on the responsibilty for obesity prevention. The paragraph had to follow a professional paragraph structure. A HD was received for this assessment.

    The responsibility for obesity prevention is shared widely and requires environmental modification to create a supportive environment in which the population can make individual food choices. The environment in which people live in has changed dramatically and now favours ease of access, cost and taste (Swinburn 2008). The physical, socio-cultural, economic and policy settings should be modified in order to promote behaviour change among the population (Swinburn 2008). Magnusson (2008) indicates that personal responsibility is a factor towards obesity prevention but the governments need to modify various environments in order to make achieving a healthy lifestyle easier. Without environmental modification there will be little reduction in the number of obese people within the population due to the subtle influences the environment has on day-to-day food choices (Magnusson 2008). A study conducted by Olsen et al. (2009) revealed that numerous participants associated with an environmental frame. This meant that they believed their individual decisions impacted upon their food choices but their environment played a fundamental role in weight gain. This lead participants to want an inter-sectoral approach to obesity prevention and expected the government to take the lead on environmental modification (Olsen et al. 2009). “The community must create the environment that maximize the potential for people to make healthy choices” (Armstrong 2007, p.1).

    Lesson Plan: Traffic Light Activity

    The table below is a section of a lesson plan developed for a Nutrition unit. The assessment was to develop an educational session for primary school students. As part of the assessment, a lesson plan had to be developed. The section of the lesson plan below, is for the activity for which  I was responsible.

    Learning Outcome 4:
    To categorize foods into everyday and sometimes foods. 

    Session Content:
    This session aims to inform children on foods that should be eaten everyday and foods that should only be eaten sometimes. The traffic light concept has been adopted for this session, although the amber light has been omitted due to their learning age. The everyday and sometimes foods terms will be used, as they are simple and easy to understand.

    Each child will be given one healthy (everyday) food item and one unhealthy (sometimes) food item. One at a time, each child will stand up and put each food item on the red or green tray. The green tray represents everyday foods and will be significantly larger than the red tray (sometimes foods) to further promote that you should eat lots of everyday foods and only a small amount of sometimes foods.

    Once each child has placed their items on the trays, a small discussion will be held regarding placement of each food item, if it is in the correct tray, and why it belongs in that tray.

    Resources Required:

    Items required:

    • 1 x large tray
    • 1 x small tray
    • Green crepe paper (to cover the large tray)
    • Red crepe paper (to cover the small tray)

    Food Items:

    • 1 x banana
    • 1 x apple
    • 1 x carrot (sticks)
    • 1 x celery (sticks)
    • 1 x low-fat yoghurt
    • 1 x bottle of water
    • 1 x potato chips
    • 1 x chocolate bar (no nuts)
    • 3 x biscuits (any sweet)
    • 1 x can soft drink
    • 1 x meat pie
    • 1 x roll up

    Evaluation / Method:

    Direct observation: this session will be evaluated through direct observation to see how many items are placed correclty on the appropriate tray.

    Questionaire: a small section of the evaluation questionaire will asses their knowledge of everyday and sometimes foods.

    Campaign: Beat the Binge

    The document below is a media release developed as a promotional strategy for the Beat the Binge campaign.

    Beat the binge
    Created 26/10/2010 at 11:38:53
  • Apply logical and rational processes to analyse the components of an issue; Think creatively to generate innovative solutions.

    The examples provided in the section above (Discipline Knowledge) all involved the use of Thinking Skills. Each project required analytical and logical thinking processes to ensure an effective campaign was developed, a succinct paragraph was produced, and an interesting yet comprehensive lesson plan was created.

    Developing the energy balance tool for the My Healthy Balance program required a lot of thinking to ensure all aspects were covered, that the tool was meeting its goals and objectives and that it is simple yet informative for participants. Examples of documents can be found in the My Showcases tab under 'Placement - My Healthy Balance (Diabetes WA).

    These skills were also used and developed throughout the Beat the Binge campaign. Designing and implementing a campaign requires specific thought processes to ensure the campaign targets the needs of the target group, is interesting yet informative and is appealing. Examples of documents and images from the campaign can be foung in the My Showcases tab under 'Beat the Binge'.

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:11:00
  • Decide what information is needed and where it might be found using appropriate technologies; Make valid judgements and synthesise information from a range of sources.

    Research Proposal

    The assessments mentioned in the above sections (Discipline Knowledge, Thinking Skills) also required the use of information skills. Determining what information is appropriate for the project and ensuring sufficient research has been conducted are essential.

    The document below provides an example of the use of information skills for a research proposal. The document highlights the need for a study to determine the effect of increased fruit intake and increased physical activity on obesity levels among children.  The development of this document involved extensive research of peer-review journals and analysis of information that should be included and information that should be excluded.


