MSc in Clinical & Public Health Nutrition
Educational aims of the programme
Malnutrition, that is over-nutrition and under-nutrition, accounts for excess health costs of £10 billion each year in the United Kingdom. Obesity is clearly a “headline” item because of its visible prevalence and personal, clinical and societal costs, especially amongst younger people. In Europe and in the United States, nearly two thirds of men are either overweight or clinically obese and this contributes one-fifth to one-quarter of the risk of stroke, hypertension, heart attack and diabetes, in addition to the emerging risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. In contrast, disease-related malnutrition is less well-publicised, but is estimated to occur in one tenth of the United Kingdom population. It has high incidence in older people living in care settings and can affect nearly a half of hospital patients.
These problems are really international, and apply to most developed nations as well as those undergoing rapid transformation. Over- and under-nutrition increase healthcare costs, and about three-quarters of this increase (UK figures) can be ascribed to disease-related malnutrition. The two forms of malnutrition therefore represent present and future clinical risks. This MSc in Clinical and Public Health Nutrition has therefore been developed to analyse these contrasting situations in a unified manner by combining the disciplines of Clinical Nutrition and Public Health Nutrition.
We will focus on periods of the life-cycle (e.g. infancy or old age) when nutrition is particularly important; episodes of acute illness, trauma, surgery or malignancy; chronic conditions in which disease, nutrition and treatment interact (e.g. inflammatory bowel disease, cystic fibrosis) and periods of hospitalisation when nutrition status may be compromised and where nutrition support can have a positive effect on outcome and length of stay. The aetiology, pathophysiology and epidemiology of obesity will be explored together with all approaches which are currently being used in its treatment. This unified approach is now possible because of new findings about the common basis of inflammation in both situations.
The MSc in Clinical and Public Health Nutrition is therefore designed for medically qualified graduates, nurses, dietitians, pharmacists and nutritionists with a keen interest in this disease/malnutrition axis and effective nutritional therapies. It offers specialised training in the clinical and scientific basis of under- and over-nutrition, and therapeutic approaches to correcting this in the hospital, community and educational setting. This MSc is particularly suitable for candidates who wish to pursue a life-long career in the field of cutting edge translational research and the practice of nutrition therapy in the health services of the UK or other countries or in the clinical nutrition industry.
The practice of
gastroenterology at University College London Hospitals group is
internationally renowned and members are active contributors to the
ESPEN life-long learning project. It is one of 9 centres in Europe to
be part of the EU partnership for nutrition
education and one of 3 prospective centres for the European study of nutrition and intestinal failure. The new bariatric surgery centre is one of the busiest in the UK. The course will be taught largely by clinicians and scientists based at University College London, in the University College London Hospitals NHS Trust and the Royal Free Hospital NHS Trust. The course is located on the Bloomsbury campus of UCL.
Successful candidates for the MSc in Clinical and Public Health Nutrition will be required to design and undertake an original research project in a field of their choice. It is envisaged that this course will provide an ideal foundation for graduates who wish subsequently to undertake a PhD within UCL or elsewhere.
It should be noted that this
MSc does not lead to registration to practice as a Dietitian.
programme provides opportunities for students to develop and
demonstrate theoretical knowledge and understanding, and practical
skills in the following areas:
- Research methodology including statistical methods applied to medical research
- The disciplines contributing to the study of Clinical and Public Health Nutrition
- Metabolism and physiology which underlies obesity and disease-related malnutrition throughout the life-cycle
- Optimum nutritional treatments for patients in different diagnosis-related states.
- Research in a specific biomedical area or health specialty
- Ethics and governance of applied health research
In particular, by the end of the programme, students will have acquired:
- Practical understanding of research methods in clinical and public health nutrition science
- Knowledge of cutting-edge research within a specialised area
- The ability to evaluate scientific literature
- Practical experience in laboratory, clinical or epidemiological research
- The ability to design and complete a research project
- An appreciation of ethical and governance requirements of research
Entry Requirements and Applications
Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a healthcare or health-related discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
How to apply
You may choose to apply online or download application materials; for details visit www.ucl.ac.uk/gradapps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
Who can apply?
The programme is designed for medically qualified graduates, nurses, dieticians, pharmacists and nutritionists with a keen interest in this disease/malnutrition axis and effective nutritional therapies.
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
•why you want to study Clinical and Public Health Nutrition at graduate level
•why you want to study Clinical and Public Health Nutrition at UCL
•what particularly attracts you to this programme
•how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
•where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.
The closing date for applications is 30 June 2013 Once the programme is full no further applications are considered. You are therefore strongly urged to apply as early as possible.
Dr George Grimble
Miss Gemma Martin