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Master's Degree Programs

Master of Science in Applied Health Science Degree (MSAHS), Nutrition Science Major

Description of Program

Nutrition science integrates nutrition with biochemistry, epidemiology, and research methods, including dietary assessment, statistics, and presentation skills to prepare students for doctoral study in nutrition, environmental health, nutritional epidemiology or health behavior. Specialization courses can be selected from food chemistry, medical nutrition therapy, nutrigenomics, phytonutrients, nutrition for sports, community nutrition, or behavioral theory to add depth to your program of study.


  1. Identify key sources of data for epidemiologic purposes.
  2. Apply the basic terminology and definitions of epidemiology.
  3. Evaluate the strengths and limitations of epidemiologic reports.
  4. Use biochemical mechanisms of nutrient metabolism to explain contributions of nutrients to health and disease.
  5. Demonstrate command of elective area of specialization in nutrition science.
  6. Demonstrate command of structures, chemical properties, and interrelationships of biological substances.
  7. Demonstrate command of ethical principles in designing and conducting research and presenting and publishing findings.
  8. Critically synthesize scientific literature to evaluate research findings.
  9. Select, apply and interpret appropriate statistical methods of analysis to data.
  10. Conduct nutrition science research project.
  11. Synthesize and summarize nutrition research in an effective presentation.
  12. Demonstrate proficiency with Nutrient Data System for Research software to analyze food intake.
  13. Demonstrate command of methods and techniques of research.
Degree Requirements

A minimum of 35 graduate credit hours is required for the nutrition science program. A minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average (GPA) is required for graduation. A minimum grade of C– is required in each course. The sequence of courses for completing the degree must be approved each semester by the advisor.

Complete the following list of requirements to reach a total of 35 graduate credits:

Complete each of the following public health core courses (6 cr.):

  • SPH-E 651 Epidemiology (3 cr.)
  • SPH-X 505 Principles and Foundations of Public Health (3 cr.)

Complete each of the following nutrition science core courses (6 cr.):

  • SPH-N 530 Advanced Nutrition I (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 532 Advanced Nutrition II (3 cr.)

Complete one of the following nutrition science core biochemistry courses (3 cr.):

  • CHEM-C 483 Biological Chemistry (3 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 484 Biomolecules and Catabolism (3 cr.)
  • BIOT-T 540 Structure, Funtion, and Regulation of Biomolecules (3 cr.)
  • MCHE-C 580 Medical Biochemistry (3 cr.)

Complete six credits from the following specialization courses (6 cr.):

  • CHEM-C 485 Biosynthesis and Physiology (3 cr.)
  • MCHE-C 583 Physiological Biochemistry (3 cr.)
  • SPH-B 589 Social and Behavioral Determinants of Health (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 520 Food Chemistry (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 525 Food Chemistry Laboratory (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 531 Medical Nutrition Therapy (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 533 Medical Nutrition Therapy Application (2 cr.)
  • SPH-N 536 Community Nutrition (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 600 Nutrigenomics (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 601 Phytonutrients (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 620 Nutrition in Sports (3 cr.)

Complete each of the following research and research techniques courses (5 cr.):

  • SPH-N 517 Research Presentations Nutrition Science (1 cr.) (S/F grade)
  • SPH-N 550 Dietary Assessment Techniques (1 cr.) (S/F grade)
  • SPH-X 590 Introduction to Research in Health, Kinesiology & Recreation (3 cr.)

Complete the following biostatistics course (3 cr.):

  • SPH-Q 502 Intermediate Statistics in Public Health (3 cr.)

Complete one of the following six-credit research options (6 cr.):

      Complete a master's thesis.
  • SPH-H 599 Masters Thesis (6 cr.)


      Complete the following six-credit combination of courses (6 cr.).
  • SPH-N 691 Readings in Nutrition Science (3 cr.) or SPH-N 539 Special Problems: Nutrition & Food Science (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 692 Research in Nutrition Science (3 cr.)
Special Opportunities

Special opportunities include individualized research with faculty members, laboratory experiences, and volunteer opportunities in nutrition education.


The study of nutrition science lays a solid foundation for further study in doctoral programs, or professional schools that train doctors, dentists, physicians' assistants, and other professionals. Graduates with an M.S. in Nutrition Science can also work in related government agencies or food industry, health-related companies, or pharmaceutical sales. Graduates with an MS in Nutrition Science can conduct research in nutrition, food science, or health.

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