UCAS code: B401

Start dates: September 2024 / September 2025

Full time: 3 years (or 4-year undergraduate degree for students who take a placement and complete their Year 2 studies on or after June 2024)

Part time: Part-Time study is possible

Location: Headington

Department(s): Department of Sport, Health Sciences and Social Work

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On this course you'll take food science modules to understand the challenges of food manufacturing. Your studies will cover a range of topics, including:

  • eating disorders

  • food additives

  • organic food

  • the politics of food production.

You can attend events to meet employers and successful alumni from various sectors. You can gain work experience in your field of interest, where you’ll develop your skills and gain experience in research and lab work. 

The course is accredited by the Association for Nutrition (AfN), which is recognised by key employers in the food, nutrition and health sectors. The course curriculum is set by the AfN and you can become Associate Nutritionists, enhancing your employability prospects.

You also have the option of a year long professional or industry placement at the end of your second year.

Oxford is an ideal location as it is home to many organisations who depend on nutritionists, like healthcare agencies and food manufacturers. We also have great transport links to other areas of the country.


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Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • Home of cutting-edge research

    The Oxford Brookes Centre for Nutrition and Health researches the role of foods in preventing chronic disease. You can volunteer for projects, get involved in research, and hear about breakthroughs.

  • Practical and career focused

    Whether we’re helping you find a summer placement or organising trips to a factory, we’re always looking for ways to make the course more valuable to your future.

  • Immerse yourself

    There are many opportunities to get involved beyond the course curriculum, like attending events organised by the Nutrition Society, or volunteering for the Children and Young People’s Research Network.

  • A valuable first step

    As well as look for work in nutrition, you could use the course as a basis for further study and training, in dietetics for example.

  • Course Ranking

    Our BSc Nutrition course is now ranked 3rd in the UK for Student Satisfaction according to the Complete University Guide '24

  • Free language courses

    Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

  • Study abroad

    You may be able to go on a European or international study exchange while you are at Brookes. Most exchanges take place in the second year. Although we will help as much as we can with your plans, ultimately you are responsible for organising and funding this study abroad.

  • Accreditation(s)

    This course is accredited by the Association for Nutrition

    • Association for Nutrition 275

Course details

Course structure

The course follows the competencies set out by the Association for Nutrition. You’ll cover, amongst other things, the key topics of:

  • science - knowledge and understanding of the scientific basis of nutrition
  • food chain knowledge and impact on food choice
  • understanding food in a social or behavioural context
  • applying the scientific principles for health/wellbeing of all
  • professional conduct and the AfN Standards of Ethics Conduct and Performance.

Throughout the course, you’ll develop technical and practical skills suitable for a career in food science. You’ll advance your academic and research skills. Also you’ll study important topics like the psychology of food, or the impact of physical activity on health.

Professional practice is a key part of the course. Here you’ll get to think about ethical considerations, go on site visits, and hear from experts working in industry.

In your final year, you’ll work on a research project where you can explore a subject in real depth with support from an expert at Oxford Brookes.

Students sitting around table in the John Henry Brookes Building

Learning and teaching

We use a variety of teaching and learning methods including:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • workshops
  • small group assignments
  • simulations
  • independent study. 

Each year includes a professional practice module. This enables you to build on your skills and equip you for working in the area of nutrition. 

Our staff are active in nutrition and food science research. This informs and enhances our teaching.

Most modules include a strong practical element. You will have access to specialised laboratories and equipment in biochemistry, physiology and nutrition.


Your work will be assessed with a mix of coursework and some examinations. 

Coursework can include:

  • practical reports
  • essays
  • seminar presentations
  • class tests
  • reflective video diaries
  • numerical problems. 

Study modules

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Academic and Research Literacy

    In this module you’ll develop your ability to write at an appropriate academic standard, and in an appropriate style. You’ll build skills in searching, reading and begin to critique suitable literature, and develop collaborative skills through writing and research. You’ll also develop a basic learning and understanding of qualitative and quantitative research methods.

  • Scientific Skills for Health Scientists

    This module will help you develop the skills used to manipulate numbers/equations and to analyse data that is appropriate for nutrition purposes. You’ll have the opportunity to work in a subject specific laboratory practical class. Where you’ll complete structured tasks to develop your understanding of statistics and practice using SPSS software, helping you to bridge the gap between data science and data understanding in Nutrition.

    Module lead Dr Rianne Costello says “Pulling on some of my expertise from both laboratory and applied based work, we will cover skills such as pipetting to the application of statistics in nutrition and food science. Scientific Skills is exactly what it says on the tin - the module aims to provide you with those fundamental skills that will help you excel as a nutrition scientist.”

