Subjective health literacy among school-aged children
Paakkari, O., Torppa, M., Villberg, J., Kannas, L., & Paakkari, L. (2018). Subjective health literacy among school-aged children. Health Education, 118 (2), 182-195. doi:10.1108/HE-02-2017-0014
Published inHealth Education
© Emerald Publishing Limited 2018. This is a final draft version of an article whose final and definitive form has been published by Emerald. Published in this repository with the kind permission of the publisher.
Purpose The aim of this study was to explore Finnish adolescents’ subjective health literacy (HL) in association to school achievement, learning difficulties, educational aspirations, and family affluence. Design/methodology/approach Nationally representative data were collected in Finland as part of the international Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study. The respondents consisted in total of 3,833 adolescents (7th and 9th graders) from 359 schools. The Health Literacy for School-aged Children (HLSAC) instrument was applied to measure adolescents’ subjective HL, while the Family Affluence Scale (FAS) was used to measure adolescents’ socioeconomic status. Information was gathered on school achievement, learning difficulties, and educational aspirations. Findings Approximately one third of the adolescents manifested a high level of HL, around 60% had a moderate level of HL, and about one tenth had low HL. The HL level was lower for boys than for girls, and lower for 7th graders than for 9th graders. In the total sample the strongest explanatory variables for HL were school achievement in the first language, and educational aspirations. Originality/value This study provides the first Finnish nationally representative examination of adolescents’ subjective HL levels, and how these vary across age and gender groups. In drawing conclusions and presenting suggestions for HL interventions, it is important to verify the nature of the HL examined in any given study, and how it was researched. ...