Master of Science in Human Nutrition

Master of Science: 45.0 quarter credits

About the Program

The human nutrition major is concerned with normal and therapeutic nutrition for individuals and groups. This major also encompasses nutrition science, the application of the principles of biochemistry, physiology, and biology to human nutritional needs. Current research in human nutrition includes food preference and nutrition, nutrition assessment, and effectiveness of nutrition education (particularly by the use of multimedia) on health and eating habits. Current research in nutrition science includes physiological and genetic determinants of obesity, lipid metabolism, neutraceuticals, and diet-endocrine interrelationships.

Graduate study in human nutrition is offered on both a full-time and part-time basis. Soon after matriculation students consult with their advisors and complete a plan of study. All students are expected to file a plan of study with the graduate advisor before the end of their third term of matriculation. In addition to the core curriculum students select specialty courses relating to their major, as well as electives.

Visit the College's MS in Human Nutrition web page for more information.

Program Prerequisites

The program’s approach to graduate study in Human Nutrition is quantitative; therefore, applicants should have demonstrated competency in the coursework or its equivalent listed below.

 Applying to the MS in Human Nutrition with Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) program requires special planning. Students are admitted only in the Fall or Winter terms. The first consideration before submitting an application is whether all prerequisites have been met with a minimum grade of B. Students are encouraged to apply as early as possible so that transcripts can be reviewed and prerequisites determined. Students may be required to retake courses to earn a grade of B or better before they may enroll in the program.

  •     1 year English composition and/or literature
  •     1 semester general biology with lab to include cells and genetics
  •     2 semesters general chemistry with lab, OR, 1 semester  general chemistry with lab AND 1 semester organic chemistry with lab
  •     1 semester upper-level (300-400 level) biochemistry with lab
  •     1 semester human physiology with lab, OR, 2 semesters anatomy & physiology with lab
  •     1 semester general psychology
  •     1 semester statistics
  •     1 semester nutrition

In addition, students completing the DPD track will be required to complete the following 2 courses either before entry to the program or while completing the MS in Human Nutrition.

  •     1 semester basic food preparation (DPD track only)
  •     1 semester quantity foods  (DPD track only)

Degree Requirements

Students are required to complete 21.0 credits of CORE courses and then select 24.0 credits of electives chosen from courses currently offered in Biology, Nutrition, Food Science, Environmental Science or Public Health after consulting with their advisor. Those students choosing the thesis option substitute 6 credits of research for two elective courses. Those students choosing the non-thesis option are required to pass a comprehensive exam before being granted their MS


Required Courses
BIO 610Biochemistry of Metabolism3.0
BIO 641Data Analysis in Biosciences3.0
NFS 530Macronutrient Metabolism3.0
NFS 531Micronutrient Metabolism3.0
NFS 601Research Methods3.0
NFS 629Readings in Nutrition Science3.0
BIO 679Issues in Scientific Research3.0
Nutrition Science Electives9.0
Select three of the following:
Nutritional Assessment
Nutrition in Critical Care
Nutrition Counseling
Women's Issues in Nutrition
Nutrition of the Schoolchild
Nutrition in Later Maturity
Community Nutrition
Methods of Teaching Dietetics
Weight Management and Eating Disorders
Electives15.0
In consultation with their graduate advisory committee or graduate advisor, students select electives from departmental or related course offerings. Some examples include the following:
Select five of the following:
Medical Microbiology
Special Topics
Pharmacogenomics
Food Chemistry
Epidemiology
Principles of Toxicology I
Thesis Option
Students selecting the thesis option may include up to 6 credits of NFS 997 Research in Nutrition and Food Sciences among their electives.
Non-thesis Option
Students selecting the non-thesis option are required to pass a written comprehensive examination. Students electing the non-thesis option may include up to 3 credits of NFS 997 Research in Nutritional and Food Sciences among their electives.
Total Credits45.0

MS in Human Nutrition with Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)

 The Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) provides the coursework that is required to become a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist (RD/RDN). Students who want to become a RD/RDN must successfully complete coursework approved by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND). Drexel University was one of the first universities in the country to offer the DPD program on the graduate level. In 2022, all newly credentialed RD/RDN will be required to have a graduate degree.

The MS in Human Nutrition with the DPD option is a full- or part-time program with courses offered in the evening. The program is 45 credits with a written comprehensive exam and may be completed in 18 months to two years with full-time study. Students who enroll part time typically complete the program in three to four years. After completing the MS in Human Nutrition, students participating in this program will also receive a Verification Statement which shows successful completion of the DPD and allows them to apply for an accredited supervised practice experience (dietetic internship).

