module specification

NU6051 - Sports and exercise nutrition (2021/22)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2021/22
Module title Sports and exercise nutrition
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 150
64 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
50 hours Guided independent study
36 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 40%   Case study/menu plan
Unseen Examination 60%   Exam (1.5 h)
Running in 2021/22
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Monday Morning

Module summary

This module requires students to integrate their knowledge of nutritional physiology and biochemistry and to apply this knowledge to develop a critical understudying of the nutritional and practical dietary needs of sports people and athletes.  It includes discussion of different sporting groups and exercise types; macro- and micronutrient requirements; hydration; ergogenic aids; practical dietary considerations in relation to training and competition; policy; current issues and research in sports nutrition. This module contributes to the broad experience, knowledge and practice of a nutrition graduate and provides the specialist academic knowledge and evidence-based practical skills to enter employment in the sports nutrition field. Examples of key skills include nutritional and dietary assessment of individuals engaged in sport and exercise, dietary advice and counselling and sports club policy formulation.
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 enable students to gain a critical understanding of the nutritional and practical dietary needs of sports people and athletes. Integrate the knowledge and skills acquired from other modules. Encourage independent learning through the access of background information using appropriate primary and secondary sources. Develop and encourage confidence in the use of appropriate learning, critical and discursive skills Develop competence in discussion, oral presentation and written work, encouraging clarity of presentation and scientific rigour.
This module will also provide students with the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility; decision making in potentially complex contexts; and the learning ability needed to undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature.

Prior learning requirements

NU5002 (Nutrition Science 1)


1. Metabolic demands of exercise and sports. Exercise types, fatigue. Energy, macro- and micronutrient requirements of sports people. Thermoregulation in the athlete. Fluid and electrolyte balance, needs and status. Protein and amino acids. Nutritional supplements/ergogenic aids, sports drinks. Training and competition - metabolic demands. Performance and recovery. Requirements, reference values and recommendations. Reference to specific groups, eg vegetarians, children, women, veterans, disabled. Body weight and composition. Immune function, overtraining. Disordered eating patterns. LO1, LO2
2. Factors to be taken into account when working with sports people. LO3
3. Working with the individual sportsperson, teams and agencies. Dietary assessment. Dietary intervention and advice - strategies and approaches. Menu design, preparation and evaluation. Religion and cultural factors. Whole person approach. Strategies for teams and other groups. Training and competition - dietary strategies. LO3
4. Monitoring and evaluation of advice and practice. Policy and strategy formulation. Ethics. Professionalism, reflection and professional development. LO4
5. Recent research in sport nutrition. Teaching/education aids. Exercise and physical activity for health/policy. LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Teaching and learning sessions include tutorials (12 h), lectures (24 h), and course work with feedback where appropriate. Lectures are used to set context and to deliver subject material, and are linked to the practical, course work and tutorials. Students will be expected to reflect on the learning experience and develop their own understanding of the material. Writing skills will be enhanced through the production of a case study menu plan. The ability to undertake scientific and ethical appraisal of data will be encouraged through directed reading and tutorial discussions. Students will be expected to reflect upon taught material in order to demonstrate their understanding of the aspects of sports nutrition covered in this module.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
1. Integrate the theoretical aspects of human nutrition and metabolism with the applied nature of sports and exercise science.
2. Assess the metabolic demands of the various types of exercise in relation to the nutritional and fluid needs of sports people engaged in various physical activities.
3. Translate the nutritional requirements of physical activity and sport into dietary practice and to be able to offer basic nutritional advice to healthy people in relation to their sporting activity.
4. Demonstrate an appreciation of the ethical and policy issues in sports nutrition   practice including, for example, the use of dietary supplements and the diet and hydration issues of vulnerable sports people.

Assessment strategy

The module will be summatively assessed by an unseen examination of 1.5 hrs (60%) and a coursework component. This report is a dietary and menu plan for a sports person (40%; 1000 words). Criteria for assessment will include an understanding of the subject matter; evidence of ability to determine energy and nutrient requirements and to translate this into food-based dietary provision and advice; an ability to explain, describe and discuss the work; completeness and conciseness of the written report with an emphasis upon critical ability and scientific rigour. To pass the module an aggregate mark of at least 40% must be obtained. Course work will be submitted through Turnitin to allow students to understand and demonstrate the skills of good academic practice and time management. Feedback on course work will be provided on Weblearn in a format that promotes student understanding of the basis on which academic judgement is made. In both assessment elements, an appreciation of a reflective approach and professionalism in the discipline should be demonstrated.

Attendance at all practical sessions is compulsory.

Component                                                           Marks  Learning outcomes
Dietary and menu plan for a sports person    40%  1,2,3
Exam (1.5 hours)                                                  60%  1,2,3,4


Textbooks: Core

Lanham-New S ed. (2011). Sport and Exercise Nutrition (The Nutrition Society Textbook). London; John Wiley & Sons.
Maughan R & Shirreffs, IOC Consensus Conference 2010. J Sports Sci (2011) 29, (S1).
Maughan R. (2004). Food, Nutrition and Sports Performance 2. The IOC Consensus Conference on Sports Nutrition. London; Routledge.

Other Texts:
Bean A. (2013). The Complete Guide to Sports Nutrition. 7th rev. Edn. London; Bloomsbury Sport.
Brouns F. (2009). Essentials of Sports Nutrition. 2nd ed. London: Wiley.
Burke, L, Deakin V, Ed., 2015. Clinical Sports Nutrition, 5th ed., Beijing; McGraw-Hill.
Griffin J. (2001). Food for Sport. London; Crowood Press Ltd.
Jeukendrup A & Gleeson M. (2010). Sports Nutrition 2nd ed. Human Kinetics Publishers.
McArdle WD, Katch, FI, Katch V.L. (2014). Exercise, Nutrition & Human Performance, 8th Edn. Philadelphia; Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins.
Williams, C., & J.T., Devlin, Ed. (1994). Foods Nutrition and Sports Performance. London; E&FN Spon Publ.

Journals: International Journal of Sports Nutrition


Electronic Databases: Sports Discuss

Social Media Sources AfN, NutSoc Twitter accounts.