Videos to influence: a systematic review of effectiveness of video-based education in modifying health behaviors

J Behav Med. 2014 Apr;37(2):218-33. doi: 10.1007/s10865-012-9480-7. Epub 2012 Nov 28.


This systematic review examines the effectiveness of videos in modifying health behaviors. We searched PubMed (1975-2012), PsycINFO (1975-2012), EMBASE (1975-2012), and CINAHL (1983-2012) for controlled clinical trials that examined the effectiveness of video interventions in changing health behaviors. Twenty-eight studies comprised of 12,703 subjects were included in the systematic review. Video interventions were variably effective for modifying health behaviors depending on the target behaviors to be influenced. Video interventions appear to be effective in breast self-examination, prostate cancer screening, sunscreen adherence, self-care in patients with heart failure, HIV testing, treatment adherence, and female condom use. However, videos have not shown to be effective in influencing addiction behaviors when they are not tailored. Compared to loss-framing, gain-framed messages may be more effective in promoting certain types of health behavior change. Also, video modeling may facilitate learning of new behaviors and can be an important consideration in future video interventions.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Health Behavior*
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Humans
  • Videotape Recording*