Nutrition MSc

Year of entry

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Start date
September 2024
Delivery type
On campus
Duration
12 months full time
Entry requirements
A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) in a subject containing chemistry and biology content.
Full entry requirements
English language requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in all components
UK fees
£13,500 (Total)
International fees
£32,000 (Total)
Accredited
Yes

Course overview

Nutrition MSc

Nutrition is a dynamic discipline that is central to understanding the role of foods, nutrients and consumption behaviour in maintaining human health and preventing disease.

Nutritionists play a significant role in providing dietary recommendations at the individual level, as well as contributing to evidence-based guidelines and policy formulation and implementation at community and population level. As such, nutritionists are in demand – meaning there'll be an exciting range of career or research opportunities open to you when you graduate.

Our Nutrition MSc degree will give you an in-depth understanding of the scientific and contextual considerations that inform the ethical practice of the nutrition profession, as set by the Association for Nutrition (AfN) — the UK professional voluntary register of nutritionists.

You’ll cover the essential areas of nutritional sciences — from the scientific principles underpinning the relationships between diet, the food environment and food choice and the associated impacts on human health and wellbeing, to the application of this knowledge in policy and practice. You'll learn about both existing and emerging areas which inform current policy and practice, such as obesity, personalised nutrition and healthy and sustainable diets.

Throughout the course, you’ll build up the key technical knowledge, practical skills and professional competencies needed to pursue a career in nutrition. And, as the course is accredited by the AfN, you’ll have to platform to become a Registered Associate Nutritionist when you graduate – a status required by many organisations in industry.

Why study at Leeds:

  • This Masters degree is accredited by the Association for Nutrition.
  • Our globally-renowned research here at Leeds feeds into your course and shapes your learning with the latest thinking in areas of human biochemistry and molecular nutrition, personalised nutrition, nutrition policy and nutritional epidemiology.
  • Advance your knowledge and skills in industry-relevant areas, including nutrition and health, human biochemistry, policy in nutrition and nutrition across the lifespan.
  • Conduct your own independent research project as part of your course and gain industry experience in in investigating an exciting real-world problem, mirroring the type of work you’ll be conducting in your professional career.
  • Experience expert teaching delivered by a programme team made up of academics and researchers who specialise in a variety of Food Science and Nutrition disciplines.
  • Work alongside our academics and get involved in real-life research happening in the School.
  • Access specialist facilities, including computerised sensory testing, multiple libraries, computing facilities and teaching laboratories that will give you an industry-standard environment to perform experiments and conduct project work.
  • Enhance your career prospects and join our successful alumni who have pursued careers in revered global companies including Tesco PLC., Premier Foods and PepsiCo.
  • Master the most up-to-date practices and techniques recognised in industry on a course that has been directly informed and advised by the Industrial Advisory Board.

Accreditation

Accredited by the Association for Nutrition

Accreditation is the assurance that a university course meets the quality standards established by the profession for which it prepares its students.

The course is accredited by the Association for Nutrition (AfN).

This accreditation certifies that this programme delivers evidence-based nutrition education to a professionally recognised level which meets quality standards.

This MSc degree guarantees your eligibility to apply for direct entry at ‘Registered Associate Nutritionist’ level to the AfN voluntary register – a registration required by many nutritionist and nutrition-related jobs.

Join our online taster courses

Food Safety and Nutrition: A Global Approach to Public Health is delivered via FutureLearn, exploring the challenges of ensuring food security faced by researchers, policymakers and individuals worldwide.

Learn how large-scale change, like industrialisation, globalisation, population growth and climate change, affects food safety and understand the consequences for global health and nutrition.

A Nutritional Approach to Agriculture and Food Security will introduce you to skills necessary to apply and evaluate nutrition-focused innovative solutions for a more sustainable food system, with a focus on the Global South.

Course details

Throughout this course, you’ll develop an in-depth understanding of the scientific principles that underpin the relationships between diet and health, how nutrients in food are used in the body and how individuals’ nutritional requirements change across various stages of life, with consideration to how these relate to specific groups of people. You'll explore how and why people make choices relating to what they eat and drink and how this knowledge can be applied in the design and implementation of public health promotion interventions, aimed at improving health. Additionally, you'll be introduced to existing and novel key areas in the field of Nutrition, where your knowledge and skills may be applied, such as personalised nutrition and nutrition policy and practice.

