NUT4001 - Foundations of dietetic practice - 2017

12 points, SCA Band 2, 0.250 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

Department of Nutrition, Dietetics and Food


Ms Amanda Anderson

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2017 (Day)


This unit introduces students to the profession of dietetics, commencing their pathway to becoming experts in food (knowledge and application) and culturally competent, self-aware healthcare professionals. This unit is tailored for the non cognate path for Masters of Dietetics (96CP) under the course architecture project. Students coming through the cognate path will receive credit for this subject and be eligible to proceed into the 72 CP Masters program.

The unit initially focuses on health behaviours, assessment of nutritional status, growth and development, physical activity and nutritional requirements for groups across the lifespan from infancy to old age. The unit will incorporate elements of professional development, cultural competency about food and eating patterns, and content around the Australian food supply system including food regulation and law.

Concepts of health education and promotion will enhance students' knowledge and ability to communicate nutrition messages effectively to groups and individuals as well as teamwork and reflection. Students will be introduced to reflective practice, commencing a professional portfolio and will be engaged via adult learning teaching and learning principles as they begin to develop their professional identity.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Investigate foods, food ingredients and varied cultural eating patterns found in Australia.
  2. Evaluate varying nutritional needs, growth and development and human behaviour across the lifespan consistent with best available evidence.
  3. Discuss physical activity guidelines, evidence and recommendations across the lifespan.
  4. Explore psychological, cultural, personal, economic, environmental and social factors and their influence on health and eating behaviours.
  5. Relate the theoretical basis of health education and health promotion to planning, implementing and evaluating a creative group education session designed to support behaviour change.
  6. Evaluate different methods for the collection of dietary intake data from individuals and populations.
  7. Integrate and apply the knowledge and technical skills required to assess nutritional status.
  8. Critically evaluate regulations relating to food labelling, food composition and food-related claims in Australia.
  9. Describe the process of HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) in food production and supply and design a HACCP plan.
  10. Extend communication skills relevant to the professional context in a range of written and oral approaches.
  11. Practice professional attitudes, skills and behaviours including critical reflection and team work required for healthcare practice.
  12. Evaluate practice of self and peers.


Professional portfolio (6,000 words) (50%) (Hurdle)

Group education assignment (20%)

Final exam (30%) (Hurdle)

Workload requirements

On Campus: This unit will run over one semester with an average of 24 hours per week allocated to both contact and private study with the majority of time dedicated to contact hours. For example:

  • 8 hours of lectures and tutorials
  • 4-8 hours of private reading/self-study
  • 4-8 hours preparation for and contribution to tutorials.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Nutrition and dietetics