What is Health & Human Development all about?

Through the study of VCE Health and Human Development, students investigate health and human development in local, Australian, and global communities.

The study of Health and Human Development is based on the premise that health and human development needs to be promoted at an individual level, within group and community settings as well as at national and international levels to maximise global development potential. This underpins the structure of the four units of Health and Human Development. The study also promotes the understanding that nutrition plays a major role in influencing both health status and individual human development.


This study enables students to:

    • understand the complex nature of health and wellbeing, and human development
    • develop a broad view of health and wellbeing, incorporating physical, social, emotional, mental and spiritual dimensions, and biological, sociocultural and environmental factors
    • examine how health and wellbeing may be influenced across the lifespan by the conditions into which people are born, grow, live, work and age
    • develop health literacy to evaluate health information and take appropriate and positive action to support health and wellbeing and manage risks
    • develop an understanding of the Australian healthcare system and the political and social values that underpin it
    • apply social justice principles to identify health and wellbeing inequities and analyse health and wellbeing interventions
    • apply the objectives of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals to evaluate the effectiveness of health and wellbeing initiatives and programs
    • propose and implement action to positively influence health and wellbeing, and human development, outcomes at individual, local, national and/or global levels.


The study is made up of four units.

Unit 1: Understanding Health and Wellbeing

On completion of this unit the student should be able to:

  • explain multiple dimensions of health and wellbeing, explain indicators used to measure health status and analyse factors that contribute to variations in health status of youth.
  • apply nutrition knowledge and tools to the selection of food and the evaluation of nutrition information.
  • interpret data to identify key areas for improving youth health and wellbeing, and plan for action by analysing one particular area in detail.

Unit 2: Managing health and development

On completion of this unit the student should be able to:

  • explain developmental changes in the transition from youth to adulthood, analyse factors that contribute to healthy development during prenatal and early childhood stages of the lifespan and explain health and wellbeing as an intergenerational concept.
  • describe how to access Australia’s health system, explain how it promotes health and wellbeing in their local community, and analyse a range of issues associated with the use of new and emerging health procedures and technologies.

Unit 3: Australia’s health in a globalized world

On completion of this unit the student should be able to:

  • explain the complex, dynamic and global nature of health and wellbeing, interpret and apply Australia’s health status data and analyse variations in health status.
  • explain changes to public health approaches, analyse improvements in population health over time and evaluate health promotion strategies.

Unit 4: Health and human development in a global context

On completion of this unit the student should be able to:

  • analyse similarities and differences in health status and burden of disease globally and the factors that contribute to differences in health and wellbeing.
  • analyse relationships between the SDGs and their role in the promotion of health and human development, and evaluate the effectiveness of global aid programs.


There are no prerequisites for entry to Units 1, 2 and 3. Students must undertake Unit 3 prior to undertaking Unit 4.


Satisfactory Completion

Demonstrated achievement of the set of outcomes specified for the unit.

Levels of Achievement

Units 1 and 2

School-based assessment consisting of coursework, assessment tasks and an exam

Units 3 and 4

School assessed coursework and an end-of-year examination.

  • Unit 3 school-assessed coursework: 25 %
  • Unit 4 school-assessed coursework: 25%
  • End-of-year examination: 50 %