PhD in Nutrition Sciences: 2013 - 2014

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The UAB student handbook, Directions, may be accessed online at ...... animal, and clinical nutrition research, including assessment of vitamin and trace mineral  ...

PhD in Nutrition Sciences: 2013 - 2014


TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction Dean’s Welcome Message Brief Overview of the School of Health Professions Office of Student Success Section 1 – School and University Information Academic Calendar Academic Honor Code (UAB) AskIT Attendance / Absence Awards and Honor Societies Background Check Blackboard BlazerNET / Blazer ID / Email Bookstores Campus Card Campus Map Counseling Services Directions Student Handbook Disability Support Services Drug Screening Emergencies Equity and Diversity Office Escort Service FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) Food Services 3

Graduate School Health Services and Medical Clearance HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability) Training Institutional Review Board (IRB) Intellectual Property Libraries and Learning Resources Center Parking Patient Care Partnership Plagiarism and Turn-It-In Recreation Center Scholarships Social Media Tuition and Fees Weather Withdrawal from Course/Program Section 2 – School and University Policies SHP Policies Background Check and Drug Screen Grievance Procedures for Violations of Academic Standards Impairment and Substance Abuse Plagiarism and Turn-It-In UAB Policies AIDS and HIV Infection Alcoholic Beverages, Use and Consumption Attendance Body Fluid Exposure Computer and Network Resources (Acceptable Use) Computer Software Copying and Use Drug Free Campus Equal Opportunity and Discriminatory Harassment Ethical Standards in Research and Other Scholarly Activities


Firearms, Ammunition, and Other Dangerous Weapons Immunization Nonsmoking Patent (Intellectual Property) Section 3 – Department / Program Information Dean’s Welcome Message Welcome to the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Health Professions, one of the nation’s leaders in the health care industry. We are home to one of the largest health professions schools in the nation with more than 20 programs at the baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral levels with nearly 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students enrolled. The School of Health Professions is part of UAB’s thriving academic health center. As one of our students, you will have the opportunity to work side-by-side with world-renowned researchers and faculty, utilize the most advanced technologies and experience the most cutting-edge approaches to clinical treatment. We understand health care needs are constantly changing. That’s why we continue to add innovative programs such as our unique Biotechnology program, Genetic Counseling, our one of a kind Low Vision Therapy and our newest program, a PhD in Rehabilitation Science. We offer this in addition to our many established offerings. All of our programs are fully accredited by their respective professional organization, which means you will be eligible for licensure, national certification or registration, and enjoy mobility in the job market. Our first-time student pass exam rate on credentialing exams is an astounding 98 percent. Several of our programs rank in the nation’s top 30 by U.S. News and World Report including our master’s in health administration ranked at number five, entry level Physical Therapy at number 19, Physician Assistant program at number 25 and Occupational Therapy at number 29. We continue to rank at the top of the list in research funding from the National Institutes of Health, and SHP is the only school in the country to house both a NIH-funded Nutrition and Obesity Research Center and an NIH Diabetes Research and Training Center. What this means to you is that you will graduate with a degree with an esteemed reputation, job opportunities in the health care industry that will continue to grow in the next decade, and a chance for you to make a difference in your field. Our alumni give advice to current students that’s worth repeating: be a sponge, learn your craft to be a better professional for your patients, be open minded to all future possibilities, and remember to have life balance. I look forward to seeing you grow in your respective field and watch as you become the professional we know you can be in the next few years. Harold Jones, Ph.D. Dean, UAB School of Health Professions


OVERVIEW OF THE SCHOOL OF HEALTH PROFESSIONS A leader in federally funded research, the UAB School of Health Professions (SHP) is the largest academic institution of its type in the United States and currently boasts four nationally ranked programs. What began in the 1950s as a collection of courses in various paraprofessional disciplines has grown into an internationally recognized center of academic excellence. The SHP initially took shape in 1969 as UAB gained autonomy within the University of Alabama System. Originally christened the School of Community and Allied Health Resources (SCAHR), the school incorporated the School of Health Services Administration and the Division of Allied Health Sciences from the College of General Studies with parts of the Department of Public Health and Epidemiology from the medical school. An innovative facility designed to meet the growing needs of the health care industry, the SCAHR was divided into four academic divisions that functioned like regular academic departments: Health Services Administration, Public Health and Environment, Allied Health Sciences, and the Regional Technical Institute for Health Occupations. Throughout the 1970s and 80s the school’s offerings were amended to reflect the changing health care industry. As a result of those changes, SCAHR became SPAH (the School of Public and Allied Health), before becoming SCAH (the School of Community and Allied Health), and then SHRP (the School of Health Related Professions). During that time, the school added several new areas of study including the consistently nationally ranked Nutrition Sciences program. In 2001, Dr. Harold Jones was recruited to become the school’s dean. Through his visionary leadership and guidance the school has experienced a period of unparalleled success beginning with the SHRP’s reorganization and relocation. Up that point in time, the SHRP’s programs had been housed in various locations throughout the UAB campus but during the spring of 2002, many of the classrooms, laboratories and faculty offices moved into the newly completed School of Health Professions Building (SHPB), the first such building dedicated to housing those programs since their original grouping more than 30 years before. Today the school is known as the School of Health Professions, and is comprised of more than 20 programs – at the baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral levels – across five academic departments: Clinical and Diagnostic Sciences, Health Services Administration, Nutrition Sciences, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapy. The school is housed in three buildings, the Susan Mott Webb Nutrition Sciences Building, the Learning Resource Center Building and the SHPB. A major renovation of the SHPB is currently underway to add additional offices, laboratory, and classroom space to meet the needs of incoming students and accommodate the next generation of leaders in the health professions. With more than 2,100 faculty, staff and students, the SHP is one of the six schools comprising the world-renowned UAB Academic Health Center. Students are exposed to vast resources, state-of-the-art facilities, and progressive research during their academic and clinical education at UAB. SHP is proud of many accomplishments including: 

U.S. News & World Report ranks several SHP programs in the nation’s top 25

Research funding is rapidly approaching the $11 million level

The school is at the top of the list in research funding from the National Institutes of Health for schools of its type and has been either first or second in funding received since 1969

All of the school’s programs with professional accrediting agencies are fully accredited by those associations.


OFFICE OF STUDENT SUCCESS The SHP Office of Student Success supports UAB’s mission and values with a focus on achievement, collaboration and diversity. Guided by our commitment to student achievement and dedication to excellence, the Office of Student Success provides academic counseling and advising support to all students through a number of programs including:  Academic advising and counseling  Peer tutoring services  ADA accommodations  Campus resource referral At the Office of Student Success, we understand that undergraduate and graduate studies can be challenging and we provide students with a network of services specifically designed to address those challenges and explore the many opportunities of attending an internationally renowned research university. We have created a series of seminars, available in person and on-line to assist students with:  Test taking strategies  Time management  Resume preparation  Interview skills and techniques  Professionalism in health care Additionally, the Office of Student Success team recognizes that with classes and labs, internships and studying, students’ in the health professions can have particularly demanding schedules. In response we have created a number of programs specifically to address our students’ limited availability:  The OSS Advising Coffee House  OSS Monthly Brown Bag Lunch Seminars  OSS Virtual Seminars  OSS’s own, in-office, liaison to the UAB Office of Career Services  The OSS Finals Week Breakfast Fiesta The advising and professional team at the Office of Student Success is here to support individual students and student groups, contributing to the University’s strong sense of community. We have an open-door policy and encourage students to connect on a personal basis with advisors and mentors. To that end, students should feel free to drop-by, no appointment needed – but if they prefer, the can call, email or arrange a meeting with one of our advisors through the OSS website. We are here to help students make the most of their UAB experience and will assist in any way we can. Our Goal is Student Success!

Check us out!


