BSc (Hons)

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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The field of nutrition plays a vital role in maintaining human health. It's an ever-evolving field that can transform communities and change lives.

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 career events to meet key employers and successful alumni from various sectors. Additionally, you can gain work experience in your field of interest, where you can develop your professional skills and gain experience in research and lab work. You'll graduate one step closer to realising your future career aspirations.

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.

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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.

  • Ideal location

    Oxford is home to many organisations who depend on nutritionists, from private healthcare agencies to food manufacturers. We also have great transport links to other areas of the country.

  • 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

    This module provides a detailed examination of sources of metabolic energy and other nutrients required by human metabolism, including their sources in food and the UK diet and the consequences of sub-optimal intake or excess.  The students will gain a detailed understanding of nutritional biochemistry including the mechanisms for the integration of metabolism at the molecular, cellular and whole body levels. Nutrient requirements will be discussed with reference to UK Dietary Reference Values.  

    Dr Catherine Graham, Module Lead: “I love teaching the ins and outs of where biology, chemistry and nutrition combine, and seeing students from different academic backgrounds work together to understand the fundamentals. This module delves into the science of human nutrition. It acts as the knot between many other modules.”

  • Applied Human Nutrition

    This module is a detailed study of the features and problems of nutrition-related disease in the UK, Europe and other prosperous countries and communities.  The module explores the relationship between food, health and chronic disease.  It is composed of three broad sections: nutrigenomics (the role of nutrients on gene expression and the genetic susceptibility to disease stages); chronic diseases (e.g. obesity, diabetes mellitus, cancer, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome); and specialist topics (vegetarianism, alcohol).

    Dr Catherine Graham, Module Lead: “My research area overlaps with this module, so students get to learn from a research-led perspective. Chronic disease is the leading cause of mortality in the world today. In Applied Human Nutrition students get to learn how we as nutritionists can contribute to tackling this.”

  • Fundamentals of Food Science

    Fundamentals of Food Science is concerned with the chemical, biochemical, microbiological, physical and organoleptic properties of foods as specifically related to nutrition. It generally deals with foods between the times they are harvested to the time they are consumed. The central theme running through this module is food quality – in the context of nutritional content, physical properties, microbiological contamination, chemical composition and sensory levels of acceptability.

    Dr Sangeetha Thondre, Module Lead: "I love talking to students about the link between food science and nutrition. It is important to know what is in the foods we buy, how they are processed and how we can ensure the quality and safety of foods".

  • Motivating Health Behaviour

    This module examines a variety of approaches to motivate behavioural change with the aim of improving human health by addressing nutrition, exercise and other relevant factors in post-industrialised nations. The syllabus includes Introduction to health psychology, Predicting health behaviours, Health behaviour change, Government health policy, Psychological issues in nutrition and exercise and Health psychology applications

  • Research Methods

    This module introduces students to past and current research paradigms used within Sport and
    Health Sciences. It will enable students to develop a critical approach to research and to explore and
    apply associated philosophical, methodological, analytical and ethical issues to their own small-scale
    research project. It will provide an exploration of some of the fundamental concepts and practices
    that underpin the research process including research design, literature critique and critical analysis
    of research.

    Dr Rianne Costello, Module Lead: “Based on some of the work from my PhD and my sports
    nutritionist background, I have a particular interest in looking past the group mean and assessing the
    inter-individual differences and variability in data. I will use some of my expertise in this area to help
    develop your research skills and improve your critical eye when reading research papers and
    designing experimental studies.”

  • Physical Activity and Health

    This module investigates the ways in which physical inactivity impacts human health. Evidence from the scientific literature is evaluated to investigate a role for physical inactivity in development of e.g. obesity, insulin resistance syndrome, cancer and development of cardiovascular disease. The role of physical activity is also examined in reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with these diseases and aging.

  • Professional Practice for Nutritionists 2

    This module develops the knowledge and experience gained by students via the level 4 module ‘Professional practise for Nutritionists 1’. The students will learn about research guidelines and ethical considerations required to act in the best interest of clients. The module also requires students to do a field visit of a minimum of 6 hours in a food industry, nutrition or public health setting. Students will be provided with opportunities to reflect deeply on their existing skills, knowledge and learning and encouraged to identify areas that need further development.

    Dr Rianne Costello, Module Lead: “I will also share some of my top tips about how to transition from the nutrition student to the nutrition graduate professional. This module will help to show you all the different career pathways available to you following University. You will hear from different academic and industry experts to successful Brookes Alumni who have gone on to establish their own businesses.”

  • Lifespan Nutrition

    This module is a detailed study of the changes in nutritional requirements throughout the lifecycle. It will explore the role of diet and nutrition in supporting growth, development and health at each life stage and highlight the potential influence of diet and food choice on health throughout the lifespan. The role of nutrition from pre conception through childhood, adolescence and adulthood, through to the end of life will be studied. Emphasis will also be 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.

    Dr Vasiliki Iatridi, Module Lead: “In this module, I get the opportunity to bring together my long experience as a Nutritionist/Dietitian in counselling children and adults on diet and health and as a researcher in contributing to projects involving participants as young as infants and others in their later years.”

