School of Health Professions

MSc Advanced Professional Practice in Paediatric Dietetics

Are you a qualified dietitian working in paediatric dietetics? Take your career further with our specialist course delivered in partnership with the Paediatric Group of the British Dietetic Association (BDA). You’ll benefit from the knowledge and experience of leading clinical practitioners from across the UK and develop as an evidence-based practitioner with advanced skills in clinical reasoning, critical appraisal, problem solving and leadership.

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Delivered by professional experts, our programmes are tailored to you and your career. Together, we address today's most challenging healthcare issues, through research-informed teaching and active, real-world learning.


Key features

As this programme is designed for qualified practitioners there is no requirement for a clinical placement component. Neither the programme nor any of its pathways lead to eligibility to apply for registration with a regulatory body.

Unfortunately, we are unable to accept applications from non-EU overseas students for this programme as it does not comply with the current Tier 4 visa requirements.

Please note that when you enrol on this programme, you always enrol to study the master degree but we offer three exit awards: PgCert, PgDip and MSc.

Course details

  • Programme overview
  • Increase your skills in reflection, analysis and critical debate, as well as developing your knowledge base to match pace with current developments. With our emphasis on self-directed learning, you’ll be expected to read around the subject and actively engage in discussion during taught components and online forums when modules are taught via distance learning. You’ll learn through a mixture of lectures followed by small group work, and tutorials to support your development. You will benefit from assessment by written coursework with no written exams. Our teaching is underpinned by current research, giving you the opportunity to work closely with experienced staff on your own research project. The quality of our programme is important to us, so we’ll encourage you to engage in feedback, staff-student liaison and to join in with the wider life of the school. 

    We offer three award pathways to suit your professional and personal requirements:

    • Postgraduate certificate – to achieve a postgraduate certificate, you will need to earn 60 credits. This must include the core module Applying Evidence to Practice (20 credits) with the remaining 40 credits coming from two pathway specific modules of your choice.
    • Postgraduate diploma – to achieve a postgraduate diploma, you will need to earn 120 credits. This must include the core modules Applying Evidence to Practice (20 credits) and Project Design for Research (20 credits). The remaining 80 credits will come from three pathway specific modules and one optional module of your own choice.
    • Master of Science – for a full masters degree, you will need to earn a total of 180 credits. You will study the same core and pathway specific modules as the postgraduate diploma, with the final 60 credits coming from the Research dissertation module.

    Note: Core module, ADV702 – Applying evidence to practice, can be taken as a taught module or via distance learning. Please visit the module webpage for further information.

    The optional modules listed below are all pathway specific for this programme. For further information on the all of the modules that make up this programme please visit MSc Advanced Professional Practice module information.

    Induction takes place 16 – 17 September 2019.
    Core modules
    • ADV702 Applying Evidence to Practice

      Focusing on the application of evidence based practice (EBP) to professional practice; you’ll learn how to use research to guide best practice. You will also identify a question relevant to your area of practice, review and critique the literature in this area, and plan and evaluate any necessary change to professional practice.

    • ADV715 Project Design for Research

      You’ll explore methodology and methods relevant to the development of a research project and by the end of the module you’ll formulate a research proposal. You’ll learn how to define and refine a research question, select and appraise methodology, address ethical considerations, and select and appraise data collection and analysis techniques.

    • ADV716 Research Dissertation

      You’ll complete your dissertation as part of your Advanced Professional Practice Masters programme under supervision from the module team and a named dissertation supervisor.

    Optional modules
    • ADV720 Dietetic Management of Inherited Metabolic Disorders (IMD)

      You will look at the biochemical, pathophysiological and genetic basis of IMD. You’ll critically appraise the complex dietary therapies needed to correct metabolic derangements to ensure long-term safety, optimal growth, neurodevelopment and psychosocial stability of infants, children, adolescents, and individuals approaching adulthood who are starting their own families.

    • ADV741 Nutrition and Dietetics in Infancy and Childhood

      This module promotes understanding of advice given to families, health professionals and policy groups on normal nutrition and feeding during infancy and childhood. It critiques evidence for health promotion strategies, initiated to enhance health outcomes and minimise disease risk.

    • ADV742 Nutrition and Dietetics in Common Paediatric Disorders

      This module will critically examine the aetiology, nutritional and dietetic management of paediatric diabetes, cystic fibrosis, faltering growth, cancer, allergy and gastrointestinal problems. It explores their impact on feeding problems and the complexity of managing paediatric disorders to ensure normal growth and development.

    • ADV743 Clinical Dietetics for Infants and Children

      This module explores the nutritional and dietetic interventions essential for normal growth and development in chronic and acute paediatric illness. Nutritional management of organ system diseases, epilepsy, neonatal surgery, burns and trauma will be considered. The use of all forms of nutrition support in disease management will be critically examined.

    • ADV744 Neonatal Nutrition

      This module explores the nutritional and dietetic management of preterm and sick term infants in the neonatal period and beyond in order to optimise growth and development and minimise post-natal growth restriction. It includes the management of complex neonatal nutritional problems such as necrotising enterocolitis and practical issues such as breastfeeding and human milk banking.

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest programme structure and may be subject to change:

MSc Advanced Professional Practice in Paediatric Dietetics pathway specification 4470

The modules shown for this course or programme are those being studied by current students, or expected new modules. Modules are subject to change depending on year of entry.