SECTION 1 – SCHOOL AND UNIVERSITY INFORMATION Academic Calendar All dates related to registration, payments of tuition and fees, drop/add dates, other administrative requirements, and official school holidays are recorded on the UAB Academic Calendar available at Academic Honor Code (UAB) The University expects the highest ethical and professional behaviors from the academic community. The code, including penalties for violations, is published on the UAB website at The UAB Academic Honor Code The University of Alabama at Birmingham expects all members of its academic community to function according to the highest ethical and professional standards. Students, faculty, and the administration of the institution must be involved to ensure this quality of academic conduct. Academic misconduct undermines the purpose of education. Such behavior is a serious violation of the trust that must exist among faculty and students for a university to nurture intellectual growth and development. Academic misconduct can generally be defined as all acts of dishonesty in an academic or related matter. Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, the following categories of behavior: ABETTING is helping another student commit an act of academic dishonesty. Allowing someone to copy your quiz answers or use your work as their own are examples of abetting. CHEATING is the unauthorized use or attempted use of unauthorized materials, information, study aids, the work of others, or computer-related information. PLAGIARISM means claiming as your own the ideas, words, data, computer programs, creative compositions, artwork, etc., done by someone else. Examples include improper citation of referenced works, the use of commercially available scholarly papers, failure to cite sources, or copying another person’s ideas. FABRICATION means presenting falsified data, citations, or quotations as genuine. MISREPRESENTATION is falsification, alteration, or the misstatement of the contents of documents, academic work, or other materials related to academic matters, including work substantially done for one class as work done for another without receiving prior approval from the instructor. Violations of the UAB Academic Honor Code are punishable by a range of penalties, from receiving a failing grade on an assignment to an F in the course to dismissal. Any course grade of F for academic misconduct supersedes any other grade or notation for that class. Withdrawal from a course while a possible violation of the Academic Honor Code is under review will not preclude the assignment of a course grade that appropriately reflects the student’s performance prior to withdrawal if the violation is substantiated.

AskIT AskIT is the technology help desk for faculty, staff, and students. AskIT staff provides free support via telephone, email, or in-person. You can make contact through the website at or by telephone at 205-996-5555. Questions or problems can also be submitted by email to [email protected]. You will be asked to supply your BlazerID when you request assistance.


Attendance Class attendance is expected in all SHP programs. Specific program requirements for class, laboratory, and clinical site attendance may be more stringent that those established by the University. Please refer to the program requirements elsewhere in this handbook and in individual course syllabi for program attendance policies. The UAB policy for undergraduates follows. Please note the categories of excused absences; they typically apply to both undergraduates and graduates. UAB Attendance and Excused Absence Policy The University of Alabama at Birmingham recognizes that the academic success of individual students is related to their class attendance and participation. Each course instructor is responsible for establishing policies concerning class attendance and make-up opportunities. Any such policies, including points for attendance and/or participation, penalties for absences, limits on excused absences, total allowable absences, etc., must be specified in the course syllabus provided to students at the beginning of the course term. Such policies are subject to departmental oversight and may not, by their specific prescriptions, negate or circumvent the accommodations provided below for excused absences. The University regards certain absences as excused and in those instances requires that instructors provide an accommodation for the student who misses assignments, presentations, examinations, or other academic work of a substantive nature by virtue of these excused absences. Examples include the following:  Absences due to jury or military duty provided that official documentation has been provided to the instructor in a timely manner in advance.  Absences of students registered with Disabilities Services for disabilities eligible for "a reasonable number of disability-related absences" provided students give their instructors notice of a disability-related absence in advance or as soon as possible.  Absences due to participation in university-sponsored activities when the student is representing the university in an official capacity and as a critical participant, provided that the procedures below have been followed: o Before the end of the add/drop period, students must provide their instructor a schedule of anticipated excused absences in or with a letter explaining the nature of the expected absences from the director of the unit or department sponsoring the activity. o If a change in the schedule occurs, students are responsible for providing their instructors with advance written notification from the sponsoring unit or department. o Absences due to other extenuating circumstances that instructors deem excused. Such classification is at the discretion of the instructor and is predicated upon consistent treatment of all students. In these instances, instructors must devise a system for reasonable accommodation including, for example, policies allowing for dropped exams/quizzes, make-up exams, rescheduling of student classroom presentations or early or later submission of written assignments.

Awards and Honor Societies All students in the School are eligible for consideration for following awards or society memberships. Alfred W. Sangster Award for Outstanding International Student – One award is made annually to an international student in recognition of academic and non-academic achievements. Alpha Eta Society – The UAB Chapter of this Society recognizes students registered in the final term of a baccalaureate or graduate health professions program. Inductees must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (4.0 = A), and be in the upper 10% of their program. Nominations are made by program directors in spring and summer terms.


Cecil Clardy Satterfield Award for Humanism in Health Care – One award is made annually to recognize an outstanding student for humanitarianism, professionalism, and commitment to health care. Nominations are coordinated by program directors, but may be made faculty, students, patients, or preceptors. Charles Brooks Award for Creativity – One award is made annually in recognition of creative accomplishments such as written publications or artistic contributions which complemented the student’s academic activities. Nominations are made by program directors. Dean’s Leadership and Service Award – This award is made to a maximum of three outstanding SHP students annually, and recognizes leadership to the School, UAB, and the community. Nominations are made by program directors or faculty. Phi Kappa Phi – This is the oldest, and most selective, all-discipline honor society in the nation. Membership is by invitation to the top 7.5% of junior students and the top 10% of seniors and graduate students. Nominations are made by program directors. Who’s Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities – Membership in this national organization is open to outstanding college juniors, seniors, and graduate students. Criteria include scholarship, leadership, and service to the School and community. Applications should be submitted in spring term to the Office of Student Success. Please refer to the program section of this handbook for awards and honors available to students in individual programs. Background Check By policy, SHP students are required to undergo a background check using the school’s approved vendor, Certified Background, at the time of program admission and again prior to placement in a clinical rotation. Instructions for requesting the background check and appropriate consent forms will be provided to students by their programs. Please refer to the policy section of this handbook for the policy statement. Blackboard The platform used for managing instructional materials online is Blackboard Learn. Blackboard course sites can be accessed through BlazerNET or at Students should monitor their course sites routinely for communications from faculty and to manage course assignments. BlazerID / BlazerNET / Email All students are assigned a unique identification, their BlazerID, which is established by the student at BlazerNET is the official portal to the UAB information networks. The portal can be accessed from any Internet-accessible computer, on- or off-campus at Your BlazerID is required to access BlazerNET and other campus information resources, such as the UAB email accounts. Your UAB email is the official communication medium and should be monitored routinely.


Bookstores Two bookstores are located on the UAB campus, both offering a wide variety of products and services to students, including online purchasing and shipping. Both bookstores stock UAB memorabilia and college wear in addition to all required textbooks and course material. UAB Barnes and Noble Bookstore Location: 150 Hill University Center; 1400 7th Avenue South Hours: M – Thu 7:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.; Fri 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sat 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Telephone: (205) 996-2665 Email: Through website Contact page Website: Snoozy’s Bookstore Location: 1321 10th Avenue South Hours: M – F 7:45 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.; Sat 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Telephone: (205) 328-2665 Fax: (205) 933-2229 Email: [email protected] Website: CampusCard The UAB CampusCard is the official university identification card. It is used for personal identification, for entry to campus events and the recreation center, for library check-out, and other UAB services. It also serves as a declining balance card for the UAB meal plans and for Blazer Bucks accounts. Additional information is available at Campus Map A downloadable campus map is available at Counseling Services The Counseling and Wellness Center offers no cost, confidential counseling for UAB students related to physical, emotional, social, intellectual, or spiritual concerns. The Center is located in the Holley-Mears Building, 924 19th Street South.. For more information, call 205-934-5816 or visit Directions Student Handbook The UAB student handbook, Directions, may be accessed online at Disability Support Services Offices for UAB’s Disability Support Services (DSS) are located at 516 Hill University Center. The purpose of these services is to make UAB’s programs and services accessible to students with disabilities. Students must be registered with DSS and be assessed for type of disability and need for accommodations. It’s best to register with DSS when upon application to UAB. A request for assessment and accommodations can be made at any time, but accommodations are not granted retroactively. For more information about DSS, contact the office directly or visit their website. Disability Support Services 516 Hill University Center / 1400 University Blvd. / Birmingham, AL 35294-1150 (205) 934-4205 (Voice) (205) 934-4248 (TDD) Fax: (205) 934-8170 Email: [email protected] Website:


Drug Screening By policy, SHP students are required to undergo a routine drug screen using the school’s approved vendor, Certified Background, at the time of program admission and again prior to placement in a clinical rotation. Instructions for requesting the drug screen and appropriate consent forms will be provided to students by their programs. Please refer to the policy section of this handbook for the school and university policy statements related to drug use and substance abuse. Emergencies Any suspicious or threatening activity should be reported to the UAB Police Department immediately. In addition to calling via a regular telephone, more than 300 emergency blue light telephones connected directly to the police dispatcher are located throughout the campus. Police are staffed 24 hours, seven days a week. UAB Police Numbers: 911 from a campus phone; 934-3535; 934-HELP (4357); 934-4434. Emergency situations affecting the campus are communicated to students in several ways:  Webpage:  University home web page (  Cell phone messages and SMS text – register to receive these notices with the UAB Emergency Notification System (B-ALERT) via; text short code will be 23177 or 63079; cell phone calls will come from 205-975-8000. Store these numbers and codes in your cell as BALERT.  Mass emails – uses the official [email protected] email system  Announcements on the BlazerNET portal  Facebook and Twitter – B-Alert integrates with these media at and @UABALERT:  Weather and Emergency Hotline: 205-934-2165 Equity and Diversity Office The mission of the UAB Office of Equity and Diversity is to “increase, retain and enhance faculty, student, and staff diversity at all levels of the University and to ensure equity.” UAB defines diversity as “the full range of human difference and potential…”. This administrative office supports faculty recruitment, provides scholarships for graduate and undergraduate students, and promotes programs to enhance the campus diversity experience. The office provides a diversity awareness training program for employees. A key component of this Office is the Commission on the Status of Women, which is charged with assuring the best possible conditions for women who work and study at UAB. Additional information is available at Dr. Louis Dale is the Vice President responsible for the activities of this Office. Escort Services The UAB Escort /service provide students and employees with after-dark escort to or from any point on campus, including parking facilities. The escort will accompany the customer to the on-campus destination in a marked vehicle. The service is available Monday through Friday from 5:15 p.m. to 10:15 p.m. After hours calls are directed to the UAB Police department. White escort telephones are located throughout campus, or you may call 205-934-8772.


