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Chapter: 11th Nursing : Chapter 10 : Health Education and Audio visual Aids

Principles of health education

Some basic principles that should be followed in imparting health education.

Principles of health education

Some basic principles that should be followed in imparting health education. 

(It can be summed up using a mnemonics -“MILK CPR LG CSF”)

M : Motivation

I : Interest

L : Learning by doing

K : Known to unknown

C : Credibility

P : Participation

R : Reinforcement

L : Leader

G : Good human relation

C : Comprehensive

S : Setting an example

F : Feed back


In every person there is a fundamental desire to learn. Stimulation or awakening of this desire is called motivation. The two types of motives - primary and secondary motives. The primary motives are sex, hunger, survival; these are inborn desires. The secondary motives are praise, love, rewards, punishment and recognition.


It is well -known psychological principle, that unless people are interested, they will not learn. Health education should therefore relate to the interests of the people. All health teaching, in order to be effective, must be based on the health needs of the people.

Learning by doing

Learning is an action process. The following Chinese proverbs emphasizes the importance of learning by doing


Known to unknown

We must always go from “simple to complex”; from concrete to the abstract, from easy to difficult and from known to unknown. These are the rules of teaching. One should start educating people from what they know already and then expose them to new knowledge.


It is the degree to which the message to be communicated is perceived as trustworthy by the receiver. It must be based on facts. It must be consistent, compatible with scientific knowledge and also with local culture, educational system and social goods.


It means taking part in or involving oneself or contributing towards something. It is one of the active principles in learning. It is better than passive learning. Personal involvement is more likely to lead to personal acceptance.


Few people can learn all that is new in a single period. Repetition at intervals is necessary. If there is no reinforcement there is a possibility that the individual will forget what is taught.


We learn a best from people whom we respect and regard in the work of health education. We penetrate the community through local leaders. e.g. School teacher, Agents, etc. Leader understands the needs and demands of the community and provides proper guidance.

Good human relations

The health educator must be kind and sympathetic. People must accept him as their real friend. Good relationships that lead to good communication are of utmost importance in health education.


In health education, we must know the level of understanding, education and literacy of the people to whom the teaching is directed. The teaching should be within the mental capacity of the people.

Setting an example

The health Education should set a good example in the things he is teaching. e.g. If he is explaining the hazards of smoking, he will not be very successful, if himself smokes.

Feed back

It is one of the key concepts of the system’s approach. For effective communication, feed back is of paramount importance.

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11th Nursing : Chapter 10 : Health Education and Audio visual Aids : Principles of health education |

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