Our Ph.D. program prepares you for a career in healthcare, government, community, industry,and university research and teaching positions.

Why choose UGA?

Program Requirements

Program Requirements PDF 

Requirements include a minimum of 55 semester credit hours as follows: at least 43 hours of course work and 12 hours of thesis and related research. A minimum of 25 credit hours in Foods and Nutrition, 6 credits of statistics (required minimum), 3 credits of physiology (required minimum), 3 credits of biochemistry and/or cell biology (required minimum), and a minimum of 16 credit hours of course work open only to graduate students.  In consultation with their Advisory Committee, students with credit in FDNS 4100, Micronutrient Nutrition, or another course in vitamin and mineral nutrition may substitute another graduate level course in FDNS. 

FDNS courses (25 credit hours)

Required FDNS courses (19 credits)


3 cr

Micronutrient Nutrition (may be substituted with FDNS course if taken as undergraduate)


3 cr

Advanced Macronutrients


2 cr

Proposal Writing


1 cr

Special Topics in Foods and Nutrition (concurrent with FDNS 8560)


4 cr

Seminar Foods and Nutrition


6 cr

Doctoral Research

Elective FDNS courses (choose 6 credits)


3 cr

Optimal Nutrition for the Life Span


1 cr

Research Methodology in Human Foods and Nutrition


3 cr

We Are What We Eat


3 cr

Nutrition in Physical Activity, Exercise, and Sport


3 cr

Nutrition and Obesity Across the Life Span


3 cr

Medical Nutrition Therapy I


3 cr

Nutrition Related to the Human Life Cycle


2 cr

Clinical Nutrition Interventions


4 cr

Medical Nutrition Therapy II


3 cr

Public Health Dietetics


3 cr

Nutritional Genetics


3 cr

Metabolism and Physiology of Energy Balance and Obesity


3 cr

Food and Nutrition Policy


1 cr

Foodservice Procurement and Financial Management


2 cr

Management of Foodservice Organizations


3 cr

Cultural Aspects of Foods  and Nutrition


3 cr

Food Sanitation and Safety


2 cr

Nature of Food


1 cr

Food Choices and the Consumer


3 cr

Experimental Study of Food


3 cr

Food and Nutrition Education Methods


3 cr

Nutrition and Pharmacology for Disease Management


3 cr

Nutritional Epidemiology


4 cr

Public Health, Physical Activity and Nutrition Interventions



Nutrition, Physical Activity, Exercise, and Sport Internship


3 cr

Food & Nutritional Biochemistry


3 cr

Advanced Nutrition in Physical Activity, Exercise, and Sport


3 cr

Nutrition and Disease Processes I


1 cr

Survey of Obesity and Weight Management

*These apply towards the required 12 credit hours of graduate only courses

^Cannot be repeated if taken as an undergraduate. Does not apply towards the required 12 credit hours of graduate only courses.

Courses in Supporting Area (24 credits minimum)

Required (12 credits)

Statistics choose 6 credits from potential courses http://www.fcs.uga.edu/docs/Statistics_courses_available_for_FDN_students.pdf

Physiology (3 credits)

Biochemistry and/or Cell Biology (3 credits)

Electives (12 credits)

Graduate courses in area of interest

Dissertation: 6 required credits


6 cr

Doctoral Dissertation

Minimum Total Credit Hours: 55

NOTE: Per graduate school requirements, the doctoral program of study must include 16 or more hours of 8000- and 9000-level courses, exclusive of 9000 (research) and/or 9300 (dissertation writing).

How long does it take?

Generally 4-5 years to complete the courses and research for the doctoral dissertation.

Benefits of Our Approach

  • Talented professors with cutting-edge research
  • Small classes with highly motivated students from around the world
  • Immersion in a research team that is solving real-world food and nutrition issues

What you'll do in research

  • Give scientific presentations
  • Network at scientific meetings
  • Write and submit grant proposals
  • Publish journal articles and book chapters

What you'll do in teaching

Research and Dissertation

  • You will conduct research alongside your major professor in a specific area
  • Our doctoral students are currently conducting clinical, community, applied and basic sciences research to solve real world problems
  • You will write reviews, abstracts, and journal articles that summarize your research
  • Travel funds are available so you can present your research at scientific meetings
  • You will compile all of your research findings and summaries into a dissertation
  • Examples of doctoral research projects are in the Electronic Theses and Dissertations Database. Search by department, topic, and faculty of interest. 

Where are our graduates?

Graduates are employed at the CDC, USDA, NIH, and several universities including Auburn University, Emory University, Penn State, University of Georgia, University of Illinois, University of Kentucky, SUNY Plattsburg, and University of Tennessee.

Meet Our Alumni