FERPA The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 provides protection for all educational records related to students enrolled in an educational program. Information about your rights and protection of your records is available at the following sites:; If you have questions or concerns about FERPA issues, you may email [email protected], or contact the SHP Office of Student Success. Food Services UAB offers seven meal plans for students that are billed to the student account. All students, even commuters, are required to purchase a meal plan. Up to 25% of dining fees not used by the end of the school year are converted to Blazer Bucks, which can be used to shop at campus bookstores, local restaurants, and the campus CVS. Several dining facilities that accept the meal plans are available on campus. Those closest to the SHP buildings include:  Blazer Café – located on the first floor of the Hill University Center adjacent to the UAB Bookstore. Options include Grill 155, Chick-fil-A, Taco Bell, and Simply to Go. The Café is open Monday – Thursday, 7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. and Friday 7:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.  Commons on the Green – located on the Campus Green, just south of 9th Avenue and the Campus Recreation Center. Seven different serving stations  Einstein’s Bagels – located at the plaza entrance to the Learning Resource Center. Open Monday – Thursday, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., and Friday 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. There are soda and snack vending machines available in the basement of the Learning Resource Center, on the 6th floor of the Webb Building, and on the 4th floor of the SHP Building. Additional information about meal plans and campus dining facilities is available at Graduate School The UAB Graduate School offers doctoral programs in 37 areas, eight post-master’s specialist programs, and master’s level programs in 45 areas. Most graduate programs in SHP are coordinated through the Graduate School and students must adhere to the Graduate School policies and procedures. Graduate School information for current students is available at Health Services and Medical Clearance The University provides prevention, counseling, and treatment services to students through the UAB Student Health Services (SHS) clinic located at 930 20th Street South. The clinic is open from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday – Thursday and 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. on Friday, but is closed between noon and 1:00 p.m. daily. Detailed information about services and operating practices is located on the SHS website at Appointments may be scheduled by calling 205-934-3581. SHP students are required to receive medical clearance at the time of program admission. A secure webbased process using Certified Background, an external vendor, is used to document medical information and immunization records. Each student will have a personal account with Certified Background for storage of required documents. More information is available under the Medical Clearance Sections of the SHS website. An instruction sheet and access code are provided to students by programs or the Office of Student Success.


HIPAA Training The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, includes significant requirements for protecting individual privacy of health information. All students in the School of Health Professions must complete an online tutorial about HIPAA regulations at the time of program admission. A BlazerID is required to access the training site, located at Compliance with the training requirement is monitored monthly. Students who have not completed the training are reported by name to the Office of Student Success for follow-up with the appropriate program director. Institutional Review Board for Human Use (IRB) Student researchers must comply with all requirements for protection of human subjects. Detailed information is available on the IRB website (, including resources and services specifically for students. The brochure “IRB Guidance for Student Research and Class Projects” may be downloaded from this site as a PDF document. Intellectual Property Intellectual property refers to an asset that originated conceptually, such as literary and artistic works, inventions, or other creative works. These assets should be protected and used only as the creator intends. A training module defining inventor status, patent criteria, and other intellectual property issues is available at Libraries and Learning Resources Center UAB’s libraries house excellent collections of books, periodical, microforms, and other media. The libraries have online remote access to catalogs and online collections. Customer services are extensive. All facilities have computers available for student use during regular hours of operation. Birmingham Public Library In addition to the main library facility, there are 17 branch libraries. The library holdings include print and digital media. Library services are described on the website. Location: 2100 Park Place Hours: M – Tue 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.; W – Sat 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.; Sun 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Telephone: (205) 226-3600 Website: Lister Hill Library of the Health Sciences This is the largest biomedical library in Alabama, and one of the largest in the south. Located across the crosswalk from the School, the LHL has extension libraries in University Hospital and The Kirklin Clinic. Dedicated librarians hold “office hours” in the Learning Resource Center weekly. Location: 1700 University Boulevard Hours: M – Thu 7:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.; Fri 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sat 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.; Sun 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Telephone: (205) 934-2230 Website: Mervyn H. Sterne Library A collection of more than one million items supporting teaching and research in the arts and humanities, business, education, engineering, natural sciences and mathematics, and social and behavioral sciences.


Location: 913 13th Street South Hours: M – Thu 7:30 a.m. – 2:00 a.m.; Fri 7:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. Sat 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sun 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m. Telephone: (205) 934-6364 (Reference) (205) 934-4338 (User Services) Website: Reynolds Historical Library A collection of rare and important books, manuscripts and artifacts in the medical sciences. The Reynolds historical collection is located on the top floor of the Lister Hill Library. Parking Student vehicles must be registered with UAB Parking and Transportation Services, located at 608 8th Street South. The office is open Monday – Friday from 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Parking is allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Commuter student lots are designated as Lot 15, Deck 12, and Deck 16. Parking fees are established by location, payable by semester or year, and are billed to the student’s account. Additional information is available at Patient Care Partnership Students in health professions programs learn general information about the health care industry as well as knowledge and skills specific to their chosen profession. The American Hospital Association (AHA) ( is an excellent resource for industry information. One role fulfilled by the AHA is that of patient advocate. The Patient Care Partnership brochure (link below) outlines rights and responsibilities of patients during hospital stays. Plagiarism and Turn-it-In Plagiarism is academic misconduct that will result in a grade of zero on the plagiarized assignment and may result in dismissal from the School of Health Professions and the University (see DIRECTION Student Handbook or SHP Grievance Procedures for Violations of Academic Standards). All papers submitted for grading in any SHP program may be reviewed using the online plagiarism monitoring software, Please note that all documents submitted to are added to their database of papers that is used to screen future assignments for plagiarism. Recreation Center The campus Recreation Center, located on University Boulevard at 15th Street, is open to faculty, staff, students, and their families. A valid student identification card or membership card is required for access. Facilities include basketball courts, racquetball courts, weight rooms, swimming pools, exercise rooms, and indoor track. Check the website at for information about hours and services. Scholarships Many programs in the School have scholarships available to students currently enrolled in those programs. Please see the program section of this handbook for that information. The following scholarships are available to students enrolled in any program in the School. Dean’s Diversity Scholarship – Funding to recruit or retain outstanding minority students. Awards are based on academic achievement, diversity, and unmet financial need. Program directors apply for funding on behalf of qualified students. Awards up to $1500 per semester are made by the School’s Scholarship Committee.


Dean’s Merit Scholarship – Funding to recruit or retain outstanding students. Awards are based on academic achievement and unmet financial need. Program directors apply for funding on behalf of qualified students. Awards up to $1000 per semester are made by the School’s Scholarship Committee. Dean’s National Alumni Society Scholarship – Funding from the UAB National Alumni Society for two scholarships per year, one to a graduate student and one to an undergraduate student. One student per program is nominated by the program director for consideration by the School’s Scholarship Committee. Ethel M. and Jessie D. Smith Endowed Nursing and Allied Health Scholarship – Funding for baccalaureate students with GPA 3.0 or above and unmet financial need. Students apply to the UAB Office of Student Financial Aid. Awards are made by the University General Scholarship Committee. Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation Scholarship – Funding for Christian women students from selected states (AL, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN) enrolled in SHP programs. Award amounts are variable and are based on unmet financial need. Students apply to Mr. Bernard Harris in the SHP Office of Student Success. Matthew F. McNulty Jr. Health Services Emergency Loan – Students enrolled in any SHP program may apply for this low interest loan to address emergencies. Loan amounts are variable based on need. Students apply to Mr. Bernard Harris in the Office of Student Success. SHP General Scholarship – Funding to recruit or retain outstanding students. Awards are based on academic achievement, and unmet financial need. Program directors apply for funding on behalf of qualified students. Awards up to $4500 over the length of the student’s program are made by the School’s Scholarship Committee. Social Media Social media such as Facebook and Twitter are useful communication tools, but health professions students should use these forums judiciously. In addition to the School’s official sites listed below, individual programs and student organizations may have networking sites.      

