Nutritional Therapy PGDip / MSc
What makes Nutritional Therapy at Worcester special?
This is an innovative, evidence based, flexible taught programme with full and part time options. You will develop your knowledge and skills to work with clients as a registered Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (Nutritional Therapist) in the UK and to employ your skills in other related activities such as group work as a Registered Nutritionist MBANT.
International students may apply, but practising internationally will depend on having Professional Indemnity Insurance that covers for practice in the UK irrespective of location. Practice may also be subject to country specific legal restrictions. Registration with the Complementary and Natural Health Care Council (CNHC) and membership of a professional body (e.g. British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine) (BANT)) is also recommended.
Full and part time options enable you to fit study around work and family life.
The Post Graduate Diploma and MSc courses are accredited by the Nutritional Therapy Education Commission.
On completion of the course students are able to apply for registration with The Complementary and Natural Health care Council (CNHC) and to become full members of The British Association for Nutritional and Lifestyle Medicine (BANT)
You can develop clinical experience in our excellent teaching facilities in the McClelland Centre with our registered nutritional therapy practitioners and clinic assessors, who bring with them a wide scope of experience and expertise.
What qualifications will you need?
A first or second class honours degree in a relevant discipline. This should include knowledge of fundamental human anatomy, physiology and biochemistry.
An undergraduate access module in nutrition and health is available for those with a higher education qualification that does not meet our entry requirements. In this case, passing this module at an appropriate level may be an additional entry requirement for the course.
The IELTS score required for international applicants is 7, with a minimum of 6.5 in each area. Other English Language qualifications will be considered.
Prior to starting the clinical practice module, students are also required to have student membership of a professional body e.g BANT and student professional indemnity insurance. It is the students' responsibility to pay for these. Membership of a professional body is recommended from the start of the course.
You will need a working knowledge of Microsoft Office, PowerPoint, email systems and the use of the internet. However, if you do not have these skills the University will be able to help you.
The course team is committed to the University of Worcester’s aim of widening participation in higher education
Additional selection criteria
You will need to provide a satisfactory academic reference (or satisfactory reference from a current employer).
In your personal statement you should also address the following:
- Evidence of successful academic study at level 6
- Ability to define nutritional therapy and have an awareness of British Association of Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine and the Complementary and Natural Health Care Council
- Satisfactory academic reference (or satisfactory reference from a current employer)
- Demonstrate interest and motivation for successful study at this level in personal statement or interview
- Evidence of basic competence in IT skills such as Microsoft Office in the application or personal statement or interview
- Occupational Health clearance
All applications will be considered on their merit and a short informal telephone interview with the course leader will be held after application.
Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)
Applications for recognition of prior learning, or prior experiential learning, will be considered and will be assessed using the University of Worcester RPL guidance for postgraduate courses. Normally this would only apply to NUTH4031 Studying Nutrition.
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What will you study?
Here is an overview of current modules available on this course. Regular updates may mean that exact module titles may differ. All teaching days run from 10.15 – 17:15 and the course framework can be found here.
You will study 4 individual 15 credit modules in semester 1. In semester 2, you will study 3 further 15 credit modules and start the dissertation. You will study clinical practice in semester 1 of the second year.
You have up to 2 semesters to complete the dissertation and 1 semester to complete clinical practice.
You will study 2 individual 15 credit modules in semester 1. In Semester 2, you will study 3 individual 15 credit modules. In the second year, you will take 2 individual 15 credit modules in semester 1. You will start the dissertation and clinical practice in semester 2.
You have up to 2 semesters to complete the dissertation and 1 semester to complete the clinical practice.
An additional Access module in Nutrition and Health is available in September each year if you don’t have a background in physiology, cell biology and biochemistry. Please note: applications for our Nutrition and Health Access Module will close on 31st July 2018.
Teaching and Assessment
How will you be taught?
Teaching and Learning
The University places emphasis on enabling students to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment, as well as academic achievement. A mixture of independent study, teaching and academic support through the personal academic tutoring system enables you to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences that will enable you to flourish and be successful.
You are taught through a combination of online lectures to give an overview, with seminars to facilitate further student engagement; these are often based around pre read research papers or journal articles, which are disseminated via Blackboard the visual learning environment. Workshops are an integral part of most modules and maybe based around; exploring dietary analysis, drug nutrient interactions or exploring case studies using a systematic and functional approach. The development of reflective practice is embedded throughout with opportunities for personal development planning, reflection and critical reflection. A range of other approaches may be incorporated where relevant e.g. online quizzes and informal presentations in group workshops.
