How does food affect human health, and the prevention and management of diseases?

Gain the knowledge that underpins the study of human nutrition and metabolism.

  • Learn from scientists working at the University’s Rowett Institute, one of Europe’s most prestigious nutrition research centres.
  • Access our unique expertise and find out first hand what’s happening in the world of nutrition right now.

Our online Human Nutrition and Metabolism course is designed for wide appeal. It’s an ideal refresher for graduates in nutrition. As a scientist, it will help you move towards a career in nutrition. And it’s CV-boosting professional development for the health professions, industry and government agencies.

Build credits towards a Masters degree

This online course is part of:

You can use the credits you earn on this short course towards either of these MSc qualifications.

What you’ll study

Poor nutrition is a public health problem facing both developed and developing nations today.

In this course, you’ll:

  • learn to apply the scientific principles of nutrition to have a real, positive impact on public health
  • focus on the basic biochemistry and physiology relevant to human nutrition, to understand how the body works and how it responds to the food we eat
  • studying metabolism
  • gain detailed knowledge of the digestion, absorption and metabolism of carbohydrates, protein, fat, alcohol, vitamins and minerals, as well as energy balance and metabolism.

Increasing your knowledge of what constitutes ‘healthy eating’ will give you the solid science to debunk popular myths, diet fads and misunderstandings commonly propagated today around the role of nutrition in maintaining health and preventing and managing disease.

By the end of this course, you’ll be able to…

  • Describe how the human body responds to the food and nutrients we eat.
  • Explain how methods of food production and preparation influence the nutritional quality of the diet.
  • Communicate the energy balance, energy expenditure and energy requirements of the human body.
  • Recognise strengths and weaknesses in research methods, enabling you to understand the science behind nutritional information.

Feeding the future

For over 100 years, the Rowett Institute has played a major role in informing government policy and establishing the link between diet and health.

Read about the Rowett Institute’s work

How you’ll study

Online learning

This distance learning Nutrition and Metabolism course is delivered part-time, 100% online. You can study with us anywhere in the world and manage your study hours to suit you.

Your teaching

This course is taught at Masters level by experienced nutrition researchers and academics.

Your teaching is delivered through MyAberdeen, our online Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It holds all the materials, tools and support you’ll need in your studies. Take a look around MyAberdeen.

You can access your learning materials on computer, smartphone and laptop, 24 hours a day. You’ll find a range of resources at your fingertips, including:

  • podcasts of lectures
  • seminars
  • videos
  • study notes
  • discussion boards with colleagues and tutors
  • the online resources of our award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library.

Through the discussion boards, we’ll encourage you to question accepted wisdom and interact with your online colleagues to develop fresh ideas.

Your course coordinator

Where this will take you

Towards a Masters

You’ll earn 15 credits at Masters level (SCQF Level 11) with this course. You can use these credits towards our:

Build your learning

We have a range of online nutrition and healthcare courses you can use to build your skills.

Many carry credits you can build up into postgraduate qualifications, including Masters degrees:


Your employer or professional institute may recognise this course for Continuing Professional Development (CPD). Talk to your employer or institute to find out more.

Free career support

Access our free careers service while you study.

  • 1:1 appointments
  • CV checks
  • Interview prep
  • Job opportunities

See how our careers service can help you.

Why study nutrition online with the University of Aberdeen?

Entry requirements

This course has no formal entry requirements. You decide if it’s suitable for you.

The course is delivered at Masters level. At this level, you’d usually have at least:

  • a 2:2 (second-class) undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences or Life Sciences
  • or relevant experience that supports this level of study.

Apply for this course

Start date
18 September 2023
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