This unit provides an overview of current and emerging global nutrition challenges from a biological, social, economic and policy perspective. Focusing on low and middle income countries the unit explores issues of maternal and child under-nutrition and the growing global momentum to address these with evidence-based interventions delivered to scale. The double-burden of nutrition related diseases as a result of changing food consumption and physical activity levels is increasingly becoming a major public health concern globally with an increase in non-communicable diseases in low and middle income countries. Building on the unit Global Challenge: Non-Communicable Disease, this unit explores specific issues around the double burden of nutrition-related communicable and non-communicable disease and recent advances in efforts to tackle this globally.   

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Discriminate the different forms of under and over nutrition and using a lifecycle approach predict which population groups are most vulnerable and why;  
  2. Assess the risks to health in terms of mortality and morbidity and the economic and social burden of under and over nutrition;  
  3. Investigate and interrogate the distribution and epidemiology of under and over nutrition globally;  
  4. Critically apply conceptual frameworks to analyse the causes of under and over nutrition in specified populations;  
  5. Argue the benefits to development of investing in nutrition and propose cost effective interventions; and  
  6. Conceptually map global and national policies and initiatives designed specifically to combat under and over nutrition and evaluate the challenges of implementing these to scale.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Test Online quizzes during the course of unit (1,000 words approx.) 20%
Essay Essay on a specific global nutrition problem (2,500 words) 40%
Case Study Case study on nutrition problem in a specific population (2,500 words) 40%

Required reading

Public Health Nutrition: Principles and Practice in Community and Global Health 1st ed.
Stein, N., (Ed) (2014)
Burlington, Jones and Bartlett Learning

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

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