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MS in Nutrition Education: Course Descriptions

Nutrition Courses from American University

The online Master of Science in Nutrition Education from American University delivers the most relevant courses to help you understand the current challenges and solutions facing nutrition education today.

Core Courses

HFIT 540, Health Communication
This course addresses distinct forms of delivering health promotion messages to consumers, professionals, and large groups through various communication methods and social marketing. The course is divided into three modules, covering health coaching, mass health communication, and consumer health writing and public speaking. Students have the opportunity to coach individuals, advocate for a health issue, or give a presentation on a health-related topic.

HFIT 610, Lifecycle Nutrition
This course explores the role of nutrition through the entire life span. Beginning with conception, pregnancy, early childhood feeding, adolescence, adulthood and the elderly, each life cycle is discussed with an understanding of the physiological changes and their implications for nutritional factors. Special emphasis is placed on using this information in nutritional education programming. Prerequisite: HFIT 645.

HFIT 625, Nutrition Epidemiology & Research Methods
In this course students learn how to design, implement and analyze studies involving nutrition-disease associations. Research methods and its challenges are assessed in relation to epidemiology, focusing specifically on food and nutrition.

HFIT 630, Nutrition Education Methods I
In this course students explore the current status of nutrition and nutrition education, specifically in the United States, and identify the factors that influence nutrition status. Students learn to perform a needs assessment, and design and implement educational strategies.

HFIT 640, Nutrition Education Methods II
This course is the second in a two-part sequence designed to develop knowledge and understanding of effective instruction in nutrition education. The course focuses on the development of instructional methodologies, content area knowledge used to understand assessment and evaluation in a number of settings.

HFIT 645, Nutrition
The role of nutrition in maintaining health and physical fitness is studied in relation to the responsibilities and opportunities of a nutrition educator. Current food myths, diets for those in athletic programs, and special needs of overweight and underweight clients are included.

HFIT 650, Changing Health Behavior
This course provides students with an overview of the theory and application for assisting individuals and groups change lifestyle behaviors related to health promotion. Includes cognitive behavior techniques changing lifestyle behaviors such as smoking, obesity, stress, or diet for the reduction of chronic disease risk. Students deepen their understanding of select theories and practices necessary for effective health behavior change.

HFIT 660, Multicultural Health
In this course students investigate gender and cultural issues affecting health. Emphasis is on health disparities and how gender and cultural indicators affect behavioral risk. The relationship between health and other factors such as religion, social class/socioeconomic status, acculturation, migration and globalization is also studied.

Elective Courses

HFIT 530, Sports Nutrition
This course allows students to translate theory into practice and to relate content to fitness and sports. Included are topics on weight and body composition, eating disorders and guidelines through proper nutrition. The material covered gives students comprehensive knowledge of nutrition for use in complementary fields focusing on sport and exercise.

HFIT 535, Global Nutrition
This course surveys the nature and scope of leading nutritional issues and problems throughout the world, with an emphasis on developing countries. It includes consideration of specific nutrient deficiencies, as well as nutrition-related aspects of infectious and chronic disease with an emphasis on the nutrition transition.

HFIT 545, Health in the School Environment
Examine the promotion of healthy behaviors and beliefs in the school setting for grades K-12 based on the Center for Disease Control's Division of Adolescent and School Health coordinated school health program model.

HFIT 570, Strategies in Weight Control
This course is designed to address the strategies used to assist in reversing the obesity epidemic. Students gain an understanding of the trends of obesity, risk factors associated with being overweight, and chronic disease patterns. Further, strategies of proper weight management are explored on an individual and societal level, looking at current diet trends and evaluating their health implications.

HFIT 655, Vitamins and Minerals
This course explores the role of vitamins and minerals in maintaining cellular health through biochemical and physiological mechanisms. Topics provide an in-depth view of specific vitamins and minerals as well as effective ways to translate this information toward efforts for prevention of chronic disease.

Click here to learn more about the online Master of Science in Nutrition Education or call 855-725-7614 to speak with an admissions advisor today.

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