Website: Twitter:!/UAB_SHP Facebook: LinkedIn: Vimeo: YouTube:

The School’s Academic Affairs Committee published the following guidelines related to use of social media.


UAB School of Health Professions Guidelines for Social Networking The Academic Affairs Committee proposes the following for social networking vehicles. Online communities like Facebook, MySpace, Flickr and Twitter provide opportunities for faculty, staff, and students to share and explore interests that enrich the higher education learning experience. However, using these mediums with discretion is advised. UAB online community members are expected to act with honesty, integrity, and respect for the rights, privileges, privacy, sensibilities, and property of others. Professional Use Only UAB employees authorized by their departments may use social networking Web sites to conduct University business. The authorized employee/position will serve as the point of contact for the web site. In 1 keeping with University policy , the authorized employee may post on a social network profile: the University’s name, school, department, and/or unit information, a University email address or University telephone number for contact purposes, or post official department information, resources, calendars, and events. The employee should use care that any personal opinions or opposition to the University either by direct statement or perception not be published. General Use The following guidelines are strongly suggested: 1. Use networking sites legally and appropriately. Consider your personal obligation as a citizen of the university. Use proper conduct in your posts regarding the university and your colleagues/fellow students. 2. Consider the use of a student, staff or faculty member to monitor any departmental social pages. All parties need to understand the guidelines presented. 3. Remember, you cannot ensure who does and does not have access to your information. Any text or photo placed online is available to anyone in the world – even if you limit access to your site. 4. Information that you post online may continue to stay on the World Wide Web even after you erase or delete that information from your profiles or blog. Do not post anything that could reflect negatively on you, your family, your friends, and the university. 5. Do not post any confidential or sensitive information online. 6. By agreeing to the terms of use, online communities have your permission to republish your content worldwide and share information with advertisers, third parties, law enforcement, and others. 7. You are legally responsible for your posts on the social networking sites. Be discreet, respectful, and as accurate/factual as you can be in any comments or content you posted online.

8. Potential employers, admissions officers, and scholarship committees often search social networking sites to screen candidates. Your profile will be a part of how others know you. ___________________________ 1 The Official UAB Web Policy >> Tuition and Fees Tuition and fees for the University are published annually under the “Current Students” tab of the UAB website. There are two tuition rates: Alabama resident (in-state) and Non-resident (out-of-state). Currently, non-resident students who register for online course sections pay resident tuition for all lecture-based courses. Non-resident tuition is charged for clinical practicums, independent study courses, and project courses. SHP programs may have specific fees attached to courses or laboratories. These fees will be addressed in the program section of this handbook. Questions about program-specific fees should be addressed with your program director. Current standard tuition and fees for the School, and links to program cost estimations, are posted at


Payment deadlines for each semester are published on the official academic calendar and on the UAB website at Please note that failure to meet payment deadlines can result in administrative withdrawal from courses. Tuition and fees may be paid through BlazerNET (tutorial available at Weather Severe weather situations that may affect the safety of students, faculty, and staff are communicated through the same channels as other emergencies. Severe weather precautions are published at Other information sources include:  Webpage:  B-ALERT system: Register to email, cell phone, and text notices with the UAB Emergency Notification System via;  Hotline: 2305-934-2165  WBHM Radio (90.3 FM): Announcements about University closings or delayed openings are made on the UAB radio station. Withdrawal from Course / Program Withdrawal from a course or from your program is an official process and should be discussed with your academic adviser or program director. Most programs in the School are full-time and the curriculums are specifically sequenced. Withdrawal from a course may put you at risk for being required to wait for a full year before resuming courses in the program. Course withdrawals are made through the UAB registration system via the Student Resources tab in BlazerNET. Program withdrawal should be made in writing to the program director. Please refer to the program section of this handbook for additional information.


SECTION 2 – SHP AND UAB POLICIES School of Health Professions Policies Background Check and Drug Screen – Under review; pending approval Grievance Procedures for Violations of Academic Standards Impairment and Substance Abuse Plagiarism Please note that all papers submitted for grading in any SHP program may be reviewed using the online plagiarism monitoring software, All documents submitted to are added to their database of papers used to screen future assignments for plagiarism. UAB Policies AIDS and HIV Infection Alcoholic Beverages, Use and Consumption Attendance / Absence (Undergraduate) ttext Body Fluid Exposure Computer and Network Resources (Acceptable Use) Computer Software Copying and Use Drug Free Campus (General Policy) Drug-free Campus Policy for Students -Attachment A Drug-free Campus Policy for Students -Attachment B


Drug-Free Campus/Workplace Policy-Attachment B.1 Drug-free Campus Policy for Students -Attachment C Equal Opportunity and Discriminatory Harassment Ethical Standards in Research and Other Scholarly Activities Firearms, Ammunition, and Other Dangerous Weapons Immunization Nonsmoking Patent (Intellectual Property) Note: Additional university policies may be located by searching the UAB Policies and Procedures Library available online at



A. THE DEPARTMENT OF NUTRITION SCIENCES .........................................................................21 B. DNS FACULTY ........................................................................................................................22 C. FACILITIES FOR RESEARCH IN THE DEPARTMENT OF NUTRITION SCIENCES ..............................0 Susan Mott Webb Nutrition Sciences Building ........................................................................... 0 Centers of Research at UAB ........................................................................................................ 0 Library Resources ........................................................................................................................ 1 Computer Resources ................................................................................................................... 1 Graduate Student Access to Research and Training Facilities .................................................... 1 D. ADMISSION TO THE PHD PROGRAM .......................................................................................1 E. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION AND COURSEWORK..........................................................................2 F. MASTERS IN CLINICAL NUTRITION ...........................................................................................4 G. ADMISSION TO CANDIDACY ....................................................................................................4 H. APPOINTMENT OF DISSERTATION ADVISORY COMMITTEE .....................................................4 I. RESEARCH. ...............................................................................................................................7 J. COMPLETION OF PHD ..............................................................................................................8 K. ACADEMIC MISCONDUCT ........................................................................................................9 DNS Plagiarism Statement and Procedures ................................................................................ 9 Preventive Education ............................................................................................................ 10 Departmental Procedures..................................................................................................... 10 School of Health Profession Plagiarism Policy Requirements .............................................. 10 Additional Information ............................................................ Error! Bookmark not defined. L. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ..................................................................................................11 A.THE DEPARTMENT OF NUTRITION SCIENCES Historically, UAB has a heritage of over 75 years of involvement in nutrition, pioneered by Drs. James McLester, Tom Spies, and Charles Butterworth and their interests in the use of vitamins for the treatment and prevention of disease (for a narration of the history of our Department please visit ). Recognized as one of the top nutrition programs in the U.S., the Department has had a national impact on the health care practices of Americans through its federally supported research, its leadership in providing multidisciplinary nutrition support services, its exceptional training programs for physicians and other health professionals, and its nationwide public service activities. Most of the larger nutrition programs in the U.S. are fragmented both physically and programmatically among different campuses and schools. In contrast, the Department of Nutrition Sciences at UAB (with more than 100 students, staff and faculty) is a joint department of three Schools (Medicine, Dentistry, and Health Professions) and, thus, is a single, multidisciplinary department that is highly integrated into and centrally located within the Academic Health Center. This integration of the Department into


multiple schools on campus provides an ideal academic setting for our programs which encompass wellfunded basic and clinical research, extensive inpatient and ambulatory nutrition support services, and one of the most comprehensive health professions nutrition education programs in the world. The PhD program in the Department of Nutrition Sciences provides quality training for pre-doctoral students because of its extensive ongoing nutrition research program. The Department has longstanding research programs in nutrient metabolism, cancer, obesity, and energy metabolism and regulation which encompass both clinical and human nutrition as well as basic molecular nutrition. The program leading to the PhD degree is designed to provide students with didactic coursework and research experiences that emphasize the science of nutrition in maintaining the health of individuals and populations. Areas of emphasis may include molecular and basic nutrition investigations, studies of body composition, obesity and energy metabolism, cancer, osteoporosis, community nutrition, and disease prevention. The mission of the Department is to improve health and quality of life in our society through realizing full faculty potential, the creation of new knowledge, the training of students, and the care of patients. To achieve this mission, the Department is structured to give emphasis to each of three main areas covered by the faculty: clinical, research and education. DNS has creatively adopted a Chair “matrix” organizational structure (rather than Vice Chair Vice Chair the typical “hierarchical” organizational CLINICAL NUTRITION RESEARCH Vice Chair structure that defines academic EDUCATION environments). The three main areas are identified as “missions” and the effective functioning of the missions are overseen by Research Clinical Faculty Faculty Mission Leaders (the term in the “matrix” structure) or Vice Chairs (the term in the Research Clinical “hierarchical” structure). The Missions are lead by Drs. Taraneh Soleymani (Clinical), Jose Figure 1. DNS Mission Structure Fernández (Education) and Tim Nagy (Research) who work directly with the Chair of the Department (Dr. Tim Garvey) to assure that the three areas are interrelated, providing opportunities for teamwork, and collaborative efforts among all members of DNS (Figure 1). B. DNS FACULTY The diversity inherent to the field of nutrition is reflected in our faculty and students. The Department of Nutrition Sciences currently consists of the following faculty members:


