MSc/PgDip Sport Nutrition

Can athletes thrive on a plant-based diet? How do you teach cooking skills to an Elite Development Squad? What evidence is there to suggest that beetroot juice can improve endurance?

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On our one-year course, you’ll examine the evidence surrounding nutrition, performance and health and gain the nutritional and physiological skills needed to work in the field of sport and exercise nutrition.

You’ll study the theory of nutrition, physiology and sports performance, exploring topics ranging from the applied effects of manipulating macronutrients to evaluating the role of fuelling before and during exercise, recovery and body composition manipulation.

You’ll develop practical skills in our on-site laboratories and Food and Nutrition Suite and at specialist sports venues across Greater Manchester, including our Platt Lane sports complex.

Some of the practical assessments you’ll complete include analysing the composition of food and exploring how to help athletes to perform better. You might investigate cardiac capacity and recovery times, or consider questions such as whether dietary supplements can affect performance positively or negatively.

To help you practice your skills, you’ll have the opportunity to apply for work placements. We have links with employers across the North West, including professional and amateur sports teams from football to netball.

Features and Benefits

  • Industry standard facilities - you’ll have access to our extensive practical facilities, which include physiology laboratories, performance suites, and product development kitchens.
  • Practical sessions - you’ll have sessions where you’ll explore the physiological systems of the body and use our laboratories.
  • Practical experience - you’ll have the opportunity to gain experience of working with athletes, professional and amateur sports clubs, and community and public health settings.
  • Manchester Food Centre - you can gain experience of real life case studies through the Manchester Food Centre, our on-site consultancy specialising in food and nutrition.
  • Teaching excellence - our teaching team includes academic practitioners currently working within sport and exercise nutrition.
"Our course provides the knowledge and skills required for a career working with athletes at all levels to improve their performance and promoting exercise and activity as part of healthy lifestyle initiatives across the UK and beyond." James Cameron – Senior Lecturer, Sport Nutrition

Career Prospects

Roles for sport and performance nutritionists include working with athletes (from ballerinas to pro-footballers), in product development for sports nutrition brands, with the community or local authority as part of public health initiatives, and in the media.

Some of the places you might work at include NHS hospitals, local authorities, multinational food companies, professional sports associations, and private healthcare organisations.

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Entry requirements

You will have a minimum 2:2 UK undergraduate honours degree, or equivalent, in nutrition, dietetics, physiology, sports science with a strong biological sciences component, or a related subject. 

Overseas applicants will require IELTS with an overall score of 6.5 with no less than 5.5 in any category, or an equivalent accepted English qualification. Accepted English qualifications can be viewed here.

Course details

On our one-year MSc/PgDip Sport Nutrition, you'll have varied days with a mix of lectures, practical sessions and workshops in our laboratories, such as practical nutrition for athletes or body composition assessments.

Some of the topics you might investigate include the principles of health promotion, our cardio-respiratory systems’ responses to exercise, and the influence of food on exercise performance.

Practical sessions are an important part of this course and you’ll develop your skills in our on-site Food and Nutrition Suite, as well as sports facilities across Greater Manchester.

On-campus, we have chemistry and microbiology laboratories, a taste panel suite, a product development kitchen (with a fully equipped carbohydrate studio and protein studio), a bakery, and food quality testing equipment.

We also have two performance laboratories with equipment to measure performance ability and body composition analysis.

Our teaching team includes dedicated technicians who can support you with the practical side of our course. They will help you to learn how to use our specialist equipment and support your work in our laboratories and product development kitchen. Their specialist areas include sports nutrition and physiology, and community nutrition.

To help you understand some of the scientific methods you might use in your future career, you'll study research methods. You'll learn about ethics for scientific research, research methodologies and statistical analyses, including how to appraise scientific research studies.

You'll use these methods in the independent research study that you'll conduct for your final assessment. Typically, you'll submit a 2,000-word research proposal and a 16,000-word dissertation with your research findings.

Over your one year course, you'll study the following units:

Core units

  • Fundamental Nutrition
  • Practical Nutrition for Athletes
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Sport and Exercise Nutrition
  • Health Promotion
  • Research Trends in Performance Nutrition
  • Laboratory Techniques in Sport and Exercise Nutrition
  • Dissertation with Research Methods
  • Nutritional Assessment

For the full unit descriptions, click read more about this year of study below.

Read more about this year of study

Core Units

Fundamental Nutrition

In this unit, we'll provide you with core knowledge of dietary sources of energy, nutrients and bioactive constituents of food, nutrient deficiencies and excesses in the human diet. You'll consider the impact on the development of disease across the lifespan. You'll also develop a comprehensive understanding of nutrients and non-nutrient bioactive compounds. You'll discuss dietary recommendations and analyse programmes with the aim to improve the health of the population and the nutritional adequacy of a variety of diets.