Project work

During the latter part of the year, you’ll be tasked with developing and conducting an independent nutrition-related research project around your interest or which is aligned with current research being conducted by one of our academics. You'll have the opportunity to work in one of our fully equipped research laboratories or be involved in desk or field-based research activity, such analysis of dietary datasets from surveys.

Examples of the range of research projects previously undertaken by our MSc Nutrition students include:

  • Effectiveness of probiotic therapies on body weight and BMI: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials.
  • Perceptual differences in portion sizes using the Delboeuf illusion & colour contrast.
  • Systematic review: childhood obesity prevention during the first 24 months of life.
  • Exploring consumer and industry perspectives around “may contain” labelling on vegan-suitable products.

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our terms and conditions.

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Nutrition MSc in the course catalogue

Modules

Compulsory modules

Capstone Research Project – 60 credits

Undertake an independent, real-life research project with the support of our experienced academics. Your project work may take on the form of a lab-based, desk-based or field-based research activity. The choice of topics available will vary depending on your interest and what academics are working on at the time and may include experimental, computational or applied research. Through this module, you'll apply the skills and knowledge you have acquired throughout your programme and further develop the academic and professional skills necessary for graduate roles and various career paths, including further education at Leeds or elsewhere. 

Nutrition and Health – 15 credits

Take a closer look at the relationship between diet and health by exploring how foods and diets may be used to prevent or manage specific health conditions, within the scope of practice for a AfN Registered Nutritionist. Specialist themes covered in the module may include ‘diet and gut health’, ‘diet and cancer’, ‘diet and diabetes’, diet and bone health’, ‘diet and liver health’ and ‘diet and mental health’.  

Nutrition Across the Lifespan – 15 credits

Investigate nutrition needs and associated influencing factors throughout distinct stages of an individual’s life course (pre-conception to old age/elderly). Themes covered may include, for example, critical nutrients at different stages of life, determinants of food choice including the psychology of food choice and food preferences and their effects on nutrition profiles. 

Human Biochemistry and Molecular Nutrition – 15 credits

Explore various aspects of human biochemistry and molecular nutrition, such as enzymes and metabolic pathways, the gut microbiome and the role of nutrition in gene expression.

Nutrition Policy – 15 credits

Most people have an opinion on nutrition policy, such as the UK “sugar tax” but what exactly is it? And, further to that, how do nutritionists work to support, deliver or evaluate such policies? We’ll explore current nutrition policies in the UK and globally and ask - do they work to improve people’s diets or reduce health inequalities? You'll be involved in active and discursive learning and hear from nutrition professionals and other experienced policy makers in industry and multi-sector organisations.

Our graduates are the nutrition policy makers of the future. As such, the module involves both real-life and academic assessment, with a strong emphasis on skills for professional work in nutrition.  

Health Promotion: Applications of Theory & Practice – 15 credits

This module will look at the theoretical background of health promotion and its applications to individual and community health. Themes include definitions of health and determinants of health (including health inequalities), theories and models of individual and community-level behaviour change, planning, implementation and evaluation of targeted individual, community and population nutrition-related interventions/approaches for health promotion.  

Nutritional Epidemiology and Dietary Research Methods – 15 credits

Explore the fundamentals of nutritional epidemiology, including study design and the hierarchy of evidence pyramid, dietary assessment, anthropometric assessment and the analysis and interpretation of nutritional epidemiological studies.  

Personalised Nutrition – 15 credits

Learn perspectives on individualised solutions to nutrition-related challenges, within the scope of practice for a AfN Registered Nutritionist. Using an active learning approach, you'll explore emerging areas in this field such as the applications, challenges and possibilities of telehealth and digital technologies to achieve personalised nutrition. 

Research and Professional Skills – 15 credits

This key module will introduce you to a diversity of academic and professional skills and competencies that will help you succeed throughout your degree – and beyond. You'll learn how to critically read scientific and non-scientific sources of information and how to communicate scientific aspects relating to your discipline to various audiences, using different tools, e.g., academic writing and digital platforms. You'll explore the application of study skills, such as Academic Integrity, Ethics, and Library Skills. By engaging in practicals, you'll build your laboratory skills specific to your specialisation, as well as more generic skills such as good laboratory practices and laboratory safety. This module will also introduce you to the requisite professional competencies and how you can build these throughout your programme. 

