Red X iconGreen tick iconYellow tick icon

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.

Ready to enrol?

Get Started

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.

Human Nutrition at Otago

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.

You may also be interested in

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.


Human Nutrition as a minor subject for a BA, MusB, BPA, BTheol, BSc, BCom, BEntr, 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 Commerce (BCom), Bachelor of Entrepreneurship (BEntr), 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


HUNT 141 Understanding Human Nutrition



Two of:

Note: Prerequisites for HUNT 241 are BIOC 192, CHEM 191 and ((HUBS 191 and HUBS 192) or (HUBS 192 and PTWY 131*) or (ANAT 101 and PHSL 101))



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



* PTWY 131 is only available to students enrolled in the Diploma in Science.

Total   90

HUNT papers

Paper Code Year Title Points Teaching period
HUND471 2024 Clinical Nutrition 30 Not offered in 2024
HUND472 2024 Public Health Dietetics 20 Not offered in 2024
HUND473 2024 Food Service Management 20 Not offered in 2024
HUND475 2024 Applied Dietetics 20 Not offered in 2024
HUND477 2024 Professional Placement 60 Not offered in 2024
HUND5A 2024 Master of Dietetics Thesis Part A 30 Thesis full year
HUND5B 2024 Master of Dietetics Thesis Part B 60 Thesis semester 1, Thesis semester 2
HUND5BH 2024 Master of Dietetics Thesis Part B 60 Thesis semester 1, Thesis semester 2
HUNT141 2024 Understanding Human Nutrition 18 Semester 1, Semester 2, Summer School
HUNT241 2024 Fundamentals of Nutrients and Health 18 Semester 1
HUNT242 2024 Nutritional Assessment 18 Semester 2
HUNT243 2024 Lifecycle Nutrition 18 Semester 2
HUNT245 2024 Sport and Exercise Nutrition 18 Semester 1
HUNT246 2024 Applied Nutrition 18 Semester 1
HUNT341 2024 Nutrition and Behaviour Change Communication 18 Semester 1
HUNT342 2024 Nutrition and Chronic Diseases 18 Semester 1
HUNT343 2024 Community and Public Health Nutrition 18 Semester 2
HUNT345 2024 Applied Sports Nutrition 18 Semester 2
HUNT346 2024 Global Nutrition and Health 18 Semester 2
HUNT441 2024 Research Methods 20 Not offered in 2024
HUNT442 2024 Applied Nutrition & Disease Management 20 Semester 1
HUNT443 2024 Practice in Public Health Nutrition 20 Semester 1
HUNT444 2024 Food - Systems, Services and Skills 20 Full Year
HUNT445 2024 Applications in Sport and Exercise Nutrition 20 Semester 2
HUNT452 2024 Nutrition and Human Health 20 Semester 2
HUNT454 2024 Nutritional Biostatistics 20 Semester 1
HUNT455 2024 Advanced Topics in Human Nutrition 20 Semester 1, Semester 2
HUNT460 2024 Research Project in Sport and Exercise Nutrition 20 Full Year
HUNT485 2024 Research Project 20 Full Year
HUNT490 2024 Dissertation 60 Full Year, 1st Non standard period
HUNT495 2024 Master's Thesis Preparation 40 Semester 1, Semester 2, Full Year, 1st Non standard period
NUTN401 2024 Principles of Human Nutrition 30 Semester 1
NUTN402 2024 Nutrition and Health Promotion 30 Semester 1
NUTN404 2024 Nutrition and Chronic Disease 30 Semester 2
NUTN407 2024 Advanced Sports Nutrition 30 Semester 2
NUTN590 2024 Dissertation 60 Semester 1, Semester 2, Full Year, 1st Non standard period

More information

Contact us

Department of Human Nutrition

Tel +64 3 479 7959

Studying at Otago

This information must be read subject to the statement on our Copyright & Disclaimer page.

Regulations on this page are taken from the 2024 Calendar and supplementary material.

Back to top