GradCert Food, Nutrition & Health

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 30)

The Food, Nutrition and Health programme is aimed at graduates from a variety of disciplines who wish to develop their knowledge and understanding of food as it relates to human nutrition and health.

The programme is suitable for graduates with no formal educational background in food science or nutrition, who wish to up-skill and become competent and employable in this increasingly important and rapidly evolving field.

This programme is delivered and assessed entirely on- line. Minimum registration to the Graduate Certificate is 1 year. The flexible and online format of the programme enables the majority of students enrolling on the programme to combine studying while in employment. 

​Hosted by the UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science, the Food, Nutrition and Health programme brings together academic and research staff from across UCD in health-related aspects of food research, including food science, human and public health nutrition, food production, biosystems engineering, food law, consumer behaviour and food safety.

Students will gain an understanding of the nature of food, how it is produced, how it is affected by processing, why we eat, what happens to food when we eat it, and how food components can interact with the functioning of humans. Upon completion of the MSc graduates will be able to apply this knowledge to address nutrition-related problems in different groups, cultures and societies.

Graduates will be educated to a high level in the science of food as it pertains to human nutrition and health.

Careers & Employability

There are excellent job prospects for graduates in Food, Nutrition and Health with graduates working in a range of roles across the food industry, public health and regulatory agencies. Graduates have the distinct advantage of bringing a nutrition or health perspective to their roles.

Within the food industry graduates will work in areas such as product innovation, technical sales, product quality enhancement, nutrition and health promotion or food labelling regulation.

Graduate Roles include: 

  • Product Innovation
  • Technical Sales
  • Production Quality Enhancement
  • Health Promotion
  • Food Regulation

Curricular information is subject to change

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

The programme is suitable for graduates with no formal educational background in food science or nutrition, who wish to up-skill and become competent and employable in this increasingly important and rapidly evolving field.

The Graduate Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health aims to enable students to transform their careers, and develop intellectually and professionally, to achieve and demonstrate the skills, knowledge and expertise necessary to succeed in times of rapid global food nutrition and health change. The programme provides an academically challenging and professionally relevant, focused programmes of study for students who wish to develop careers in Food, Nutrition and Health. The programme will allow studentsto develop subject specific knowledge in core areas of Food, Nutrition and Health. Teamwork, collaboration and communication are integral components of this programme.  The programme will provide opportunities to become connected with fellow students from a range of disciplines and cultures, and utilise the online nature of the course to strengthen connectedness, and design innovative and creative solutions to problems across the Food, Nutrition and Health spectrum.

  • Construct and defend reasoned conclusions in relation to Food, Nutrition and Health
  • Demonstrate a critical awareness of principles relating to scientific integrity and ethical issues in Food, Nutrition and Health
  • Demonstrate competence to acquire, organise, analyse integrate and critically review information from a wide range of sources relating to issues in Food, Nutrition and Health.
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and problem solving skills as they apply to Food, Nutrition and Health
  • Demonstrate effective time management and organization skills
  • Integrate and apply knowledge of key principles underlying Food, Nutrition and Health

View All Modules Here

The Graduate Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health will be delivered through the UCD online learning platform (Brightspace) and will consist of:

  • pre-prepared lecture material delivered online
  • videos and demonstrations by lecturers
  • interactive learning reinforcement quizzes
  • online assessed multiple choice quizzes
  • Interactive discussion boards
  • virtual classroom environments

For each 5 ECTS credit module earned students are expected to undertake about 125 hours of work, to include on-line activity and performing their own study. Students will be required to complete quizzes periodically so that we can monitor progress. Formative assessments will be used to help you develop and critically assess your own understanding of the material presented. All modules will have a high continuous assessment component.

The Gradaute Certifiicate is delivered and assessed online. Therefore students do not need to attend UCD campus for classes or assessment. Many of our current students are based internationally. 
Each module is assigned a Module tutor; students can make direct contact with the Module Tutor and Module Coordinator with any queries.

GradCert Food, Nutrition & Health (X621) Part Time
EU/NONEU    fee per credit - € 125.1

***Fees are subject to change

The total cost of this graduate certificate is based on 30 credits at the current per credit fee listed above. (Per credit fee x 30).

