This theory was first created by Ajzen and Fishbein in 1980. This theory provides a framework to study the attitudes that support behaviours and suggests that the most important determinate of an individual’s behaviour is their behavioural intent. This is the individual’s intention to preform a certain behaviour, which is formed from a combination of their attitude towards the behaviour and the subject norm. (The subject norm is the individual’s perception of what others expect them to do).
If the individual believes that the result of accepting the behaviour will have a positive effect then the individual will begin to have a positive attitude towards the behaviour. Also if the important people within that individual’s life view the action as being positive then a positive subject norm is created. Taken together; the two influences would strongly suggest that the person will follow the health advice.
Behavioural change is a function of: – Belief about the consequences of the behaviour Evaluation of the importance of the outcome – The expectations of significant others – A motivation to conform This model can be seen within the ‘Change 4 life Campaign’, which was used to try and get people motivated to becoming healthier and it also showed how much fat and sugar are in the food we eat. It helped people lose weight and become more active. The theory of reasoned action can be seen within this campaign as it influenced many people to lose weight and showed people the positive impact losing weight can have on their life.
By having a positive impact on the individuals life it also allows people to have a positive attitude about the campaign and can be shown as: Joining the campaign will help you lose weight The campaign is useful (Positive outcome) (Positive attitude) As there are both positive outcomes and positive attitudes it will influence others to join and show how the campaign has a positive impact on them. This may also convince family and friends that the campaign is worthwhile and they should join in.
This will create a positive subject norm as people are influencing them and then that individual is more incline to follow the health advice given to them. There is also another campaign which supports the theory of ‘Reasoned Action’. For example, another one is the Jump Rope for Heart Campaign. This campaign was put together by the British Heart Foundation. This campaign was set to raise money for the fight against heart disease and stroke, and also to show children how to stay healthy and have fun at the same time.
The model supports the campaign because it enables and influences children to be healthy and this will also affect other people within the children’s life, which could create a positive subject norm. This could help them in later life because they will understand how to stay healthy and active. The stages of change model: This model is used a lot in substance use services (e. g. smoking, alcohol and many illegal substances). It shows that the process of behaviour can be broken down into five stages.
These stages are: Precontemplation: there is no intention to change behaviour in the foreseeable future and the individual is usually unaware or under aware of their problems. People also try to defend their current behaviour and they will not think that they have a problem. Contemplation: people are aware that a problem does exist. They realise what the problem is and they think about how they can change this. However, even though they are thinking about changing they are still unsure about it.
Preparation: in this stage the individual is more motivated and have made a commitment to change their behaviour. During this stage the individual is getting information on how to change so they can then take the first steps which allows them to change. Action: This stage is when the individual starts to change their behaviour and they use a variety of different techniques to figure out what works best for them. Maintenance: this stage is when the individual successfully avoids any temptation to get back to their bad behaviour.
Usually in this stage the individual tells themselves how well they have done so they can keep on changing their behaviour. Relapse: returning to old behaviour and abandoning new changes. It is really common for people to experience relapse. Relapse happens when the individual has feelings of discouragement and seeing it as a failure and can occur at any stage. After these stages are completed the individual can then go through transcendence. This is when the individual is able to control their emotion and understand their behaviour and how to view their behaviour in a good light.
During this stage people will feel like they are a new person and their confidence will grow. This model can be seen within the campaign ‘Stoptober’. This campaign was put together to get people to stop smoking for 28 days. By doing this it was thought that more people will stop smoking as they will be others in the campaign doing this too, this will mean they will get the encouragement and motivation they need to stop smoking. The stages of change model can be seen in this campaign as the 28 days allow the smoker to go through all the different stages.
At the beginning the smoker will go through the precotemplation stage as they may think that they cannot quit smoking but as the process goes on, they will realise that they can do and the temptation of having a cigarette will decrease and they will be able to continue to the different stages. At the end of the 28 days the individual will have either relapsed, or they will be towards or have finished all the stages and will have realised that they can stop smoking for more than the 28 days.
Another campaign that follows the stages of change model is ‘Smoke Free Homes and Cars’, this campaign was put together to tell people the problems and risks of second hand smoking, and the effect it can have on their family. This model can be seen within this campaign because smokers will go through all the different stages and each of the individual stages are important as they all have a significant and different part in the role of quitting smoking. By knowing the facts of second hand smoking they will be able to make a conscious decision to stop smoking.
Courtney from Study Moose
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