Entry requirements

  • You will normally have a relevant first class or 2:2 honours degree, or a European first cycle equivalent in dietetics. 
  • You should have experience of professional practice in paediatric dietetics.
  • Note that successful completion of this pathway does not lead to eligibility to apply for registration as a dietician with the Health and Social Care Professions Council.
  • Unfortunately, we are unable to accept applications from non-EU overseas students for this programme as it does not comply with the current Tier 4 visa requirements.

You must also provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English in accordance with the University’s Admissions Code of Practice -  IELTS requirement is 6.5 average with a minimum of 5.5 in each category. If you need to improve your English language to get onto a degree programme at the University of Plymouth, you can book a pre-sessional academic English course.

You will be assessed individually for your ability to study at this level and therefore an interview may be necessary. You will normally be required to submit a short piece of writing as part of the admissions process.

Claims for credit for prior learning, whether certificated or experiential are accepted and will be assessed following university regulations and faculty procedures.

European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS):
This programme is equivalent to 90 ECTS credits (second cycle) with 30 ECTS credits at postgraduate certificate, 60 credits at postgraduate diploma and 90 credits at masters degree. Each 20 credit module has the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits and assumes a notional student effort of between 200-300 hours.

Successful completion of this pathway does not lead to eligibility to apply for registration as a dietician with the Health and Social Care Professions Council.

Fees, costs and funding

EU applicants should refer to our dedicated Brexit webpage for details of the implications of the UK’s plans to leave the European Union.


Home/EU (full time)  
Home/EU (part time)
£820 per 20 credits (University of Plymouth modules); £820 per 20 credits (BDA pathway specific modules)

For further information on specialist modules ADV720, ADV741, ADV742, ADV743 and ADV744 please visit the module webpages

Full time fees shown are per annum. Part-time fees shown are per a number of credits. Fees are correct at the time of publication and may be subject to change.

Information about loans and funding for postgraduate study.

Students applying for a postgraduate loan will be subject to stipulations regarding the duration of the programme. Please contact the pathway lead for advice before applying.

Additional costs

Please be aware that there may be additional costs to undertaking your studies relating to the printing of course materials, parking charges if you are studying at PAHC, and the requirement for an initial outlay for travel and accommodation in respect of practice placement. If you have any questions regarding these costs please contact

Postgraduate Merit Scholarship for international students

Scholarship value: £2000 off your tuition fees in year one.
You may also receive:

  • 10% off the successive years tuition fee if an overall grade of 60% or above is maintained
To be eligible you must:

This scholarship will be offered automatically, providing you meet the eligibility criteria. A separate application will not be required.

Further information about Scholarships for international students

How to apply

Applying for this programme

Please visit our PDU admissions homepage for full details on the application process and to download the relevant forms.

Please return your completed forms to:


Professional Development Unit
4th floor, Rolle Building
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus
Plymouth, PL4 8AA

Tel: +44 (0)1752 586951

What happens after I apply?

After your application is received by the PDU Admissions team, it will be processed and sent to the Programme Lead for a decision to be made on your suitability to study. You may be asked to provide additional information or to take part in an interview (for overseas students this may be by telephone or video conference). Once this decision has been made, you will be sent an email either confirming your place on the programme, or rejecting your application and giving the reasons for this decision (you may request further feedback in order to improve your chances of selection at a later date).

Please note that you will be enrolled on the full MSc programme. You may choose to exit with the qualification of PgCert upon completion of an appropriate 60 credits, or a PgDip upon completion of an appropriate 120 credits. More information is contained within the programme specification.

For applicants with disabilities

If you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by the University of Plymouth, please visit our Disability Services webpage.

Kim Novell – graduate profile

Kim Novell talks to us about the excellent facilities available at Plymouth, placements, working for the NHS, and setting up her own consultancy.

Find out more about Kim's experience

Teaching and learning

This programme benefits from the teaching of the core programme modules at the University of Plymouth with the specialist paediatric modules being delivered at locations across the UK by the British Dietetic Association (BDA).

Delivery of the specialist modules takes place over four consecutive days – for further information on the delivery of these modules please visit the BDA website  or contact Hayley Clarke, BDA Course Administrator.

Delivery of the core modules is mostly via a blended learning approach based at the Peninsula Allied Health Centre. 

For further information on both specialist and core modules please visit the module webpages.

MSc Advanced Professional Practice pathways

Both the School of Health Professions and the School of Nursing and Midwifery offer the MSc Advanced Professional Practice programme; together we offer a wide range of specialist and generic pathways to meet the educational needs of all health and social care professionals.

Discover more about the pathways we offer

Alumnus loyalty reward for postgraduate study

From September 2018, the University applies a discretionary alumnus reward where alumni meet certain criteria on particular postgraduate taught courses.

  • A 20 per cent discount on home/EU tuition fees.
  • Or a £2,000 discount on international tuition fees.

PGCE programmes, Master of Architecture, MChem, MEng, MGeol, MPsych, MSci, ResM and postgraduate research degrees are not included in this reward. Please note that students must have applied directly to be eligible. 

For further details, and contact information, please see our alumnus discount policy.

English Language Centre

We offer a range of courses to help you develop your academic English language skills.

These include pre-sessional academic English courses for undergraduates, taught postgraduates and research students along with insessional language classes, tutorials and activities to support students who have English as a second language.

Find out how we can help you reach your potential.