Human Nutrition

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The BSc Human Nutrition degree is a stimulating and provocative programme that covers a wide variety of subjects linked to nutrition. It will challenge some of your own views and opinions and will answer many misconceptions.

This degree has been developed in consultation with potential employers to make sure that graduates are equipped to meet the needs of the varied employment market.

“The Human Nutrition degree has been accredited by The Association for Nutrition.  This means that graduates of this degreee will be eligible for Associate Nutritionist status. Human Nutrition is a specialised course designed specifically to give students thorough and up-to-date knowledge in this ever growing area. It’s a stimulating programme that will challenge views, and since there’s an increasing demand for multi-skilled graduates with knowledge of nutrition and health, it provides students with the skills needed for employment in both the private and public sector.”

- Tracey Lewarne, Course Leader, Human Nutrition.

Why study Human Nutrition?

By studying human nutrition you will understand the scientific principles underlying nutritional requirements throughout life, in health and disease. This is a stimulating and provocative programme that will challenge some of your own views and opinions and will answer many misconceptions.

Course structure

You will be taught by a core lecturing team and we have a number of visiting expert lecturers who take both lectures and seminars on their areas of expertise.

Examples of the subject themes studied on the programme include in Year 1:

Compulsory modules in Food, Nutrition and Health, which provides you with introductory information on food, nutrition and dietary analysis; Introduction to Biological Sciences; Human Biology; Biochemistry; and Global Food Issues.

In Year 2 a core Advanced Food and Nutrition module will develop topics covered in the first year. Other themes include Human Pathophysiology and Nutrition; Research Skills and Epidemiology and Public Health. Importantly you will gain an understanding of the ethical and professional framework you will work within as a graduate of a human nutrition degree.

In your final year you will critically explore the complex nature of issues related to dietary intake and physical activity and how these choices impact on health. You will also have the opportunity to take optional modules to help tailor your degree. The primary research investigation is an important part of your studies in Year 3 and this will enable you to integrate the practical and theoretical aspects of diet, nutrition and ethics.

Modules

Year 1

Year 1 develops a sound knowledge of the science that underpins the study of nutrition and factors that impinge on human health. You will be introduced to a broad range of public health strategies designed to promote behaviour change. Emphasis is given to key skills including communication (both written and oral), problem solving and the use of a range of laboratory and ICT techniques, including specialist diet analysis software.

Students working in laboratory

Year 1 Modules
  • Introduction to Biological Sciences;
  • Food, Nutrition and Health;
  • Global Food Issues;
  • Fundamentals of Biochemistry;
  • Human Biology.

Year 2

You will build upon your knowledge from Year 1 and apply it to aspects of human nutrition investigating the role of diet and physical activity in normal health and as a risk factor in health disorders. Importantly you will gain an understanding of the ethical and professional framework you will work within as a graduate of a human nutrition degree. You will be trained in research methodology, and increasingly you will become an independent and autonomous learner.

You will explore future careers through an optional, but encouraged, work placement in Year 2.

Experiment to measure body composition in laboratory

Year 2 Modules
  • Advanced Food and Nutrition;
  • Research Skills;
  • Epidemiology and Public Health;
  • Human Pathophysiology and Nutrition;
  • Choose 1 option from:
    • Food Product Development;
    • Applied Microbiology;
    • Work Placement;
    • The Marketing Business;
    • Environmental Sustainability;
    • Science Publishing;
    • Biological and Cognitive Psychology;
    • Abnormal Psychology.

Year 3

In your final year you will critically explore the complex nature of both issues related to dietary intake, exercise and the acquisition of human health. You will also build upon the food modules in Years 1 and 2. The primary research investigation is an important part of your studies in Year 3 and this will enable you to integrate the practical and theoretical aspects of diet, nutrition and ethics.

Year 3 Modules
  • Nutrition Research Project;
  • Nutrition and Exercise Science;
  • Future Food: Food and Nutrition in the 21st Century
  • Choose 2 options from:
    • Food Safety;
    • Global Trends in Food Preservation and packaging;
    • Food in Nutrition in Practice;
    • Digital Imaging;
    • Medical Biology;
    • Plants and People;
    • Environmental Consultancy;
    • Enterprise; Creating your own Business or Successful Freelancing;
    • Science Publishing Project;
    • Neuropsychology;
    • Individuals, Health and Society.

