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Undergraduate Curriculum

Course Content


Course Number:     NUR 471

Course Title:        Socio-cultural Variations in Health  

Faculty:                  Dr. Essmat Gemaey

Course Overview:

    An examination of the socio-cultural process influencing the behavior patterns of individuals, families and larger social network. Student will be provided with the opportunity to assess and recognize adaptive and maladaptive behavior patterns in their socio-cultural context.

Course Objectives:

By the end of this course, student will be able to:

1-     Develop a theoretical base for using concepts and values relevant to socio-cultural variations in health for nursing practice.

2-     Explore the effect of different social systems on the health of individuals and families.

3-     Analyze major concerns and issues encountered by nurses in providing transcultural nursing care to individuals, families and groups.

4-     Comprehend the cultural influences on human behavior as regard to health and illness.


Course Requirements:


The course will be presented by the use of lecture, discussion and students' small group work. Each student will be expected to submit a written assignment investigating a chosen cultural conce


Course Outlines:





6 hrs.

Introduction to socio-cultural variations in health:

- Concept of culture and its characteristics.

- Influence of tradition, values and believes on health and health related behavior.

- Health care system as a subculture.

- Culture shock.


6 hrs.

Social system and health:

- Social system and enculturation.

- Socio-economic status and health care.

- Social support.

- Health groups.


6 hrs.

Concepts of health and illness cross-cultures:

- Illness, sickness and disease.

- Sick role behavior.

- Determinant of health behavior of an individual.                                 



6 hrs.

Trans-culture nursing care:

1-     Culture assessment

·        Space.

·        Communication.

·        Time.

·        Social organization.

·        Environmental control.

·        Biological variations.

2- Cultural competence.


15 hrs.

Culture and health relevant issues:

- Culture definition of anatomy and physiology.

- Diet and nutrition.

- Caring and curing.

- Pain and culture.

- Culture and pharmacology.


6 hrs.

Medical advanced and cultural value conflicts:

 Life support system.-

 Genetic engineering.-

- Organ transplantation.

- New definition of death.






Semester evaluation:

     Assignment and participation in class work             30 %

     Mid term Examinations                                            30 %            

  Final written examination                                         40 %

Required Bibliography:


1- Andrews, M.M and Boyle, J.S. (1999). Transcultural Concepts in Nursing Care. 3 rd ed., Philadelphia: Lippincott Co, USA.

2-  Giger, J.N and Davidhizar, R.E. (1995). Transcultural Nursing: Assessment and Intervention. 2 nd ed., St. Louis: Mosby Co, USA.

3-  Leininger, M. (1995). Transcultural Nursing: Concepts, Theories, Research and practices. 2 nd ed., New York: McGraw-Hill Inc, USA

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