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Food, Culture, and Nutrition

East Baltimore
4th term
International Health
4 credits
Academic Year:
2017 - 2018
Class Times:
  • M W,  1:30 - 3:20pm
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor :
Joel Gittelsohn

Introduces the bio-cultural influences on nutrition and their relevance to international and domestic public health research and programs. Topics include theoretical and methodological issues in nutritional anthropology, an overview of social scientific contributions to nutrition focusing on cultural perspectives of infant feeding, social impacts on under- and overnutrition, comparisons of Eastern and Western traditions of nutrition and the role of nutritional anthropology in the development of public health interventions.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Understand the significance of culture as it relates to food behavior and nutritional status in contemporary human populations
  2. Discuss how culture interacts conceptually with other aspects of human existence (behavior, social, historical, economic, etc.)
  3. Describe some of the main theoretical approaches that have been used to guide nutrition interventions
  4. Apply cultural and behavioral information to the development, implementation and evaluation of nutrition intervention programs
Methods of Assessment:

Student evaluation based on class discussions, exercises, and a group report.

Students will be graded on the basis of class participation (10%), individual lab reports (30%) (10% each for the conceptual framework, formative research, and intervention plan labs), review of an ethnography (15%), a final project poster (40%), and your reviews of other student’s final project posters (5%).

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for all students

Consent Note:

Students must get consent from instructor prior to registering

For consent, contact: