Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit


UNMC595 Foods for Special Diets in Practice - Theory or submission of a statement to demonstrate evidence of prior learning equivalent to UNMC595 Foods for Special Diets in Practice - Theory Microcredential.


NUTR504 Foods for Special Diets in Practice

Unit rationale, description and aim

Special diets are not a new phenomenon yet in recent years the perceived and real need for foods for special diets has increased dramatically. Through a contemporary analysis of the place of special diets within our modern foodscape, this microcredential builds on UNMC595 Food for Special Diets in Practice - Theory and facilitates students’ application of evidence-based diets for the maintenance of health and treatment of disease. Students will be expected to apply advanced food/ingredient and menu knowledge, critical understanding of special diet food regulations and food service standards and utilise their highly advanced food planning, preparation, and cooking skills to prepare a range of foods to meet the requirements of specific diets. 

This microcredential aims to assist students to use practical elements of contemporary diets to support meaningful messages and communicate this to audiences in highly engaging and influential formats.  

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Illustrate expert planning, preparation, and cooking techniques through the preparation and presentation of a range of foods/meals for special diets (GA5, GA7, GA9)

LO2 - Practically apply the scientific evidence related to foods and diets designed for specific purposes while demonstrating highly efficient and collaborative workflow planning and operation in a commercial kitchen environment (GA4, GA5, GA7, GA9)

LO3 - Present evidence-based practical examples of foods for special diets in highly meaningful engaging formats for a range of audiences (GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10)

Graduate attributes

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 

GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media 

GA10 - utilise information and communication and other relevant technologies effectively.


Topics will include:

Practical bases of modified texture, energy and protein diets and foods

Practical bases of modified macronutrient diets and foods, limited examples provided below



Modified lactose

Modified fibre

           Low, no-carbohydrate

           Low, no sugar

Modified sweetener

           Modified fat

           Low FODMAPs

           Vegetarian and veganism

           Carbohydrate counting

           Portion control

           Ketogenic diet

Paleo diet

Practical bases of modified micronutrient/other bioactive components of diets and foods, limited examples below



Practical based of modified other

           Specific food inclusions or exclusions

           Allergens and intolerances

           Elimination Diets

           Menu planning principles for pregnancy and aged care

Advanced food preparation and cooking techniques

Workflow planning

Practical food and nutrition writing for multimedia

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

The microcredential content will be completed over a 2-week intensive, or equivalent teaching period (e.g. over a series of weekends according to demand and resources). Where delivered in the 2-week mode, this will be delivered concurrently with an undergraduate advanced culinary science microcredential in the Master of Dietetic Practice and Graduate Certificate in Culinary Nutrition Science. The microcredential begins by building on the theoretical knowledge gained in UNMC95 Food for Special Diets in Practice - Theory and assists students apply their learning through practical skills development in the kitchen and communication of outputs through meaningful messaging of foods for special diets.

The approaches used in this microcredential have a constructively aligned developmental sequence designed to progressively, and logically, support students learning in ways that maximise the perceived (and actual) relevance and value of each activity. It is expected to engender high levels of engagement, efficiency, and effectiveness in students’ study behaviours, and to maximise their learning achievements. This strategy and approaches will allow students to meet the aim and learning outcomes of the microcredential. Learning and teaching approaches will reflect respect for the individual as an independent learner. Students will be expected to take responsibility for their learning and to participate actively in learning activities.

Assessment strategy and rationale

In this microcredential, two assessment tasks are sequenced to progressively support students learning in alignment with the learning and teaching strategy.

The first assessment task requires students to demonstrate practical application of the knowledge and skills required to prepare foods for special diets that meet regulatory requirements (where appropriate). This task provides students with practical-by-practical assessment and feedback on their ability to prepare and cook specific foods/meals.

The second assessment task allows students to bring together their theoretical and practical knowledge, understanding and skills of food for special diets and communication for popular media in a written task that requires critical writing skills pitched at diverse audiences.

Combined, these assessment tasks will allow microcredential coordinators to assess students’ demonstration of the learning outcomes.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Practical assessment:

Enables students to demonstrate their develop of advanced culinary skills for special diets and efficient work practice in a commercial kitchen environment


LO1, LO2

GA4, GA5, GA7, GA9

Written assessment task: 

Enables students to create elements in a media portfolio suitable for publication across popular media formats that uses scientific and practical evidence to refute/support a contemporary diet approach


LO1, LO2, LO3

GA4, GA5, GA7, GA8, GA9, GA10

Representative texts and references

Agency for Clinical Innovation. (2011). Therapeutic Diet Specifications: For Adult Inpatients. Retrieved from Note: this document is under constant revision and updates must be retrieved from 

Chendard, C.A., Rubenstein, L.M. Snetselaar, L.G. & Wahls, T. L. (2019). Nutrient Composition Comparison between a Modified Paleolithic Diet for Multiple Sclerosis and the Recommended Healthy U.S.-Style Eating Pattern. Nutrients, 11(3), 537,

Coeliac Australia. (2019). Food Service. Retrieved from

Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ). 2019. Food Standards Code. Retrieved from  

Healthy Eating Advisory Service. Healthy Choices Guidelines:

History of Nutritional Science – in 4 parts

Carpenter, K. J. (2003). A Short History of Nutritional Science: Part I (1785-1885). The Journal of Nutrition, 133(3), 638-45,

Carpenter, K. J. (2003). A Short History of Nutritional Science: Part 2 (1885-1912). The Journal of Nutrition, 133(4), 975-84,

Carpenter, K. J. (2003). A Short History of Nutritional Science: Part 3 (1912-1944). The Journal of Nutrition, 133(10), 3023-32,

Carpenter, K. J. (2003). A Short History of Nutritional Science: Part 4 (1945-1985). The Journal of Nutrition, 133(11), 3331-42,

Menu Planning Guidelines for Long Day care

Mozaffarian, D., Rosenberg, I. & Uauy, R. (2018). History of modern nutrition science—implications for current research, dietary guidelines, and food policy. BMJ, 361:k2392, doi:


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