BSc/BSc (Hons) Nutrition and Food Science

Nutrition is the science that interprets the relationship between food and its nutritional composition to the functioning of the living organism. It includes study of the intake, digestion, absorption of food, production of energy, elimination of wastes and all the syntheses that are essential for growth, maintenance and reproduction across the life cycle.

This flexible course enables graduates to enter a variety of scientific and health-related careers. It offers a study abroad opportunity*, volunteering opportunities and allows you to select modules to tailor your studies. 

Why QMU?

  • The course is taught by experienced registered nutritionists who are research active. Their highly dynamic research informs the teaching programme, keeping up to date with current thinking in the field of nutrition.
  • Significant elements of Years One and Two are shared with our Applied Pharmacology, Human Biology, and Nutrition and Food Science courses, meaning you can change course any time up to the end of Year Two.


About the course

Nutrition is the science that interprets the relationship between food and its nutritional composition to the functioning of the living organism. It includes study of the intake, digestion, absorption of food, production of energy, elimination of wastes and all the syntheses that are essential for growth, maintenance and reproduction across the life cycle.

This is a multidisciplinary course focused on human nutrition with an emphasis on health and prevention of diet-related disease. It is suitable if you are interested in following a career in public health, the food industry, health promotion and nutrition, education or research.

In Years One and Two, you will gain a grounding in the core areas of the biological sciences. You will be introduced to fundamental principles and concepts in nutrition and associated disciplines and start to integrate your acquired knowledge from the different disciplines. You will study a range of modules that will allow you to start to develop core study skills in addition to laboratory and investigative (information technology and research) skills.

In Year Three, you will consider the factors that influence the maintenance and disturbance of health with a focus on nutrition at the individual, community and population level across all stages of the lifespan. You will continue to develop a range of skills, including evaluating scientific and lay literature, communication, and also specialist skills needed by the nutritionist to practice within the profession.

In Year Four, the majority of your time will be spent on your honours project which will involve you carrying out an individual research project, allowing you to integrate and develop your skills and knowledge further in a particular area. Modules focus on the current issues facing public health within the UK, namely obesity, cardiovascular disease and cancer, and consider nutrition policy, health promotion and education. Elective modules allow you to align your studies to your career goals.




You can opt to study for an honours degree over four years or an ordinary degree over three years. You will complete a range of modules each year as outlined.


Teaching, learning and assessment

The information on teaching, learning and assessment for entry in 2019 is not yet available, but will be accessible from here.

The information below is for entry in 2018 and will give you an idea of what to expect.

>>Click for more information on 'Learning, Teaching and Assessment'


Year One modules

  • Biochemistry
  • Developmental Biology and Ageing
  • Genetics
  • Health and Society
  • Cell Biology & Human Physiology
  • Integrating Module 1
  • Introduction to Nutrition
  • Key Investigative Skills 1
  • Microbiology

Year Two modules

  • Food Science
  • Immunology
  • Integrating Module 2
  • Key Investigative Skills 2
  • Molecular Biology
  • Nutrition
  • Pharmacology
  • Professional Development in Scientific Analysis
  • Systems Biology

Year Three modules

  • Applied Nutrition
  • Clinical Sciences
  • Determinants of Health
  • Dissertation (choice of topic)
  • Epidemiology and Health
  • Professional Module
  • Public Health Practice
  • Techniques for Nutrition Research

Year Four modules

  • Current Issues in Cancer
  • Current Issues in Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Disease
  • Current Issues in Obesity
  • Epidemiology
  • Food and Nutrition Policy
  • Honours Project (research)
  • Research Communication
  • Research Process
  • plus one from the following optional modules: Current Issues in Sport and Exercise/ Health Education and Promotion/ International Health and Nutrition

The modules listed here are correct at time of posting (Feb 2018) but may differ slightly to those offered in 2019. Please check the website for any updates.



There are no formal placements, but a limited number of volunteering opportunities allow you to gain further experience and develop skills in particular areas of practice.


Exchange opportunities*

In Years Two or Three, you have the opportunity to study for one semester at a university overseas. For more information, see www.qmu.ac.uk/study-here/international-students/exchanges-and-study-abroad/.

*subject to availability



You can enter a variety of scientific and health-related careers in the public and private sectors, such as: public health nutrition; health promotion; health media; food industry; fitness and leisure industries; research; government advisory posts; pharmaceutical industries; and product development. Graduates may also choose to study for a higher degree (MSc, MPhil or PhD).


Entry requirements

Scottish Higher: BBB

A Level: BB

Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H3

International Baccalaureate: 26 points

International: IELTS of 6.0 with no element lower than 5.5

Required subjects: Chem or Biol and preferably one other science (may include Maths or Home Economics) at Higher/A Level or equivalent AND Chem, Biol Maths and Eng at S/Int2/N5/GCSE level

Mature/Access: See related Access courses. We welcome applications from mature students with relevant qualifications in biology and chemistry and/or experience.

Direct Entry:

Year Two - HNC in a related subject with B in the graded unit

Year Three -  HND in a related subject with CB in the graded units

For details of related HNC and HND courses, see www.qmu.ac.uk/college-qualifications

Other: You may be requested to be immunised against Hepatitis B






Associate student places

You can study this course as an associate student completing your first year at West Lothian College. For more information and entry requirements, see page 32.

Associate student places


Professional registration/ accreditation


Teaching staff, class sizes and timetables

For more information, please see ‘How we teach and how you’ll learn’.

Awarding body

QMU. For more information, please see ‘External Review’ section on the ‘How we teach and how you’ll learn’ page.

Please Note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2019/20 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Undergraduate).

*subject to availability

Teaching staff may be subject to change.

 Special Information for EU Applicants The Scottish Government has confirmed that undergraduate EU students enrolling in the 2019/20 academic year will be entitled to free tuition fees in Scotland for the duration of their course. Those assessed as eligible will remain so for the duration of their course. You must apply to the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for funding. For guidance on eligibility and funding please visit the SAAS website


Course Overview

On campus
3/4 years
Start Date
September 2019
Study Abroad
School of Health Sciences
Subject Area
Fees & Funding

A Student Story - more at foot of page

Rebecca Kinghorn - BSc / BSc (Hons) NUtrition and Food Science "I’d say if you’re interesting in Food and Science this definitely is the course for you, and a bonus to this course is that there are a wide range of job prospects and opportunities that come along with this degree." Read my story...

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