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FutureLearn and Monash University team up for online courses

The university's first paid-for online courses will allow healthcare professionals to collect CPD points and fit education around their work

Posted by Charley Rogers | August 23, 2017 | Technology

FutureLearn, the social learning platform, and Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, have just announced the launch of Monash University’s first online paid-for courses in Healthcare Practice. This first course will be part of a programme which is FutureLearn’s suite of credit-bearing courses, specifically aimed at offering learners the opportunity to gain credits for degrees and MBAs, professional qualifications, or in this case, formal credit points which count towards their continuing professional development (CPD).

Food as Medicine: Fertility and Pregnancy’ is the first course to launch as part of the programme and is aimed at medical specialists, general practitioners, nurses, and those in the healthcare field looking for revalidation within a specific area of nutrition. Subsequent courses within the programme include ‘Talking about Weight’, ‘Food and our Genome’, ‘Food, Exercise and the Gut’ and ‘Food and Inflammation’. 

The 5 courses within the programme have received endorsement from various bodies within the healthcare sector, such as the Association for Nutrition (AfN), the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF), Australian Primary Health Care Nurses Association, and the British Dietetic Association, with completion contributing to CPD hours. ‘Fertility and Pregnancy’ has also received accreditation from the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP), having been allocated 40 category 1 points. 

This course, specifically designed for health professionals who want up to date, evidence-based practice advice to pass onto their patients, uses case studies to bring real conversations to light.

During this first course in the Food as Medicine series, healthcare professionals will be able to explore the latest evidence surrounding the role of nutrition on fertility and pregnancy outcomes. The first area of focus, ‘foods and fertility’, examines optimising nutrition for fertility and preconception, including topics such as the effect of food on reproductive health and dietary recommendations to improve fertility in both men and women. ‘Foods and Pregnancy’ will explore topics including nutrient requirements during pregnancy, and how to optimise gestational weight gain. 

By the end of this first course, learners will be able to:

  • Generate a holistic multi-disciplinary approach peri-conception and during pregnancy.
  • Provide evidence based food recommendations to improve ovulation and fertility.
  • Promote optimal nutrition preconception and during pregnancy.
  • Describe the role of preconception nutrition in terms of fertility, foetal development and adult health.
  • Define dietary recommendations for pregnancy.

Professor Helen Truby, Head of Department of Nutrition, Dietetics & Food and lead educator of the course at Monash University, commented: “With a plethora of information available to women about diet in pregnancy on the internet, health professions are battling against a tide of social media driven fads and fallacies. This course, specifically designed for health professionals who want up to date, evidence-based practice advice to pass onto their patients, uses case studies to bring real conversations to light. It has been structured so busy practitioners can dip in and out of the learning over a couple of weeks. We are delighted that the content has been endorsed by so many professional bodies” 

Helen Fuller, Healthcare Portfolio Lead at FutureLearn, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with our partner, Monash University, on their first paid-for courses with FutureLearn. The ‘Food as Medicine’ course has been extremely popular with our learners, so we’re very excited to be able to delve into this topic further to support healthcare professionals with their continuing professional development, particularly as the course has received endorsement from such influential bodies in the healthcare sector.”

Food as Medicine: Fertility and Pregnancy’ is open for enrolment now as part of the ‘Using Food as Medicine in Healthcare Practice’ programme and is available to start on 25th September 2017, costing £124.00. 

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