 Applicants who would like to take a stand-alone module may do so as an Occasional Student, and should contact the School of Agriculture and Food Science directly for further details on how to apply and cost per module. Email:

NOTE: These fees are correct at time of publication and are for guidance only. Fees are subject to change. Official fees are as per UCD Fees website


The course is aimed at graduates from science-based disciplines with no previous or recent formal educational background in Food Science or Nutrition who wish to up-skill and become competent in this increasingly important and rapidly evolving area.

Applicants must hold a minimum of a Second Class Honours degree in a cognate subject (Science, Engineering or related discipline), or international equivalent.
Applicants with other awards who hold substantial relevant work experience will be considered.
Applicants who do not hold the requisite Science qualification (but who hold a Level 8 Honours degree or equivalent) have been admitted previously and are advised to submit an application for assessment by the Programme Coordinator to determine eligibility.

All applications are assessed on a case by case basis by the Programme Director. 

Applicants are asked to provide a CV and Personal Statement with their application, along with Academic Transcripts (non UCD Graduates) and proof of English proficiency if required.

Applicants who would like to take a stand-alone module may do so as an Occasional Student, and should contact the School of Agriculture and Food Science directly for further details on how to apply and cost per module. Email:

Gráinne Clarke (Graduate) 

I chose to complete my postgraduate studies at UCD as it is such a globally renowned, impressive and distinguished University. I completed the Master’s degree in 2 years. While the course was challenging at times overall, I found it to be extremely enjoyable and rewarding.  Lectures and coursework were efficiently delivered, interactive and extremely well-organised. Professors and tutors provided excellent support and encouragement throughout. While the course is delivered online there was always a sense of responsive care and courtesy from all academics with a robust support system in place.

I would recommend the Master’s course to anyone that is considering pursuing a career in the food, nutrition or health industry. Potential students need to be fully committed and self-disciplined throughout the course and I would advise them to grasp and enjoy the experience and opportunity. I believe attaining this Master’s has distinguished me to employers and businesses.  Since graduating I have been continually to advance my professional development and I plan to apply to the Association for Nutrition for Registered Associate Nutritionist status.

Breda O'Mahony (Graduate)

One of the main advantages attached to this course is the whole area of its diversification. The depth and variety of modules delivered offered a host of different opportunities in the spectrum of Food, Nutrition and Health.
After exhaustive investigation between different institutions and the courses that they had to offer, I knew the MSc in Food, Nutrition and Health at UCD was the one for me. Their online platform enabled me to continue working whilst studying at a pace that suited my schedule. As a result, a great level of compatibility between my work and study life was achieved. The open timeframe to complete the Masters was very attractive. I was motivated to complete it within two years but it was reassuring that I could extend the timeframe if needed. Receiving the coursework grid on week 1 of each semester allowed me to focus and plan coursework/MCQ’s around busier times at work. Similarly, knowing that on each Monday relevant lectures would be released, therefore aiding planning.

I can genuinely say that completing my Masters in the field of Food, Nutrition and Health has been one of the best decisions that I have ever made. I have never worked so hard nor have I ever felt so proud of the work that I have produced. This is largely due to the challenging environment the programme provided, as I was stimulated by the realistic obstacles that confronted me throughout the programme. This journey has allowed me to study with some of the leading academics in their field.
Lectures and coursework were relevant, engaging and thought provoking thus enabling me to expand on areas such as subject knowledge and development of critical thinking skills with relevance to everyday life. The depth and variety of modules offered insight into varying perspectives thus enhancing my subject knowledge. Having a tutor for each module was advantageous, they were very helpful and responded very quickly to any query no matter how big or small.

The completion of this Programme has opened up a number of differing opportunities that perhaps would not have come otherwise. The biggest sensation I feel when I think about my time at UCD is that of pride. Whilst the workload was demanding, the feeling of pride and accomplishment upon its completion meant that the hours of dedication were all worth it.

The following entry routes are available:

Grad Cert Food, Nutrition & Health PT (X621)
1 Years
Part Time

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised