Accessibility Skip to Global Navigation Skip to Local Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Site Map Menu

Study Human Nutrition at Otago

We all eat, and what we eat impacts on our health and well-being.

It is the energy, carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals within these foods that influence our health.

Human nutrition is the study of how the foods we eat impact on our growth and development, disease risk, and physical performance.

Nutrition impacts on the health of individuals and populations, here in New Zealand and worldwide, from birth to old age. You will learn about the nutrients within foods, their importance for health as well as the cultural and social influences on our diet.

Apply for the Bachelor of Arts and Science (BASc) through the Dunedin campus in 2023

Apply Now

Apply for the Bachelor of Commerce and Science (BComSc) through the Dunedin campus in 2023

Apply Now

Apply for the Bachelor of Science (BSc) through the Dunedin campus in 2023

Apply Now

Apply for the Bachelor of Science with Honours (BSc(Hons)) through the Dunedin campus in 2023

Apply Now

Apply for the Diploma for Graduates (DipGrad) through the Dunedin campus in 2023

Apply Now

Apply for the Postgraduate Diploma in Science (PGDipSci) through the Dunedin campus in 2023

Apply Now

Why study Human Nutrition?

Nutrition affects everyone, making Human Nutrition relevant to all. With new knowledge and skills, you will be able to make a real difference at the global, national, community and whānau levels. You will also learn about yourself while you study. You’ll learn from world-leading experts who will provide you with the most up-to-date information in their specialist areas.

Studying Human Nutrition opens doors to career opportunities in a variety of disciplines, both in New Zealand and worldwide. It also provides all the background required to become a registered nutritionist or continue into postgraduate study where you can apply your skills in real world settings such as working in our nutrition clinic, within the public health sector or with sports organisations.

Career opportunities

We will equip you with skills that can be used in a number of careers. Our graduates work in the health sector, government organisations, corporations, research, teaching, high-performance sport, private practice, and the food industry. Māori and Pacific graduates are often sought after, particularly by health providers across the country.

Teaching style

There is a combination of lectures, small group laboratory classes, and tutorials. Your assignments may be individual or group-based and will aim to develop communication skills for both a scientific and lay audience. One of the best things about studying nutrition is you get to practise on yourself with practical laboratory classes where you assess your own diet, try foods and monitor your body’s response. The department is friendly, welcoming and supportive. The smaller group classes allow greater interaction with lecturers and postgraduate students who are always willing to discuss any issues with you.

Background required

Secondary school students are highly recommended to take chemistry to Year 13 and biology, statistics and English to Year 12, preferably Year 13.

Qualifications

Explore your study options further. Refer to enrolment information found on the following qualification pages.

Programme requirements

Postgraduate Certificate in Health Sciences (PGCertHealSc) in Human Nutrition

Papers
  • NUTN 401  Principles of Human Nutrition

  • One of:
    • NUTN 402  Nutrition and Health Promotion
    • NUTN 404  Nutrition and Chronic Disease
    • NUTN 407  Advanced Sports Nutrition

Further information regarding the PGCertHealSc endorsed in Human Nutrition is available from the Department of Human Nutrition website.

Postgraduate Diploma in Health Sciences (PGDipHealSc) endorsed in Human Nutrition

Papers
  • NUTN 401 Principles of Human Nutrition
  • Two of:
  • Further approved papers to the value of 30 points

Further information regarding the PGDipHealSc endorsed in Human Nutrition is available from the Department of Human Nutrition website.

Master of Health Sciences (MHealSc) endorsed in Human Nutrition

Thesis option
  • NUTN 401 Principles of Human Nutrition
  • Two of:
  • Approved research methods papers(s) to the value of 30 points
  • A thesis (120 points)
Coursework option
  • NUTN 401 Principles of Human Nutrition
  • Two of:
  • Approved research methods papers(s) to the value of 30 points
  • Further approved papers to the value of 60 points
  • A research dissertation (60 points)

Further information regarding the MHealSc endorsed in Human Nutrition is available from the Department of Human Nutrition website.

