School of Public Health and Community Medicine

Nutrition and Health (GENM0707)

image - Nutrition and Health


Nutrition is relevant to everybody, every day. What, how and why you eat and drink are questions you may not have contemplated in any depth, but adequate nutrition is key to both good physical and mental health. In exploring the mechanisms and determinants of nutrition behaviours, this course offers an opportunity to understand what nutrients your body needs, how your body processes nutrients, how to analyse your own diet, and how poor nutrition can influence individual and population health.

Credit points

This course is an undergraduate General Education course, comprising 6 units of credit towards the total of 12 units of credit required of General Education for most undergraduate students.

Mode of study

Partially online.

Course aim

This course aims to help students become familiar with the basic science of human nutrition (including requirements for a healthy body and metabolism), the factors that influence dietary habits (including the role of personal needs and advertising), and how these affect both the individual and populations. Upon completion of the course, students should be able to critique the modern nutrition environment and apply the information to their own lifestyles.

Course outcomes
  1. Define the basic function of nutrients and its metabolism in the human body, including fundamental principles of anatomy, physiology and biochemistry.
  2. Explain the role of diet in the development of disease and in health maintenance.
  3. Recognise and describe different dietary needs between population groups.
  4. Recognise and describe how different factors influence diet.
  5. Be able to analyse your own dietary behaviours.
  6. Critique the modern nutrition environment using an evidence-based approach.
Learning and teaching rationale

Teaching: there is a 1-hour lecture and a 1.5-hour tutorial each week. There are preparation lessons to watch online before each lecture. The lectures are ideally attended in-person, partly because real-time interaction via Moodle can occur between lecturer and class. However, the lectures are recorded both visually and aurally, so students can opt to catch-up on lectures online. The 1.5-hour in-person tutorials (where attendance is monitored) build on lecture content; and enable students to reflect on, and analyse their own health and nutrition experiences, and improve upon future experiences for themselves and others.

Assessments: there are weekly online quizzes so students can check their understanding of the course concepts and content on an ongoing basis, as well as be provided with continuous summative feedback. These quizzes allow students to develop their independent learning skills; as well as their information literacy skills by locating, evaluating and using relevant information. The remaining assessments further hone these learning and literacy skills: the nutrition self-reflection project, the group presentation and the capstone paper all require identification of relevant information and critical analysis of it. Each of these assessments also gives students opportunities to pursue their own individual interests in the world of nutrition. Further, the nutrition self-reflection project enables students to consider the causes and effects of their nutrition habits. The group presentation allows students to experience teamwork with peers from other disciplines and enables them to improve their oral communication skills. The capstone paper involves an element of peer feedback, which teaches students to take on an examiner's viewpoint.


Assessment Task 1 - Quizzes 1 - 10
Weighting: 20% (2% each quiz)
Length: 10 MCQs per quiz

Assessment Task 2 - Nutrition self-reflection project
Weighting: 20%
Length: 1500 words

Assessment Task 3 - Group presentation
Weighting: 20%
Length: 3 minutes per person + 3 minutes 'extra time' for group

Assessment Task 4 - Capstone paper
Weighting: 40%
Length: 2000-2500 words

Readings and resources

Before each lecture, there will be some pre-lecture activities for you to do. Content from the preparation materials are part of the assessment for this course.