Required Courses
FDSC 506Food Composition & Behavior3.0
NFS 510Profession of Dietetics3.0
NFS 525Nutritional Assessment Through the Life Cycle3.0
NFS 530Macronutrient Metabolism3.0
NFS 531Micronutrient Metabolism3.0
NFS 543Medical Nutrition Therapy I3.0
NFS 544Medical Nutrition Therapy II3.0
NFS 545Nutrition in Critical Care3.0
NFS 546World Nutrition3.0
NFS 601Research Methods3.0
NFS 630Nutrition Counseling3.0
NFS 550Foodservice Systems Management3.0
NFS 690Community Nutrition3.0
NFS 849Readings in Therapeutic Nutrition3.0
Elective3.0
Total Credits45.0



Courses

NFS 510 Profession of Dietetics 3.0 Credits

This course will introduce the learner to the profession of dietetics. Topics covered will include: educational preparation and credentialing of registered dietitians and the organizational units responsible for these functions; professional roles and practice areas of dietitians; professional responsibilities of the credentialed dietitian; the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and other professional organizations; and, trends affecting the dietetics profession.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit
Restrictions: Can enroll if major is HNUT.

NFS 525 Nutritional Assessment Through the Life Cycle 3.0 Credits

This course is designed to introduce students to and provide hands-on experience with the four primary methods of nutritional assessment: dietary, anthropometric, laboratory, and clinical assessment. Assessment methodology appropriate to each stage of the life cycle, including infants, children, adolescents, adults and elderly, will be used.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 530 Macronutrient Metabolism 3.0 Credits

Covers absorption, utilization, digestion, storage, and excretion of carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 531 Micronutrient Metabolism 3.0 Credits

Covers absorption, utilization, digestion, storage, and excretion of vitamins, macrominerals, and microminerals.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 543 Medical Nutrition Therapy I 3.0 Credits

In-depth coverage of nutrition assessment and the Nutrition Care Process. Pathophysiology of selected acute & chronic disease states and their associated medial problems, with focus on using the Nutrition Care Process to meet the medical nutrition needs of patients.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit
Prerequisites: NFS 525 [Min Grade: C] and BIO 610 [Min Grade: C]

NFS 544 Medical Nutrition Therapy II 3.0 Credits

Pathophysiology of selected acute & chronic disease states and their associated medical problems, with focus on using the Nutrition Care Process to meet the medical nutrition needs of patients.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit
Prerequisites: NFS 543 [Min Grade: C]

NFS 545 Nutrition in Critical Care 3.0 Credits

Pathophysiology of selected critical care conditions and their associated medial problems, and the use of the Nutrition Care Process to meet the medical nutrition needs of patients. Also covers nutrition support including use of enteral and parenteral nutrition.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit
Prerequisites: NFS 544 [Min Grade: C]

NFS 546 World Nutrition 3.0 Credits

Discusses the nutritional status of peoples in various parts of the world, the incidence and treatment of deficiency diseases, problems of the food supply and efforts to improve it, and other timely aspects of this comprehensive problem.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 550 Foodservice Systems Management 3.0 Credits

In-depth treatment of food purchasing, financial management of foodservices, cost controls, marketing in foodservice, equipment layout and design, and management/leadership theories and applications.

College/Department: College of Arts and Sciences
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit
Restrictions: Can enroll if major is HNUT.

NFS 601 Research Methods 3.0 Credits

Covers current techniques and evaluation methods for human nutrition research. Focuses on human subject aspects and critique of the literature.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 602 Methods of Nutrition Research 3.0 Credits

Laboratory methods current in nutrition research techniques. The emphasis will be on methods of instrumental analysis.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 609 Individualized Supervised Practice Pathway 1.0-3.0 Credit

The Individualized Supervised Practice Pathway is designed to prepare competent, entry-level dietitians for positions in medical nutrition therapy, outpatient nutrition counseling, food service management and community nutrition. The program will provide a curriculum for the student to experience and practice the many roles of the dietitian under the supervision of the preceptor.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Can be repeated 12 times for 36 credits

NFS 625 Nutrition and Exercise Physiology 3.0 Credits

The principles of exercise science and their interaction with nutrition are explored in-depth. The physiological and biochemical effects of training are examined in relation to sports performance and prevention of chronic diseases prevalent in developed countries.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 629 Readings in Nutrition Science 3.0 Credits

Covers advanced nutritional aspects of selected subjects in metabolism via an in-depth survey of current research literature in the field.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 630 Nutrition Counseling 3.0 Credits

Emphasizes nutrition counseling techniques for use with individuals and small groups, including development of nutrition education materials as well as verbal and non verbal communication skills.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 634 Women's Issues in Nutrition 3.0 Credits

Deals with the interface between nutrition, medicine, psychology, sociology, and anthropology as it relates to the female life cycle. Emphasizes pregnancy, lactation, maternal obesity, eating disorders, menopause, and society's roles for women in relation to food.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 640 Nutrition of the Schoolchild 3.0 Credits

Covers normal growth patterns and nutrition requirements for children of school age (K to 12). Stresses nutritional problems of schoolchildren, attitudes toward food, the role of the school lunch in nutrition, and evaluation of school lunches in relation to total nutritive needs.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 641 Nutrition in Later Maturity 3.0 Credits

Considers physiologic changes and nutritional requirements in later maturity and applications to dietary planning in the home and in the institution. Stresses economic, management, and community resources for meeting dietary needs and special nutrition problems of the elderly.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 680 Special Topics 0.5-9.0 Credits

