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Course content

This course is for graduates of biological sciences who want to extend their studies into the professional field of dietetics. Dietetics is the management of diseases that are amenable to dietary intervention and the prevention of nutrition related disorders.  A dietitian influences food selection and eating behaviour of an individual based on specific nutritional or food requirements.

With a clinical and health promotion focus, this course includes three blocks of integrated practice placements of 4, 12 and 12 weeks duration within a hospital and/or primary care setting.

Teaching, learning and assessment

The emphasis is on student-centred learning where your previous knowledge and skills are used to develop your new subject area. Learning activities include lectures, tutorials, workshops and practical classes and are guided using web-based supported materials.

You will also attend three practical placements to enable the integration of theoretical knowledge with practical experience. A variety of assessment methods are used across the course.  Normally, there are 12 – 15 students on this course. This ensures that individuals receive excellent support and benefit from sharing their experiences with classmates.

Teaching hours and attendance

Each module is equivalent to a notional 150 hours of work which is made up of attendance in class and independent work. The structure of each module is different with different attendance requirement  for each timetabled module. Over an average semester the expectation is that during 14 weeks of teaching this will equate to approx. 40 hours per week of student effort (contact classes plus independent study time). Students normally complete the course via a full time route but part-time routes are available and can be discussed with the Programme Leader.

All placements are completed on a full-time basis, normally Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm.

Links with industry/professional bodies

This course provides eligibility to apply for registration as a dietitian with the Health and Care Professions Council. It is also accredited by the British Dietetic Association.

Modules

15 credits: Food and Nutrition/ Principles of Nutrition Science/ Clinical Sciences/ Therapeutic Interventions/ Professional Studies/ Professional Practice/ Evaluation of Practice/ Pharmacology and Pharmacogenetics. You will also carry out practice placements, which you must pass but which do not carry any credit. If studying for an MSc, you will also complete a dissertation (60 credits).

Careers

Career prospects on completion of the course are varied. Most graduates normally choose to work within the NHS as dietitians. Others will work in health education, health promotion, general practice, private healthcare and government advisory posts. Opportunities also exist in the food and pharmaceutical industries in, for example: food labelling; nutrient profiling; product and recipe development; product evaluation and special diet foods. Some graduates may apply for the opportunity to study for a higher degree (MPhil or PhD).

Quick Facts

  • The MSc/ PgDip Dietetics course is well established, extremely popular, and well respected throughout the profession and has good graduate employability rates.
  • The teaching team includes four registered dietitians who have strong links with the dietetic profession both within Scotland and across the UK. 
  • The university’s clinically relevant research along with the broad range of experience of the teaching team ensures that the course remains current.

Visit the PgDip/ MSc Dietetics page on the Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh website for more details!

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