Triangle

Course overview

This programme provides a direct route to specialise in nutrition and is designed for BSc graduates with a biological sciences background (or biological sciences related subject). Accredited by the Association for Nutrition (AfN), successful graduates can join the UK Voluntary Register of Nutritionists (UKVRN) as a Registered Associate Nutritionist (ANutr).

Throughout this course you will develop a deep understanding of human nutrition and how this relates to health and disease. You will study the functions of macro and micronutrients, energetics and metabolism. Using the latest research, you will explore the important role of nutritionists in public health and sustainable global food systems. You will discuss current evidence-based research, trends and developments within the field of nutrition and recognise the importance of exposing the public to safe and credible nutrition information.

You will have access to state-of-the-art specialist facilities including the diet laboratory, clinical skills suite and technology enhanced teaching laboratory.

Highlights include:

  • Public health nutrition; study current public health priorities across the lifespan.
  • Healthy People, Healthy Planet module; explore the global food system, sustainability and the link to population and planetary health.
  • Molecular nutrition; study how nutrients impact on cellular processes
  • Research projects; work alongside leading nutritional scientists to complete research addressing important topics in nutrition.

You will develop transferrable skills essential for a career as a Registered Associate Nutritionist including communication skills, critical appraisal, data handling, professional development and evidence-based practice.

Why choose this course?

Ranked 2nd in the UK

for agriculture, forestry and food

Guardian University Guide 2021

AfN accredited

Masters graduates can join the Association for Nutrition register for nutritionists 

Interpersonal skills

to help you in your future nutrition career

Specialist facilities

including diet laboratory, clinical skills suite and technology enhanced teaching lab

Personal tutor

All students are assigned a personal tutor to provide support while you study

Support Programme

our bespoke support programme is designed to aid your transition to postgraduate level studies

Course content

This course is divided into three sections:

  • 120 credits of taught modules in both the autumn and spring semesters
  • 60 credits research project in the summer.

For the masters, a total of 180 credits is required. A diploma is awarded if you choose to study only 120 credits. Only the masters (180 credits) is accredited by the Association for Nutrition.

Throughout the taught modules you will learn the fundamental basics of nutritional sciences and evidence based nutrition while applying this knowledge in the context of public health, sustainability and molecular nutrition. You will further develop advanced research skills throughout the summer research project.

Modules

Research Skills in Nutrition 20 credits

The research process:
A review of the steps in the research process, including project planning, applying for funding, project management, and the peer review process.

Critical review skills:
A discussion of reading strategies appropriate for scientific literature, and how to critically assess the quality of published material.

Data collection and statistical analysis:
An introduction to the types of data commonly collected in research in nutritional sciences and the basic concepts of statistical analysis, with practical application using SPSS. How to present data effectively.

Laboratory skills:
An introduction to the basic skills required to work effectively and safely in a laboratory environment.

Dietary assessment:
The tools available for dietary assessment, both at individual and population level. Discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of these tools, according to different research scenarios in the nutritional sciences.

Anthropometry:
The tools available for measuring body composition, both at the individual and population level. Discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of these tools, according to different research scenarios in the nutritional sciences. Practical application of laboratory, dietary assessment and anthropometry techniques

Healthy People, Healthy Planet 20 credits

You will investigate international nutritional practices and evaluate the impact on health, survival and development capacity of populations in developing and developed countries. You'll look at current and future considerations such as climate change and an increasingly ageing population.

Topical issues will focus on household, community, national and international levels, such as:

  • nutritional surveillance
  • development of sustainable global diets
  • international breastfeeding and weaning initiatives
  • future foods
  • impact of infectious disease on nutrition and health
Nutrition and Metabolism 20 credits

This module aims to enhance your knowledge and understanding of the role of nutrition in a variety of physiological & pathological situation covering:

  • Metabolism in the Fed, Fasted and Starved States.
  • Nutrition, Metabolism and Exercise
  • Disorders of Metabolism
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular Disease, Lipoproteins, Hyperlipidaemia and Atherosclerosis
Molecular Nutrition 20 credits

This module will introduce the concept of metabolic control at the gene expression level with particular reference to the role of nutrients in these processes. Through the provision and application of relevant biochemical and molecular biology information, you will gain an understanding of the regulatory effects of nutrients, either directly or indirectly, on gene expression and how this influences metabolism and growth in eukaryotic systems.

