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Last modified: 27 Feb 2018 11:49

Course Overview

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including dietary intake, assessment of body composition and energy expenditure applied in the context of energy balance. Theory will be put into practice through a series of practical workshop and laboratory sessions to give you ‘hands-on’ experience of using a range of assessment techniques using state-of-the-art equipment routinely employed by nutritional scientists. 

Course Details

Study Type Postgraduate Level 5
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus None. Sustained Study No
  • Dr Alex Johnstone

Qualification Prerequisites


What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Any Postgraduate Programme (Studied)

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?


Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

The assignments for this course are designed to help you develop the skills you will employ in daily life as a nutritional scientist these include presenting an academic poster, producing a paper and critical evaluation of a case-study research proposal. Lectures and practical classes on nutritional status that covers body composition, dietary assessment and energy expenditure and metabolism, as components of energy balance.

By the end of the course students should have a deep understanding of the following:

  1. Methods used to assess body composition and principles and application principles and assumptions relating to methods of assessing nutritional status
  2. The composition and nutritional analysis of foods and diets, with the use of food composition tables. Principles and assumptions and application of methods of dietary assessment and the validation of dietary intake data.
  3. The use of indirect calorimetry to measure resting energy expenditure and how to estimate RMR; alternative methods to assess physical activity
  4. Components of energy balance, energy expenditure, energy requirements and bioenergetics.

Degree Programmes for which this Course is Prescribed

  • MSc Human Nutrition

Contact Teaching Time

68 hours

This is the total time spent in lectures, tutorials and other class teaching.

Teaching Breakdown


Assignment 1 - Poster on Anthropometric Assessment - 30% mark

Assignment 2 - Research paper for lab report on multi-method dietary analysis - 30% mark

Assignment 3 - Essay on research proposal critical evaluation -  40% mark

Formative Assessment

Food diary evaluation self-test



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