  • Human Structure and Function

    Through this module you’ll build detailed insight into physiology - the way that the human body performs vital functions. Body function is dependent on the form or structure of the body and we’ll also study relevant areas of anatomy to gain a greater understanding. 

    Body functions are complex and individual organs don’t function in isolation, they work within organ systems. You’ll explore systemic physiology, which is the study of these organ systems. We’ll use examples such as the cardiovascular, respiratory and renal systems to illustrate this way of looking at and understanding the human body.  

    Organ systems also work in an integrated way, each affecting the others to try to maintain a physiological equilibrium. We will explore how the body maintains its balance, and also think about when things go wrong.


  • Introduction to Nutrition

    There are few things more fundamental to life than food and water. 

    In this module you’ll develop a basic understanding of the Science of Nutrition. You will study the concepts of human energy supply and energy expenditure, learning about the different nutrients. You’ll build your skills through training in how to assess dietary intake and nutritional adequacy, as well as body size and body composition. Helping to further your expertise in the field of nutrition.

    Module leader Dr Vasiliki Iatridi says: “Studying Nutrition was one of the best decisions I've ever made: in the Introduction to Nutrition module it's my turn to convey that enthusiasm to our future Nutritionists and Health Care Professionals and provide them with the fundamentals to value the principles of Nutrition Science during their studies and later careers.”

  • Psychology of Food

    You’ll look at the concept of food choice and identify the range of factors that affect food choice. You'll explore: 

    • theories and models of food choice
    • psychology of drinking behaviour
    • biological and learning influences on food choice 
    • societal influences on food choice
    • changing behavioural patterns.

    Helping you to build your knowledge and understanding of influences and factors that affect food choice. You also have the opportunity to formulate an individual recovery plan using a behavioural change approach.

    Module lead Dr Shelly Coe says: “This is one of my favourite modules to teach and the students really like it too, especially the case study assignment which allows them to design a recovery plan using behaviour change techniques for an individual. I have always enjoyed the psychological aspect of why we eat what we do, and Psychology of Food develops students' understanding of just that, from a biological or physiological point of view or at a societal level.”

  • Professional Practice for Nutritionists 1

    You’ll look at the role of a food science/nutrition professional and you’ll find out about the range of career opportunities that exist for nutritionists. You’ll have time to reflect on your own skills and knowledge while also looking to develop skills and knowledge that is needed for you to become a successful associate nutritionist. 

    You will undertake training in some of the key practical and communication skills in nutrition. Also you’ll visit professional food science/nutrition settings to help you better understand your future career development and options.

    Module lead Dr Alaeddine El-Chab says “The main reason I chose to work in academia was to share the knowledge I have acquired over the years studying and exploring nutrition. Sharing knowledge requires communication skills which will be covered in this module by exploring poster and oral presentations, nutrition in the media, and many other topics.”

  • Food Groups

    You’ll look at foods based on their biological origins, biochemical composition, culinary use, nutritional importance and how they contribute to the varied human diet.  

    You will study the changes that occur to the biochemical components in staple foods as they are transformed to different food products, which is an important aspect of your lectures. The key groups are based around the basic food commodities, which are cereals and pulses, fruit and vegetables; meat and fish; dairy products; and tropical products such as cocoa, coffee, tea and spices. Building your knowledge of food groups so you gain a deep understanding of food production and the human diet.

    Module Lead Dr Rianne Costello says “This module will provide you with the all-important foundation knowledge of the core food groups, from farm to fork and the importance of food security around the globe. This knowledge will help you become a more well-rounded Nutritionist or Nutrition Scientist.”

Year 2

Compulsory modules

  • Nutritional Biochemistry and Metabolism

    In this module you’ll be introduced to the theoretical background behind metabolic energy and human metabolism. You’ll learn about nutritional biochemistry in foods and how excessive consumption or suboptimal intake can impact internal biological mechanisms at a molecular, cellular and whole-body level. This module serves as a precursor to NUTR5008 Applied Human Nutrition, where you’ll also gain an informative insight into the role of energy and nutrients in the various stages of the life cycle and their associations with chronic disease risk.

    Once you graduate you can expect to be equipped for careers in public health, clinical nutrition/dietetics, or the food industry to name a few.

  • Applied Human Nutrition

    How does food play an important role in our lives? Explore this question and more on this module. Throughout your studies, you’ll discover the societal and biological nutritional links from disease prevention, maintenance and therapeutic perspectives. You’ll enjoy weekly lectures that build upon and apply the knowledge gained during Nutrition Biochemistry and Metabolism (NUTR5004) in the previous semester.