Learning and teaching

Our MSc Nutrition covers a broad range of scientific areas relevant to the nutrition discipline, such as human biochemistry, nutrition policy, public health nutrition, statistics and epidemiology, food science, and food choice and behaviour. You’ll explore these subject areas with academics, researchers and experienced external practitioners who work in industry, policy, or health care. Teaching staff at the School of Food Science and Nutrition include lecturers and professors who are all experienced at producing globally recognised, cutting-edge research across a range of different areas of nutrition, health and food. You may also be taught by industry and health care professionals with years of experience in the field, e.g., practising dietitians, as well as trained postgraduate researchers.

You'll benefit from a wide range of active learning activities and innovative teaching methods, including lectures, workshops, small group tutorials, case-based learning, problem-based learning, and practical laboratory work. All learning is undertaken alongside peers and other students from within the School of Food Science and Nutrition and potentially other students within the University of Leeds. As such, you'll learn about different aspects of nutrition science in innovative ways, all of which will support the development of your knowledge, skills and confidence. You’ll also be assigned an academic personal tutor to guide you through your studies and help you progress throughout your degree.

Independent study is an important part of this course, through which you'll develop your research and analytical skills as well as your ability to think critically and work independently.

Skills Development

Our problem-based learning approach, laboratory classes and project-based work allows you to gain first-hand experience investigating and applying material from your lectures and tutorials to real-life work situations. This ensures that, as a student, you’re actively engaged in teaching and learning and working collaboratively with your course mates to build a sense of community where you feel valued.

This approach will also equip you with high-level thinking and in-depth knowledge along with the key practical, technical skills and transferable skills and competencies that will help you secure a graduate job.

Specialist facilities

You'll have access to excellent teaching and laboratory facilities, supplemented by extensive computing equipment installed with specialist analytical software packages used to evaluate dietary intake, nutritional composition of recipes and other nutrition-related data.

Other specialist facilities include a purpose-built energy balance laboratory, which houses equipment used for the assessment of human body composition (BodPod), resting energy expenditure (using a state-of-the-art metabolic system - Cosmed Quark RMR) and exercise-induced energy expenditure (measured during cycle ergometry using a breath-by-breath metabolic cart - Cosmed Quark). Also available is a research kitchen and experimental cubicles that allow the measurement of appetite and dietary intake in which the volume/composition of foods can be manipulated.

We also have strong links with the Astbury Centre for Structural Molecular Biology and the Global Food and Environment Institute, both of which are equipped with a range of facilities.

Programme team

The MSc Nutrition course teaching team is made up of academics and researchers from within the School of Food Science and Nutrition who work across the School’s interdisciplinary research groups to address global challenges in Food Science, Nutrition and Food Systems Sustainability. Expertise includes nutritional biochemistry, nutritional epidemiology, public health nutrition, global nutrition, human nutrition and lifestyle interventions, plant-based diets and food systems sustainability, functional biopolymers for health and obesity, cancer and cardiometabolic diseases.

Our MSc Nutrition Programme Leader is Dr Sara Guo, a Registered Nutritionist. Sara has great experience in teaching Food Science and Nutrition and has led several research projects including different types of studies. Her key research interests include prospective studies and human intervention studies on the association between diet or nutrients and chronic disease risk, e.g., cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancers.

On this course you’ll be taught by our expert academics, from lecturers through to professors. You may also be taught by industry professionals with years of experience, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus.

Assessment

A variety of traditional and authentic formative and summative assessment approaches are used to support your learning and progression through the course, measure your attainment of the learning outcomes, and develop your skills. Our assessments are designed to reflect real-world needs and challenges encountered in the workplace, while accommodating the various learning styles and embedding equitable and inclusive practices to ensure a supportive and fair assessment framework is presented. As such, assessments range in format and may include, for example, report writing, mini critical review and oral and visual presentation. In so doing, skills attained would include, for example, communication, problem-solving, critical thinking, and team working, in addition to the core technical skills specific to your degree.

Throughout the course, you'll receive formative feedback, which will provide an opportunity to think critically and reflect on your performance, as you progress and learn.