Fundamentals of Nutrition 20 credits

This module aims to provide a comprehensive introduction to the key concepts in the field of Nutrition, including requirements for macronutrients (e.g. proteins, carbohydrates and fats) and micronutrients (e.g. vitamins and minerals).

Public Health Nutrition 20 credits

This module will provide an integrated programme of epidemiology, basic nutrition and molecular science and public health nutrition and policy to examine the relationship between nutritional status and major human disease. The emphasis of the module will be upon understanding population-wide approaches to evaluation of disease risk factors and development and implementation of preventive strategies.

Postgraduate Research Project 60 credits

You will carry out a research project in an area related to nutritional sciences, supervised by a specialist.  This will involve the application of investigative, critical and analytical skills, and the presentation of a report. There is a poster presentation at the annual postgraduate research symposium.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021.
Healthy People, Healthy Planet 20 credits

You will investigate international nutritional practices and evaluate the impact on health, survival and development capacity of populations in developing and developed countries. You'll look at current and future considerations such as climate change and an increasingly ageing population.

Topical issues will focus on household, community, national and international levels, such as:

  • nutritional surveillance
  • development of sustainable global diets
  • international breastfeeding and weaning initiatives
  • future foods
  • impact of infectious disease on nutrition and health
Fundamentals of Nutrition 20 credits

This module aims to provide a comprehensive introduction to the key concepts in the field of Nutrition, including requirements for macronutrients (e.g. proteins, carbohydrates and fats) and micronutrients (e.g. vitamins and minerals).

Public Health Nutrition 20 credits

This module will provide an integrated programme of epidemiology, basic nutrition and molecular science and public health nutrition and policy to examine the relationship between nutritional status and major human disease. The emphasis of the module will be upon understanding population-wide approaches to evaluation of disease risk factors and development and implementation of preventive strategies.

Molecular Nutrition 20 credits

Cellular signalling and gene expression influence metabolism and growth but how does nutrient supply regulate these processes? In this module, you’ll explore nutrition from a molecular perspective. You'll investigate the regulatory effects of nutrients on eukaryotic systems. You'll look at the potential for manipulating metabolic processes through nutrition. You'll use experimental methodologies to assess how nutrients influence gene expression. You will learn how to analyse molecular data to draw conclusions about regulatory processes.

You’ll study:

  • molecular mechanisms controlling gene expression
  • opportunities for modification of metabolic processes using nutrition
  • direct and indirect regulatory effects of nutrition
  • variations in genomic sequences and the impact of nutrition on gene expression
Nutrition and Metabolism 20 credits

This module aims to enhance your knowledge and understanding of the role of nutrition in a variety of physiological & pathological situation covering:

  • Metabolism in the Fed, Fasted and Starved States.
  • Nutrition, Metabolism and Exercise
  • Disorders of Metabolism
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular Disease, Lipoproteins, Hyperlipidaemia and Atherosclerosis
Research Skills in Nutrition 20 credits

The research process:
A review of the steps in the research process, including project planning, applying for funding, project management, and the peer review process.

Critical review skills:
A discussion of reading strategies appropriate for scientific literature, and how to critically assess the quality of published material.

Data collection and statistical analysis:
An introduction to the types of data commonly collected in research in nutritional sciences and the basic concepts of statistical analysis, with practical application using SPSS. How to present data effectively.

Laboratory skills:
An introduction to the basic skills required to work effectively and safely in a laboratory environment.

Dietary assessment:
The tools available for dietary assessment, both at individual and population level. Discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of these tools, according to different research scenarios in the nutritional sciences.

Anthropometry:
The tools available for measuring body composition, both at the individual and population level. Discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of these tools, according to different research scenarios in the nutritional sciences. Practical application of laboratory, dietary assessment and anthropometry techniques

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Lab sessions
  • Workshops

Although lectures and practical classes still play an important role as the course progresses, your learning experience is enhanced by placing greater reliance on self-directed study, written dissertations and research project work. You will join lectures, workshops, seminars, tutorials and practical classes. You will also take part in class discussion and debate to critically appraise global nutritional challenges. You will apply your knowledge in practical classes and throughout the summer research project where you will work independently and as part of a team. 