DNS Primary Faculty Krista Casazza, Ph.D., R.D. Assistant Professor, DNS Interests: Insulin dynamics, body composition, weight loss, nutrient partitioning, critical periods and development, interface between bone and fat Paula C. Chandler-Laney, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, DNS Interests: Success in weight-loss prediction, intrauterine exposure to diabetes and obesity, behavioral and neurochemical markers in obesity-related traits Pi-Ling Chang, Ph.D. Associate Professor, DNS Interests: Regulation of calcitriol on TPAinduced tumorigenesis and the involvement of osteopontin in tumorigenesis

Yuchang Fu, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, DNS Interests: Gene expression and regulation in lipid metabolism in Atherosclerosis and diabetes W. Timothy Garvey, M.D. Professor and Chair, DNS Director, DRTC Interests: Molecular, metabolic, and genetic basis of type 2 diabetes mellitus, insulin resistance, and obesity Barbara A. Gower, Ph.D. Professor, DNS Interests: Insulin secretion/action and the role of the endocrine system in obesity and energy metabolism

Maria De Luca, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, DNS Interests: Genetic pathways in fat storage and metabolism in fruit flies, quantitative genetics

Elizabeth Kitchin, Ph.D, M.S., R.D. Assistant Professor, DNS Director, Undergraduate Minor Nutrition Interest: Interpersonal communication and patient education, Mass Communication and Health Behavior

Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, Ph.D., R.D. Professor, DNS Associate Director, UAB CCC Interests: Mechanisms underlying food-related components and neoplastic progression, nutrition and cancer, lifestyle intervention for cancer prevention

Susan Miller, M.S., R.D., L.D. Assistant Professor, DNS Director, Dietetic Internship Program and Graduate Program in Clinical Nutrition Interest: Dietetic education, food safety

Isao Eto, Ph.D. Associate Professor, DNS Interests: Nutritional Biochemistry - Folate metabolism and interactions José Fernández, Ph.D. Professor and Vice Chair for Education, DNS Interests: Genetic contributions to racial/ethnic disparities in obesity and diabetes, quantitative genetics

Douglas R. Moellering, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Interest: Mitochondrial physiology, bioenergetics, and free radical-mediated tissue injury and disease pathologies Tim R. Nagy, Ph.D. Professor and Vice Chair for Research, DNS Interests: Regulation of body weight, development and validation of methods for small animal phenotyping, link among body fat, caloric restriction and cancer


Laura Newton, M.A.Ed., R.D., L.D. Assistant Professor DNS Interest: Nutrition education, clinical nutrition; nutrition and cancer; total parenteral nutrition Chandrika Piyathilake, Ph.D. Associate Professor, DNS Interests: Nutritional Biochemistry and Genomics Daniel L. Smith Jr., Ph.D. Instructor, DNS Interests: Invasive methods to quantify and study brown adipose tissue in vivo using magnetic resonance imaging, high-throughput quantitative methods to study the effect of nutrition on cellular lifespan

Taraneh Soleymani, M.D. Assistant Professor, DNS Interest: Behavioral, dietary, and exercise therapy for adult obesity management. Medical management of obesity. Adult obesity management in primary care setting. Hospital related malnutrition. Qinglin Yang, M.D., Ph.D. Associate Professor, DNS Interests: Molecular mechanisms of heart failure, role of myocardial fatty acid and carbohydrate metabolisms in disease

DNS Secondary Faculty David B. Allison, Ph.D. Professor, Department of Biostatistics Interests: Obesity, quantitative genetics, clinical trials, and statistical and research methodology Marcas M. Bamman, Ph.D. Associate Professor, Physiology and Biophysics Interests: Mechanisms of skeletal muscle elasticity in humans Monica L. Baskin, Ph.D. Associate Professor, Department of Heath Behavior Interests: Childhood obesity prevention Lauren B. Dodd, M.A., R.D., L.D. Nutritionist, Civitan International Research Center Frank A. Franklin, MPh, Ph.D., M.D. Pediatrics – Cancer Control and Population Science, GI: Nutrition Suzanne P. Geerts, M.S., R.D., L.D.

Clinical Assistant Professor/Dietetic Internship Preceptor, DNS Interests: Biochemical genetics, genetics T. Michael Harrington, M.D. Chair, Department of Family and Community Medicine Interests: Health maintenance and prevention Carol Hickey, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, Department of Maternal and Child Health Gary Hunter, Ph.D. Professor, Health Education Interests: Exercise physiology; Fat distribution; cardiovascular risk factors M. Aminul Islam, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry Robert A. Oster, Ph.D. Associate Professor, Department of Preventive Medicine Interests: Modern statistical computing methods, exact statistical methods, categorical data analysis, longitudinal data analysis,


statistical methods in epidemiology, clinical trials

Interests: Hypothalamic Control of Feeding Behavior

Robert Kesterson, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, Genetics and Nutrition Sciences

Bonnie A. Spear, R.D., M.S. Ph.D. Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics Interests: Pediatric Nutrition

DNS Emeritus Faculty C. Michael Brooks, Ed.D. Professor Emeritus, DNS Interests: Cancer Prevention and Control Training Program

Carlos L. Krumdieck, Ph.D., M.D. Professor Emeritus, DNS Senior Scientist, NORC Interests: Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

Harriet H. Cloud, R.D., M.S. Professor Emerita, DNS Interests: Mental retardation and learning disabilities, inborn errors of metabolism

Charles W. Prince, Ph.D. UAB Assistant Vice President for Research Professor, DNS Interests: Influence of macromolecular components of bone extracellular matrix influence bone homeostatis, mechanisms of homocysteine in macromolecules

Carol Craig, M.S., R.D. Professor Emerita, DNS Interests: Dietetics Education Mohammad A. Khaled, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, DNS Scientist Interests: Nutrition and infection, Helicobacter pylori induced nutritional aberrations and health consequences

Tsunenobu Tamura, M.D. Professor Emerita, DNS Interests: Folate metabolism, trace element nutrition, inborn errors of metabolism


