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Course overview

Dietitians use their knowledge of science and food to help advise people to live a healthier life.

Our integrated masters course is accredited by the British Dietetic Association and approved by the Health and Care Professions Council. This means you can become a registered dietitian when you graduate. 

  • You'll gain clinical experience through a number of practice placements. These can be in a variety of different settings including hospitals
  • Our teaching will develop your scientific understanding including nutrition, biochemistry and physiology
  • Practical sessions in our dietetics suite help to develop your communication skills
  • Our close links with local hospitals mean that your research project can relate directly to human health

Why choose this course?

  • Be taught by experienced registered dietitians
  • Connections with the major local hospital and community dietetic departments
  • Regular contact with specialist practising dietitians and a vital insight into your future career
  • Learn about education methods, communication skills, psychology and sociology
  • Develop your clinical skills through three practice placements in hospital and community dietetic departments

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2021 entry.

UK entry requirements
A level offer AAB-ABB including two science-based subjects
Required subjects

Biology and/or chemistry A level.

Minimum grade 5 (B) in chemistry and grade 4 (C) in GCSE mathematics and English (or equivalent examination).

IB score 34-32 including 5 in two science subjects at Higher Level (must include at least one of biology or chemistry)

A levels

AAB-ABB, including at least two science-based subjects. Biology and/or chemistry essential.

Other science subject can be food technology/home economics, geography, IT, maths, physics, physical education or psychology.

Citizenship studies, critical thinking, general studies and leisure studies are not accepted.

GCSE's

All applicants must have a minimum grade 5 (B) in chemistry and grade 4 (C) in GCSE mathematics and English (or equivalent examination).

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

Teaching methods

  • Lab sessions
  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops
  • Placements
  • Problem-based learning
  • Computer labs
  • Practical classes

How you will be assessed

You will receive a copy of our marking criteria which provides guidance on how we will assess your work. Your work will be marked on time and you will receive regular feedback.

Your final degree classification will be based on marks gained in your second and third years of study.

You must pass each year to progress. This typically means that you will need to achieve marks of at least 40% in each module. Full details on our marking criteria and structure will be provided at your induction.

Assessment methods

  • Coursework
  • Group project
  • Lab reports
  • Oral exam
  • Poster presentation
  • Research project
  • Written exam

Contact time and study hours

Each year you will take 120 credits in core modules. As a guide, one credit equals approximately 10 hours of work. You will spend around half of your time in lectures, seminars and practicals. The remaining time will be independent study.

Core modules are typically taught by professors or associate professors. Specialist dietitians from practice may support teaching on some modules. You will have 26 weeks full-time practice placement throughout the course, around half of this takes place over the summer between years three and four.

Placements

You will complete three practice placements throughout the course. Our practice educator partners are located as far north as Sheffield and as far south as Northampton.

  • Placement A is normally two weeks, full time and takes place in the summer between years one and two
  • Placement B is usually 12 weeks, full time and takes place at the end of the third year in the summer
  • Placement C is usually 12 weeks long and occurs in the spring semester of year four

Modules

You will develop an understanding of the roles and skills required of a registered dietitian and study relevant science subjects including nutrition and biochemistry. To build on this knowledge there is a short clinical practice placement, this is normally three weeks full-time, over the summer.

Introduction to Dietetics

This 10 credit module will develop your knowledge of the nutrient composition of food.

You'll study:

  • the principles of healthy lifestyle guidance
  • develop the skills to apply this knowledge to different population groups
  • essential skills for dietetic practice
Introduction to Nutrition

Nutrients are vital to humans and animals, but how do they work? In this module you’ll be given a comprehensive introduction to the key concepts in the field of nutrition, including macronutrients, energy metabolism, vitamins and minerals. Depending on your interest, you’ll be able to focus on human or animal nutrition. This means you can choose to look at the role of nutrition in human disease (including coronary heart disease, cancer, obesity and diabetes), or learn about animal nutrition and what it means for food production. You’ll learn about nutrition through a mix of lectures, practical sessions and e-learning.

