HNE-25806 Research Methodology for Nutrition and Health I


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Learning supported by IT
Practical intensively supervised45
Course coordinator(s)dr. MR Mensink
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. A Melse-Boonstra
Examiner(s)dr. MR Mensink

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

Common part of the BSc programme Nutrition and Health

Continuation courses:

HNE-26306 Research Methodology for Nutrition and Health II


NOTE: This course will start in 2011/2012
This course precedes HNE-26306 and should be taken before HNE-26306. The 2011/2012 study handbook will have an updated description of this course.
The course consists of different but integrated parts:
- research Methods: Deepening and extension of methodological aspects related to nutritional research on three levels: cell or molecular level, individual level and population level;
Other aspects that will be discussed include a.o. the research cycle; common designs in nutritional research; observational surveys and experimental trials; studies on molecular mechanism; methods on assessment of food consumption, energy expenditure, physical activity, body composition and growth, functional performances, and on assessment of nutritional status; research on biological materials; laboratory quality control; biochemical indicators of food intake;
- research skills: scientific reporting, structured literature research, critical literature review;
- application: Deepening and extension of nutritional aspects in relation to the life cycle (pregnancy and lactation; young child and adolescent; elderly) and to common nutritional diseases in developed countries (obesity, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes).

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course the student is expected to be able to:
- identify, distinguish and describe the factors that are of importance in nutrition research that influence the choice of the subject of research, the design and type of study. This can also be done for some specific sub-groups of the population and some specific (chronic) diseases;
- demonstrate understanding on factors in nutrition research that influence the choice of the methodology and measurement techniques to be selected;
- identify the pro's and con's of methodologies used in nutrition research;
- indicate frequent occurring problems of interpretations related to specified methods and their results;
- find and judge scientific publications and interpret and report critical comments on nutrition research as published in scientific journals;
- define and describe the nutrition requirements of specific age groups and the role of nutrition in prevention and therapy of some (chronic) diseases;
- be aware of the pitfalls in carrying out and applying frequent used measurement methods and techniques and know how to overcome these;
- to apply, use and evaluate techniques to determine nutrition status and food consumption and their results.


Besides lectures, students will participate in various practicals, tutorials, skills training and e-learning modules.


A written exam. All practicals need to be completed successfully.


Course reader available at WUR-shop. Studybook to be announced. The course is supported by the Blackboard learning environment.

Compulsory for: BVGNutrition and HealthBSc5AF