    “Ten percent of the world’s school-aged children are estimated to be carrying excess body fat” (Lobstein, Baur and Uauy 2004 p. 4). Obesity is a problem among many countries and its consequences are severe. Obesity is classified as a chronic medical condition and is associated with many other diseases (Lobstein, Baur and Uauy 2004 ; NSW Government n.d).

    Australia’s rates of childhood obesity are among the highest in developed nations increasing 1% each year, with 20-25% of children classified as overweight or obese (Go For Your Life: Victorian Government 2005; Lobstein, Baur and Uauy 2004; Victorian Government Health Information 2007). Childhood obesity tripled during 1985 to 1995 and the number of overweight children doubled (Dieticians Association of Australia [DAA] 2009; Go For Your Life: Victorian Government 2005). Results from the 1995 National Nutrition Survey indicated that 21% of participating males were overweight/obese and 23% of females (DAA 2009). Furthermore, evidence from a NSW survey portrayed that 26.2% of males and 28.4% of females in primary school aged between 7-11 years were overweight (Parliament of Australia: Parliamentary Library 2007). Obesity figures were also analysed to produce results indicating that 9.9% of males and 7.1% of females aged between 7-11 years were obese (Parliament of Australia: Parliamentary Library 2007).

    Results from the Child and Adolescent Physical Activity and Nutrition Survey (CAPANS) indicated that children living in Western Australia were heavier with increased weight compared to results from 1985 (Government of Western Australia 2005). Children’s weight has increased on average by 12kg and 6.6kg respectively for males and females, whilst the prevalence of overweight/obesity had doubled in males and tripled in females aged between 7-15 years since 1985 to 2003 (Government of Western Australia 2005).

    Consuming more energy than is expended leads to an energy imbalance within the body where excess energy is stored as fat leading to the development of overweight/obesity (DAA 2009). Evidence of this increase is found in data presented in surveys stating that between 1985 and 1995 children increased food and drink consumption by 10% (DAA 2009).

    Lack of physical activity combined with unhealthy eating habits is the main cause of overweight/obesity among children (NSW Government n.d). Environmental modifications have led to an increase in access of food and reduced physical activity in turn negatively influencing children’s activities and food choices (NSW Government n.d; WHO Technical Report Series 2003).

    Dietary changes and increased physical activity are required to reduce the severity of childhood obesity (DAA 2009). For children, these changes should be small, realistic and supported by their family (Victorian Government Health Information 2007). Dietary modifications should focus on reducing fat, sugar and total energy intake whilst physical activities need to be entertaining and incorporate incidental activities into the daily routine (Victorian Government Health Information 2007). Small changes in individual’s energy intake and physical activity participation will lead to large changes in body weight (DAA 2009). Therefore, these two components need to be addressed and incorporated into children’s lifestyles at an early age in order to encourage them to adopt healthy behaviours and help reduce the number of overweight/obese children.


    Fruit and vegetables are important for development and have significant health-protective effects (Government of South Australia n.d.; Timperio et al. 2008). Fruit and vegetables contain many minerals and nutrients that are important for healthy bodily functioning (Government of South Australia n.d.).

    Children consume less fruit and vegetables than recommended (Timperio et al. 2008). Results from the 1995 National Nutrition Survey indicate that only 32% of children aged between 5-12 years were eating the recommended amount of vegetables and an estimated 66% of children aged between 2-12 years consumed the recommended number of fruits. (Government of South Australia n.d.). When results were adjusted to remove fruit juice consumption less than 33% of children met the recommended fruit guidelines (Government of South Australia n.d.).

    Results of the CAPNS indicate that since 1985 there have been large changes in children’s eating patterns. Children are consuming greater quantities of confectionary and snack foods and less vegetables, milk products and eggs (Government of Western Australia 2005). The study also confirmed that children’s consumption of fruit and vegetables were well below the recommended daily intake (Government of Western Australia 2005). Furthermore, approximately 45% of students consumed confectionary and sugar based foods (Government of Western Australia 2005).

    Physical Activity

    Physical activity is any movement that a person participates in when they are awake or not entirely sedentary (Steinbeck 2001). This can be planned or incidental activity (Steinbeck 2001). Conventionally, children participated in regular physical activity throughout the school day along with walking or cycling to and from school (Pate et al. 2006). In recent years there has been a decline in these activities, reducing the energy expenditure of children and in turn contributing to the rise in overweight/obesity (Pate et al. 2006; WHO Technical Report Series 2003). Therefore increasing children’s levels of physical activity is necessary to reduce the prevalence of overweight/obesity (Steinbeck 2001).