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

    This module provides an opportunity to explore a topic of interest, allowing you the freedom to discover advances in nutrition and to generate new ideas. You will gain an understanding of your topic through primary and secondary research by pursuing a critical inquiry in an area of nutrition. You will engage with research methodology and academic literature in a reflective and analytical fashion. You will choose a subject and methodology in collaboration with an academic supervisor. This allows you to develop and enhance a research question, explore a range of issues related to nutrition, and to develop the graduate attributes important for your development and future career.

    Dr Jonathan Tammam, Module Lead: “My favourite part of teaching this module is to see students focus on a substantial research project and grow into independent thinkers. Some students present their work at conferences and publish in academic journals, which makes me especially proud.”

  • Clinical Nutrition

    This module provides a detailed study of nutrition theory and practice within a clinical setting. It takes a 'process' approach to clinical nutrition and outlines the general principles and processes that underlie most clinical cases. The module will explore human energy requirements during health, disease states and in clinical settings. It also investigates the management of nutrition-related diseases, and the uses of clinical dietary therapy and therapeutic diets. It also examines the underpinning supporting research evidence for clinical practice as appropriate. The focus will be on nutritional management of common diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 1 & 2 diabetes, gastrointestinal disorders, and renal/liver disease.

    Dr Alaeddine El-Chab, Module Lead: “This is my favourite module to lead. I cover topics that I am very passionate about as a nutritionist. For this module, I will bring my dietetic and clinical background together with my experience working at a hospital.”

  • Energy Regulation and Obesity

    In this module students study the factors influencing human energy regulation and the development and treatment of obesity. This includes the concept of energy balance and discusses the measures and implications of basal metabolic rate (BMR) and the factors controlling energy intake and energy expenditure as part of the body’s internal balancing act. Development of overweight and obesity is controlled by environmental, socioeconomic, genetic and diet-related factors. Understanding these factors and the methods for measuring energy requirement are important for energy regulation and prevention of obesity.

    Dr Catherine Graham, Module Lead: “Being one of the last modules in our degree path this module links many aspects together, from biochemistry to treatment and prevention. This is a fantastic module, full of debates, practicals, and combining the creative with the scientific.”

  • Functional Foods and Food Product Development

    This module investigates the relationship between food and human health by concentrating on functional foods and their potential and proven health benefits, and also on techniques used to modify and optimise the nutritional composition of food products. The syllabus includes the development process for new food products, modification of recipes to meet nutritional guidelines including the use of fat, sugar and salt replacers, implications of food reformulation for the stability of food products, and the procedures for approval of health claims for new or reformulated food products.

    Dr Vasiliki Iatridi, Module Lead: “Understanding early on in my collaborations as a consultant the barriers of miscommunication between Nutritionists who focus on people's healthy eating and the Food industry that aims to please consumers' pallets, the Functional Food and Food Product Development module has been designed to bring these two worlds together.”

  • Global Nutrition, Public Health and Policy

    This module introduces students to nutritional issues specific to global populations consolidating knowledge on topics such as wasting, stunting, micronutrient deficiencies, chronic diseases and complications with infectious diseases. Nutritional epidemiology and policies to address maternal nutrition, infant feeding, emergency nutrition and food security are also reinforced in this module. 

    Dr Sangeetha Thondre, Module Lead: "This module opens a whole new world to nutrition students. It is fascinating to discuss the global challenges ranging from child malnutrition to nutrition transition and food sustainability."  

  • Professional Practice for Nutritionists 3

    This module develops the knowledge and experience gained via the module ‘Professional practice for Nutritionists 2’ and prepares you for future practice as nutritionists in food industry, community, research or public health. There will be sessions on the legal context of nutrition practice and relevance of intellectual property issues taught by the Research and Development staff at Oxford Brookes. The module also requires you to prepare a personal statement demonstrating your knowledge and understanding in nutrition to meet the core competencies of the AfN.

    Dr Shelly Coe, Module Lead: “Professional Practice for Nutritionists 3 includes lectures from alumni and consultants from the nutrition field and allows me to welcome back past students from over the years. It’s very rewarding to see our graduates excel in the nutrition field. Current students are also able to meet nutritionists from different backgrounds who have been successful in the profession.”

Optional modules

Advanced Work Experience

This module aims to provide you with opportunity to apply the theory taught in other modules to practical contexts. The authentic, real life, work-based contexts will provide you the opportunity to construct knowledge in situ providing the you with real resonance. An additional aim of the module is the enhancement of your employability on completion of their relevant programme. It is also anticipated that you will gain a better understanding of their future career direction and be able to identify future professional development opportunities.

Independent Study

This module involves individual or group work on an appropriate topic constructed under the supervision of the module leader, with prior approval of the field committee. This study may be work based, enabling students to gain recognition and academic credit for learning gained through their professional practice or employment or from an in-depth study of their own high level sporting performance.

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

Home (UK) sandwich (placement)

International full time

International sandwich (placement)

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

2023 / 24
Home (UK) full time

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

Home (UK) sandwich (placement)

International full time

International sandwich (placement)

2024 / 25
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.