UCL Graduate degrees


Obesity and Clinical Nutrition MSc

Obesity is a complex illness which requires an understanding of multiple treatment modalities. In this unique and world-leading MSc, students will learn the latest evidence base on the treatment of obesity which will incorporate state of the art research in the area, new technologies and real-life treatment of this disease through clinical visits.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2021

Modes and duration

Full time: 1 year
Part time: 2 years

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 9 November 2020
Close: 31 May 2021
applications for September 2021 entry.

Tuition fees (2021/22)

£14,300 (FT)
£7,150 (PT)
£28,500 (FT)
£14,250 (PT)

Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a biological science, medical or healthcare discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Standard

Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

About this degree

The programme will offer specialised training in the clinical and scientific basis of overnutrition and obesity, and in public health measures and therapeutic approaches aimed at preventing and treating obesity.

Graduates will develop a thorough grounding in the theory and application of nutrition in prevention and treatment of obesity and its complications, and good understanding of the causes, and current best practice for treating overweight and obesity as observed in clinical practice. They will be knowledgeable in public health nutrition issues and the strategies employed at both national and local levels. Specialist knowledge related to research on obesity and its complications and health risks will be acquired upon completion of the research project. Graduates will also develop a range of intellectual, academic, practical and research skills as part of the course related to the interpretation and evaluation of the academic literature.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits (with at least 150 at level 7 and no more than 30 at level 6).

The programme consists of eight compulsory modules (120 credits; 15 credits each) and a dissertation (60 credits). There are no elective or optional modules. All modules are at FHEQ Level 7.

Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Obesity and Clinical Nutrition.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory modules

The following modules are all compulsory modules for the degree. There are no elective or optional modules. All modules are at FHEQ Level 7.

  • MEDC0033 Disease Related Malnutrition
  • MEDC0034 Fundamentals of Nutrition and Metabolism
  • MEDC0037 Practical Nutritional Assessment
  • MEDC0039 Research Methods
  • MEDC0035 Disease and Disordered Eating
  • MEDC0036 Therapeutic Aspects of Nutrition
  • MEDC0104 Obesity and Public Health Nutrition
  • MEDC0105 Obesity and Weight Management
  • MEDC0115 Research Project (Obesity and Public Health Nutrition)

Part time students will be able to attend four modules each year. The Research project will be conducted in Year 2.

Optional modules

No optional modules are offered at the present time.

Dissertation/research project

A wide variety of projects will be available to select as project dissertation. These range from laboratory based, technical research topics through to community based qualitative studies or the opportunity to participate in a clinical trial, all of them linked to obesity research.


Students are offered the opportunity to observe obesity related clinics at University College London Hospital.

As this involves working with the public you will be subject to screening by UCL Occupational Health and through the Criminal Records Bureau Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to determine your suitability for the course.

Teaching and learning

Teaching is conducted across the duration of the course via a range of methods including lectures, online video materials, tutorials to address problem-based activities, practical sessions in a laboratory setting, and data analysis sessions. Students will have the opportunity to attend clinical activities and engage with health practitioners.

Additional costs

Some small travel costs may be incurred for travel to site visits within London. There are two to three visits each year.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.


For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.


This MSc programme is planned and developed by experienced research and teaching academics in the areas of cardiometabolic disease and obesity and with the feedback from professionals with clinical work experience. 

It is particularly suitable for candidates who wish to pursue a career in the field of cutting-edge translational research in the obesity field and in clinical weight management. You will be able to work as nutritionists in the health services of the UK and other countries, in the clinical nutrition or pharmaceutical industries. This programme will provide an ideal foundation for graduates who wish subsequently to undertake a PhD within UCL or elsewhere.


The MSc programme is expected to be popular among a range of health professionals in the UK and abroad who seek specialty training in the areas of obesity management and prevention. 

Whilst this MSc does not lead to registration to practice as a dietitian, it provides a firm foundation for an application for registration with the Association for Nutrition (AfN), a professional body that holds the UK Voluntary Register of Nutritionists (UKVRN), a competency-based register of nutritionists. 

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL is one of the top ten universities in the world. There is an excellent opportunity for the students to engage with medical research at UCL and its partner hospitals in areas widely accepted as world leading. UCL has a long and prestigious history in obesity and nutrition research and currently coordinates a variety of major studies in both the UK and the rest of the world. 

This programme runs within the School of Life and Medical Sciences, one of the largest and most prestigious aggregations of academics in its field, with a global reputation for teaching informed by cutting-edge research. It will hold close links between UCL, the UCLH Bariatric Centre for Weight Management and Metabolic Surgery, and our UCL NHS partners, major London hospitals and public health organisations which will allow students to participate in significant nutrition projects focused on obesity.

The programme has been planned and developed by experienced research and teaching academics in the areas of cardiometabolic disease and obesity and with the feedback from professionals with clinical work experience. This programme will be unique as it is focused on evidence-base practice and will train graduates on state of the art research. The curriculum is focused on clinical practice and the latest understanding of dietary treatments to support weight loss. We are strongly committed to change the practice paradigm and reduce obesity stigma, as the course focus is on ethical best practice from the requirements for conducting research to the approach followed by major stakeholders involved in obesity prevention and treatment. 

Department: Division of Medicine

Application and next steps


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.

This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

The MSc programme is designed for a range of health professionals in the UK and abroad. It is particularly suitable for candidates who wish to pursue a career in the field of cutting-edge translational research in the obesity field and in clinical weight management. 

All applicants must have a minimum of a 2:1 degree in a relevant subject area. 

Relevant subject area refers to an undergraduate academic degree (awarded for completed courses that generally last 3-5 years) in biological sciences, medical or healthcare discipline from a UK University or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. We will consider students with a degree in other biomedical disciplines on a case by case basis.

Application deadlines

All applicants
31 May 2021

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Obesity and Clinical Nutrition at graduate level
  • why you want to study Obesity and Clinical Nutrition at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging 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.

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Page last modified on 28 August 2021