    Evidence states that a major contributor to the high levels of obesity is reduced physical activity (Steinbeck 2001). Environmental influences encourage an inactive lifestyle contributing to the rates of childhood obesity as many children adopt positive energy balance (Hills, King and Armstrong 2007).  The ABS (2007) confirms the environmental influence as children were recorded to have spent approximately 28 hours a fortnight watching television or playing electronic games across 2005-2006. Participation in regular physical activity is important as it contributes to a healthy lifestyle and reduces the risk of chronic disease (Hills, King and Armstrong 2007).

    Obese children are often less active than children within the recommended weight category (Steinbeck 2001). It is important that obese children are encouraged to participate in regular physical activity as studies indicate that adiposity might be maintained by inactivity (Steinbeck 2001). Studies also show that obese children were less likely to participate in sports clubs and received lower grades for sport in school (Steinbeck 2001).

    The Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing (2009; Go For Your Life: Victorian Government 2005) has provided the following physical activity recommendations for children aged between 5-12 years;

    At least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity is required each day
    No more than 2 hours per day, especially during daylight, should be spent using electronic media for enjoyment, including television, computer games and the internet.
    Pedometers are a useful tool for measuring levels of physical activity for the following reasons; they have a low subject burden, are low cost, can be used in a variety of settings, are easy to administer to large groups and have the potential to promote behaviour change. Furthermore, walking is good physical activity as people can participate anywhere, it is free, easily accessible, can be conducted in a number of settings and most people are able to participate.

    Results of the CAPANS indicate that “less than one in seven students reported doing no sport, exercise or dance activities in a typical week” (Government of Western Australia 2005 p.3). In addition, it was recorded that approximately 50% of females and 33% of male participants spent more than “10 hours per week on sedentary behaviours” (Government of Western Australia 2005).

    Children should be encouraged to participate in physical activity (Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing 2004). Inactive children should commence activities they enjoy and begin at an appropriate level and increase steadily (Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing 2004).

     Needle Syringe Exchange Program

    The document below highlights the need for Needle Syringe Exchange programs. This document required the same skills as the previous document.


    The development of Needle Syringe Exchange Programs (NSEPs) was designed to reduce transmission rates of blood borne viruses among injecting drug users (IDUs) (Logan and Marlatt 2010). NSEPs in Australia have been effective in reducing transmission rates of blood borne viruses among IDUs therefore it is important they continue to have access to sterile injecting equipment (CDC 2005; Holtzman et al. 2009; WAAC n.d.). Providing IDUs with sterile injecting equipment is not only beneficial to their health but further protects the wider community (Logan and Marlatt 2010; WAAC n.d.). By 2010, approximately 5,000 lives will be saved, nationwide, through NSEPs (NCAHS website). NSEPs have also prevented 21,000 hepatitis C and 25,000 HIV infections (WAAC n.d.).

    The NSEPs have proved to be one of the most successful health promotion strategies both financially and for public health (NCAHS website). Through implementation of NSEPs there is a large return on investment. In Australia, it has been established that $141 million invested into NSEPs has seen a saving of $7.8 billion (WAAC n.d.). NSEPs are extensive throughout New South Wales where more than 8 million syringes and needles are dispensed each year, and about three quarters are provided by NSEPs (Bryant et al. 2010).

    Blood borne virus transmission, including hepatitis B, C and HIV, are the most important public health hazard connected with injecting drug use (Need & Syringe program Policy 2009; Queensland Government 2009). Blood-borne viruses have the potential to affect everyone in the population, therefore confirming the need for health promotion interventions (Need & Syringe program Policy 2009). Blood borne viruses have a high burden on society because of the “cost to the health care system and employers” (Need & Syringe program Policy 2009 p. 2) IDUs are at an increased risk of acquiring a blood borne virus through sharing contaminated injecting equipment containing others blood (CDC 2005; Daya et al. 2010; WAAC n.d.). “A small amount of blood remains in or on the injecting equipment” after use which will be passed into another person’s bloodstream if the injecting equipment is to be shared (Western Australian Department of Health 2007). If the original IDU has a blood borne virus and allows another IDU to use their equipment the virus will be transmitted (CDC 2005; Western Australian Department of Health 2007).

    NSEPs support single use of injecting equipment and provide IDUs with clean, safe equipment to use and dispose of, including; barrels, syringes and tips (CDC 2005; Western Australian Aids Council [WAAC] n.d.). These are provided free of charge when exchanged otherwise IDUs can purchase them for a low fee (CDC 2005; WAAC n.d.). Many drug users have had minimal contact with health care services and therefore using the NSEP facilities provides a point of initial contact for drug users to seek support (Need & Syringe program Policy 2009). NSEPs are not only involved in the provision of sterile injecting equipment they also offer support, referrals and information to IDUs to reduce their risk of obtaining a blood borne virus and improve their health (Bryant et al. 2010; CDC 2005; Logan and Marlatt 2010).

