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MSc Human Nutrition

Course Description

The MSc Human Nutrition was established in 1986 as a joint programme lead by the Rowett institute of Nutrition and Health, one of the oldest and leading centres on nutrition research, and Institute of Applied Health Sciences.

The aim of this innovative programme is to provide training in human nutrition for graduates in biological sciences. The main focus of the programme is on the relationship between diet, health and disease, and the nutritional mechanisms involved in disease development and disease with three specialist areas harnessing Aberdeen’s unique range of expertise in Metabolic Nutrition, Molecular Nutrition and Public Health Nutrition.

All students take four core taught courses in the first session: Foundations of Human Nutrition, Assessment of Nutritional Status, Nutrition and Health and Applied Statistics. These are delivered as lectures, laboratory practical classes and individual and group assignments. The topics covered include dietary assessment, macronutrients, energy balance and metabolism, micronutrients, nutritional status and body composition, nutrition throughout the lifecycle, diet and disease, computing and applied statistics. Successful completion of the above four courses is required to be awarded a PG Certificate in Human Nutrition.
Students continuing to the Diploma and MSc progress to follow a 6-week taught course, which includes lectures and practical classes and exercises, to give understanding and first-hand experience of their chosen specialism selected from Metabolic Nutrition, Molecular Nutrition or Public Health Nutrition.

Metabolic Nutrition:
Metabolic Nutrition focuses on human metabolic demands for nutrients and other food components and how they reduced disease risk by understanding the nutritional and biochemical effects of these compounds.
The main focus of this specialism is on the relationship between diet, health and disease at the metabolic level. Particular emphasis is placed on practical classes on nutritional epidemiology, nutritional and biochemical laboratory methods, nutrient-gene- interactions, clinical nutrition, study design and introduction to public health nutrition

Molecular Nutrition:
Molecular Nutrition focuses on how the basic metabolites produced from nutrients and other food components influence physiological and health status by understanding the effects of these compounds at the molecular and cellular level.
The main focus of this specialism is on the relationship between diet, health and disease at the molecular and cellular level. Particular emphasis is placed on practical exercises designed to give students first-hand expertise of, and insight into, research methods relevant to Molecular Nutrition.

Public Health Nutrition:
Public Health Nutrition focuses on health promotion and disease prevention through nutrition interventions at the population level. Key components include understanding the social, cultural and economic determinants of food choice, the design and evaluation of nutrition interventions in the community and the impact of national and international food policy. Particular emphasis is placed on epidemiological research methods relevant to Public Health Nutrition.

Research Project:
MSc students then continue with an 18-week supervised original research project chosen to reflect the student's specialism, particular interests and training needs. Pg Diploma students carry out a 6-week supervised literature review this is a literature review on a topic chosen by the student in consultation with an appointed supervisor.

Career opportunities include nutrition careers in academic or private institutions, hospitals, industry or national and international agencies.

Visit the MSc Human Nutrition page on the Aberdeen University website for more details!

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Student Profiles

Scottish/EU Postgraduate Bursaries - 15 Awards

Full fee waiver on tuition fee costs plus a stipend towards living expences of up to £3,500 is available.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Funding available to Scottish or non UK EU students.

Application Procedure

Simply apply to the degree as normally and if you meet the eligibility criteria you will automatically be nominated as a candiate for the award.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

This programme is open to graduates with a second class degree (at least 60% or GPA 2.4/4) in biological sciences such as biochemistry, physiology, nutrition or medicine.Applicants whose first language is not English should note that english language proficiency is required, more information on this can be found at View Website

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