    Your learning journey will take you beyond the lecture room, introducing you to cutting-edge laboratory-based class techniques using specialist dietary analysis software, and preparing you for the career world. You’ll explore three broad sections: Nutrigenomics; which focuses on the role of gene expression and the genetic susceptibility to disease stages, chronic diseases, and specialist topics such as vegetarianism and alcohol. 

  • Fundamentals of Food Science

    From field to plate, in this module you’ll examine the chemical, biochemical, microbiological elements of the whole food science process from the time foods are harvested to the time they are consumed.

    The central theme of this study is food quality. You’ll explore various methods used to analyse the nutritional content of foods, both for macronutrients and micronutrients and the effect of cooking and preservation on the nutritional content of raw foods.

    Harnessing the knowledge and expertise from accredited academics you’ll focus on techniques in food safety, systems and processing, sustainability, and food evaluation, equipping you with vital employability skills and the know-how to solve real-world problems within the food industry.

  • Motivating Health Behaviour

    What are the main factors that motivate you to eat healthily and adopt healthy lifestyles? In this module, you’ll be discovering how the reasons behind consuming certain foods are important in relation to the improvement of lives globally, and in post-industrialised nations.

    To be healthy and active, our diet must comprise of certain foods to meet our energy and nutritional requirements and our lifestyle habits must include activities that promote health. In some circumstances, unhealthy food and lifestyle choices become of concern in relation to adverse health consequences. 

    This module will allow you to examine the approaches to motivate behavioural health change in relation to improved human health, by addressing nutrition, exercise and other relevant factors. 

  • Research Methods

    Get hands on with practical research methods and concepts employed in food and nutrition. Explore aspects of design, analysis and interpretation of research as well as ethical considerations fundamental to the research process. You’ll be given the opportunity to develop your own research proposal, honing your skills in engaging with literature in a critical and analytical manner.

  • Physical Activity and Health

    Learn the prevention and treatment concepts behind promoting and enhancing the nation’s health, from how physical inactivity impacts human health to formulating behavioural changes strategies. You’ll have the opportunity to investigate evidence from scientific literature pertaining to the role that physical inactivity plays in the resulting conditions and illnesses of obesity, insulin resistance syndrome, cancer and development of cardiovascular disease.

  • Professional Practice for Nutritionists 2

    This module develops the knowledge and experience gained by your study via the level 4 module ‘Professional practise for Nutritionists 1’. In this module, you’ll learn about professional and research guidelines, and ethical considerations required to act in the best interest of clients.

    You’ll also have the opportunity to participate in a volunteering experience of a minimum of six hours in the food industry, nutrition, or public health setting. You’ll be trained to reflect on your existing skills, knowledge and learning and encouraged to identify areas of improvement within your specialist field.

    Drawing on the knowledge from expert academics in professionally-geared lectures and seminars, you’ll be equipped with some of the most fundamental evidence-based concepts, preparing you to take the lead in a practice setting and on field visits.

  • Lifespan Nutrition

    How do nutritional requirements impact us throughout the course of our lifespan? This module will introduce you to a detailed study of the changes in nutritional requirements throughout the lifecycle.

    From pre-conceptual, foetal life, pregnancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood, ageing, and through to the end of life. A particular emphasis will be placed on the biochemical and physiological changes that occur throughout the human lifespan, together with an understanding of nutrition-related conditions associated with each life stage.

    You’ll also focus on the potential influence of early diet and food choice on health throughout the lifespan.

Work Placement Year

Optional modules

Work Placement Year

A placement gives you the opportunity to apply the knowledge you've learnt within an organisation.  You will develop skills that enhance your employability, and gain an insight into working in the nutrition and food industry.  

Part of the experience is finding the placement yourself. We can suggest suitable employers through our network of contacts.

Year 3

Compulsory modules

  • Research Project/ Dissertation in Nutrition

    You’ll have the opportunity to pursue a sustained research effort in the area of nutrition, and gain an in-depth understanding of a specific area of nutrition knowledge through data collection. You will be allowed to do this either individually or in a group, with a supervisor, to develop and enhance your research. You’ll gain confidence in reflecting effectively on your academic studies and research methodology, as well as improving your analytical skills and critical self-awareness. You’ll get to choose your dissertation subject in agreement with your supervisor and module lead, and you’ll be encouraged to explore a range of issues related to nutrition. You’ll find that you will acquire skills and attributes that are valuable to your personal development and future career options.

  • Clinical Nutrition

    You’ll gain a detailed insight of nutrition-based theory and practice within a clinical setting. You’ll investigate the processes behind approaches to clinical nutrition and explore the general principles that underlie most clinical cases. Your study will touch on human energy requirements during health, disease states, the management of nutrition-related diseases, and the uses of clinical dietary therapy and therapeutic diets. You’ll gain the confidence in identifying supporting evidence for clinical practice and will focus on nutritional management of common diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, gastrointestinal disorders, and renal/liver disease. In addition to lectures, you’ll have the opportunity to put your problem-solving skills to the test with hands-on interactive practical laboratory experience. Put your knowledge into action within the real world by exploring the potential application of various methodologies as part of your coursework.