Applying

Entry requirements

A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) in a subject containing chemistry and biology content.

A bachelor degree with a 2:2 (hons) will be considered for candidates with relevant industry and/or research experience.

We expect all applicants to provide a supporting statement indicating their career aim in Nutrition and a description of their interest in Public Health priorities.

We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications.

For more information, please contact the Admissions Team.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in all components. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our postgraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

This pre-sessional course is designed with a progression route to your degree programme and you’ll learn academic English in the context of your subject area. To find out more, read Language for Science (6 weeks) and Language for Science: General Science (10 weeks)

We also offer online pre-sessionals alongside our on-campus pre-sessionals. Find out more about our six week online pre-sessional.

You can also study pre-sessionals for longer periods – read about our postgraduate pre-sessional English courses.

How to apply

Application deadlines

Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

30 June 2024 – International applicants

8 September 2024 – UK applicants

Click below to access the University’s online application system and find out more about the application process.

If you're still unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

University of Leeds Admissions Policy 2025

This course is taught by

School of Food Science and Nutrition

Contact us

School of Food Science and Nutrition Admissions Team

Email: mscenquiry@food.leeds.ac.uk
Telephone:

Fees

UK: £13,500 (Total)

International: £32,000 (Total)

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

Additional cost information

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more on our living costs and budgeting page.

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.  Find out more at Masters funding overview.

Career opportunities

The food industry is one of the largest in the world — with a vast amount of career opportunities available to qualified nutritionists.

On graduating from our Nutrition MSc, you’ll have the knowledge and skills relevant to register as a qualified nutritionist, providing personalised advice on healthy eating in food companies and other nutrition/health-related industries. You’ll also have the groundings to follow careers in food manufacturing, nutrition training, health promotion, marketing, scientific research and product development to name a few. This programme also provides a good foundation for students who would like to pursue further studies at the PhD level at Leeds, or elsewhere.

Here at Leeds, we rank in the top 10 in the UK for Nutrition and Food Science and our Food Science MSc has been accredited by the Association for Nutrition, meaning many of our alumni have been sought after by large corporations worldwide and have gone on to hold key positions in the food industry and government agencies.

Plus, University of Leeds students are among the top 5 most targeted by top employers according to The Graduate Market 2024, High Fliers Research, meaning our graduates are highly sought after by some of the most reputable companies in the field.

Our graduates from this course have secured positions at companies such as:

  • Food Technical Graduate, Tesco PLC
  • Nutrition Advisor and Business Development Executive, I-detox International Limited
  • Product Development Officer, Premier Foods
  • R&D Technician, Kerry Foods
  • Dietetic Assistant, County Durham NHS Trust
  • Nutritionist, PepsiCo
  • Food Labelling & Nutrition Coordinator, Jordans, Dorset & Ryvita
  • Nutrition Technologist, Bakkavor
  • Regulatory Advisor, Danone
  • Product Development Technician, Mars Petcare

Careers support

At Leeds, we help you to prepare for your future from day one — that’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers. The University's Careers Service is one of the largest in the country, providing a wide range of resources to ensure you are prepared to take your next steps after graduation and get you where you want to be.

  • Dedicated Employability Officer — gain quality advice, guidance and information to help you choose a career path. From CV and cover letter writing to supporting you with job applications, our School’s dedicated Employability Officer is on hand to help maximise your capabilities through a process of personal development and career planning.
  • Employability and networking events — we run a full range of events, including careers fairs and industry talks in specialist areas and across broader industries, with employers who are actively recruiting for roles, giving you the opportunity to network and engage with industry sponsors. 
  • Employability skills training – to support your transition to the workplace, we embed training in a range of key transferable skills valued by employers such as research and data analysis in all our programmes.
  • MyCareer system — on your course and after you graduate you’ll have access to a dedicated careers portal where you can book appointments with our team, get information on careers and see job vacancies and upcoming events.
  • Opportunities at Leeds — there are plenty of exciting opportunities offered by our Leeds University Union, including volunteering and over 300 clubs and societies to get involved in.

Find out more at the Careers website.

Alumni profile: Conor Mullen

I think the broad content of the course has been excellent, and the lecturers are all experts in their fields. Having never done them before, the lab practical classes have been very interesting.
Find out more about Conor Mullen's time at Leeds