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Understanding the Concept of Health Literacy in the Educational Environment: A Pilot Study

Dace Kravale1, Anita Helviga2, Diāna Laiveniece2
1 University of Latvia, Latvia
2 Liepāja University, Latvia

Abstract. Health literacy is a widely known and researched subject in health care system defined as the relationships between an individual’s level of education and his/her ability to maintain healthiness, improve health or participate in health treatment. However, there is a lack of information about the role of health literacy in school environment. This study reports on the topical status of understanding of health literacy concept among teachers and parents in the educational system of Latvia. Qualitative descriptive research was conducted in order to: a) analyse health literacy concept in theory and education documents; b) explore teachers’ and parents’ health literacy perception through focus groups interviews. A group of respondents included six adults representing teachers and parents from two schools. A thematic analysis method was applied to investigate participants’ perception of health literacy, representing four dimensions of the concept’s explanation: health and health education, Covid-19 pandemics, school/parent collaboration, and uncertain terminology aspects. The results showed various interpretations of health literacy terminology in educational documents, caused by insufficiently explained sub-terms – school, teacher and parent health literacy. This finding was confirmed by the results of the focus group interviews. That leads to a conclusion that the concept of health literacy requires a more efficient explanation by developing a comprehensible health literacy terminology in the educational setting.

Keywords: education environment, focus group interview, health literacy, parental health literacy, pilot study, terminology

Authors Note
Actual pilot study is a part of European Social Fund project No “Monitoring the Quality of Education Establishment and Implementation of the Quality Monitoring System”.

In: Human, Technologies and Quality of Education, 2022. Proceedings of Scientific Papers = Cilvēks, tehnoloģijas un izglītības kvalitāte, 2022. Rakstu krājums
Riga, University of Latvia, 2022. 1135 p. Ed. L. Daniela
ISBN 978-9934-18-911-1