C. FACILITIES FOR RESEARCH IN THE DEPARTMENT OF NUTRITION SCIENCES Susan Mott Webb Nutrition Sciences Building Constructed in 1983, the six-story Webb Nutrition Sciences Building provides modern facilities and office/laboratory space for the majority of our faculty. The Department currently occupies the first four floors of the Webb Nutrition Sciences Building. Total space committed directly to our faculty equals ~ 43,000 sq. ft. (18,000 dedicated to laboratories, 11,000 to animal facilities, 8,000 to offices, 5,000 to class/conference rooms, and 1,000 to nutrition clinics). The Susan Mott Webb Nutrition Sciences Building is located within the Academic Health Center and is in easy walking distance to all of the major campus facilities. This assures easy access to the 2,000-bed University Hospital complex, which constitutes one of the major medical facilities in the eastern United States. In addition to access to this large patient population, the Department benefits from the presence on campus of a number of outstanding regional and national institutes and centers with which the Department maintains active collaboration. The Department is also close to Southern Research Institute and the Baptist Medical Center, two collaborating institutions. The first floor houses animal facilities which include diet preparation and storage rooms, a fully equipped necropsy room with an adjacent cold room, a laboratory for carcinogen preparation, a room for minor surgical procedures, central facilities for automatic cage washing, a large autoclave, 22 animal wards, and a histopathology laboratory. All of the animal wards are temperature and humidity controlled with automatic cycles of illumination and darkness. Our research laboratories (located on floors 2-4) provide all of the major equipment needed for basic, animal, and clinical nutrition research, including assessment of vitamin and trace mineral levels in human and animal samples. Notably, the Department operates one of the most complete Energy Metabolism/Body Composition Research Laboratories in the country. This Laboratory contains indirect hood calorimeters, a whole-room indirect calorimeter, a facility for hydrodensitometry, a dual energy Xray absorptiometer (DEXA), a body impedance analyzer (BIA), exercise testing equipment, and a mass spectrometer equipped with a gas chromatograph for stable isotope analyses. Major pieces of equipment and instrumentation in the Webb Building include two double-beam recording U.V.-visible spectrophotometers, one single beam U.V.-visible spectrophotometer, one Perkin Elmer infrared spectrophotometer, one ultracentrifuge, two Sorvall refrigerated centrifuges, two Beckman Accu Spin centrifuges, two liquid scintillation counters, a Beckman gamma counter, one Coulter Counter, three laminar flow hoods, three CO2 incubators, a Nikon inverted microscope with phase contrast, brightfield and fluorescence optics, a Zeiss upright microscope, eight HPLC systems capable of gradient operation with U.V., fluorescence and/or electrochemical detectors and integrators, four autosamplers. Other items of equipment include an Ericomp twin block thermal cycler, a UV crosslinker, hybridization oven, nucleic acid and protein electrophoresis equipment, X-ray film processor, a Perkin Elmer atomic absorption spectrophotometer, a Technicon Autoanalyzer II, fraction collectors, pH meters, flash evaporators, lyophilyzers, glassware washers, autoclaves, analytical balances, numerous low temperature freezers and liquid nitrogen storage containers. Centers of Research at UAB Because of UAB’s high quality research environment, many specialized research Centers of Excellence have been established. A partial listing includes the Cardiovascular Research and Training Center, Center for Aging, Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Immunological Diseases, Center for Research in 27

Oral Biology, Comprehensive Cancer Center, Diabetes Research and Training Center, Multipurpose Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases Center, UAB Aids Center, Cystic Fibrosis Research Center, Neurobiology Research Center, Nephrology Research and Training Center and many others. Most of these specialized centers are actively involved in diversity of training activities (as many of their names indicate), including graduate and medical students, M.D. fellows, postdoctoral fellows and others. Core facilities of many centers offer analytical services for a fee. Library Resources UAB maintains two major libraries, the Mervyn H. Sterne Library (net area of 154,000 sq. ft., shelving capacity of >516,000 linear ft., >575,000 printed holdings, >524,000 titles and >2700 periodical subscriptions) and the Lister Hill Library of the Health Sciences. The Lister Hill Library, which serves the Academic Health Center and is located directly across the street from the Webb Nutrition Sciences Building, is the largest biomedical library in Alabama and one of the leading such libraries in the South. It serves as a Resource Library in the National Network of Libraries of Medicine for the Southeast/Atlantic region. Its collections span seven centuries of knowledge. The holdings include 10,000 old and rare books, 2855 current journal subscriptions, and 324,000 volumes of books and bound journals. The Lister Hill Library provides not only traditional library services but also a wide variety of on-line capabilities locally and via telephone, modem, Internet, and fax, thereby allowing access to the library’s catalog of holdings and to twenty-plus electronic databases, including MEDLINE. Computer Resources UAB has all the computer facilities expected of a major research university, including on-campus, interactive access to a Cray C94/232 supercomputer system via the Alabama Supercomputer Network. In the Webb Building all faculty have fiber optic connections to the local UAB computer network and to the Internet. Graduate Student Access to Research and Training Facilities Student access to most UAB resources is readily available, either directly (e.g., the libraries) or through the student’s advisor or his/her Dissertation Advisory Committee. In fact, gaining access to certain techniques, expertise or instrumentation is often a consideration in selecting a Dissertation Advisory Committee for a student. Certain centers on campus, such as the Comprehensive Cancer Center, have a broad spectrum of diagnostic and analytical services available to the UAB faculty at-large, not just to Cancer Center members. D. ADMISSION TO THE PHD PROGRAM Entrance Requirements for the PhD Program in Nutrition Sciences: Applicants should have a Baccalaureate (B.S. or B.A.) degree in a recognized field of biological, physical, chemical, agricultural or engineering science from an accredited university. To meet Graduate School and Departmental standards a student must submit a completed application form to the Graduate School. To ensure prompt application processing, the Graduate School encourages applicants to apply online at the following address: The application form needs to be accompanied by:  non-refundable application fee (UAB Graduate School has waived this fee for U.S. citizens and permanent residents); 27

 three letters of recommendation based on thorough knowledge of the applicant’s background and abilities;  transcripts from all colleges and universities attended;  brief statement of research interests, professional goals, and past performance;  results of Graduate Record Examination taken within two years;  results of Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) exam. Required only for applicants whose native language is not English. Acceptance to the DNS PhD Program: All applications for the PhD program are evaluated by departmental committee. Recommendations from the Committee are given to the Vice Chair for Education who recommends acceptance of candidates to the UAB Graduate School. Students recommended for admission to the Graduate Program will receive a letter from the UAB Dean of the Graduate School. In addition, a letter will be send to the students from the DNS Vice Chair for Education that indicates the offer of acceptance. Financial support: If a student is accepted as a PhD candidate in the Department of Nutrition Sciences (DNS) program, he/she will be awarded a tuition scholarship, which will cover general tuition, building fees, student service fee and student insurance for the regular terms. As a condition for receiving this tuition scholarship, the student must register for and successfully complete at least 15 hours of approved graduate course work each semester and maintain an outstanding academic record. No services are required to UAB as a condition of receiving this tuition scholarship. If the student is placed on academic probation, this tuition scholarship will be terminated. During the first year of the graduate program, most of our students also receive stipend support. After the second year, and until the completion of the PhD, a student is expected to have in place a form of financial support by securing a stipend from a faculty member whose research interest is most compatible with the student’s objectives, by finding individual funding to a pre-doctoral award mechanism, by getting a pre-doctoral slot in a training grant (such as T32s), or other form of financial support. The Vice Chair for Education will assist the student with the process of finding a suitable mentor, but he cannot guarantee that all PhD candidates will be successful in finding a mentor to fulfill these conditions. The faculty mentor may appoint the student as a research assistant or graduate assistant. In this case, the student will be given a service assignment by the mentor. The service provided will be designed to enhance the professional development of the student, as well as to contribute to the teaching and research of the university. The remainder of effort should be devoted to carrying out those activities required by the program, including the original research necessary to fulfill thesis, pre-dissertation, and dissertation requirements. A student will not be allowed to hold any form of employment outside the advisor’s or other committee member’s research laboratories. Exceptions may be made in situations in which such outside work is clearly beneficial to the overall training of the student.

E. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION AND COURSEWORK The typical graduate student takes 4-5 years to complete the requirements for a PhD degree. The maximum amount of time allowed by the Graduate School to complete a PhD degree is seven years. In the first year, much of the student’s time will be devoted to coursework; however, the student will also gain valuable laboratory/clinical research experience during research rotations. The program leading to the PhD degree in nutrition sciences is


designed to provide training and research experience in classical nutrition and various aspects of clinical nutrition, human health, and metabolism. The program emphasizes the science of nutrition, from a variety of perspectives, as demonstrated by our courses:



Credit Hours

BST 621 & 622



NTR 701 NTR 718

Advanced Medical Nutrition Nutritional Biochemistry

3 6

NTR 722 NTR 725

Recent Advances in Nutrition Cancer Research Human Nutrition Through Life Cycle

3 3

NTR 726 NTR 733 NTR 736

Consumer issues in Nutrition Laboratory Instruments and Methods in Nutrition Research (Rotation) Research Methods

NTR 745 NTR 747 NTR 750

Origin of Cancer: Microenvironment Molecular Biology in Nutrition Sciences Body Composition and Energy Metabolism

NTR 769 NTR 779 NTR 788 NTR 789 NTR 798 NTR 799

Race, Nutrition and Health Obesity in the XXI Century Advanced Nutrition Seminar Diabetes and Energy Metabolism Non-dissertation Research Dissertation Research