    It is important to note that NSEPs do not support or condone drug use or the recruitment of new drug users. Furthermore, there is no evidence to confirm that providing IDUs with access to sterile injecting equipment will increase the prevalence of IDUs within the community (CDC 2005; Need & Syringe program Policy 2009; Queensland Government 2009; Wodak and Cooney 2006).

    Studies of the effectiveness of NSEPs indicate that IDUs will utilize sterile injecting equipment if it is accessible, were less likely to share or borrow injecting equipment, and did not reuse equipment as often (CDC 2005; Holtzman et al. 2009; Wodak and Cooney 2006). Studies also indicate that IDUs who participate in NSEPs are less likely to employ hazardous behaviours in turn reducing their risk of acquiring hepatitis C, or other blood borne viruses (Holtzman et al. 2009). Therefore, NSEPs are a vital strategy to prevent the transmission of blood borne viruses among IDUs (Holtzman et al. 2009).

    Increasing IDUs access to and availability of sterile injecting equipment is imperative to ensure their risk of acquiring a blood borne virus is limited (Wodak and Cooney 2006). It is important that IDUs can easily access sterile injecting equipment and health information (Queensland Government 2009). NSEPs are an effective strategy as they reduce the number of IDUs in the community by increasing their contact with management services during the early stages of use (Need & Syringe program Policy 2009; Queensland Government 2009).

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:14:59
  • Communicate in ways appropriate to the discipline, audience and purpose.

     All of the examples above (Discipline Knowledge, Thinking Skills, Information Skills)  have used communication skills; written, verbal, between group members, teachers or health professionals.

     Another example of good communication skills can be seen through my mystery shopper report that is conducted through my casual employment. The clothing company I work for, Pilgrim, prides themselves on customer service.

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:17:42
  • Use appropriate technologies recognising their advantages and limitations.

    Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint are technologies that I use every day. Continual development of these skills is necessary to ensure I am keeping up with an ever-developing industry.

    Through my work with Diabetes WA (work experience and placement) I have produced powerpoint presentations and learnt how to mail merge. I have also increased my Excel skills. A section of a basic spreadsheet can be seen below. The spreasheet was used to determine the number of minutes of physical activity for each food included in the energy balance tool. The numbers under the breakfast colum indicate the number of kilojoules in each food, whilst the numbers under each physical activity column indicate the minutes of physical activity required to burn off the kilojoules in the food. The following equations were inputted into Excel to produce the spreadsheet:

    light physical activty = 12.6 kJ/min

    moderate physical activity = 21 kJ/min

    vigorous physical activity = 33.6 kJ/min


    breakfast    light PA    moderate PA    vigorous PA
             1,700                135                          81                         51
             2,282                181                        109                         68
                         -                              -                            -  
             2,635                209                        125                         78
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                755                  60                          36                         22
                535                  42                          25                         16
                931                  74                          44                         28
                492                  39                          23                         15
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                         -                              -                            -  
                850                  67                          40                         25
             1,600                127                          76                         48
                         -                              -                            -  
             1,318                105                          63                         39

    Further Examples

    Further examples of my technical skills can be seen in the:

    My Courses tab in 'Health Promotion Media and Advocacy' where there is an example of a pamphlet I designed for an assessment.
    My Showcases tab in 'Work Experience - Diabetes WA' where there is an example of a powerpoint presentation I developed.

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:19:35
  • Use a range of learning strategies; Take responsibility for one's own learning and development; Sustain intellectual curiosity; know how to continue to learn as a graduate.

    I am a very keen learner and believe I practice life-long learning skills through volunteering, work experience, being a member of the Health Promotion Association and the Health Promotion Student Association at Curtin.

    I thrive on new knowledge and enjoy reading about changes to the community.

    I believe these skills will be further enhanced upon graduating university when I am no longer provided with new information during tutorials and workshops.

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:21:08
  • Think globally and consider issues from a variety of perspectives; Apply international standards and practices within a discipline or professional area.

    As part of our Health Promotion Methods and Settings in Health Promotion units I have used my international perspectives skills. Through learning about the HIV/AIDS epidemic I have gained an understanding of the issue across various countries, Uganda in particular. I have read journal articles, watched a documentary and listened to a guest lecturer on the topic of HIV/AIDS in Uganda and across Africa.

