Module code: BMS3057

Module Overview

This module will provide a broadly-based review of current methods employed in experimental nutrition and sport & exercise sciences, with hands on practical aspects in statistics, epidemiology, study design, body composition, physical activity assessment and dietary intake measurements as well as experience in scientific writing and detailed critical reviews of peer reviewed scientific papers in nutritional science and sport & exercise sciences.  The module will also provide insights into career options within the different disciplines of nutrition, dietetics, food science and sport & exercise sciences.

Module provider

School of Biosciences

Module Leader

LANHAM-NEW Susan (Biosciences)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 80

Lecture Hours: 20

Seminar Hours: 5

Tutorial Hours: 5

Practical/Performance Hours: 20

Guided Learning: 10

Captured Content: 10

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

BMS2076 Research Methods for Nutrition and Exercise I

Module content

Indicative content includes:

• Overview of key aspects of scientific study design
• Description and practical application of epidemiological studies
• Assessment and practical experience of body composition measurements
• Assessment and practical experience of physical activity methodology and dietary assessment tools
• Overview and practical use of different experimental techniques in nutritional science and sport & exercise sciences 
• Understand the application and background to  epidemiology and it’s implications for public health nutrition and physical activity
• Be able to undertake a detailed and analytical critical analysis of the design and implementation of cross sectional & longitudinal studies and of intervention projects and statistical analysis of specified datasets that includes modelling work and repeated measures stats..
• Practical Statistical Coursework feedback and revision tutorials.  Career workshops for nutrition and sport & exercise science disciplines

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate critical thinking, understanding of the taught topics and extra reading

Thus, the assessment strategy for this module consists of:

  • Coursework Practical on Statistics (Submission of 1500 word report with practical analysis of a dataset and simple/applied Statistics in either Nutrition Sciences or Exercise Sciences).  Marked by Professor SA Lanham-New

  • Submission deadline 3 weeks after the lecture/practical has run

  • Final exam (linked to all learning Outcomes and with a particular focus on critical appraisal and strategic scientific thinking).

Formative assessment and feedback:

  • Feedback on written statistical coursework (written feedback on coursework and one-to-one feedback, as requested)

  • Generic post-coursework feedback (on-line and in class)

  • Feedback on final exam (written feedback on exam scripts, one-to-one feedback, as requested, with generic on-line feedback)

Module aims

  • To provide a broadly-based review of current methods employed in experimental nutrition and sport & exercise sciences and the concomitant career options that are aligned within the fields of nutritional sciences (nutrition, dietetics and food science) and sport & exercise sciences
  • To provide theoretical frameworks for the applications of experimental techniques and provide bases for selection of appropriate experimental methods in experimental nutrition and sport & exercise sciences
  • To provide an understanding of the terms epidemiology and nutritional epidemiology, introduce the important scientific concepts in study design, research protocol development and calibration of methods of investigation
  • To introduce the important design strategies and interpretation of nutritional and physical activity epidemiological studies and other relevant data and databases together with an understanding of key statistical issues including sampling, study size and statistical power
  • To demonstrate analysis and evaluation of data including longitudinal analysis; application of statistical methods with a broad coverage of cross-sectional and longitudinal cohort studies and randomised controlled trials as well as the use of specific statistical computer packages
  • To provide a framework to understanding the important concepts in the design and implementation of intervention projects and the methods required for monitoring and evaluating effectiveness and efficiency.
  • To provide practical experience in body composition measurements, physical activity assessment and dietary intake measurements.
  • To provide detailed experience in scientific writing and in the critical review of scientific papers and protocols to enable a more structured and 360 degree thinking in scientific research.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Select experimental methods appropriate to a particular experimental objective and design for both nutrition sciences and exercise sciences KC
002 Appreciate the limitations of presently available experimental methods used for both nutrition sciences and exercise sciences. KCT
003 To provide a detailed understanding of anthropometric data in the context of nutrition and exercise sciences KCP
004 Define and have a working knowledge of epidemiology and demonstrate a basic understanding of the fundamental scientific concepts of study design for nutrition sciences and exercise sciences KCT
005 Appreciate the advantages and disadvantages of a range of methods for assessment of dietary intake and physical activity levels. KCT
006 Appreciate and understand the important design strategies of nutrition and exercise epidemiology studies and the correct procedures for interpretation of data. KCT
007 Be able to undertake a detailed and rigorous critical analysis of the design and implementation of cross-sectional and longitudinal cohort studies, intervention trials and statistical analysis of datasets. CPT
008 Communicate experimental findings clearly in written form, with discussion and critical evaluation relevant to current literature and have a full appreciation of the career opportunities within the disciplines nutrition (dietetics, nutrition & food science) and in sport & exercise sciences. CPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching methods include:

• Lectures
• Practicals: Critical thinking & digital literacy
• Tutorials
• Coursework
• Advised extra reading, including scientific papers and reviews


Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: BMS3057

Other information


This module from an employability perspective will provide the student with key skills in analytical methods (such as how to assess an individual's dietary intake and physical activity levels); quantitative analysis (using datasets from actual published scientific work) and it will also teach them in the areas of critical thinking and scientific writing.  These combined will equip them with important skill sets for future employment and will boast their employability prospects.  In addition, the Module will hold career discussion opportunities with key stakeholders in their respective disciplines.    This will enable the student to identify the different pathways that are open to them in scientific and health-related roles for future employment.   


Global and cultural capabilities 

The programme and module has a strong cohort from around the world; with a mix of students from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Students will be integrating through the module and engaging with one another. 


Digital capabilities 

Students will become proficient in the use of a number of digital tools.   These include experience of using statistical programmes for analysis of data and appropriate graphical packages as well scientific publication platforms such as PubMed and Embase through our teaching of methods for systematic reviews and meta-analysis.   These will also use dietary assessment packages (such as Nutritics) and learn what are the most update digital platforms for assessing food patterns, dietary intake and physical activiity levels.   Thus, students will become competent at using these tools and platforms. 


Resourcefulness and resilience 

Students will develop their resourcefulness (independent critical thinking) and resilience within this Module.  There is a clear focus on critically analyzing datasets within the Module through the Coursework Assessment, and within the Written Examination with respect to specific questions on critical reviews of scientific papers and analytical methods.  For these individual assessments, students will be supported by formative feedback and will be fully supported by group drop-in sessions and 1:1 coaching.  This will assist them through the challenging areas to support their growth in resourcefulness and resilience. Therefore, they will be better prepared for roles in science (Nutritional Science and Exercise Science), as Health Professionals or working within Industry, Government or Charity organizations.   



Issues surrounding sustainability of scientific research and data collection and the impact of these activities will be covered in the Module. Taking this understanding into the workplace (such as the Food Industry, the Health Service, Government and Charity Organizations, Education  [primary/secondary] sets the scene for better equipped students in scientific and health professional employment roles. 

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Food Science and Nutrition BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Nutrition and Dietetics BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Nutrition BSc (Hons) 1 Core Each unit of assessment must be passed at 40% to pass the module
Sport and Exercise Science BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2024/5 academic year.