module specification

HN5054 - Techniques in Nutritional Research (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Techniques in Nutritional Research
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 150
99 hours Guided independent study
51 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Oral Examination 20%   Presentation (5 min)
Coursework 80%   Project proposal
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Monday Morning

Module summary

This module focuses on the concepts of techniques used in nutritional science and research. It covers the principles of research methodology including study design in the context of nutrition and dietetics. Ideas are formulated in preparation for the project in the final year. The module supports on-going development of professional skills.

Prior learning requirements

HN4003 Human Nutrition

Module aims

The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. Specifically it aims to introduce the concepts of research methodology and professional conduct in a nutrition and dietetic context to enable them to prepare for their final year project. This module will support students as they consider how to seek future employment. This module will also provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility and decision making.


The specified learning outcomes will be developed around a framework based on the following subject matter:
Study design, epidemiology concepts and principles of epidemiology with particular reference to nutrition and nutrition related diseases.
Conducting literature reviews.
Statistics and interpreting output.
Dissemination of research.
Research methodology in nutrition and context – critical appraisal of the strengths and limitations.
Ethics in research.
AfN Code of Ethics and Statement of Professional Conduct.
Development of Careers Management Skills.

Learning and teaching

Acquisition of knowledge of the subject matter of this module will be promoted through lecturer-led lectures (24 hours) and tutorial workshops (14 hours); web based learning (14 hours) and through the guided use of student-centred learning resources (85 hours). Practical classes and small group work (3 hours) will be used to consolidate the students learning with guidance for directed activities (10 hours).

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of study design and its practical application in nutritional research.
  2. Construct project proposal with an appraisal of the background literature and demonstrate an understanding of statistical analysis.
  3. Demonstrate skills to support the enhancement of employability and make informed decisions about their choices of further study and identify specific skills requiring further development

Assessment strategy

This module will be formatively and summatively assessed by:

  1. Oral presentation (20%) (5 minutes) of the project proposal with formative feedback will be provided during the session and as written feedback after the presentation.
  2. Project proposal (80%) (1500 words) which will be a written proposal in preparation for the students level 6 dissertation, which will include a reflective account about how learning on the module has improved students employability.


Bland M., 2015. An Introduction to Medical Statistics.4thEd. Oxford: OUP.
Cargill M. and O'Connor P., 2013. Writing scientific research articles: strategy and steps. 2nd Ed. London: Wiley-Blackwell.
Creswell J., 2013. Research Design.4th Ed. London: Sage.
Lovegrove J, Hodson L, Sharma S and Lanham-New S. 2015. Nutrition Research Methodologies. London Wiley-Blackwell. (Core)