    I have also used my international perscpectives skills through volunteering with the UWA Health Promotion Unit. Conducting a TAP Quiz at Currie Hall (UWA College) required the use of these skills when communicating with international students.

    Through my casual employment, Pilgrim, I am also required to use these skills when communicating with people of different cultures and backgrounds.

    Another example of this skill is through reference to the World Health Organisation, the Jakarta Declaration and the Ottawa Charter. These have been used extensively throughout my degree and allow me to understand and apply the standards and practices. Furthermore, analysis of peer-reviewed articles in countries other than Australia provides me with an insight into the health promotion programs and nutritional culture of other countries.

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:22:38
  • Respect individual human rights; Recognise the importance of cultural diversity particularly the perspective of Indigenous Australians; Value diversity of language.

    Examples of my ability to achieve these skills can be seen in the following sections:

    • My Courses tab in the 'Health Promotion Media and Advocacy' section where a pamphlet was developed. It's appropriateness was tested using the SMOG and Gobbledegook tests. A document is provided underneath the pamphlet to highlight the purpose of the pamphlet and assess its readibility.
    • My Showcases tab in the 'Work Experience - Diabetes WA' section where a powerpoint presentation has been developed. The powerpoint will be used by a health professional to promote the My Healthy Balance Program. The powerpoint needed to be succinct, easy to administer and easy to listen to; all aspects associated with cultural and international skills
    • My Showcases tab in the 'UWA Health Promotion Volunteer' section where photos show me interacting with students from a variety of cultures and nationalities. International and cultural skills were essential to effectively communicate (verbally and information) with participants

    Furthermore, the units Health Promotion Methods and Settings in Health Promotion have provided me with intercultural understandings, through analysis of HIV/AIDS worldwide and understanding cultural differences between settings used for health promotion

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:23:27
  • Work independently and in teams; Demonstrate leadership, professional behaviour and ethical practices.

    Through completing work experience and my 100 hour placement at Diabetes WA my professional skills have developed immensely. Working in a professional environment, dressing appropriately and conversing with individuals are essential and I believe I possess these skills. The written work presented in the sections above demonstrate working in teams, individually and producing professional projects.

    My mystery shopper report also shows my professional skills in a work environment and when serving customers. I was also name Employee of Month March 2010 which further confirms my professional skills in relation to team work, completing tasks, appropriate standard of dress, time management and punctuality.

    The Beat the Binge media release and alert required professional skills in writing the articles but also contacting journalists and seeking permission to send the media release alert to them.

    Professional skills have also been used through conducting an educational session for primary school students. Interacting with staff, the students, the language used and dress standards were essential.

    Furthermore, these skills have been used during meetings with health professionals, when visiting agencies and during field trip experiences. I was required to use professional skills during consultation with Sally from WAAC, during an observation session on the NSEP van, during canteen visits and when helping out at a School Breakfast Program at Balga Primary School.

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:25:03


  • Achievement of all Curtin’s graduate attributes, ensuring assessments throughout the course provide students with comprehensive and coordinated opportunities for work-integrated and career development learning, scenario-based problem-solving, and critical reflection on real or simulated work-based experiences related to their course and aspirations.

    Energy Balance Tool

    The document below was developed for the online, interactive My Healthy Balance program. The program consists of eight sessions and various tools to help increase participants understanding of a healthy lifestyle and ways to achieve it. As part of my professional placement I am required to develop, implement and evaluate an energy balance tool for the program. The document below explains the purpose of the tool and its components. The brief will be given to the web design company involved in the program where a quote will be determined.

    Briefing document

    To develop an interactive tool that encourages participants to make healthy behaviour changes to achieve energy balance.

    To develop an interactive energy balance tool for participant’s of the My Healthy Balance Program.

    1. To provide participants with healthy food options to assist in achieving energy balance and promote behaviour change.
    2. To provide information on portion sizes and assist participants to recognise the effect of portion size on energy balance.
    3. To provide information on physical activities and assist participants to recognise the effect of physical activity on energy balance.
    4. To assist participants in recognising the number of minutes of physical activity required to meet energy balance for various foods/meals.

    This tool is designed to promote behaviour change in order to achieve energy balance among participants. The tool will consist of four components including selecting an unhealthy food item/meal, selecting a physical activity, creating a healthier plate and analysis of portion sizes. Each component will highlight the importance of energy balance, whether or not it has been achieved and provide alternative behaviours that will lead to energy balance.

    Energy balance occurs when energy intake equals energy expenditure. Providing participants with alternatives to their unhealthy behaviours promotes behaviour change and in turn promotes energy balance.

