About this Course
4.5
139 ratings
43 reviews
In this course, we’ll look at the facts and misconceptions around obesity and discuss key physiological and psychological concepts around the brain’s control of appetite and body weight. We’ll consider the biological and environmental pressures that make it easy to gain weight (and hard to lose it!). Most importantly, we'll give you the opportunity to reflect on your own knowledge and assumptions around the subject. We deliver course materials as a mixture of videos, audio-only MOOCcasts, and a selection of short readings. There are short weekly quizzes, a peer-reviewed exercise, and discussion activities on the forum. These will help you prepare for the final project. In it, you are invited to demonstrate your evidence-informed understanding and express how you'll develop it beyond the course. The course features Citizen Science projects. We'll collect data from you (anonymously, of course) and use it to drive participant-led discussions of controversial ideas. In this way, we hope to explore ideas around diet and obesity. These projects also give a taste of how scientific evidence is collected and interpreted by scientists, and give some indication how much there still is to discover and understand....
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Calendar

Flexible deadlines

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Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 4 weeks of study, 1-2 hours per week

Approx. 8 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 4 weeks of study, 1-2 hours per week

Approx. 8 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

1

Section
Clock
1 hour to complete

Week 1: What we know, and how we know it.

This week we'll discuss what we know about diet, appetite and obesity. But, and perhaps more importantly, we'll point out the gaps in our knowledge....
Reading
4 videos (Total 30 min), 3 readings, 1 quiz
Video4 videos
Why is obesity a problem?8m
What do we know about appetite and obesity? Part 110m
What do we know about appetite and obesity? Part 27m
Reading3 readings
About the course3m
MOOCcast 1.1: The Scientific Method10m
MOOCcast 1.2: Science, evidence and the media10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 1 quiz10m

2

Section
Clock
3 hours to complete

Physiology and Stress

This week we discuss some aspects of the physiology of obesity and learn how so-called "food addiction", stress and early-life experience can affect our eating choices. Included is an optional assignment where you can explore barriers to healthy eating. This assignment is not graded but does use the same interface as the Week 4 assessment. As such, you may find it useful to use it as practice for the "real thing"....
Reading
2 videos (Total 17 min), 3 readings, 2 quizzes
Video2 videos
Early-life experience8m
Reading3 readings
MOOCcast 2.1: Is food an addictive substance?10m
MOOCcast 2.2: Is eating a behavioural addiction?10m
MOOCcast 2.3: Stress, eating and dieting10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 2 quiz15m

3

Section
Clock
1 hour to complete

Psychology and Behaviour

This week we discuss some aspects of the psychology of appetite control and learn how portion sizes and food insecurity might affect our behaviours....
Reading
2 videos (Total 20 min), 2 readings, 1 quiz
Video2 videos
Economic approaches to obesity9m
Reading2 readings
MOOCcast 3.1: Portion size and meal size10m
MOOCcast 3.2: Food insecurity10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 3 quiz15m

4

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

Consolidation and Discussion

This week online material will be posted ad hoc as we consolidate and discuss what we've already learned. This week's main tasks are a quiz on the scientific method and the peer-reviewed assignment. Please note you can attempt the Week 4 quiz only once....
Reading
2 quizzes
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 4 quiz10m
4.5

Top Reviews

By ADAug 19th 2017

Very well addressed from different aspects. Helped forming a solid foundation to address the obesity problem as well as to make good food choices with portion control.

By RRAug 15th 2017

this is very good course, helped me think about well being not just health. hope to see more courses from the Mr Menzies. thanks!

Instructor

Dr John Menzies

University of Edinburgh

About The University of Edinburgh

Influencing the world since 1583, The University of Edinburgh is consistently ranked as one of the world's top 50 universities. Today, we are an established and global leader in online learning, providing degree-level education to 3,000 online students in addition to 36,000 students on-campus. We also offer a wide range of free online courses in a variety of subjects. To find out more about studying for one of our online degrees, search for ‘Edinburgh online’ or visit www.ed.ac.uk/studying/online-learning/postgraduate ...

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.