NTR 699

Master’s Level Thesis Research – Students completing M.S. Ethics

GRD 717

3 1-3 3 1 3 3 3 3 1 1 1-12 1-12 6 3

A description of these courses can be found at the UAB School of Health Professions Catalog website. Courses NTR 701, 718, 725, 726, 736 and 747 are core courses, defined as required courses that provide the basic knowledge expected for our students to have. BST 621 and 622 are also considered core courses. GRD 717, the Graduate School Ethics class is also required. It is required for students to obtain a final grade greater than “C” to pass all core courses. Students will also participate in Journal Clubs of his/her choosing to broaden knowledge both inside and/or outside the student’s area of interest and to learn how to critically evaluate the scientific literature. By the second year in the program students are expected to spend more time in the laboratory developing the research projects, reducing the amount of course work and increasing the emphasis on research. Research rotations are an integral component of the first year; the students are recommended to spend 10-12 weeks working in 3 different laboratory or research experiences to learn, firsthand, various techniques and areas of research, and how to function in a laboratory or clinical setting. Approval for


such rotations must be given prior to their starting by the Vice Chair for Education. The approximate rotation timing should be: Rotation 1; 2nd week of September to mid-December Rotation 2; 1st week of January to late March Rotation 3; 3rd week of March to early/mid June These rotations will provide an opportunity for students to identify their area of research interest. By the end of the summer term of the first year the student should have identified a research mentor and should have a general idea of his/her area of research interest. It is important for first year students to understand that obtaining a publication from a particular rotation is not an expected rotation outcome. Most first year students come to the PhD program without experience in technical writing, and are not equipped during their first year to participate in the rigorous involvement that requires authorship in a peer-reviewed publication. Exceptions to this expectation may be discussed with the Vice Chair for Education. The DNS Mission of Education regularly reviews the curriculum and program by the formation of a committee of students and faculty. New courses or changes in the core curriculum are recommended as changes occur in the development or direction of areas of nutrition science. Since most formal doctoral courses involve small numbers of students, close interaction between faculty and students occur. With larger classes, students formally evaluate course content. These evaluations provide guidance as to study areas that should be increased or decreased. Students are expected to maintain a minimum grade average of B. Overall, the status of the students is critically evaluated in terms of the progress and quality of their research endeavors. F. MASTERS IN NUTRITION Students without a graduate level degree are required to obtain a Master’s Degree in Nutrition after the end of their second year. For these students, the spring semester of the second year becomes an intense research experience. Students working on getting the Master’s Degree from our program need to make sure that they have an established masters committee, a masters level candidacy approval form, appropriate IRB or IACUC certifications, and to be registered for 6 hours of NTR 699 (Master’s Level Thesis Research). For detailed information regarding deadlines, forms to be completed for this degree, and requirements for the Master’s Degree, students are recommended to visit the website: G. ADMISSION TO CANDIDACY The UAB Graduate School encourages students to apply for external funding, particularly via the NIH F31 mechanism. Funding of these grants provide a great opportunity to our students to develop their own line of doctoral research. To provide a unique learning and training opportunity to our students that might result in the attainment of independent funding, we are utilizing the F-31 format to evaluate Nutrition Science students as part of their candidacy examination. Procedures Once the student identifies his/her committee members and discusses the research project with the advisor, the student will submit to the committee a proposal in the format of an F31 grant. The proposal submitted will represent only the scientific aspect of the application (research proposal). This proposal 27

will be reviewed by the committee and the Vice-Chair for Education (or PhD Program Director). Within one month of submission, a formal review of the proposal will be conducted. During this review, the student might or might not be present; however, the committee will provide feedback to the student. After the application review has been successfully passed, a proposal defense will be scheduled (preferably within a one-month period after the evaluation of the application). This will consist of a public presentation of the background and the research plan, followed by a private meeting with the committee for discussion and/or approval of the proposal. A positive completion of these processes will represent the completion of candidacy. It is highly recommended that students meet with their advisor to coordinate the submission of the proposal. Student and advisor will design and add to the proposal the mentoring component of the F31 (which is part of the application). The student and the advisor will have support from the office of the DNS Education Mission in this part of the process. Non-US citizens will also write the F31; however, they will be encouraged to develop a plan with their mentor for transferring the information of the written proposal into another type of funding mechanism, including R03 or R21. Proposal Application for an Individual Fellowship Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award should use the form PHS 416-1 that may be downloaded from: Some relevant information to take into account (taken from the directions in the link above) is that: The proposal submitted to the student’s committee should have the appropriate face page. Although recent changes to F31 require six pages, we provide the opportunity to our students to use more than six pages, taking into account that the scientific section must not exceed 10 pages, including all tables, graphs, figures, diagrams, and charts. The scientific component should include: Specific Aims. List the broad, long-term objectives and the goal of the specific research proposed, e.g., to test a stated hypothesis, create a novel design, solve a specific problem, challenge an existing paradigm or clinical practice, address a critical barrier to progress in the field, or develop new technology Background and Significance. Briefly sketch the background leading to the present application, critically evaluate existing knowledge, and specifically identify the gaps that the project is intended to fill. State concisely the importance and health relevance of the research described in this application by relating the specific aims to broad, long-term objectives and to the mission of the NIH IC or AHRQ. Preliminary Studies. Use this section to provide an account of preliminary studies, if any, that are pertinent to this application. This information will help reviewers and NIH staff evaluate your experience and determine your competence to pursue the proposed project. It will also help demonstrate the utility of the proposed project as a training experience. When applicable, provide a succinct account of published and unpublished results, indicating progress toward their achievement. Research Design and Methods. Describe the research design concept or clinical framework, procedures, and analyses to be used to accomplish the specific aims of the project. Include how the 27

data will be collected, analyzed, and interpreted. Describe any new methodology and its advantage over existing methodologies. Describe any novel concepts, approaches, tools, or technologies for the proposed studies. Discuss the potential difficulties and limitations of the proposed procedures and alternative approaches to achieve the aims. As part of this section, provide a tentative sequence or timetable for the project. Point out any procedures, situations, or materials that may be hazardous to personnel and the precautions to be exercised. Although not part of the 10-pages, when necessary, applications should address issues related to Human Subjects Research, Clinical Trial, Protection of Human Subjects, Inclusion of Minorities and Women, Inclusion of Children, and Vertebrate Animals, select agents, according to instructions. Also, a bibliography and reference cited should be included as part of the proposal, but not counted as part of the 10 pages of the body of the proposal. Evaluation The evaluation criteria for an F31 are based on four aspects: a) Candidate: The candidate's previous academic and research performance and the potential to become an important contributor to biomedical, behavioral, or clinical science. b) Sponsor and Training Environment: The quality of the training environment and the qualifications of the sponsor as a mentor within the proposed research training experience. c) Research Proposal: The merit of the scientific proposal and its relationship to the candidate’s career plans. d) Training Potential: The value of the proposed fellowship experience as it relates to the candidate's needs in preparation for a career as an independent researcher. However, the evaluation that will count as part of the candidacy exam would be based mainly on aspect (c) which is the research proposal. It is recommended that the candidacy committee of the student evaluate the research proposal using the typical NIH review criteria, as described: Significance: Does this study address an important problem? If the aims of the application are achieved, how will scientific knowledge or clinical practice be advanced? What will be the effect of these studies on the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, or preventative interventions that drive this field? Approach: Are the conceptual or clinical framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well integrated, well-reasoned, and appropriate to the aims of the project? Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider alternative tactics? Innovation: Is the project original and innovative? For example: Does the project challenge existing paradigms or clinical practice; address an innovative hypothesis or critical barrier to progress in the field? Does the project develop or employ novel concepts, approaches, methodologies, tools, or technologies for this area? Investigators: Are the investigators appropriately trained and well suited to carry out this work? Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level of the principal investigator and other researchers? Does the investigative team bring complementary and integrated expertise to the project? Environment: Does the scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success? Do the proposed studies benefit from unique features of the scientific


