Requirements Descriptions - MS in Human Nutrition

The Master of Science in Human Nutrition is a 30 credit-hour program designed to prepare nutrition professionals to practice dietetics at an advanced level and/or pursue doctoral study. The program develops research skills, stimulates independent thought, and provides up-to-date knowledge in food and nutrition. This master’s degree does not provide eligibility to sit for the National Registration examination to become a registered dietitian, nor does it provide eligibility to apply to a dietetic internship. There are three tracks available: Clinical, Community, and Generalist. Students with a bachelor’s degree in nutrition or another discipline who have met the listed prerequisites may also apply.

Track Descriptions and Required Courses

The following information outlines the requirements for each track in the MS in Human Nutrition.

Clinical Track

The clinical nutrition competencies developed by the American Society of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition were used as a guide to develop the curriculum for the clinical concentration. In this concentration, students will develop advanced competency so they may:

  • Utilize theoretical and skill-based knowledge of nutrition science needed for advanced clinical nutrition practice.
  • Apply advanced clinical nutrition assessment and diagnostic skills.
  • Develop advanced nutrition intervention and monitoring skills.
  • Utilize methodological and analytic skills necessary to acquire, analyze, and apply data to interpret the scientific literature and practice the principles of evidence based medicine.
  • Critically evaluate nutrition research and apply results to practice.

Community Track

The concentration in community nutrition meets the Advanced Practice Guidelines for Community Nutrition and Public Health Nutrition Practice; 3rd ed. Public Health/Community Nutrition Practice Group, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and Association of State Public Health Nutritionists; 2015. In this concentration, students will develop advanced competency so they may:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of biological and physiological processes that affect nutrient needs of individuals and populations across the lifespan.
  • Analyze and interpret data needed to perform the core public health functions of assessment, assurance, and policy development.
  • Develop, implement, sustain, and evaluate systems of care or theory-based programs and interventions (preventive and treatment) for improving the nutritional health of populations.
  • Advocate for policy and environmental supports in both public and private sectors.
  • Utilize cultural competency skills to develop programs and services that are responsive to the cultural, social, linguistic and ethnic diversity of the community.

Generalist Track

Some students are not sure which direction their career in nutrition will take. Students can stipulate no concentration on their application. These students will receive a degree in Human Nutrition without a concentration. We call this track the Generalist Track. This track provides the greatest flexibility when selecting electives. Students will develop advanced competency so they may:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of biological and physiological processes that affect nutrient needs of individuals and populations across the lifespan.
  • Acquire, analyze, and apply data to interpret the scientific literature and practice the principles of evidence based medicine or utilize Best Practices.
  • Critically evaluate nutrition research and apply results to practice.

Electives

Electives must be approved by the student′s academic advisor.

Prior Coursework (Prerequisites)

If you received your bachelor’s degree from a nutrition program accredited by ACEND and received your verification statement, then you are eligible to apply to this program. Before you apply, read the admission requirements.

If you received a bachelor’s degree in nutrition from a program that was not accredited by ACEND you must have completed the coursework listed below. These courses may have different names or numbers at your last institution. Keep in mind that transfer credit is not evaluated until after admission is granted. If you need to complete one or more of these courses prior to applying to the graduate program, you can complete the courses as a post-graduate/undergraduate student at UA.

The following courses should be completed before you apply to the graduate program:

  • *CH 104 Introductory Chemistry + Lab (4 credit hours)
  • *CH 105 Introductory Organic Chemistry + Lab (4 credit hours)
  • *BSC 215 Human Anatomy and Physiology 1 + Lab (4 credit hours)
  • *BSC 216 Human Anatomy and Physiology 2 + Lab (4 credit hours)
  • *BSC 242 Microbiology + Lab (4 credit hours)
  • PY 101 Introduction to Psychology (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 101 Introduction to Nutrition (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 201 Nutrition in the Life Cycle (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 253 Food Science (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 361 Nutritional Biochemistry (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 362 Nutrition at the Cellular Level (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 363 Applied Nutrition (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 365 Medical Nutrition Therapy 1 (3 credit hours)
  • NHM 441 Nutrition Education (2 credit hours)
  • NHM 442 Nutrition Care Process (1 credit hour)

* Course not offered through distance education at The University of Alabama.