A degree in nutrition is a three-year course (full-time) that teaches you the fundamentals of nutrition. It examines the science behind lifestyle choices and behavioural patterns to give you an in-depth understanding of what food does to our body, and why we eat what we do.
You will take a closer look at the key principles of nutrition, as well as the production and development of food, and the legislation and safety. The course is both practical and theoretical, and you will have access to food development and processing units. As well as academic staff, it is likely that you will also be taught by qualified practitioners and technicians from the field of nutrition.
Topics covered on a nutrition degree will vary according to the university and their program. Usually, the topics are chosen by the staff according to their own research interests. As such, one university might put the focus on developments in research, while another might be more focused on legislation changes. A few core units you can expect to study include:
- Principles of Food and Nutrition
- Psycho-social Aspects of Health
- Human Physiology and Anatomy
- Food Development and Processing
- Nutrition in Disease and Health
- Food safety
- Nutritional Requirements
As part of the course, it is likely that you will be sent out on a placement. You will also have to complete a research project in the form of a dissertation in Year 3, while there will also be optional modules for you to choose from.
A Masters in Nutrition is a postgraduate degree aimed at students who wish to gain an in-depth understanding of human nutrition, and its links to many areas of science including disease, health, and dietetics.
The degree can be studied on its own, as well as with other subjects it is closely affiliated to including biology, food science, clinical nutrition, and public health.
The degree can be studied over the course of twelve months if studied full time, and can be completed in two years if studied part time.
Throughout the course of a postgraduate Nutrition degree, students will be required to study a range of core modules related to the topic, as well as have the chance to branch out to more specialised areas of nutrition.
Core modules could include:
- Fundamentals of nutrition
- Metabolic nutrition
- Molecular nutrition
- Research nutrition
- Nutritional assessment
- Sports nutrition
A-Levels of BBB in related subjects, such as chemistry or biology is the minimum requirement, though you will still be considered if only two of your three A-Levels are a science-based subject. Other possible subjects that will usually be accepted include physical education and maths.
If you haven’t met the minimum requirement, your application may still be required if you can demonstrate satisfactory educational or personal circumstances, such as work experience in the field of science.
Entrance requirements to a Masters in Nutrition will vary depending on the university you are applying to, but it is a requirement to have previously gained an undergraduate degree level 2:1 or above. Most universities will also require students to have gained the undergraduate degree in a health related or biological area of study.
Other entry requirements may also be required such as a personal statement, entrance interview or entrance tests. You are advised to speak to the university you are applying to for a full breakdown of entry requirements. To help you understand postgraduate interviews we have put together an article for the top 10 questions that are likely to pop up and the best ways that you can answer them: Top 10 Postgraduate Interview Questions.
There are many career paths open to you if you have a degree in nutrition. Many graduates head straight into the food industry, where they practice nutrition. Other possible careers and sectors include:
- Nutrition Journalist
- Health Service
- Nutritional Supplement Company
- Public Health Nutrition
- Dietetic Assistant
Media You may also want to consider becoming a dietitian. If so, the best way to do this would be by taking a Masters degree in Nutrition after you graduate.
Some students go onto write cookbooks or educational programs, and if this is one of your aims, it might be a good idea to supplement your degree with a part-time course in creative writing.