English Reading Proficiency: A Study of Public Health Students in Indonesia


This study aimed to determine the English-language public health literacy of public health students. Literacy of public health constitutes proficiency and application of complex skills such as reading, critical and analytical thinking, listening and decisionmaking skills about emerging health situations. We used a quantitative approach with cross-sectional research to investigate the extent of English-language public health literacy among first year public health students. There were 110 participants in this study, all of whom were first year students of the Faculty of Public Health/ Public Health Study Program in North Sumatra Province and more than half were 18 years old with the sex dominated by women. The English-language public health literacy was quite high while students had limitations in understanding the content and main ideas of the articles they read. Students tended to hesitate to disseminate and explain information because they were not confident in their literacy skills. These findings can be used as material for English language curriculum evaluation and competency adjustment of public health students at college level.

Keywords: Cross-sectional study, public health literacy, public health students, reading skill, undergraduate student

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