environment, or subject populations, or employ useful collaborative arrangements? Is there evidence of institutional support? Overall Evaluation: In one paragraph, briefly summarize the most important points of the Critique, addressing the strengths and weaknesses of the application in terms of the five review criteria. Recommend a score reflecting the overall impact of the project on the field, weighing the review criteria, as you feel appropriate for each application. An application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have a major scientific impact and, thus, deserve a high merit rating. For example, an investigator may propose to carry out important work that by its nature is not innovative, but is essential to move a field forward or improve clinical decisions or outcomes. It is encouraged that committee members use this information when evaluating the student proposal, and provide feedback regarding any deficiencies/concerns that will diminish the scientific quality or feasibility of the proposed study. The meeting among the committee members should focus on the discussion of the proposal within the context of the aspects mentioned above, and should not last for more than one hour. H. APPOINTMENT OF DISSERTATION ADVISORY COMMITTEE The student’s primary advisor (mentor) should be chosen by the end of the summer term of the first year. It is understood that the role of the mentor carries numerous responsibilities, including the many facets of graduate student education and financial support for the student’s stipend, insurance and student travel to meetings to present their research. The mentor must become familiar with and abide by the Policies and Procedures of the Graduate Program, and encourage the student to progress rapidly and meet all appropriate deadlines detailed in the Policies and Procedures. All students will have a permanent Dissertation Advisory Committee that must be appointed prior to initiating the procedures for admission to candidacy. The Dissertation Advisory Committee will consist of 56 faculty members who will guide the student to develop an effective research agenda and to pursue the Graduate School requirements. The student's Dissertation Advisory Committee will evaluate competence of the student to conduct scientific study. Two members of this committee should be from outside the student’s specialization and each of them should be able to bring some relevant insight and expertise to guide the student. Recommendations for graduate student committee membership are submitted by the advisor and the student to the program director or Vice Chair for Education, who subsequently submits these recommendations to the Graduate School Dean. Graduate study committee appointments are made by the Graduate School Dean, who is an ex officio member of all graduate study committees. It is the responsibility of the student to plan and execute regular meetings with the Dissertation Committee. It is recommended to have these meetings every 6 months. These meetings do not need to be longer than one hour, should be schedule in advance and should have at least three committee members present. An update of research progress should be evaluated during the course of the meeting. I. RESEARCH An intensive period of original research will be performed by the student, the length of which will be decided by the Dissertation Advisory Committee. During this time the student will carry out the studies presented in the experimental plan, as presented at the Dissertation Advisory Committee meetings. 27

IRB Approval for Thesis and Dissertations Student researchers have the same submission options as any investigator. In most cases, it is advisable that the student submit a separate application to the IRB, especially those working towards dissertation, as these projects are often either new projects in which the student has the leading or sole role or they are secondary to an existing protocol where the student’s work differs from the purpose of the existing protocol. Regardless, dissertation committees prefer to see the student’s name on an approval document, and this is the best way to ensure that happens. Research that is limited to secondary analysis of data, records or specimens that are de-identified or otherwise impossible to be linked to personal identities can be submitted via a Not Human Subjects Research (NHSR) application provided that the custodian of the data can provide written assurance that the student researcher will not have access to identifying data. It is this “de-linking” of data from personal identifiers that allows the IRB to make this determination; therefore, the custodian of the data cannot be listed as research personnel on the student’s application, although they may be listed as faculty advisor. If the IRB determines that this project is NHSR, IRB Training for the student is not required by IRB but may be required by the faculty advisor. If identifiers are required for the conduct of the research or if direct interaction with individuals will be necessary, then the research should be submitted via Exempt or Expedited application. If the student’s activity is (or will be, after modification) subsumed under the existing study, the student may be added to the existing protocol via Project Revision/Amendment Form (PR/AF). When choosing this option, the student’s full name, dissertation title, description of the project, and whether or not it differs from the existing protocol must be included in the PR/AF, and this document will be used when submitting candidacy paperwork to the dissertation committee. If the student was assisting a researcher and was already listed on the protocol as research personnel, then a PR/AF should be submitted when this student’s role changes from researcher to dissertation work, so that the PR/AF can be used with the dissertation committee submission. This option is less common and should be used with caution as the IRB may determine that a separate submission be undertaken, which may cause a delay in the candidacy paperwork submission. Students and faculty are encouraged to call the IRB if in doubt. In conclusion, the two documents that dissertation committee members will accept are: 1. IRB approval with the candidate’s name listed as PI with the dissertation title listed 2. PR/AF with the candidate’s name added and the dissertation title clearly noted.

J. COMPLETION OF PHD In order to complete the PhD degree, students are expected to accomplish the following:  complete a minimum of 33 semester hours in a core curriculum covering biochemistry, physiology, clinical and molecular biology aspects of nutrition and statistics and research design;  complete a minimum of 24 additional graduate, elective hours of nutrition courses and courses supporting the nutrition sciences; 27

 pass a written/oral qualifying examination;  author at least two research papers which have been accepted for publication by peer-reviewed scientific journals (student must be first author of at least one publication); and  submit and defend a dissertation reporting results of original scientific research which makes a genuine contribution to the knowledge of nutrition sciences. Dissertation Two models can be used for the written dissertation. The first is a model where at least one first-author and two additional publications are included in the final dissertation after adding an introduction and discussion that encompasses an overall theme for the scientific project. At least one of the manuscripts should be published or accepted for publication. The other model will include multiple chapters describing an introduction, literature review, methods, results, discussion and conclusions, and a reference list that describes the scientific discovery of the student. The model to be used for writing dissertation must be approved by the primary advisor, the Dissertation Committee, and Vice Chair for Education Students are responsible for contacting the graduate school to obtain the latest information regarding their application for degree and all related paperwork. Also, all written dissertations should follow the formatting established by the Graduate School, as described at After completion, copies of the dissertation must be distributed to each dissertation committee member and to the DNS Vice Chair of Education at least two weeks prior to the oral defense. The defense is a public event open to the UAB community; invitations to all defenses should be distributed throughout the UAB campus through flyers and media announcements. After the defense presentation (which usually takes 45 minutes and 15 minutes for questions), the student remains in the room for a private questioning session with members of the Dissertation Committee and Vice Chair for Education. Upon successful defense of the dissertation, the student must turn in a final, corrected draft (corrections made according to suggestions of the student's committee) to the UAB Graduate School within 10 business days following the oral defense. Failure to meet this deadline may result in a delay in graduation. If a student successfully defends his/her dissertation and the student's committee has signed off, the Program's financial stipend responsibility to that student ends at the end of the day of the last defense. Also, if, after the defenses and the committee sign-off, the student fails to turn in all required materials to the Graduate School by the deadline, the student must reapply for graduation and must, if necessary, register for the next semester (3 credit hours for part-time student status; 9 credit hours for full-time status). K. ACADEMIC MISCONDUCT Academic misconduct is considered an offense at UAB. Students are encouraged to become familiar with Section 7 of the Graduate School Policy Listing entitled Graduate School Conduct and Appeal. Our Department has also created a specific policy regarding plagiarism, as described. DNS Plagiarism Statement and Procedures The Department of Nutrition Sciences recognizes and strongly endorses the principles of integrity and ethical behavior as they apply to the behavior of its faculty, staff, and students as they engage in research, scholarship, teaching, and service activities. One key component of academic and scientific 27

integrity is the proper attribution and acknowledgement of the contributions of others to the acquisition of new knowledge. In an effort to promote responsible conduct of research and academic integrity, the Department of Nutrition Sciences has developed the following statement and procedures concerning plagiarism. Plagiarism, as defined by the UAB Graduate School is “claiming as your own the ideas, words, data, computer programs, creative compositions, artwork, etc., done by someone else. Examples include improper citation of referenced works, use of commercially available scholarly papers, failure to cite sources, copying other's ideas”* In the Department of Nutrition Sciences, we are particularly concerned with the education of our students, including education regarding ethics, honor codes, and the responsible conduct of research in science. From this perspective, the following procedures have been identified to address the University and School Policy on Plagiarism. From this perspective, the following procedures have been identified to be followed by members of the Department and to address the University and School Policy on Plagiarism. Preventive Education  A two hour workshop about plagiarism will be available to our students prior to the beginning of the Fall semester  Faculty will be trained in the use of the Turnitin program to evaluate plagiarism ( .) Departmental Procedures  Electronic copies of all written reports for classes should be provided to the course masters  Course masters are expected to use the program Turnitin to assess incidences of plagiarism  In the case where plagiarism is identified, the student will be given a zero as the failing grade for the original assignment.  The student will be asked to rewrite the assignment. The rewritten assignment will be graded and the average of the grades for the two assignments (original and rewritten) would be given as the final grade for that assignment (equivalent to 50% of the grade for the rewritten assignment).  At discretion of the course master, the student may have the opportunity to write an additional paper/project to improve his/her final grade  If the course masters needs to provide a grade prior to resolving the plagiarism issue with the student, an ‘incomplete’ should be given as the grade If the student obtains a grade of C or less in a core course, the student will have to retake the course, according to Departmental policy. School of Health Profession Plagiarism Policy Requirements The School of Health Professions’ Policy and Plagiarism requires: 1. that the statement regarding plagiarism is included in syllabi 2. that the statement regarding plagiarism is included in student manual 3. that plagiarism is discussed as part of the new student orientation 4. notice that submitted assignments are entered in the database Additional information regarding plagiarism could be found at: 27

L. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION For additional information regarding the Graduate Programs for the Mission of Education of the UAB Department of Nutrition Sciences please contact: Ms. Nicole Duke

Susan Miller, MS, RD, LD

José R. Fernández, PhD