Human Nutrition track provides two core modules that focus on the biological and public health aspects of the discipline. 

Core module: Nutritional Physiology and Molecular Nutrition HNFB-2100

Advanced nutritional physiology HNFB-113

The course focuses on the physiological regulation of food intake, digestion and absorption of macro- and micronutrients as well as their transport, metabolism, and storage at the molecular level. In addition, short and long-term mechanisms involved in metabolic regulation will be covered.

Course page 2018

Pathobiology of chronic diseases HNFB-212

The course deals with the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying age-related chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer, and sheds light on how diet, nutrients and diet-derived phytochemicals influence the development of these diseases.

Course page 2019

Experimental nutrition research HNFB-213

The course aims to provide the students theoretical understanding of the methods and experimental designs (human interventions, animal experiments, cell culture studies) used to study the effects of nutrition on physiological and molecular pathways in health and disease. The study material are scientific articles.

Core module: Public Health Nutrition HNFB-2200

This module has a choice from four different courses, each 5 ECTS. To complete the module, you need three courses. However, since you need an additional 15 ECTS advanced studies, you may very well choose all four courses of this module (15 ECTS in your core module + 5 ECTS additionally).

Nutrition and society HNFB-221

The student will learn learn the basics of how to plan, execute and evaluate a health promotion program. We will also touch other issues related to the interactions between human nutrition science and the society, like global views on chronic diseases and the effect of the diet on environmental issues.

Course page 2019

The Health promotion project work HNFB-222

This course gives the student the possibility to apply what has been learned in the Nutrition and society –course using a real case. The participants in this core will work in small groups and make a situation analysis and health promotion and evaluation plan for a target organization, e.g. a school, a company or a local community.

Course page 2018

Nutritional epidemiology HNFB-223

Nutritional epidemiology focuses on the relationships between dietary factors and health outcomes in order to prevent diseases and promote health. First you learn the theory and design of epidemiological research settings. We will emphasize assessment of dietary exposures, methodological considerations in study designs, and statistical issues, including how best to address measurement error and adjust for total energy intake. You will also learn to critically interpret results from nutritional epidemiological studies and evaluate the association between a given nutritional factor and disease. The analysis course covers correlations, linear and logistic regressions, factor analyses, and analysis of variance.  Students will make extensive use of SPSS.

Nutrition and Food Services HNFB-225

The course focuses on food services and their role in health promotion. The course deepens the understanding of dietary guidelines in regulating nutritional quality of meals served in public food services. The role of nutritional expertise in food services is discussed.

 

Food-related Behaviour track provides one core module that focuses on the social and behavioural aspects of food and eating. 

Core module: Food-related Behaviour in a Changing Society HNFB-2300

Theoretical and methodological approaches in research on food-related behaviour HNFB-231

The course familiarises the student with various social scientific, particularly social psychological and sociological approaches to studying food and eating. The course focuses on how eating behaviours and food choices are shaped by emotions, self-regulation, habits, social norms, self-presentation and identity construction, how they are part of social practices, and how they are associated with social structures and cultural variations. The course covers research conducted with both qualitative and quantitative methods. After completing the course, the student is able to relate these different theoretical and empirical approaches to each other as well as to analyse their potential practical applications.

Course page 2018

Behaviour change and intervention planning SOSM-SP305

The course will present the main social psychological theories that have been applied in behaviour change interventions. During the course students will learn the steps of intervention mapping (Bartholomew et al., 2016) and how to use behaviour change techniques in planning interventions for health and sustainability related behaviours. Students will do several practical exercises during the course and plan their own interventions.

Course page 2018

Sustainable culinary culture EDUM504

The course familiarises the student with the key concepts and theoretical approaches in studies on sustainable food consumption, food choices and practices of eating. The thematical areas of the course cover the various dimensions of sustainability; environmental impacts of food production and consumption; ethical and responsible consumption; food culture; food politics and policies; and practices of food consumption from the perspective of sustainability.

Course page 2018

In addition to the 75 ECTS of advanced courses, you need 45 ECTS of other studies. Some of these courses are obligatory, but otherwise you may choose according to your own interests. However, you should choose one methodological course as a part of you optional studies.

Optional studies (20-30 ECTS depending on the study track)

The optional studies offer the student the possibility to strengthen the essential knowledge-base needed for the advanced studies. Optional studies also make it possible to focus the studies by choosing theoretical and methodological courses from other degree programmes at UH or in other universities. Courses completed in student exchange may also be optional studies. Advanced level courses from the HNFB programme that do not belong to the student´s advanced study module may also be used here. 

Optional studies in other degree programmes of University of Helsinki

The kaleidoscope of food and human nutrition studies HNFB-201

During the first autumn semester of HNFB, all students participate in an opening course called The kaleidoscope of food and human nutrition –studies. This course uses active student participation, group works, presentation, etc. in order to tackle a timely topic related to HNFB. The aim is to use a multidisciplinary approach, to learn from each other and to open up the width and possibilities of this Master’s program.

Course page 2018

Dietary assessment methods HNFB-202

The student learns the main aspects of food consumption studies: dietary assessment methods and their validity, food composition databases, ethical and cultural aspects in dietary assessment, analyses and interpretation of data, and presentation of results.

Nutritional status assessment HNFB-203

The course aims to provide the students theoretical and practical understanding of the physiological and biochemical methods used to assess nutritional status, body composition, physical activity and energy expenditure and gives examples on the application of the methods.

Course page 2018

Career and work-related skills

You may choose between 5 and 10 ECTS of work-related studies. Typically, this means practical training in a suitable company, municipality, research group, NGO or governmental organization. 

For the Master's Thesis (30 ECTS) you study and analyse a significant topic related to this Master’s programme. You can write the thesis in connection with a larger research project, in collaboration with companies and public institutions, or independently. It takes about 6 months of full-time work to complete the thesis.

During the semester when you start to plan you Master’s thesis, you also start the Master’s thesis seminar (5 ECTS). This is an obligatory seminar for all students. In this seminar, you will get guidance from the teachers, and also peer support and comments from other students who are at the same stage in the HNFB programme. We aim at true multidisciplinarity and therefore all students in this seminar are in one group, regardless of the topic of their thesis. 

The advanced literature examination (5 ECTS) takes place in the end of the programme. The examination is separate for the two study tracks. The examination may include reading scientific journals, mainly review articles, and/or very advanced text books. The idea of the examination is to bring you back to all relevant issues of this Master’s programme and it will also make you realize how much you have learned.