The Biosciences and Global Food Security

How can you use science to help improve global food security? This module introduces you to the issues of global food security and the complexity existing in different parts of our food generation system. Looking across the food supply chain, you’ll cover the evolution of crops, crop and animal production, and the food industry. Importantly, you’ll also look at sustainable nutrition because food security isn’t just about supply – it’s important that people are getting the right kind of food. You’ll learn about these issues through a mix of lectures and practical laboratory sessions. You’ll also develop professional skills to work safely in laboratory situations.

Biochemistry -The Building Blocks of Life

Have you ever wondered how some crops can resist diseases? This module provides you with the fundamentals for understanding biochemical processes in living organisms. You’ll be introduced to the basic structure, properties and functions of the four key biological macromolecules: nucleic acids, proteins, carbohydrates and lipids. You’ll also look at the metabolic pathways occurring in cells, such as respiration, photosynthesis and the biosynthetic pathways for the key macromolecules. In addition to lectures, you’ll have practical laboratory sessions to learn how to use key biochemical techniques for the separation and analysis of macromolecules and measurement of the metabolic process.

Genes and Cells

The basic functional units of life are cells. In this module you’ll learn about the growth and development of cells, focusing on mitosis, meiosis, cell division and differentiation. You’ll get to explore the ultrastructure – the structure of a cell too small to be seen with an ordinary microscope – of animal, plant and bacterial cells and even viruses. Once you have this foundation understanding, Applied Genetics covers fundamental genetic principles and you’ll be able to answer the questions: What are the Mendelian laws of inheritance? How are genes expressed? You’ll have lectures from current researchers in the field and the opportunity to apply your learning in the laboratory and in workshops.

Introductory Physiology

This 20 credit module introduces the major physiological systems which are essential for life in animals and humans: the nervous, respiratory, cardiovascular, reproductive, renal, and digestive systems. You’ll learn about the structures and functions of the major organs and the functions of individual cell types.

Topics covered will refer to genes, proteins and membranes, transport of molecules across membranes, nerve signalling and biorhythms. You’ll have weekly lectures and various practical classes.

Diet, Nutrition and Lifestyle

You’ll investigate food composition, nutritional requirements and recommended dietary intakes before looking at methods of measuring food intake. Basic psychology and sociology concepts will be introduced to help investigate social, economic and cultural factors that influence food choices. You'll then examine concepts of health and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Theories of health education and promotion and how these relate to influencing health behaviour will be covered. You’ll have weekly lectures (4 hours each) and workshops (4 hours each).

Dietetics Tutorial (Academic Development)

This module is designed to help you make the transition into university and guide you through the academic expectations of your Dietetics degree. The module is spread throughout the year and includes three generic sessions on ‘study skills and plagiarism’, ‘study opportunities’ and ‘career and personal development’, and a series of small group tutorials with an academic tutor to develop generic skills such as finding crucial information (library skills), oral presentation, data handling and presentation of results, preparation for examinations, and essay writing skills. 

Nutrition and Dietetics Practice Placement

This is a 2-week clinical placement taken in the summer vacation at the end of Year one.

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 may change or be updated 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 the latest information on available modules.
Nutrition, Metabolism and Disease

This module, in lectures and practical sessions, provides a basic understanding of the role of nutrition in a variety of physiological and pathological situations. It aims to emphasise the interaction between the disciplines of biochemistry and nutrition. For example, you will cover the major factors associated with the metabolism of macronutrients during normal (healthy) metabolism and the changes in macronutrient metabolism associated with common chronic diseases like obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Nutritional Regulation, Physiology and Endocrinology

This module, in lectures and practical sessions, provides a basic understanding of the role of nutrition in a variety of physiological and pathological situations. It aims to emphasise the interaction between the disciplines of biochemistry and nutrition. For example, you will cover the major factors associated with the metabolism of macronutrients during normal (healthy) metabolism and the changes in macronutrient metabolism associated with common chronic diseases like obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Food Composition and Modifications for Dietetics

This module covers aspects of food provision for a variety of groups and settings in the UK, including menu planning, costing, recipe analysis and food labelling. You will become more familiar with the composition of foods, exchange systems and what happens to the nutritional value of foods during processes such as storage and cooking. As well as lectures you will have practical sessions using case studies where you will calculate nutritional requirements and adapt intakes to meet the nutritional needs of individuals. Other aspects such as institutional catering, food additives, labelling, health claims and new product development will be discussed. 