    The internet is an effective setting to reach a large audience and many Australians are capable of using internet-based programs. Developing an interactive, internet-based energy balance tool provides participants with the opportunity to explore various outcomes of altering their food habits and physical activity levels in relation to energy balance, and improving their health and well-being.

    Outline of energy balance tool

    The tool will be broken down into 4 sections including;

    1. Introduction and choose a food
    2. Choosing a physical activity
    3. Creating a healthier plate with comparison to the original food item/meal in terms of fat, sugar, kilojoules and physical activity requirements
    4. Comparing  portion sizes between original food and smaller version in terms of fat, sugar, kilojoules and physical activity requirements

    General recommendations

    • Incorporate a snapshot of the energy balance tool on the My Healthy Balance homepage.
    • Individuals will be required to provide age, height, weight and gender information during My Healthy Balance registration.
    • Allowing participants to use the tool after completion of the My Healthy Balance program. This will allow them to refer back to the energy balance tool whilst encouraging them to review the session components of the program.
    • A small blurb at the beginning of each section will highlight the purpose of the activity and the relevance to energy balance.
    • In all sections a large illustration of a traditional weighing scale will be used to depict energy balance for the individual. Underneath the scale will be a brief description indicating whether the person is balanced or not and a suggestion to improve this.
    • Send to a friend function.
    • Reset button.
    • Ability for participants to select an alternative section i.e. Switch between portion size, physical activity and create a healthier plate.


    Introduction and choose a food

    This section will incorporate an introduction depicting the aim of the energy balance tool and introducing participants to the concept of energy balance. Participants will be required to select a food item or meal from the list provided. Each food item/meal will have the corresponding kilojoule content and number of teaspoons of fat and sugar provided in a box nearby. The foods/meals in the list will be typical unhealthy foods/meals consumed by a large proportion of the population. An illustration of each food/meal will also be required.

    Choosing a physical activity

    This section will comprise the selected food/meal illustration (from section 1) and will require the participant to select a physical activity from the list provided and enter the duration in minutes. A brief blurb will state the purpose of this section is to analyse how many minutes of physical activity it will take to burn off the food/meal chosen. The scale illustration will move according to the state of energy balance achieved. Information regarding the state of balance will be displayed underneath the scale illustration and recommendations on how to improve energy balance provided. Four other physical activities from the list will be displayed underneath the scale illustration and allow participants to scroll over each to determine how many more minutes of physical activity is needed to return to energy balance.

    Incidental physical activity should also be re-capped in this section and examples of common incidental physical activities provided in the selection list.

    The most common physical activities within the Australian population and their associated intensity will be in the selection list including:

    General Gardening Light
    Brisk Walking Moderate
    Cycling for leisure Moderate
    Running Vigorous
    Aerobics Vigorous
    Swimming Vigorous
    Netball Vigorous
    Tennis Vigorouis

    The number of minutes required to ‘burn off’ the selected food item/meal depends on the intensity of the physical activity. The formula below will be used to calculate the number of minutes needed to ‘burn off’ each food item/meal in the food list:

    Light intensity physical activity  
    12.6 kJ/min
    Moderate intensity physical activity 21kJ/min
    Vigorous intensity physical activity 


    Presentation of results

    This step will show the participant whether they have achieved energy balance. If they haven’t achieved energy balance, 3 options will be offered for them to choose from to ‘bring back the balance’.

    Option 1 Creating a healthier plate
    Option 2 Compare portion sizes
    Option 3 Physical activity

    Each of these options is outlined below.

    1.0 Creating a healthier plate with comparison to original in terms of fat, sugar, kilojoules and physical activity requirements

    The section will highlight the healthier food/meal options to the original chosen food. The original food illustration will be seen on the screen along with a blank plate. Illustrations of healthier food options will be provided next to the blank plate encouraging participants to create a healthier plate. The healthy food options must relate directly to the unhealthy option in order to effectively portray the message. Once the healthy plate is constructed the kilojoule content, number of teaspoons of fat and sugar and minutes needed to burn off the food/meal based on the selected physical activity will arise under each plate. The scale illustration will also reflect energy balance of the original plate and the new plate.

    2.0 Compare portion sizes between original food and smaller version

    This section will display the image of the original food/meal selected and an illustration of the same food/meal but a smaller portion size. The kilojoules, number of teaspoons of fat and sugar and the minutes of physical activity required to burn off the food/meal based on the original selection will be provided for comparison.

    3.0 Physical activity

    This section will display the original food item/meal and the original physical activity and number of minutes selected by the participant. The scale illustration will ‘move’ according to the state of energy balance. Underneath the scale illustration will be four other physical activity options from the selection list. These will not include the physical activity the participant originally selected. The participant will be able to scroll over each of the four physical activities to see how many more minutes of physical activity are required in order to achieve energy balance.