Covers selected topics of study in the field of nutrition and food.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Can be repeated multiple times for credit

NFS 690 Community Nutrition 3.0 Credits

Surveys nutrition services of city, state, and national organizations. Develops suggestions for the development of a community program with appropriate educational methods and illustrative materials.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 695 Nutrition Education in K-12 3.0 Credits

Curriculum development for nutrition and food study in elementary and secondary schools; instructional materials; methods of teaching.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 696 Methods of Teaching Dietetics 3.0 Credits

Analyzes teaching situations in dietetics, including development of educational programs and instructional methods and materials for implementation in a clinical or management dietetics setting.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 732 Weight Management and Eating Disorders 3.0 Credits

Investigate current aspects of the treatment of obesity and eating disorders through nutrition therapy by studying research from medical science, nutrition knowledge, and dietary modalities.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 799 Independent Study 12.0 Credits

Provides an independent study in human nutrition.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Can be repeated multiple times for credit

NFS 849 Readings in Therapeutic Nutrition 3.0 Credits

Covers current literature pertaining to nutrition in various conditions such as malabsorption, inborn errors of metabolism, diabetes mellitus, diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, diseases of the liver, and surgical conditions. Discusses nutrition assessment and parenteral and enteral nutrition.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

NFS 997 Research 1.0-12.0 Credit

Requires students, in consultation with an appropriate faculty adviser, to identify a specific food and/or nutrition problem area of mutual interest, carefully document its background, and present research reports for study. All thesis students use this number. May be repeated for credit.

College/Department: College of Nursing & Health Professions
Repeat Status: Not repeatable for credit

Nutrition Sciences Faculty

Nyree Dardarian, MS, RD, LDN (Drexel University) Nutrition and Foods. Director, Center for Integrated Nutrition & Performance; Coordinator, Individualized Supervised Practice Pathway. Instructor. Energy expenditure.
Angelo Del Parigi, MD (University of Bari, Italy) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Beth L. Leonberg, MS, MA, RD (Colorado State University, Rowan University) Director, Didactic Program in Dietetics . Instructor. Pediatric nutrition.
Juan Muniz, PhD (Oregon State University) Laboratory Manager. Assistant Research Professor. Food microbiology; community-based research to assess pesticide levels in homes; prevention of health effects of pesticides for indigenous farmworkers.
Jennifer Nasser, PhD (Rutgers University). Associate Professor. Dopamine-mediated mechanisms of food intake regulation in humans and its impact on metabolic homeostasis, especially as it applies to obesity, eating disorders and aging.
Jennifer Quinlan, PhD (North Carolina State University). Associate Professor. Food microbiology; microbiological quality and safety of produce, dairy and meat products in markets in high vs. low socioeconomics areas, Bacillus and Clostridium spores in food processing.
Barry Ritz, PhD (Drexel University) Courtesy Appointment. Visiting Research Professor.
Vicki Schwartz, MS (Drexel University) Nutrition and Foods. Assistant Clinical Professor. Advanced nutrition, clinical nutrition, nutrition support.
Alison Ventura, PhD (Pennsylvania State University). Assistant Professor. Factors that contribute to the development of eating behaviors and dietary preferences during infancy and early childhood.
Stella Lucia Volpe, PhD, RD, LDN, FACSM (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University) Chair, Nutrition Sciences. Professor. Prevention of obesity and diabetes across the lifespan; mineral metabolism and exercise; energy balance; sports nutrition.

Interdepartmental Faculty

Rose Ann DiMaria-Ghalili, PhD, MSN, BSN, CNSC (New York University, School of Education, Division of Nursing). Associate Professor. Nutrition and surgical recovery to improve the care of older adults undergoing surgery; nutrition assessment, inflammation, and health outcomes.
Michael Lowe, PhD (Boston College). Professor. Prevention and treatment of eating disorders and obesity; effects of appetitive responsiveness and dietary restraint on eating regulation; psychobiology of obesity-proneness; empirical foundations of unconscious processes.
Margaret O'Neil, PT, PhD, MPH (MCP Hahnemann University; Duke University; University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill). Associate Professor. Measurement of and interventions to improve physical activity and fitness levels and promote participation in children and youth with who are overweight/obese and those with physical disabilities (especially cerebral palsy).
Patricia A. Shewokis, PhD (University of Georgia). Professor. Roles of cognition and motor function during motor skill learning; role of information feedback frequency on the memory of motor skills, noninvasive neural imaging techniques of functional near infrared spectroscopy(fNIR) and electroencephalograpy (EEG) and methodology and research design.

Emeritus Faculty

Donna H. Mueller, PhD (Temple University) Registered Dietitian, Nutrition and Foods. Professor Emeritus. Clinical nutrition; pediatric nutrition; nutrition in pulmonary diseases, especially cystic fibrosis; nutrition in developmental delay; dental nutrition; dietetic education and professional development.
  • Schedule of Classes
  • All Course Descriptions
  • Co-op
  • Academic Advising
  • Admissions
  • Tuition & Fees
LEARN MORE