Medicine and Pathology

This module, delivered by the School of Medicine, will introduce you to the principles of disease aetiology and diagnosis and to consider the pathophysiological consequences of common diseases likely to be seen in clinical practice by qualified dietitians. You’ll also be introduced to history taking, clinical chemistry based assessments, nasogastric intubation and venepuncture, and will also practice the basic aspects of life support, and measurement of BP.

Communication Skills and Educational Methods

This module provides insight into formal and informal methods for both written and verbal communication. Educational and learning theories will be taught and you’ll be introduced to basic counselling skills and provided with the opportunity to practice such skills within a dietetics setting. You’ll have a maximum of 4 hours contact time per week to study for this module. 

Global Issues in Nutrition
Throughout this module your problem solving skills will be developed while enhancing your knowledge on key topics in nutrition for example: global food security, tackling the obesity epidemic, and positive impacts on consumer behaviour. Every two weeks you will receive a lecture from a different academic introducing the case study topic to be investigated. In groups you will gather relevant information from various research sources, synthesis data and present in appropriate formats. 
Fundamentals of Dietetics

This module aims to add to the knowledge you have already gained in year one, whilst developing the skills that are fundamental to dietetic practice. The module considers the dietetic care process and how this defines the actions, critical thinking and specialist skills that form the components of a dietetic intervention. Students will become more familiar with the variety of techniques that can be used to assess dietary intake and to measure anthropometry, and will consider the lifestyle and social factors that may pose barriers to healthy eating. Using case study based teaching, students will be able to apply their knowledge of dietetic assessment and adapt their recommendations to meet the needs of individuals. Other aspects such as genetics in healthcare and user and carer involvement will be discussed. You will study via weekly lectures and some seminars and workshops.

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 may change or be updated 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 the latest information on available modules.
Nutrition and the Health of Populations

This module will introduce you to the basic methodology used to explore relationships between diet, health and disease in human populations. An appreciation of these techniques will be used as the basis for in-depth exploration of current major public health priorities. The module will take a lifecourse approach to explain and develop the concepts of human health and disease as affected by diet, dietary components and interacting factors. You’ll have a weekly four hour lecture to study for this module.

Clinical Pharmacology

This module is delivered at the School of Medicine by a pharmacist. You’ll be given an overview of clinical pharmacology, with particular emphasis on route of delivery of drug and principal aspects of pharmacokenetics, including factors influencing drug absorption, distribution, metabolism and elimination. The use of drugs in the treatment of diseases for which there is a dietetic input to the management, and the possibility of drug-nutrient interactions in these, and other, patients will be covered. Activities consist of lectures, private study work on clinical case studies and a review and feedback session. 

Changing Behaviour, Promoting Health

Unhealthy ‘lifestyle’ behaviours such as poor nutrition, physical inactivity and smoking are major contributors to the burden of disease. This course is designed to explore the process of changing these behaviours to improve health, using examples from behavioural science, health education, and health promotion. You’ll be introduced to fundamental concepts from sociology and their contribution to the understanding of health behaviour. You’ll look at health education strategies used in the UK, and make some comparisons with programmes from other countries. This is a highly interactive module. You’ll be expected to contribute to in-class discussions and work in groups on an assignment as well as taking lectures and self-directed online learning. 

Principles and Practice of Dietetics

This module aims to link the underpinning science of nutrition developed over the first two years of the programme to the applied practice of dietetics. This will consider both the professional aspects of dietetics alongside the theory of the nutritional management of disease in individuals and populations. This will prepare you to start your 12-week practice placement.

Research Skills in Dietetics

This module covers the theoretical and practical aspects of commonly used research methods. It includes hands-on experience of statistical packages and laboratory skills, provides information on systematic reviews, practical and audit based projects, and an understanding of the ethical nature of research. This is preparatory study for your dietetics research project. You’ll have weekly lectures, laboratory and workshop sessions.

12-week Practice Placement

This 12-week long clinical practice placement falls over the summer between the 3rd and 4th years. This placement includes:

  • Observation
  • Developing skills in practice
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 may change or be updated 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 the latest information on available modules.
Dietetics Research Project

In this module you will carry out original research at the forefront of human nutrition and dietetics in collaboration with members of staff.