Bachelor of Science (BSc) majoring in Human Nutrition

Level Papers Points
100-level

BIOC 192  Foundations of Biochemistry

CHEM 191  The Chemical Basis of Biology and Human Health

HUBS 191  Human Body Systems 1

HUBS 192  Human Body Systems 2

HUNT 141  Understanding Human Nutrition

18

18

18

18

18

200-level

HUNT 241  Fundamentals of Nutrients and Health

HUNT 242  Nutritional Assessment

HUNT 243  Lifecycle Nutrition

18

18

18

300-level

HUNT 341  Nutrition and Behaviour Change Communication

HUNT 342  Nutrition in Cancer and Heart Disease

HUNT 343  Community and Public Health Nutrition

One of:

  • HUNT 345  Applied Sport and Exercise Nutrition
  • HUNT 346  International Nutrition and Health

18

18

18

18

Plus

144 further points; (POPH 192 recommended)

Must include 54 points at 200-level or above.

Up to 90 points may be taken from outside Science.

Students intending to proceed to the Master of Dietetics programme should include HUNT 244 taken from 2019 (or HUNT 231), HUNT 341, HUNT 342, HUNT 343, HUNT 344 (or HUNT 311, HUNT 312, HUNT 313, HUNT 314, HUNT 331) in their degree programmes. POPH 192 is also recommended.

144
Total   360

Bachelor of Science with Honours (BSc(Hons)) in Human Nutrition

Papers
  • HUNT 490 Dissertation
  • HUNT 454 Nutritional Biostatistics
  • and two papers from:

    • HUNT 441  Research Methods
    • HUNT 442  Applied Nutrition & Disease Management
    • HUNT 443  Practice in Public Health Nutrition
    • HUNT 445  Applications in Sport and Exercise Nutrition
    • HUNT 452  Nutrition and Human Health

Prerequisites for 2020:
HUNT 311  Metabolism, Health and Disease
HUNT 312  Nutrition in Cancer and Heart Disease
HUNT 313  Life Cycle Nutrition
HUNT 314  Nutrition and Health Communication
HUNT 355  Perspectives in Sports Nutrition

Prerequisites from 2021:
HUNT 341  Nutrition and Behaviour Change Communication
HUNT 342  Nutrition and Chronic Diseases
HUNT 343  Community and Public Health Nutrition
HUNT 345  Applied Sport and Exercise Nutrition
HUNT 346  International Nutrition and Health

Postgraduate Diploma in Science (PGDipSci) in Human Nutrition

Papers
  • HUNT 441  Research Methods
  • HUNT 452  Nutrition and Human Health
  • HUNT 454  Nutritional Biostatistics
  • and two papers from:

    • HUNT 445  Applications in Sport and Exercise Nutrition
    • HUNT 455  Advanced Topics in Human Nutrition
    • HUNT 485  Research Project
    • NUTN 407  Advanced Sports Nutrition
    • or another approved 400-level papers

or

  • HUNT 490  Dissertation
  • HUNT 454  Nutritional Biostatistics
  • and two papers from:

    • HUNT 441  Research Methods
    • HUNT 442  Applied Nutrition & Disease Management
    • HUNT 443  Practice in Public Health Nutrition
    • HUNT 445  Applications in Sport and Exercise Nutrition
    • HUNT 452  Nutrition and Human Health

Master of Science (MSc) in Human Nutrition

Papers and Thesis
  • HUNT 495  Master's Thesis Preparation
  • HUNT 454  Nutritional Biostatistics
  • Three of:
    • HUNT 441  Research Methods
    • HUNT 442  Applied Nutrition & Disease Management
    • HUNT 443  Practice in Public Health Nutrition
    • HUNT 445  Applications in Sport and Exercise Nutrition
    • HUNT 452  Nutrition and Human Health
    • HUNT 455  Advanced Topics in Human Nutrition
    • NUTN 407  Advanced Sports Nutrition
    • or another approved 400-level paper

  • Thesis: HUNT 5

    Note: The papers are normally taken before undertaking the thesis.

    Further information regarding the MSc in Human Nutrition is available from the Department of Human Nutrition website.