Clinical skills development throughout the theory modules will be both theoretical and practical to build on knowledge and understanding and to enable students to meet the National Occupational Standards for Nutritional Therapy. The professional practice standards of the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council and The British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine are embedded throughout the course including the clinic teaching and practice. A wide variety of practice skills sessions are included in the theory modules; dietary analysis, information gathering, anthropometric testing workshops, evaluating drug nutrient interaction, interpreting test results, clinical case scenario role plays resulting in a full case role play in the clinical practice module. Communication skills and behaviour change theory and practice is also included as are the development of business skills to enable students to set up in practice or start their own business on completion. Students will also be able to observe live clinic sessions or videos via the visual learning environment. The clinical practice takes place in the University teaching clinic, which meets the University’s Management of Placement and Work-based Learning Policy. Students are fully supervised and assessed by a qualified and CNHC registered nutritional therapist and on average see three clients three times over a semester to build on the skills developed in the theory modules
Students are supported via Student Services, Library Services, the Personal Academic Tutoring (PAT) system, Academic writers in residences and the English Language unit, all of which enable students to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences that will help them to flourish and be successful.
In addition, meetings with personal academic tutors are available on at least 4 occasions in the first year and are available three occasions in each of the other years of the course.
Each theory module is four days attendance (in two x two-day blocks) with one day (six hours) online learning; the research methods module is five days attendance in semester one and the dissertation module is six days over two semesters. Full time MSc students in their first year will attend six-theory module plus the research methods and dissertation module, which is approximately 12-18 contact hours per week. In the second year there is normally slightly less contact time to facilitate greater independent study (see framework and timetable).
Typically class contact time will be structured around:
- Practical sessions
- Role plays
In addition to the contact time, you are expected to undertake around 25-29 hours of personal self-study per week on the full time pathways. Typically, this will involve preparing for seminars, through reading set text, planning and writing module assignments, watching and writing a written commentary of recordings of consultation videos. Students are expected to read around topics introduced in class to further extend their knowledge and identify areas that need clarification in class.
Independent learning is supported by a range of excellent learning facilities, including the Hive and library resources, the virtual learning environment, and extensive electronic learning resources.
You will be taught by a teaching team whose range of expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The current permanent staff of four all work part time, are senior lecturers, and are all Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council registered practitioners; this full time equivalent of 2.2 whole time staff are all also research active.
The team is also supported by a diverse group of practitioner associate lecturers who also have teaching and research experience and all those who are involved in clinical assessment are Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council registered and members of the professional body British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine. The associate lecturing team also includes a registered dietician. Wherever possible, academics from across the Institute of Health and Society also contribute to aspects of the course.
As at January 2018 all of the permanent staff have a higher education teaching qualification or are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy and several of the associate lecturers either have this or are working towards it.
Teaching is informed by research and consultancy. You can learn more about the staff by visiting our staff profiles.
The course provides opportunities to test understanding and learning informally through the completion of practice or ‘formative’ assignments. Each module has one or more formal or ‘summative’ assessments which are graded and count towards the overall module grade.
The precise assessment requirements for an individual student in an academic year will vary according to the mandatory and optional modules taken, but a typical formal summative assessment pattern for each year of the course can be seen below and here:
NUTH4031 - formative and summative in semester 1
NUTH4032 - formative and summative in semester 1
NUTH4033 - formative and summative in semester 1
NUTH4038 - formative and summative in semester 1
NUTH4034 - formative and summative in semester 2
NUTH4035 - formative and summative in semester 2
NUTH4036 - formative and summative in semester 2
NUTH4039 - formative in semester 2
NUTH4037 - formative and summative in semester 2
NUTH4039 - formative in semester 1, formative and summative in semester 2
You will receive feedback on practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback on examination performance is available upon request from the module leader. Feedback is intended to support learning and you are encouraged to discuss it with personal academic tutors and module tutors as appropriate.
We aim to provide you with feedback on formal course work assessments within 20 working days of hand-in.
Meet the team
Here are a few members of the department who currently teach on this course:
Alison was a practitioner for 15 years and has a range of experience that includes working with clients who have had breast cancer.
