HNH-30306 Psychobiology of Food Choice and Eating Behaviour

Code last year: (HNE-30306)


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Group work12
Course coordinator(s)dr. G Jager
Lecturer(s)prof. dr. ir. C de Graaf
dr. PAM Smeets
dr. G Jager
EH Zandstra
dr. S Boesveldt
dr. ir. M Mars
Examiner(s)prof. dr. ir. C de Graaf
dr. G Jager

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

Courses on social/behavioral aspects of nutrition in the first two years of the BSc programma in Nutrition and Health; HNH-20306 Nutrition Behaviour.

Continuation courses:

Theses in Nutrition; Communication and Innovation; Marketing and Consumer Sciences.


This course is focused on recent development in Nutrition Behaviour Research. The course will contain several parts:
- group assignment on a case study: students can choose one out of six possible topics;
- 20 lectures;
- a practical course where students will learn the basics of E-Prime®, a software program to create and run computerized questionnaire and experiments. Students will work in small groups (4-5 students), with the objective to design and make a simple questionnaire and a psychological experiment in order to study determinants of food habits/nutrition behaviour. At the end of the course, students give a presentation of the results,

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to:
- have obtained knowledge and a deeper understanding of the complexity and multidisciplinary of many important issues in the psychobiology of food choice and eating behaviour. The group assignment aims at students display their ability to focus on different perspectives (e.g. nutritional, medical, social, psychological) and formulate a clear summary of relevant knowledge as part of a collectively built knowledgebase that contains knowledge elements from different perspectives;
- have developed skills in work planning, organization and division amongst group members, as well as time management, planning and presentation skills;
- as a group be able to collectively create a knowledge base, using new media in the blackboard environment (e.g. wiki or comparable format);
- be able to describe the most important characteristics of nutrition behaviour and food choice using cultural, social, psychological and biological models;
- be able to apply the obtained knowledge to situations in industrialized as well as in developing countries;
- to be able to design and construct simple questionnaires and experimental tasks which measures social psychological determinants of food choice;
- be able to present a comprehensive summary of their practical work to the participating staff.


- follow lectures;

- involved in computer practical;

- involved in group assignment.


The assessment of this course will be based on:
- a written exam  (80%):
- a report for the practical assignments (20%).


A Course reader will be available at WUR-shop, Forum. Additional literature, documentation and tasks will be provided at practicals and in Brightspace.

Restricted Optional for: MFTFood TechnologyMScJ: Food Digestion and Health5MO
MFTFood TechnologyMScG: Sensory Science5MO
MNHNutrition and HealthMScC: Molecular Nutrition and Toxicology5MO
MNHNutrition and HealthMScD: Sensory Science5MO
MNHNutrition and HealthMScA: Nutritional and Public Health Epidemiology5MO
MNHNutrition and HealthMScB: Nutritional Physiology and Health Status5MO
Restricted Optional for: WUQFSBSc Minor Quantified Self5MO