Minor subject requirements

Human Nutrition as a minor subject for a BA, MusB, BPA, BTheol, BSc, BAppSc, BCom, BHealSc, BACom, BASc or BComSc degree

Available as a minor subject for a Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Music (MusB), Bachelor of Performing Arts (BPA), Bachelor of Theology (BTheol), Bachelor of Science (BSc), Bachelor of Applied Science (BAppSc), Bachelor of Commerce (BCom), Bachelor of Health Science (BHealSc), Bachelor of Arts and Commerce (BACom), Bachelor of Arts and Science (BASc) or Bachelor of Commerce and Science (BComSc) degree

Level Papers Points
100-level

HUNT 141  Understanding Human Nutrition

18

200-level

Two of:

36

300-level

Two of:

  • HUNT 341  Nutrition and Behaviour Change Communication
  • HUNT 342  Nutrition and Chronic Diseases
  • HUNT 343  Community and Public Health Nutrition
  • HUNT 346  International Nutrition and Health

36

   
Total   90

Papers

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, a selection of on-campus papers will be made available via distance and online learning for eligible students.
Find out which papers are available and how to apply on our COVID-19 website

HUNT papers

Paper code Year Title Points Teaching period
HUND471 2023 Clinical Nutrition 30 points Not offered in 2023
HUND472 2023 Public Health Dietetics 20 points Not offered in 2023
HUND473 2023 Food Service Management 20 points Not offered in 2023
HUND475 2023 Applied Dietetics 20 points Not offered in 2023
HUND477 2023 Professional Placement 60 points Not offered in 2023
HUND5A 2023 Master of Dietetics Thesis Part A 30 points Thesis full year
HUND5B 2023 Master of Dietetics Thesis Part B 60 points Thesis semester 1, Thesis semester 2
HUND5BH 2023 Master of Dietetics Thesis Part B 60 points Thesis semester 1, Thesis semester 2
HUNT141 2023 Understanding Human Nutrition 18 points Semester 1, Semester 2, Summer School
HUNT241 2023 Fundamentals of Nutrients and Health 18 points Semester 1
HUNT242 2023 Nutritional Assessment 18 points Semester 2
HUNT243 2023 Lifecycle Nutrition 18 points Semester 2
HUNT245 2023 Sport and Exercise Nutrition 18 points Semester 1
HUNT246 2023 Applied Nutrition 18 points Semester 1
HUNT341 2023 Nutrition and Behaviour Change Communication 18 points Semester 1
HUNT342 2023 Nutrition and Chronic Diseases 18 points Semester 1
HUNT343 2023 Community and Public Health Nutrition 18 points Semester 2
HUNT345 2023 Applied Sports Nutrition 18 points Semester 2
HUNT346 2023 Global Nutrition and Health 18 points Semester 2
HUNT441 2023 Research Methods 20 points Semester 2
HUNT442 2023 Applied Nutrition & Disease Management 20 points Semester 1
HUNT443 2023 Practice in Public Health Nutrition 20 points Semester 2
HUNT444 2023 Food - Systems, Services and Skills 20 points Full Year
HUNT445 2023 Applications in Sport and Exercise Nutrition 20 points Semester 1
HUNT452 2023 Nutrition and Human Health 20 points Semester 2
HUNT454 2023 Nutritional Biostatistics 20 points Semester 1
HUNT455 2023 Advanced Topics in Human Nutrition 20 points Semester 1, Semester 2
HUNT460 2023 Research Project in Sport and Exercise Nutrition 20 points Full Year
HUNT485 2023 Research Project 20 points Full Year
HUNT490 2023 Dissertation 60 points Full Year, 1st Non standard period
HUNT495 2023 Master's Thesis Preparation 40 points Semester 1, Semester 2, Full Year, 1st Non standard period
NUTN401 2023 Principles of Human Nutrition 30 points Semester 1
NUTN402 2023 Nutrition and Health Promotion 30 points Semester 1
NUTN404 2023 Nutrition and Chronic Disease 30 points Semester 2
NUTN407 2023 Advanced Sports Nutrition 30 points Semester 2
NUTN590 2023 Dissertation 60 points Semester 1, Semester 2, Full Year, 1st Non standard period

You may also be interested in

Key information for future students

Contact us

Department of Human Nutrition

Tel +64 3 479 7959
Email human-nutrition@otago.ac.nz
Web otago.ac.nz/humannutrition