    Considerations when developing the energy balance tool

    • The number of foods/meals to be included.
    • Deciding which healthy food items correspond to each unhealthy food/meal.
    • Deciding the exact size of the smaller food/meal portion.

    More examples of my industry skills can be found in the My Showcases tab in 'Coles - Letters of Recognition', 'UWA Health Promotion Volunteer', 'Work Experience - Diabetes WA' and 'Placement - My Healthy Balance (Diabetes WA)'

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:30:07
  • Achievement of Curtin’s graduate attributes 7 (international perspective) and 8 (intercultural understanding) ensuring assessments throughout the course provide students with opportunities to demonstrate Indigenous cultural competence and consider issues from a global perspective, and respect and value diversity and social justice.

    Examples of my ability to achieve these skills can be seen in the following sections:

    • My Courses tab in the 'Health Promotion Media and Advocacy' section where a pamphlet was developed. It's appropriateness was tested using the SMOG and Gobbledegook tests. A document is provided underneath the pamphlet to highlight the purpose of the pamphlet and assess its readibility.
    • My Showcases tab in the 'Work Experience - Diabetes WA' section where a powerpoint presentation has been developed. The powerpoint will be used by a health professional to promote the My Healthy Balance Program. The powerpoint needed to be succinct, easy to administer and easy to listen to; all aspects associated with cultural and international skills
    • My Showcases tab in the 'UWA Health Promotion Volunteer' section where photos show me interacting with students from a variety of cultures and nationalities. International and cultural skills were essential to effectively communicate (verbally and information) with participants
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  • Providing students with rich educational choices beyond the narrow confines of a single discipline, including opportunities such as achieving interdisciplinary majors, working in cross-disciplinary or interprofessional teams to solve complex problems, and completing elective units or modules.

    Work Experience and Field Placements

    My work experience and placement at Diabetes WA are excellent exanples of interdisciplinary skills. I am required to develop professional documents using the knowledge and skills I have learnt from university. I am also required to adapt these skills when working in different environments and settings. Specific examples where interdisciplinary skills have been used can be seen in the My Showcases tab in the 'UWA Health Promotion Volunteer', 'Work Experience - Diabetes WA' and 'Placement - My Healthy Balance (Diabetes WA)' sections.

    Furthermore, participation in the unit Settings in Health Promotion has provided me with the knowledge and skills required to implement health promotion in a variety of settings. Considering cultural differences is essential when working across different disciplines.


    Settings in Health Promotion Assessment

    The following document was written as an assessment for Settings in Health Promotion depicting the need for health promotion within the workplace setting

    1.0 Introduction

    The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health promotion as the “process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health” (WHO 2010a, p. 1). Therefore, workplace health promotion can be defined as the strategies that are incorporated into the workplace designed to optimise the health and productivity of staff (Goetzel and Ozminkowski 2008, WHO 2010b). Workplace health promotion may also involve policy and environmental modification to create a supportive setting that can assist with behaviour change.

    The workplace is a priority setting for health promotion and various studies have acknowledged the benefit of this setting (Steyn et al. 2009; WHO 2010b). This paper will provide evidence for why workplace health promotion is essential, the advantages and barriers of the workplace setting and the importance of nutrition-based health promotion interventions in this setting.

    2.0 The workplace as a health promotion setting

    According to the WHO (2010b) workplace health promotion is effective because of the setting it provides and the infrastructure that is available to support health promoting behaviours among a large audience. The WHO also recognizes the direct link between the workplace and individuals physical, social, mental and economic health which influences upon the well-being “of their families, communities and society” (WHO 2010b, p. 1). Businesses are increasingly supporting workplace health promotion as they realize that their future is dependent on a healthy workforce (WHO 2010b).

    A large proportion of adults work in the professional sector and spend a large amount of their time at their workplace, subsequently allowing health promotion interventions to target a wide audience (Harden et al. 1999; Linnan et al. 2008; Steyn et al. 2009). This also permits employees to be exposed to a range of health promoting initiatives and encourages them to participate (Goetzel and Ozminkowski 2008). Furthermore, the workplace is regarded as a successful setting for health promotion as it encompasses leadership, peer support and colleague influence, of which are crucial in promoting long-term behavioral change (Harden et al. 1999; Preventative Health Taskforce n.d; Young 2006).

    The environment within a workplace employs an individual influence on the health of workers, and through modification of physical and social surroundings, via policy changes, encourages a supportive environment to aid in the promotion of behaviour change (Linnan et al. 2008; Noblet 2003; Steyn et al. 2009).

