SHE Level 1
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M1B426520
Module Leader Yvonne Brogan
School School of Health and Life Sciences
Subject Human Nutrition and Dietetics
  • A (September start)

Summary of Content

The module introduces students to the study of nutrition by examining the sources of nutrients and their functions within the body and by determining the requirements of individuals. Students will also be introduced to food and nutrient based dietary guidelines and the components of a healthy balanced and sustainable diet. Students will also develop practical skills in nutritional analysis, food preparation, food purchasing and budgeting during the kitchen sessions. This module is assessed by coursework.


Introduction to nutrition: basic nutrient requirements; dietary reference values; food composition databases; assessment of nutrient content of foods; food portion sizes, food based dietary guidelines; sustainability. Energy balance: consequences of positive and negative energy balance; principles of estimating energy intake and expenditure; factors affecting individual energy requirements. Proteins: structure and functions of proteins in the body; sources of protein in the diet; biological value of proteins; essential amino acids; complementary action of proteins; calculation of protein requirements. Carbohydrates: structure and functions of carbohydrates, including simple sugars, complex carbohydrates, non-starch polysaccharides; role of carbohydrates in a healthy diet. Fats: structure of dietary fats, including saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and their roles in a healthy diet; essential fatty acids; cholesterol. Vitamins: roles of all fat-soluble and water-soluble vitamins; sources of each vitamin; daily requirement for each vitamin and associated health effects of deficiencies and excesses. Minerals and trace elements: main biological roles of sodium, potassium, chloride and calcium and their importance to health; main biological roles of trace elements such as iron, fluoride, selenium, zinc, copper and iodine. Fluid requirements and alcohol: the essential role of water in the body; normal fluid requirements and factors affecting this; absorption of alcohol; possible health implications of alcohol consumption.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module the student should be able to:1. Describe the classification of the major food groups and explain their contribution to a healthy and sustainable diet.2. Explain energy balance, including methods of it measurements and estimation.3. Explain the sources and functions of the key nutrients, and possible consequences of nutrient deficiencies and nutrient excess.4. Understand nutrient requirements in health and the scientific principles of food based dietary guidelines. 5. Adapt diets so that they meet with the food and nutrition guidelines for a healthy, balanced and sustainable diet, using the Eatwell Guide and the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) recommendations.6. Calculate, prepare and present a range of dietary calculations and be able to compare these to Dietary Reference Values.7. Understand realistic portion sizes.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The module has a core of lectures supported by interactive seminars and practical classes. These aim to illustrate and extend the skills and awareness of the student to the relationship between food preparation techniques and scientific principles of nutrition. Independent learning will be facilitated by asking students to prepare for seminars and also by working in small groups to design, prepare menus which will be presented to the rest of the class. Formative assessment is given via online MCQs at the end of each topic. Teaching is supported by a variety of learning and teaching activities delivered to students using a 'blended learning' approach. This approach involves a blend of online/digital learning materials and face-to-face learning activities. The digital activities include narrated powerpoints, online tests and quizzes via turning point, discussion forums and interactive online lectures, seminars and workshops via Collaboarte Ultra .

Indicative Reading

LEAN, MJ., COMBET E., BARASI, ME., 2017. Barasi's human nutrition: a health perspective . 3 rd edn . Boca Raton: CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group . MANN, J AND TRUSWELL, S., 2017. Essentials of Human Nutritio n. 5 th edition. S.l: Oxford University Press. MCCANCE, RA and WIDDOWSON, EM., 2015. McCance & Widdowson's the composition of foods . 7 th Summary EdN. :Cambridge Royal Society of Chemistry. MILLS, A., PATEL, S., and Crawley, H., 2003. Food portion sizes. 2nd edn. TSO. WHITEHEAD, R. G., 1991. Dietary Reference Values for Food Energy and Nutrients for the United Kingdom?: Report of the Panel on Dietary Reference Values of the Committee on Medical Aspects of Food Policy. London: TSO. Also: WEB sites - see GCU library subject guide for various sources <> Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) reports (SACN summary of current requirements here: <>) British Nutrition Foundation. - various briefing papers, reports British Dietetic Association Food Standards Agency

Transferrable Skills

Generic skills; Data handling and analysis; Communication; presentation skills; numeracy; teamwork. Employability skills; Practical Food skills; food preparation; Working with others; report writing; reflection on practice. Digital capabilities; Information retrieval, information literacy; digital participation; digital learning.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Lectures (FT) 24.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Practicals (FT) 16.00
Independent Learning (FT) 131.00
Seminars (FT) 9.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Course Work 01 n/a 100.00 35% Nutritional Assessment Case Study