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Health Communication Research Measures

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Edited By Do Kyun Kim and James W. Dearing

This volume presents state-of-the-art reporting on how to measure many of the key variables in health communication. While the focus is on quantitative measures, the editors argue that these measures are centrally important to the study of health communication. The chapters emphasize constructs, scales, and up-to-date reports and evidence about key social science constructs and ways of measuring them, whether your interest is in patient-provider dyadic communication, uncertainty management, self-efficacy, disclosure, social norms, social support, risk perception, health care team performance, message design and effects, health and numerical literacy, communication satisfaction, social influence and persuasion, stigma, health campaigns, reactance, or other topics. Students, researchers, and policymakers will find this book an accessible resource for planning and reviewing research studies and proposals.
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6. Health Literacy Assessment

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6. Health Literacy Assessment

SHOOU-YIH DANIEL LEE,University of Michigan& TZU-I TSAI,National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan

Health literacy is a requisite ability and skill for health promotion and self-care. Systematic research and effective interventions are impossible without accurate measurement. Thus, a global interest in health literacy has led to numerous efforts in developing health literacy instruments in different languages and countries.

A popular approach to health literacy instrument development is translation of existing instruments—such as Rapid Estimate of Adult Literacy in Medicine (REALM), Test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults (TOFHLA) and its short form TOFHL-S, and Newest Vital Sign (NVS)—that were developed in the United States (e.g., Connor, Mantwill, & Schulz, 2013; Han, Kim, Kim, & Kim, 2011; Jović-Vraneš, Bjegović-Mikanović, Marinković, & Vuković, 2013). A related approach is modification of existing instruments—e.g., changing the spelling, converting numerical units to ensure format-concordance with the target population, using passages that are specific to the new context of application (Ko, Lee, Toh, Tang, & Tan, 2012; Rowlands et al., 2013).

Translation and modification of existing instruments are time and ­cost-efficient. However, they may fail to account for cultural differences — as well as structural, financial, and operational differences in health care delivery systems— that may influence individual abilities to comprehend and utilize health information, communicate with health care providers, and access appropriate health services (Beaton, Bombardier, Guillemin, & Ferraz, 2000). Take English-language instruments...

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