    Workplace health promotion programs are also effective as they not only positively influence individuals but may have a flow-through effect towards improving the lifestyles of their families and friends outside the work setting (Mhurchu, Aston and Jebb 2010).

    It is acknowledged that workplace health promotion is essential to ensure good health of employees as employers identify workers of poor health with decreased performance, security and spirit (Gotzel and Ozminkowski 2008). In addition, the costs associated with employees of poor health or who have risk factors for many diseases is high. Some of these costs include; workers compensation and disability expenses, high levels of absenteeism and reduced productivity (Goetzel and Ozminkowski 2008; Harden et al. 1999).

    Studies have also shown that colleague’s performances are negatively affected by employees of poor health (Goetzel and Ozminkowski 2008).

    3.0 Advantages of implementing workplace health promotion

    There are many advantages for implementing workplace health promotion initiatives, for the employer and employee. The positive outcomes include increased morale and decreased absenteeism whilst having a positive effect on productivity and on a larger scale, the economy (Bellew 2008; Harden et al. 1999; Steyn et al. 2009; WHO 2010b). Workplace health promotion is often cost effective as it allows for reductions in the cost associated with the poor health of employees (Steyn et al. 2009).

    4.0 Disadvantages of implementing workplace health promotion

    There are several reasons causing businesses to be apprehensive in enforcing workplace health promotion interventions. Major barriers preventing effective implementation include participation, commitment to the program, time restrictions and interest (Harden et al. 1999; Steyn et al. 2009; van Oostrom et al. 2009). Other reasons include, employers not wanting to interfere with their employees personal lives and health, employers belief that health promotion interventions are luxuries and not directly related to the businesses work, and the belief that interventions will negatively impact upon productivity due to time being taken away from their current duties (Goetzel and Ozminkowski 2008).

    Small businesses believe it is difficult for them to have the resources required to begin health initiatives in comparison to large scale companies as they often don't have the infrastructure at hand to cope with such a change (Goetzel and Ozminkowski 2008).

    5.0 Nutrition and the workplace

    Workplace health promotion focusing on nutrition is essential as “adults are the first group to be affected by nutrition-related chronic diseases” (Doak 2002, p. 276).

    Consuming a diet of nutrient-poor foods can lead to the development obesity and in turn many chronic health conditions including type 2 diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease (Astrup 2001; Doak 2002; Mhurchu, Aston and Jebb 2010; Nutrition Australia 2007). Poor nutrition is also directly associated with stress, increased absenteeism and reduced efficiency and profitability (Murchur, Aston and Jebb 2010; Nutrition Australia 2007). Workplace health promotion interventions support workplaces as they “assist employees to gain control over their health and well-being” (Nutrition Australia 2007, p.1). Improved health will lead to improvements in employees’ job satisfaction, self-esteem, concentration and energy (Nutrition Australia 2007). Other benefits of workplace health promotion include increased productivity and work quality, reduced number of sick days taken, decreased health costs and an improvement in employee commitment (Nutrition Australia 2007).

    The workplace is an ideal setting for nutritional health promotion as 61% of Australian’s are employed and approximately 7.7 million spend between 25%-33% of their lives at work (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2008; WorkHealth WorkSafe Victoria 2010; Vic Health n.d.). In addition, approximately 65% of adults are classified overweight and 30% obese (Gates et al. 2006). Statistics from WorkHealth WorkSafe (2010) indicate that in Victoria over $440 million dollars per annum is attributable to illness and injury resulting in absence from work, whilst many of these chronic conditions are preventable through diet and physical activity.

    The environment in which people purchase and consume food is likely to contribute to the increase in obesity (Gates et al. 2006; Story et al. 2008). Environmental and policy modifications, including increasing availability of healthy food, to the workplace are very effective in promoting behaviour change within the targeted population (Gates et al. 2006; Story et al. 2008). Therefore increasing access to health food options within the workplace setting will encourage workers to choose healthier food options and in turn improve their health. Education is not adequate to promote behavior change, the food environment needs to be assessed and modified to increase workers access to these products (Drewnowski and Darmon 2005).

    6.0 Conclusion

    Extensive evidence indicates that workplace health promotion is effective and has the potential to increase the health and productivity of employees (Goetzel and Ozminkowski 2008). There are many benefits of implementing workplace interventions and the barriers must be considered during development. Nutrition is an important determinant of workers health and well-being thus confirming the need for environmental and policy changes to made as part of nutrition health promotion interventions in the workplace setting. Education should be combined with other strategies to modify the environment to promote behavior change within the targeted population.

    Created 26/10/2010 at 14:46:24