Obesity is a global epidemic and a leading cause of several major non-communicable diseases including Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers. Prevention and management is critical in reducing the considerable health costs of obesity. The Postgraduate Diploma in Obesity and Weight Management will focus on enabling health care professionals to acquire the necessary knowledge and skills to treat patients effectively.
This online course, run with the collaborative partner Diploma MSc, creates professionals who can independently assess, evaluate and disseminate the evidence base related to Obesity and Weight Management. It will develop problem solving and clinical skills together with preparing students to take a leadership role. On successful completion of this course you could go on to study the MSc Obesity and Weight Management.
The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to further change through the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.
You will develop a systematic understanding of the care of patients in obesity and weight management; a critical awareness of current issues affecting the care of patients undertaking weight and obesity management treatments; an advanced knowledge of obesity and weight management that will facilitate decision-making in unpredictable and/or complex situations.
The course consists of six modules over one year, each of six weeks’ duration:
Module 1 – The adipocyte, regulation of appetite and nutrition. This module aims to develop a critical understanding of the physiology and regulation of the adipocyte, adipose tissue, human nutrition and appetite.
Module 2 – Obesity: defining obesity, epidemiology and health risks. This aims to develop a critical understanding of the epidemiology of obesity, including the importance of the distribution of adiposity, its epidemiology, the global problems of obesity and its relationship in different populations.
Module 3 – Causation of obesity and weight gain in relation to disease and genetics. This will develop an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the medical and genetic conditions that can cause obesity and weight gain.
Module 4 – Weight Management, Diet, exercise and changing behaviour. This aims to enhance the clinical skills and knowledge required to effectively evaluate and treat obesity with emphasis on lifestyle and behavioural modifications.
Module 5 – Weight Management – Medical treatments and emerging therapies. The module aims to develop an understanding of the role of medications and emerging therapies used in weight management including pharmacovigilance and post-marketing surveillance.
Module 6 – Surgical approaches to weight management. The module aims to enhance the clinical skills and knowledge required to understand surgical weight management strategies.
Although you’ll be learning online you will be part of a group with 10 to 15 other students. Your self-directed distance learning will be guided by tutor-stimulated discussion based on clinically rich case scenarios.
You’ll do a combination of individual and group projects, and you’ll have a reflective practice portfolio to help you consider how what you’re learning on the course can be translated into everyday work and practice.
You’ll have the support of a dedicated team who will help you with any challenges you may face - from help with navigating our online learning platform to advice on what you need to do to pass the course and meet deadlines.
Once you have secured your place on the course, you will be invited to an Online Induction Day Webinar. This will give you the opportunity to participate in study skills workshops on Harvard Referencing, scientific and reflective writings, and levels of evidence in preparation for your studies.
It is not compulsory for you to attend our Induction Day, but it is recommended as it’ll provide you with a sturdy introduction to the course
Students are expected in the first 8 weeks to interact with their tutor on a weekly basis. Students select a specific project and submit a project summary/proposal (approximately 1,500 words).
Once the proposal has been approved, the professional project (10,500 words) itself is then completed through online guidance and supervision offered by the tutor. The student and tutor will interact regularly (weekly) on the dedicated students/tutor discussion area or through any other means of communication deemed appropriate by both parties (telephone/SKYPE/email). Note of any verbal communication with the tutor is recorded in the student's journal by the student.
Students will usually be employed as health care professionals before commencing this course. Consequently work or study placements are not available.
As part of your online studies you will have access to the Learning Resources Centre materials at the University of South Wales. FINDit is the University’s portal which allows you to search for over 13,000 full-text journal articles, news articles, conference proceedings and approximately 160 databases via one search box- the majority of these materials are accessible online. Interactive study skills modules are available to study via Blackboard to enable you to utilise the library services fully.
The course is delivered by a board who have an established international reputation in Obesity and Weight Management and delivering online education:
Course director Prof Haboubi runs the only NHS Multi-disciplinary Specialist Weight Management Clinic (Level 3) in Wales. He is also a PACES examiner for the Royal College of Physicians, Chairman of the National Obesity Forum Wales and the Obesity advisor to the Welsh Government on the Obesity Pathway.
To secure your place on the course, applicants will typically hold a first degree or equivalent (including international qualifications) in a relevant professional healthcare field, such as a medical or nursing degree. Registered healthcare professionals without these recognised qualifications will be considered on an individual basis and a wide range of prior experience may be taken into account.
In some cases, applicants may be asked to submit a piece of work for assessment in order to confirm that they are able to work comfortably at postgraduate level, and demonstrate the requisite clinical and professional knowledge.
English Language Requirements
Proficiency in the English Language is also essential to completing our courses. If English is NOT your first language, we ask for proof of competency during the application process. We are able to accept an IELTS overall score of 6.0 (with a minimum of 5.5 for each band) or an equivalent qualification.
This course is run in partnership with Diploma MSc. Please refer to their website for fee information.
Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.
The Obesity & Weight Management courses have been developed for health professionals who are interested in a leadership role within weight and obesity management including GP’s, doctors, nurses, physicians, surgeons, physiotherapists, dieticians, psychologists, and counsellors running clinics. Following successful completion of this specialised course, you will have the knowledge to further improve patient care and it could enhance your future career progression.