How you will be assessed

  • Written exam
  • Lab reports
  • Essay
  • Examinations
  • Presentation

Skills are assessed through a combination of essay style or short-answer written examinations or by the use of multiple-choice questionnaires. Assessment of acquisition and interpretation skills also uses coursework assignments based on exercises such as oral presentations, writing essays, reports and dissertations, presentation of posters, and research project work.

Modules are weighted to calculate your final mark for each module. Typically all taught modules have one piece of coursework in addition to a final exam.

You will need an average mark of 50% to pass the MSc overall. You will be given a copy of our marking criteria when you start the course and will receive regular feedback from your tutors.

To be able to register as a nutritionist at an associate level with the Association for Nutrition you must pass each module.

Contact time and study hours

As a guide, in the autumn and spring semesters you will typically spend a minimum of 12 hours per week in classes. You will be expected to spend 3 full days per week on campus.

You will work on your research project between June and September. Depending on your project you would be supervised for up to 3 hours per week, on average.

Teaching is provided by teaching fellows, assistant professors, associate professors and professors. Technical staff, PhD students and post-doctoral researchers provide additional support in small group and practical classes.

There will be around 30 students on this course. On average you would study with around 50 other students across the school.

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2022 entry.

MSc/PGDip

Undergraduate degree2:2 (or international equivalent) in a biological science subject, excluding nutrition or closely related degrees Accepted degrees include biology, physiology, sports science, food science and psychology.

Applying

Our step-by-step guide covers everything you need to know about applying.

How to apply

Fees

UK fees are set in line with the national UKRI maximum fee limit. We expect fees for 2022 entry to be confirmed in August 2021.

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you will pay international tuition fees in most cases. If you are resident in the UK and have 'settled' or 'pre-settled' status under the EU Settlement Scheme, you will be entitled to 'home' fee status.

Irish students will be charged tuition fees at the same rate as UK students. UK nationals living in the EU, EEA and Switzerland will also continue to be eligible for ‘home’ fee status at UK universities until 31 December 2027.

For further guidance, check our information for applicants from the EU.

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).

Additional costs

As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses.

You should be able to access most of the books you’ll need through our libraries, though you may wish to purchase your own copies. If you do these would cost around £40.

Due to our commitment to sustainability, we don’t print lecture notes but these are available digitally. You will be given £5 worth of printer credits a year. You are welcome to buy more credits if you need them. It costs 4p to print one black and white page.

Personal laptops are not compulsory as we have computer labs that are open 24 hours a day, but you may want to consider one if you wish to work at home.

Funding

There are many ways to fund your postgraduate course, from scholarships to government loans.

We also offer a range of international masters scholarships for high-achieving international scholars who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding

Careers

We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students.

Expert staff can help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.

Each year 1,100 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Graduate destinations

Our graduates go on to work across nutrition and food companies such as Slimming World, Protein World and Danone. Some set up their own nutrition businesses. Others work as nutritionists in health services, for example working for the NHS in mental health nutrition support, or internationally, working for the Ghana Armed Forces.

Every year, some of our graduates decide to study research degrees at PhD level.

Career progression

88.5% of postgraduates from the School of Biosciences secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual salary for these graduates was £28,711.*

* HESA Graduate Outcomes 2020. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Association for Nutrition

This course is accredited by the Association for Nutrition. Graduates can join the Association of Nutritionists’ Register as an Associate and use the ANutr qualification.

Two masters graduates proudly holding their certificates
" I am the MSc Nutritional Sciences course director and along with the course team I am involved in the development and delivery of this evidence-based programme. I am a Registered Nutritionist (RNut) with a specific interest in sustainable diets and micronutrient nutrition. I am also Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. "
Dr Lisa Coneyworth, Assistant Professor within the Division of Food, Nutrition and Dietetic

Related courses

This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur given the interval between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.