BASc - Applied Human Nutrition (AHN)

AHN course requirements
AHN overview
Area of Emphasis in Dietetics 
Learning Approach and Experiential Learning
What’s Unique about University of Guelph AHN? 
AHN Vision, Mission, Objectives

Applied Human Nutrition (AHN) Course Requirements

BASc.AHN course requirements and course offerings are subject to change each year. Course requirements of your program are found in the Academic Undergraduate Calendar for the year in which you started your program.  Here are the current AHN course requirements.

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Applied Human Nutrition (AHN) Overview

Our specialized major in Applied Human Nutrition (AHN) will prepare you to work in diverse settings to address nutrition issues facing Canadians. Our graduates bring evidence-based knowledge from the biological and social sciences, food expertise and strong communication skills to help Canadians maintain good health, and to prevent or treat diet-related disorders and diseases. As specialists in human nutrition, graduates often work with many other disciplines and groups to translate the latest evidence into practical programs in government, health care, education and business settings. Faculty research programs, advanced lab courses and practicum opportunities provide multiple opportunities for hands-on experience to complement courses.  Students can choose to do a minor or an area of emphasis in dietetics.

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Area of Emphasis in Dietetics 

Dietetics is a regulated health profession, similar to nursing, speech pathology, physiotherapy, etc.  Health care professionals who work in dietetics are registered dietitians (RD).  To become an RD in Ontario, you must successfully:

  1. Complete a four-year accredited undergraduate program in applied nutrition. For example, the University of Guelph, AHN major with area of emphasis in dietetics is an accredited program recognized by the Partnership for Dietetic Education and Practice.
  2. Complete an accredited dietetic training program following graduation from the AHN major with area of emphasis in dietetics. You can choose to apply for an accredited dietetic training program in your fourth year in the AHN major with area of emphasis in dietetics. A list of the accredited dietetic training programs can be found on the Partnership for Dietetic Education and Practice (PDEP) website.
  3. Pass the Canadian Dietetics Registration Examination, which you will take after you complete your dietetic practium or combined Masters practicum. 
  4. Once you have completed these three steps, you become eligible for registration with the College of Dietitians of Ontario, the dietetics regulatory body for Ontario. 

The area of emphasis in dietetics requires the successful completion of 2.5 credits: 1.50 required credits and 1.0 credits selected from a list of restricted electives.  Course requirements for an area of emphasis in dietetics are found in the academic calendar below the AHN program requirements.

References are a CRITICAL component of applications to dietetic training programs, or graduate or professional schools.

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How to Declare an Area Of Emphasis in Dietetics

To declare an Area of Emphasis in Dietetics, fill and submit this online Schedule of Studies Change Request Form.

Here is a sample of a completed form for a BASc.AHN student following the 2023 academic calendar who wants to declare an Area of Emphasis in Dietetics.

Note that when filling the form your: 

  • degree program is Bachelor of Applied Science
  • No we do not have coop in BASc
  • specialization usually means minor or area of emphasis
  • calendar is the year you started your program NOT the current year. Areas of Emphasis usually follow the same calendar as your major.

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Learning Approach and Experiential Learning

From the behavioural foundation of our eating habits to the roles of nutrients in our bodies, the AHN major will give you a thorough understanding of all aspects of human nutrition. Lectures lay out the theoretical groundwork. Labs allow you to apply your knowledge. Seminar courses support the social science component of your curriculum and allow for small group discussions to explore topics of interest. Our goal is to ensure that YOU are at the centre of your learning experience. You may also take the following courses that give you hands-on experience in the field of nutrition:

NUTR*3500 Research Internship in AHN 
This course will give students a direct, initial experience in conducting research in applied human nutrition. The internship focuses on familiarizing students with the research process and building research skills through active engagement in research under the direct guidance of a FRAN faculty member.  Students find a FRAN professor to give them an internship and then contact the BASc Undergraduate Program Assistant ( to get registered in the course.

NUTR*4850 Field Experience in Nutrition Education  
This course offers a supervised experience in nutrition education and a seminar. Seminar topics include professional ethics, exploring values, and issues management.   Students will apply principles of program planning, nutrition education theory and professional behaviour in a community setting. Placements may be arranged in institutional or community health settings, educational facilities, social services, or food industry. Some examples of placement locations include:

  • develop a series of cooking workshops for youth
  • discuss Canada's Food Guide with older adults
  • develop nutrition education resources for workplaces 
  • become part of a public health team and present to community members
  • work with food safety experts to develop educational materials
  • work on menu assessments and analysis for long term care facilities
  • work with private practice dietitians on various projects
  • teach nutrition to children in daycare or school classroom settings.

Click here for more details on NUTR*4850. Students interested in taking NUTR*4850 should contact the Field experience course coordinator and instructor (Alexia Prescod,

NUTR*4810 Applied Human Nutrition Thesis I  (see details)
An undergraduate thesis is a good way to see if you like research and to begin to develop research skills. Students plan, develop and write a research proposal under individual FRAN faculty supervision. The topic is decided by the student in consultation with the supervisory FRAN faculty member before course selection or registration period. In their 5th or 6th semester, students find a FRAN professor to supervise them and then contact the BASc Undergraduate Program Assistant ( to get registered in the course.  It is recommended you approach a FRAN faculty member well in advance with a copy of your unofficial transcript, your resume, and a summary of your research interests.

NUTR*4910 Applied Human Nutrition Thesis II  (see details)
Students conduct and write an undergraduate thesis under the direction of a FRAN faculty member.

HTM*3090 Restaurant Operations Management  
This course covers the application of managerial functions to restaurant and foodservice operations with the emphasis on teamwork and the principles of food production and service in a sustainable commercial restaurant setting. Students gain hands-on understanding of scheduling, purchasing, costing, nutritional analysis, and food safety while operating a student run restaurant.

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What’s Unique About University of Guelph AHN? 

The Applied Human Nutrition (AHN) program is one of many majors at the University of Guelph. Our university is the food and agriculture university in Ontario, and one of the top comprehensive universities in the country according to the MacLean’s magazine survey. Courses are taught by content experts in applied nutrition, food science, counseling, nutritional sciences and hospitality and tourism management, amongst others. Our students can take advantage of our strengths in research and teaching to enhance their education and gain valuable hands-on experience. We also have a full range of graduate programs. Ours is the only PhD program in the province specializing in Applied Human Nutrition.

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AHN Vision, Mission, Objectives

Vision: To be world leaders in applied human nutrition education and research. 

Mission: To provide applied nutrition expertise to address current and emerging issues through independent and collaborative education and research efforts. 


1. Develop new knowledge regarding:

  • the biological, behavioural, social and environmental bases of nutritional health and disease
  • the assessment and evaluation of nutritional health and needs of individuals, groups, and populations
  • the effectiveness of nutrition intervention strategies at the individual, group, and population levels
  • effective methods and strategies to engage and educate undergraduate and graduate students.

2. Foster student engagement and competence in clinical nutrition, nutritional assessment, critical appraisal of nutrition research, nutrition services management, nutrition communication, and community and public health nutrition.

3. For students enrolled in the Area of Emphasis in Dietetics, a professional education program, a further objective is to: Support student achievement of the education-related Integrated Competencies for Dietetic Education and Practice (ICDEP,

Details of AHN program learning outcomes, i.e. what successful students will be able to do, know and achieve by the time they graduate.

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