Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences

POPLHLTH 208 - Mental Health Development

15 Points 

Semester 2



The importance of mental health to overall health and well-being is explored. Major threats to mental health are reviewed, and contemporary response to mental ill-health are placed in historical perspective. Current theory, research and practice related to mental health development, which includes both recover-based approaches and mental health promotion practice (ie, promotion of well-being) at the community and population levels are reviewed. 


Prerequisite: POPLHLTH 102

Key course objectives

By the conclusion of the course, each participant will be expected to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the importance of mental health to overall health and wellbeing
  • Critically appraise different theoretical approaches to mental illness
  • Describe key issues that impact on mental health (determinants)
  • Demonstrate understanding of how MHP strategies can be applied in different settings, or at different ecological levels, applied to a real life problem or challenge

Course structure

The course has two one-hour lectures and two one-hour tutorials each week.


Lecture schedule


Lecture Lecture

L 1 Intro/overview MHD defined + expectations, assessment, etc.

L2 Mental Health & Mental Illness Across the Population 


L3 Models for understanding Mental Health Promotion

L 4 Building Blocks for Mental Health

Behaviour,  Cognition & mental health 



Emotions and Emotional Intelligence 


Positive emotions: Broaden & Build Theory

Assessment 1 Due



Positive individual characteristics: Strengths & virtues 


L8 + Positive institutions & communities


Models for designing mental health promotion programmes


L 9 Resilience Model

Determinants of MH: Elimination of Discrimination 

L 10  Determinants of MH: Promotion of social inclusion



L 11 Determinants of MH: Elimination of Violence

 Determinants of MH: Access to Economic resources

Assessment 2 Due


Mid Semester Break


L 13 Prevention Program for High Risk Youth in an organisation: 

Travellers Programme

Assessment 3 Due

L 14 Interventions to support Mental Health: Societal level. E.g. media



L 15  Mental Health Promotion in the Community: Community


L 16 Mental Illness in NZ



L 17 Co-existing Disorders: Mental Illness and Alcohol and Drug disorders 

L 18 Mental  Notes / History of Response to MI in NZ


L 19 Current response: Consumer-led services

L 20 Current response to Mental Illness: CMDHB


L 21 CMDHB Community living service



Assessment 4 Due


Future Directions for MH work + Blue Print II

L 23 Conclusion/review 

Tutorial schedule

Week 1

Key concepts and strategic thinking for Assessment 1

Week 2

Prevention & Intervention models for mental health

Week 3

Behaviours, Thoughts, Emotions & MH

Week 4

Positive emotions, Strengths & Virtues

Week 5

Determinants of mental health

Week 6

Doing Peer Assessment

Week 7

Components of good MHP programs

Week 8

Focusing your prevention/ intervention plan

Week 9

Mental illness: types, prevalence

Week 10

Assignment Help

Week 11

No tutorial

Week 12

Exam preparation

Course assessment

  • Assessment 1: Annotated bibliography  - 15%  
  • Assessment 2: Project proposal outline  - 10%  
  • Assessment 3: Peer Assessment of Outline  - 5%      
  • Assessment 4: Full Project Proposal - 30%  
  • Final examination -  40% 

Recommended readings/textbooks

There are no prescribed textbooks for this course. A list of recommended readings is given for each session. Recommended readings are available electronically on a library course materials page.  

The following book, available on short loan (2 hours) from the desk of the Tamaki library is recommended.  

Barry, Margaret M, Jenkins, Rachel. (2007). Implementing Mental Health Promotion. 

Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier.

Useful websites

Course Director