Alison is course leader, admissions tutor and leads the clinical practice module and a theory module. She has also been instrumental in the development of the Nutritional Therapy profession, publishing research, that informed the New Curriculum for Nutritional Therapy. She is a Nutritional Therapy Education Commission board member and accreditation officer and represents Nutritional Therapy as a Professional Standards Board member for the Complementary and Natural Health Care Council.
Her current research interests are a project evaluating the nutritional therapy-teaching clinic.
Jane runs the MSc Nutritional Therapy dissertation module and supervises student dissertations. She also contributes to the research methods module and has interests in research ethics and mixed methods research.
Jane is currently carrying out a doctoral research project looking at the impact of a group lifestyle intervention to improve nutritional intake and lifestyle for women who have had treatment for breast cancer.
Justine is CNHC registered and has worked part time in practice since 2003 and is a member of the NTEC accreditation committee. She is progressing a PhD, has just edited a book on integrative approaches to infertility and currently has a writing residency in care homes.
Her research interests include the management of food sensitivities, coeliac disease, gluten and non-coeliac disease as well as auto immune conditions.
Miranda enjoys teaching, learning and researching about Nutrition, Sports Nutrition and Behaviour Change. She enjoys the challenge of motivating and encouraging independent learning in any student whether they are Level 4 or Level 7. She enjoys the challenge of research methods, in particular research strategy and quantitative statistics.
Her own Nutritional Therapy clinical practice and work as an independent cycling coach provides useful experience for both teaching and assessing, as well as case studies for application of theory into practice.
Debbie currently runs two busy private practices in Hereford and London where she works as a Nutritional Therapist specialising in Functional Medicine. She specialises in functional laboratory testing and supporting adults and children with complex health conditions. She has a particular interest in prenatal, antenatal nutrition and children’s health.
Dr Lindsey Fellows
Dr Lindsey Fellows is an Associate Lecturer in MSc Nutritional Therapy. Her teaching interests include clinical aspects of Nutritional Therapy, particularly in terms of motivating clients to change. She is also involved in research areas that include gender, health and well-being in schools.
Where could it take you?
Can I practice as a Nutritional Therapist with this qualification?
As a UK resident you can register to practice Nutritional Therapy once you have completed this course and achieved the National Occupational Standards for Nutritional Therapy. You can then apply for registration with the Complementary and Natural Health Care Council (CNHC) as a registered Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (registered Nutritional Therapist). The CNHC provide the UK voluntary register for complementary therapists, which is also an approved accredited register by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA) for health and social care.
You will also be able to become a full member of the British Association of Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine (BANT), which will enable you to practice as a Nutritional MBANT.
International students may apply, but practising internationally will depend on having Professional Indemnity Insurance that covers for practice in the UK irrespective of location. Practice may also be subject to country specific legal restrictions. Registration with the Complementary and Natural Health Care Council and membership of a professional body (e.g. British Association of Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine) is also recommended.
What are the career opportunities after completion of the course?
Possible careers for graduates of the Postgraduate Diploma and the MSc in Nutritional Therapy:
- Nutritional Therapy Practitioners in private sector, healthcare, health clubs, health food stores or support groups.
- Nutrition journalism or other fields within the media.
- Nutritional advisors or project managers in private or public health practices or NHS.
- Technical advisors.
- Food writers.
- Health product sales.
- Working within the education sector as a lecturer of nutrition and nutritional therapy related subjects.
- Research into applied nutrition / nutritional therapy.
- Health promotion within existing practice.
In addition, a postgraduate qualification in Nutritional Therapy is a valuable, complementary tool for those working with clients in the wider health arena.
For more information visit http://www.bant.org.uk.
How much will it cost?
Full-time tuition fees
The full-time fee for UK and EU students registering in the academic year 2019/20 is £6,890.
For more details, please visit our course fees page.
Part-time tuition fees
The part-time fees for UK and EU students registering in the academic year 2019/20 are: £574 for 15 credit modules; £1,148 for 30 credit modules and £1,723 for the Dissertation (45 credits).
For more details, please visit our course fees page.
The Government will provide a loan of up to £10,000 per student for postgraduate Masters study. It will be at your own discretion whether the loan is used towards fees, maintenance or other costs.
For full details visit our postgraduate loans page.
How do you apply?
Please make your application via our online application form. If you have any questions, please contact the Admissions office on 01905 855111 or Alison Benbow (Admissions Tutor).
Please note: the application deadline for the Nutritional Therapy courses for those needing the access module is 31st July 2019. For those who do not need the access module, the closing date is 1st September 2019.