Nutritional Assessment

In this unit, we'll deliver core knowledge and skills to enable you to assess and analyse an individual’s nutritional status using dietary intake and body composition assessment.. You'll do this by measuring an individual’s food intake, calculating their nutritional requirements and developing potential management strategies. You'll learn to assess nutritional status using standard and advanced anthropometric methods. You'll also learn a range of dietary intake assessment methods, the calculation of nutritional requirements and practical management strategies, should you identify the need for nutritional intervention. We'll also teach you about dietary-related diseases and conditions, and covers practical skills in designing individual level dietary support and interventions.

Health Promotion

In this unit, you'll examine the theory, methods and applications of health promotion in the context of changing individual and population behaviours for the improvement of society’s health.

Dissertation with Research Methods

In this unit, you'll design and undertake a significant scientific research study on a topic of professional interest and relevance in your specialist study area.

Practical Nutrition for Athletes

This unit will provide you with the skills, knowledge and practical experience required for a practising nutritionist to work in the field of sport and exercise nutrition. Through a combination of lectures, seminars and practicals, you'll consider the communication, professional and practical skills necessary to translate sports nutrition principles into applied professional advice in a range of sporting environments.

Exercise Physiology

In this unit, you'll cover the physiological responses and adaptations of the body that occur with exercise training and performance.

Sport and Exercise Nutrition

In this unit, you'll cover the key concepts in sport and exercise nutrition, with specific focus on macronutrient and micronutrient intakes, ergogenic aids and nutritional periodisation for performance.

Research Trends in Performance Nutrition

In this unit, you'll focus on recent and current research in nutrition for athletic performance and its application to an athletic population, with reference to performance, recovery and health of athletes. You'll relate it to food and nutritional supplementation, in addition to exercise methods that may be manipulated to enhance performance.

Laboratory Techniques in Sport and Exercise Nutrition

In this unit, we'll provide you with an in depth knowledge into laboratory techniques used in sports and exercise nutrition, research and practice. You'll gain a theoretical underpinning and practical application of techniques relating to nutrition, physiology and performance.

Assessment weightings and contact hours

10 credits equates to 100 hours of study, which is a combination of lectures, seminars and practical sessions, and independent study. A masters qualification typically comprises of 180 credits, a PGDip 120 credits, a PGCert 60 credits and an MFA 300 credits. The exact composition of your study time and assessments for the course will vary according to your option choices and style of learning, but it could be:


Department of Health Professions

Our Department of Health Professions teaches subjects including physiotherapy, speech and language therapy, and nutritional sciences.

The department is committed to ensuring its courses stay relevant and up-to-date with current professional practice, by maintaining links with colleagues in clinical practice and research.

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Taught by experts

Your studies are supported by a team of committed and enthusiastic teachers and researchers, experts in their chosen field. We also work with external professionals, many of whom are Manchester Met alumni, to enhance your learning and appreciation of the wider subject.

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UK and EU students

UK and EU students: Full-time fee: £8,500 per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

UK and EU students: Part-time fee: £1417 per 30 credits studied per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Non-EU and Channel Island students

Non-EU international and Channel Island students: Full-time fee: £16,000 per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Non-EU international and Channel Island students: Part-time fee: £2667 per 30 credits studied per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Additional Information

A Masters qualification typically comprises 180 credits, a PGDip 120 credits, a PGCert 60 credits, and an MFA 300 credits. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of study provided the course is completed in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Additional costs

All of the books required for the course are available from the library. The University also has PC labs and a laptop loan service. However, many students choose to buy some of the core textbooks for the course and/or a laptop. Students may also need to print their assignments and other documents. Campus printing costs start from 5p per page. Estimated costs are £300 for a laptop up to £100 for books and printing. Total optional cost: £400

Postgraduate Loan Scheme

Loans of up to £10,906 for many Postgraduate Courses

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Alumni Loyalty Discount

Rewarding our graduates

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How to apply

The quickest and most efficient way to apply for this course is to apply online. This way, you can also track your application at each stage of the process.

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If you are unable to apply online, you can apply for postgraduate taught courses by completing the postgraduate application form. There are exceptions for some professional courses – the course information on our on-line prospectus will give you more information in these cases.

Please note: to apply for this course, you only need to provide one reference.

You can review our current Terms and Conditions before you make your application. If you are successful with your application, we will send you up to date information alongside your offer letter.


Programme Review
Our programmes undergo an annual review and major review (normally at 6 year intervals) to ensure an up-to-date curriculum supported by the latest online learning technology. For further information on when we may make changes to our programmes, please see the changes section of our Terms and Conditions.

Important Notice
This online prospectus provides an overview of our programmes of study and the University. We regularly update our online prospectus so that our published course information is accurate. Please check back to the online prospectus before making an application to us to access the most up to date information for your chosen course of study.

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