Course assessment

Open access computer room

A variety of methods are used for assessment on this programme - including:

  • Dietary analysis
  • Reports
  • Diet and physical activity evaluations
  • Developing food products
  • Designing a business plan
  • Essays
  • Case studies
  • Seminar presentations
  • Examinations
  • Group work
  • Literature reviews
  • Dissertation

Association for Nutrition logo

This course is accredited by The Association for Nutrition. This means that graduates of this degree will be eligible for direct entry registration at Associate level on the UK voluntary register of nutritionists, with Associate Nutritionist status. It is a specialised award, meaning that most of the modules are compulsory. However, in order for students to tailor their degree towards future career aspirations or interests there are some module options, and a research project in Year 3. Students are also encouraged to undertake relevant work experience.

Students have personal on-campus access to dietary analysis software, which is used frequently in lectures and seminars. We have excellent specialist facilities that include a food workshop and biology and microbiology laboratories.

Teaching methods

You will learn through a variety of teaching techniques: lectures; seminars; case studies; practical workshops; and educational visits.

Students have personal on-campus access to dietary analysis software, which is used frequently in lectures and seminars. Our specialist facilities include biology and microbiology laboratories and a food workshop.

Emphasis is placed on independent study. Each week you will be given a clear indication of the follow-up study and preparation you are expected to undertake.

Visiting speakers from the nutrition profession and food industry regularly contribute to the programme.

Application method

Castle and Corston building

All full time applications are through UCAS

Course enquiries

Admissions Service: 01225 875609

Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk

Entry requirements

260–300 UCAS Tariff points, with minimum 160 points from at least two science based subjects (Biology preferred plus a related science subject e.g. Chemistry, Physics, Maths, Physical Education or Food Technology) at A-level or equivalent.

An Access course that includes biosciences and numeracy.

Career opportunities

Science students graduating

There is a growing interest in human nutrition and its effect on health. There is an increasing demand for multi-skilled graduates with knowledge of nutrition and health who will be able to find employment in both the public and private sector.

The career opportunities for students studying BSc Human Nutrition are considerable and below are just some of the key opportunities.

Students are encouraged to tailor their degree to their own career aspirations. Help and advice on specific careers can be acquired from tutors and Bath Spa University's Careers Service.

Private sector careers include:

  • Graduate training schemes with food companies
  • Development of new food products
  • Food safety
  • Compliance with nutritional claims and labelling
  • Marketing
  • Public relations
  • Various roles within food companies, including specialist medical companies

Public sector careers include:

  • Working for local or national government in health, medical, scientific or food departments
  • Roles in public health such as Healthy Schools Initiatives
  • Food and health coordinator for nutrition based initiatives
  • Developing and contributing to health science in schools, colleges or universities

Graduates of the BSc Human Nutrition degree may go on to do postgraduate study, such as dietetics, or research, such as MPhil or PhD.

Employers such as University of Nottingham, University of East Anglia, Filton College, Nutricia, Nutriknowhow and a number of Food Manufacturers have recruited graduates from this course. Students have also gone into roles including Nutritionist and Academic Sports Lecturer.

What students say...

Student eating apple

"In years 2 and 3 there are guest speakers who will deliver lectures on a variety of interesting nutritional topics. This gives a helpful insight into some of the experiences that you will encounter and helps in directing you towards your dream career."

"The course contains a wide range of different subjects and skills, from cv writing and presentations to how the media can influence peoples food choice. It broadens your knowledge of the subject but also gives you the skills that will stand you in good stead throughout your working career."

"There’s a lot more to human nutrition than you expect; I didn’t expect to study microbiology and learn its importance in the foods we eat. Other modules teach you some history behind food and the tricks used in labelling. All the topics have been very interesting and relevant to the overall subject of human nutrition and becoming a successful nutritionist."

Stephanie Fisher, Human Nutrition, graduated 2012:

“As a mature student returning to education, I found that the ethos and staff encouragement at Bath Spa provided me with the necessary support when making the transition back into a learning environment. Working alongside people from all walks of life, with different experiences and unique points of view, really broadens your skills and helps better prepare you for your future career, no matter who you are or which course you do.

Since graduating, I was very focused on getting my foot in the door in an industry I had always felt so passionate about now that I felt appropriately qualified and knowledgeable in the subject area. Three months after I graduated, I started my new job as a Marketing Executive for a food company. I am eager to put everything I learnt during my time at Bath Spa into practice, yet feel that my new role will continue to challenge me and provide a whole new learning experience for the next stage of my life.”