MSc (Human Nutrition and Dietetics)


Overview of the MSc in Human Nutrition and Dietetics at UCC

Frequently asked questions about the MSc in Human Nutrition and Dietetics at UCC

NFQ Level 9, Major Award


The MSc in Human Nutrition and Dietetics is an integrated postgraduate course which enables graduates with a BSc or MSc in Nutrition or equivalent degree to meet the standards of proficiency and professional competency so they are eligible to apply to the Dietitians Registration Board (CORU) for registration as a dietitian. The programme is delivered full-time over two calendar years. 

The curriculum is based on standards set by the professional associations, the Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute (INDI) guided by the Dietitians Registration Board (CORU) Criteria and Standards of Proficiency for Education and Training Programmes. The curriculum reflects current evidence-informed and research based educational theory and dietetics practice. The course is delivered through lectures, workshops, practice education and problem based learning tutorials.

Practice Education (clinical placement) comprises of 1,000 hours in placement spread throughout the programme in years 1 and 2 to facilitate the application of knowledge gained during the academic year. Practice Education is delivered through a partnership between the University, the Health Service Executive, and voluntary and private sector providers. Students will complete three compulsory placements in a variety of settings (hospitals, clinics, community settings) throughout Southern Ireland.

Graduates will be eligible to practice as Dietitians in Ireland and eligible for registration internationally. Graduates will be able to work across a diverse range of environments to include the clinical and public health settings, hospital and private practices, food service management and food industry.
This programme is not approved by CORU. As this is a new programme opening in Sept 2020, an application will be made to CORU in line with the current processes and procedures. This programme is based in the School of Food & Nutritional Sciences in the College of Science, Engineering & Food Science, University College Cork. 

Why Choose This Course?

UCC has a well-established suite of food-related BSc programmes, including a strong programme in Nutritional Sciences. The School of Food and Nutritional Sciences at University College Cork has a longstanding national and international reputation for provision of quality education in Food Science and Technology as well as in Nutritional Sciences. The School has state of the art teaching and research facilities, including a Food Processing Hall and a dedicated human dietary studies/clinical facility for nutrition research. Our academic staff members are internationally among the most highly cited scientists in their respective fields and contribute to the development of policies that improve public health, safeguard food safety and promote innovation and sustainability for the modern food industry. The School of Food and Nutritional Sciences is recognised for high quality, collaborative research in several aspects of human nutrition including vitamin D and health, maternal and infant health, diet and cancer, health effects of phytochemicals, bioactive ingredients, nutritional surveillance, and nutrition transitions.

The School has well-established research and education links with the Departments of Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics at both Cork University Hospital and the Mercy University Hospital. The proposed programme will build on these existing collaborations as we continually develop clinical research and educational excellence in Human Nutrition and Dietetics at University College Cork. The proposed programme primarily includes advanced modules in clinical nutrition and dietetics, using novel methods in teaching and learning, such as enquiry-based learning, projects and self-directed learning, to promote the development of professional skills in addition to academic learning outcomes. The programme will be offered in partnership by experienced academics and practitioners committed to helping students to develop the necessary skills to become an effective evidence-based dietetic practitioner. 


2 years full time


€12,000 per year

Entry Requirements

Applicants must satisfy the following:

Candidates will hold a minimum 2H1 honours primary degree (Level 8 NFQ or equivalent) or a postgraduate degree (Level 9 NFQ or equivalent). Applicants must have successfully completed human physiology and biochemistry modules (a minimum of 10 credits for each module are required) as part of the primary or postgraduate degree. Suitable degrees include: nutrition, biochemistry, physiology, biology, food science, medicine, nursing, physiotherapy, speech and language therapy, occupational therapy.
Where relevant, candidates will have to prove their proficiency in the English language by achieving at least a score of 7.0 overall with no individual component less than 6.5 (International English Language Testing System).

Applicants will be required to submit a personal statement (max. 4,000 characters), indicating their reasons for applying and stating their suitability to the programme.
Applicants will be shortlisted for interview on the basis of educational qualifications, CV, referee reports and relevant work experience.
All applicants accepted onto the programme will need to have evidence of appropriate vaccinations for working in hospital environments.


Garda Vetting

Students, or applicants in receipt of an offer on this programme will be subject to Garda Vetting as relevant. Students will be prohibited from engaging in a relevant work placement unless the vetting process has been cleared. Click here to view UCC's Student Garda Vetting Policy.

Programme Requirements

Year 1

Students take 60 credits as follows:

Core Modules:
DT6002 The Fundamentals of Diet Therapy and Assessment (5 credits)
DT6003 Advanced Medical Nutrition Therapy (10 credits)
DT6004 Food Skills and Food Service Management (5 credits)
DT6006 Professional Practice and Interpersonal Skills (10 credits)
DT6007 Public Health Nutrition (5 credits)
DT6008 Medical Management of Disease (5 credits)
DT6009 Clinical Practice Placement 1 (5 credits)
DT6010 Applied Research for Dietetics (5 credits)
DT6014 Dietetics Through the Lifecycle (5 credits)

Elective modules 
Students take 5 credits from the following:
EH6158 Health promotion I (5 credits)
NT6107 Integration and Regulation of Nutrient Metabolism (5 credits) *

Module selection is subject to the agreement of the programme co-ordinator, however students who have not completed an undergraduate degree in Nutrition are required to take NT6107.

Module Descriptions may be found here.

Year 2

Students take 60 credits: 
DT6011 Clinical Practice Placement 2 (5 credits)
DT6012 Clinical Practice Placement 3 (15 credits)*
DT6013 Research Dissertation in Dietetics (40 credits)*

Module Descriptions may be found here.

Career Opportunities

By studying this course you have the opportunity to become a highly skilled, evidenced based clinician, who can use a range of resources and evidence to deliver safe and appropriate dietetic advice in clinical, community and other settings. During the course you build on a wide base of transferable clinical skills which may enable you to specialise in a specific area of Dietetics following successful graduation.

Dietitians are employed in a variety of locations, providing opportunities in areas such as: 
• Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics (hospital and community dietetics)
• Food Industry 
• Public Health Nutrition (government health, promotion agencies)
• Pharmaceutical industry 
• Sports Nutrition
• Private Practice 
• Education 
• Research (nutrition and medical research-public and private sectors)
• Working overseas

Opportunities to work in research in Dietetics are expanding and students may use their masters as a stepping stone to doctorial study in the UK or overseas, or teaching in higher education.

How do I apply?

Applicants can apply now on Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date of the 14th Jan 2021. There is a €50 non refundable application fee.

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
  • A personal statement (max. 4,000 characters)
  • A short CV
  • Two letters of recommendation, one of which must be an academic reference

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I apply if I do not have a BSc degree? (and other commonly asked questions) 

Please see the following link for our FAQ Masters Programme in Dietetics

Contact Details of Academic Staff on this course:

*Please read the above FAQ in full before contacting Academic Staff*

Dr Aoife Ryan

Senior Lecturer and

Interim Programme Director


Ph: 021 4902406

Research Profile

Dr Samantha Cushen

Lecturer in Nutritional Sciences


Ph: 021 4902845

Research Profile

Dr Majella O'Keeffe

Senior Lecturer in

Human Nutrition & Dietetics





School of Food and Nutritional Sciences

School of Food and Nutritional Sciences, Room 240 Food Science Building, University College, Cork