Credit points


Campus offering

Find out more about study modes.

Unit offerings may be subject to minimum enrolment numbers.

Please select your preferred campus.

  • Term Mode
  • Semester 1Campus Attendance
  • Term Mode
  • Semester 1Campus Attendance


NUTR202 Lifespan Nutrition

Unit rationale, description and aim

Professional practice is an integral aspect of the transition from learner to practitioner. To be a competent nutritionist the knowledge and skills gained must be transferred to a professional context, with demonstration of increasing autonomy and confidence. Professional practice provides the opportunity to apply knowledge, understanding and skills in a work context and gain the necessary experience under the supervision of a suitably qualified professional, in order to begin the transition from learner to practitioner. Active learning through real world professional experience, enables students to develop expertise, whereby, as a graduate, they can apply knowledge, understanding and skills to operate effectively in an ethically responsible manner, communicate effectively and be able to integrate and apply learning to practice. This unit will assist students to complete the necessary preparation for placements related to nutrition science and provide 50 hours of industry work experience. The aim of the unit is to provide students with an authentic learning experience in which they can integrate evidence-based learnings in applied settings. 

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.

Learning Outcome NumberLearning Outcome DescriptionRelevant Graduate Capabilities
LO1Understand the scope of practice and professional requirements relevant to working in the field of nutrition scienceGC1, GC2
LO2Apply knowledge, understanding and skills relevant to practicing as a nutrition scientistGC2, GC4, GC7, GC8
LO3Demonstrate effective verbal and non-verbal communication skills in a work contextGC3, GC10, GC11, GC12
LO4Reflect critically upon their professional experience with specific reference to their scope of practice, values, assumptions and the principles underpinning community engagementGC3, GC6, GC10, GC11


This unit requires the completion of 50 hours of industry experience work placements. Content delivery is arranged as required to support these placements and the underpinning theoretical components. This content includes:

  • principles of community engagement and reflectiveness
  • application of principles and practices in nutrition science
  • professionalism in work contexts

Both learning and performance will be directed by the university and the appointed placement supervisor at the host organisation, through a pre-defined and monitored set of criteria which encompass:

  • skills to be learned whilst undertaking the experience
  • overall student performance throughout the placement

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

In keeping with the sequence of learning outcomes in this unit, the learning and teaching strategy adopted comprises two key phases that are designed to provide students with a developmental learning experience. These phases relate to understanding and practice of nutrition scientists, building on learning from units earlier in the degree. The unit therefore begins with approaches designed to assist students actively participate in preparation for placement. Following preparatory activities, the unit provides opportunities for students through online and face-face learning, and readings to understand the scope of practice of nutrition science. The unit then proceeds to the final experiential component, 50 hours of work placement. During this time, students will be provided with opportunities to practice as a nutrition scientist under the supervision of the work placement. This final phase of the unit involves approaches that support students in the critical reflection of their experience. Online modules and discussion forums will be used to engage with students in this phase. Overall, the approaches used in this unit 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 stage. As an overarching strategy, this 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, learning outcomes and graduate attributes of the unit. 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 during work placements. 

Assessment strategy and rationale

In order to enable students to achieve the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes, standards-based assessment is utilised, consistent with University assessment requirements. To complete this unit, students need to obtain an aggregate mark of equal to or greater than 50%. range of assessment strategies are used in ways that support the developmental sequence of the learning and teaching strategy. Thus, the two phases of the strategy are reflected by integration of hurdle requirements and three appropriate assessment tasks.

Three hurdle requirements are included in this unit, all of which are necessary to successfully complete the unit. The first incorporates all preparatory requirements for the unit, the second documentary evidence of meeting the minimum placement hours, and the third is an in-class task where students share their placement experiences with peers to better understand reflective practice.

What follows are examples that have the requisite purpose: 

Ungraded Hurdle 1, Completion of preparatory requirements

Ungraded hurdle 2, Documented completion of 50 hours of work placement; 

Ungraded Hurdle 3, Reflections on placement experience in class;

Assessment Task 1, Professional portfolio to assess learning and application in preparation for employment;  

Assessment Task 2, Supervisor evaluation to assess student's application of discipline-specific knowledge and skills as well as communication and professional conduct;  

Assessment Task 3, Reflective report to assess understanding and integration of learnings through reflection and critical thinking. 

The assessment tasks will allow unit coordinators to assess students’ demonstration of the learning outcomes and attainment of graduate attributes. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning Outcomes

Ungraded Hurdle 1:

Completion of ACU-specific and discipline-specific requirements for work placement, including but not limited to: 

  • Online unit modules 
  • Faculty of Health Sciences Pre-placement Verification process through InPlace 
  • First Aid certification



Ungraded Hurdle 2:

Completion of a minimum of 50 hours of work placement and relevant documentation 

Enables students to demonstrate evidence of a minimum of 50 hours of suitable placement activity


LO1, LO2

Ungraded Hurdle 3:

Enables students to demonstrate reflective practice


LO3, LO4

Assessment Task 1 - Professional portfolio: 

Enables students to prepare a professional application for a mock industry-specific job, including cover letter, resume and statement addressing selection criteria.


LO2, LO3

Assessment Task 2 - Supervisor evaluation of student placement: 

Enables students to demonstrate the application of discipline-specific knowledge, understanding and skills, including their ability to communicate effectively in work contexts. 


LO2, LO3

Assessment Task 3 - Reflective Report 

Enables students to reflect critically upon their professional experience with specific reference to their values, assumptions and attitudes and the ACU Mission.



Representative texts and references

ACU Assessment Policy

ACU Community Engagement 

Association for Nutrition. (2013). Standards of Ethics, Conduct and Performance. 

Egan, L., Butcher, J., & Ralph, K. (2008). Hope as a basis for understanding the benefits and possibilities of community engagement.  The Institute for Advancing Community Engagement, Australian Catholic University. 

Bucker, R. B. & Rucker, M. R. (2016). Nutrition: ethical issues and challenges. Nutrition Research. 36 (11), 1183-92.  

Nutrition Society of Australia. (2023). Code of Ethics. Accessed

Have a question?

We're available 9am–5pm AEDT,
Monday to Friday

If you’ve got a question, our AskACU team has you covered. You can search FAQs, text us, email, live chat, call – whatever works for you.

Live chat with us now

Chat to our team for real-time
answers to your questions.

Launch live chat

Visit our FAQs page

Find answers to some commonly
asked questions.

See our FAQs