Entertainment education: Communicating public health messages through dance


Public health communication, if done well, can make a significant positive contribution to people’s health. Entertainment education provides audiences with a creative and pleasurable experience to promote uptake of key messages. ‘Dance Your PhD’ entry views outnumber the majority of journal article citations, so the first author chose to partake in the competition to raise awareness of the poor quality of New Zealand housing and its impact on wellbeing, and explore non-traditional methods to communicate research findings. A range of dance styles were utilised in the film including contemporary, reggaeton, disco and salsa to illustrate various concepts including water ingress and mouldy housing conditions negatively impacting health. In a short timeframe, the dance film received a relatively large number of views on YouTube. Non-traditional forms of communicating research should be readily considered, as they provide a quick, accessible and memorable way of disseminating messages to a wide audience and can improve health literacy.


@ The University of Waikato