Mass Media Campaigns and Social Marketing (PUBH5026)


This unit focuses on mass-reach public health campaigns used to promote health and prevent disease. Building on introductory Masters of Public Health units of study in health promotion/disease prevention [or equivalent], this unit describes the rationale for mass-media led campaigns, social marketing interventions, and how they fit into a comprehensive approach to population health promotion and chronic disease prevention. The major themes covered are the principles of mass-reach communications in public health; designing campaigns [formative evaluation]; developing public health campaigns as part of comprehensive health promotion; understanding the messages, branding and marketing of campaigns; process and impact evaluation of campaigns; the differences between campaigns and social marketing initiatives; and the role of ancillary and supportive health promotion strategies, including media placement and advocacy. In addition, the role of, and evaluating social media campaigns will be included. The unit will equip students with skills to plan, design, implement and evaluate public health campaigns.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


Face-to-face/ on-campus 2-day residential workshop (lectures, on-line discussions, and student participation and student presentations)


1x 1500 word assignment (60%); on-line participation/discussion (40%)


Course readings will be provided before the workshop. These are required readings, and there is some individual student preparation required for presentation at the first workshop and after the workshop to prepare for the on-line two weeks discussions.

Faculty/department permission required?


Unit of study rules



Assumed knowledge

Training in research methods epidemiology is advised but not essential.

Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.