The research project encourages critical thinking and involves both independent and teamwork, a literature survey, and data handling, analysis and interpretation. 

Our close links with the University's Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences and local dietetic departments mean that Research Projects directly related to nutrition and human health are available. Alternatively, the strong research standing of the school means that laboratory-based projects using state-of-the-art facilities are also on offer.

Recent research projects include:

  • compliance to dietary advice in diabetes mellitus Type 2
  • processed food intake in pre-school children
  • the relationship between breastfeeding and allergy: a systematic review of the literature 

Students producing the highest quality projects are encouraged to submit abstracts to the British Dietetic Association annual conference and present their work at the conference.

Our BURN (Biosciences Undergraduate Research at Nottingham) e-journal has more information on about undergraduate research projects. BURN is a freely accessible journal which showcases final-year research projects undertaken by biosciences students.

Advanced Dietetics (Clinical and Public Health) and Professional Issues

This module considers dietary management in specialist areas of advanced dietetic clinical practice and public health nutrition using individual student learning experiences and small group work. You will also cover the aspects of management, leadership and professionalism you will require in order to be suitably prepared prior to registration as a dietitian.

Advanced Dietetic Practice (includes 12-week practice placement)

Under the supervision of experienced registered dietitians, you’ll gain active experience in areas of health care that support subsequent application for dietetic registration. At the end of the 12-week placement you will have had the opportunity to work with clients and patients in the same way as a newly qualified dietitian. 

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 may change or be updated 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 the latest information on available modules.

Fees and funding

UK students

£9,250
Per year

International students

Confirmed August 2020*
Keep checking back for more information
*For full details including fees for part-time students and reduced fees during your time studying abroad or on placement (where applicable), see our fees page.

EU tuition fees and funding options for courses starting in 2021/22 have not yet been confirmed by the UK government. For further guidance, check our Brexit information for future students.

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.

There may be options to undertake an optional international summer school in Malaysia and this would be self-funded.

Practice education placements are a compulsory part of this degree and one of these is across the summer vacation between the third and fourth year. This means that undertaking paid work during that summer is unlikely to be possible. Students will get different levels of support via the NHS Bursary depending on their personal circumstances but the costs have to be claimed back after the event with receipts. It is likely that there will be some extra costs due to requiring accommodation at the practice education location which may be on top of accommodation at the university base. Usually one lot of accommodation costs will be covered by the NHS Bursary.

 

Scholarships and bursaries

For information about fees and finance available for the Masters of Nutrition, visit MNutr student funding.

Home students*

Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £1,000 a year. Full details can be found on our financial support pages.

* A 'home' student is one who meets certain UK residence criteria. These are the same criteria as apply to eligibility for home funding from Student Finance.

International/EU students

We offer a range of Undergraduate Excellence Awards for high-achieving international and EU scholars from countries around the world, who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers. This includes our European Union Undergraduate Excellence Award for EU students and our UK International Undergraduate Excellence Award for international students based in the UK.

These scholarships cover a contribution towards tuition fees in the first year of your course. Candidates must apply for an undergraduate degree course and receive an offer before applying for scholarships. Check the links above for full scholarship details, application deadlines and how to apply.

Careers

Most dietitians work within the NHS either in hospitals or within the community. A dietitian can choose to specialise in a range of areas such as paediatrics, obesity, renal or liver disease, diabetes and health promotion.

You could work in private practice, sports nutrition, journalism, education, food and drink industries, and consumer organisations.

Registration in dietetics in the UK is recognised in many countries overseas including Hong Kong.

Average starting salary and career progression

95% of undergraduates in the School of Biosciences secured work or further study within six months of graduation. £22,000 was the average starting salary, with the highest being £30,000.*

* Known destinations of full-time home undergraduates who were available for employment, 2016/17. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.

Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).

Health and Care Professions Council

This course is regulated by the Health and Care Professions Council.

The Association of UK Dietitians

Accreditation is a robust process providing assurance to the profession, students and the public that universities meet the standards of the professional body, the BDA.

The BDA holds responsibility for the curriculum which describes what is expected of a newly qualified dietitian and provides the framework for universities to deliver programmes that are responsive to the demands of dietetic employment.

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Disclaimer

This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.