  • Energy Regulation and Obesity

    The increased rate of obesity is a global health challenge, leading to associated medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer, which is placing added pressure on an already overwhelmed healthcare system. In this module, you’ll study the factors influencing human energy regulation and the development and treatment of obesity. You’ll explore the concept of energy balance and basal metabolic rate (BMR), and factors controlling energy intake and energy expenditure as part of the body’s internal balancing act. You’ll learn how obesity can be influenced by environmental, socioeconomic, genetic and diet-related factors, and how understanding these factors and the methods for measuring energy requirements are important for energy regulation and prevention of obesity.

  • Functional Foods and Food Product Development

    In this module, you’ll be introduced to the relationship between food and human health, with a special focus on functional foods, techniques and replacers used to modify and optimise the nutritional composition of food products. You’ll also explore the separation and incorporation of functional ingredients into other foods and investigate the procedures for approval of health claims in the UK/European Union. By the end of this module, you will have gained the theoretical knowledge and practical experience you’ll need to embark on your food product development career. 

  • Global Nutrition, Public Health and Policy

    In this module, you’ll be exploring the on-going nutrition-related problems in global and public health. You’ll consolidate your knowledge on topics such as wasting, stunting, micronutrient deficiencies chronic diseases, and complications with infectious diseases. In addition, you’ll turn your focus to nutritional epidemiology and policies to address maternal nutrition, infant feeding, emergency nutrition, food security and non-communicable diseases.

    You’ll be given the opportunity to work on interactive practical case studies and videos during in-class workshops, as part of small teams, and in group discussions. After this module, you’ll be well equipped with the skills and attributes to contribute towards a career in global health, nutrition policy and nutritional epidemiology in organisations such as NGO’s and government agencies. 

  • Professional Practice for Nutritionists 3

    In this module, you’ll build on the knowledge and experience gained in your previous study as you prepare for your future practice as nutritionists in the food industry, community, research or public health setting. You’ll hone your skills in your practice and will stay up to date with developments in the field of nutrition. You’ll develop an understanding of the legal context of nutritional practice, and how this applies to the professional practice as a whole.

    As part of your study, you’ll be encouraged to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding in nutrition, and there will be training sessions where you will get the opportunity to carry out your own research in either product development or nutrition services. You’ll gain confidence in presentation skills, pitching new products or services provided by a nutritionist, in a research, consultancy, industry or public health context. 

Optional modules

Advanced Work Experience

This module will give you a supervised work-based learning experience in a suitable organisation and arranged alongside your placement lead. You’ll acquire and develop new professional and/or technical skills, which shall be highly valuable in the professional workplace setting. You’ll work closely with staff and patrons, growing your knowledge of the wider context within your placement organisation, and applying the theory, concepts and content learned in previous modules. You’ll not only enhance your employability on completion of this module, but you’ll also gain a better understanding of your future career path and professional development opportunities. 

Independent Study

You’ll be given the opportunity to choose a topic for independent study, relevant to your programme. You’ll build on the knowledge you achieved in Stage 2 and if you are a full-time student, this module will typically be undertaken during your final year of study. You’ll agree your chosen topic of study with your tutor lead in the semester prior to the one in which study is to be undertaken. After the learning contract has been approved by the Subject Examination Committee, the study module you have chosen will then be registered on your programme of study.

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from those shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Download course structure chart


We believe our course develops very employable graduates. Recent students have gone to some exciting and wide-ranging careers with organisations like the NHS, Médecins Sans Frontières, Coca Cola, and many different research labs or independent healthcare agencies.

With its global breadth, the course will help you prepare for a career anywhere in the world.

Career destinations you might consider include:

  • hospital laboratories
  • health education
  • international aid
  • local authorities
  • product development in the food industry
  • teaching
  • research
  • specialised training, in dietetics for example.

Student profiles

Entry requirements

Wherever possible we make our conditional offers using the UCAS Tariff. The combination of A-level grades listed here would be just one way of achieving the UCAS Tariff points for this course.

Standard offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 104

A Level: BCC

IB Points: 29


Contextual offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 88

A Level: CCD

IB Points: 27


International qualifications and equivalences

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

2025 / 26
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 534400


Please note, tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students. 

The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support. 

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

You will need to buy basic personal protection equipment for laboratory practicals (lab coat), at a cost of around £20.

Information from Discover Uni

Full-time study

Part-time study

Programme changes:
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our changes to programmes page.