Nutritional sciences is an independent discipline rooted in biology and biochemistry. The major integrates the study of nutrition with studies of the role of diet in health and disease, and with studies of the biological, genetic, social, and economic factors influencing the diet and nutritional status of humans. Nutritional sciences combines the basic and applied sciences that address issues relevant to agriculture and medicine. The Department of Nutritional Sciences offers two areas of study, both of which require a core of courses that emphasize the chemistry and physiology of nutrition. Additional courses focus on the biochemical, clinical, business, or public health aspects of nutrition. Students who complete the nutritional sciences major in the dietetics degree program receive the bachelor of science–dietetics degree, and students who complete the nutritional sciences major in the bachelor of science degree program receive the bachelor of science degree.

Students who wish to gain practical experience are encouraged to participate in independent studies and coordinative internships, as well as laboratory and clinical research projects offered through the department, the Waisman Center and Interdepartmental Graduate Program in Nutritional Sciences. In addition to the financial support offered by these opportunities, the department annually awards a number of scholarships. All students are also encouraged to apply for scholarships awarded by the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and UW–Madison.

The department also serves as the administrative home for the popular undergraduate certificate in global health. The certificate is open to all undergraduate UW–Madison students and complements a variety of majors.


Dave Eide (chair), Ph.D. 1987
Richard Eisenstein, Ph.D. 1985
Guy Groblewski, Ph.D. 1991
Huichuan Lai, Ph.D., RDN 1994
Denise Ney (Director, Didactic Program in Dietetics), Ph.D., RDN 1986
James Ntambi, Ph.D. 1985
Roger Sunde, Ph.D. 1980
Sherry Tanumihardjo, Ph.D. 1993

Associate Professor

Beth Olson, Ph.D.

Assistant Professors

Adam Kuchnia, Ph.D., RDN 2017
Brian Parks, Ph.D. 2008
Eric Yen, Ph.D. 2000

ASSOCIATE Faculty Associate

Erika Anna, M.S., RDN
Amber Haroldson, Ph.D., RDN, M.S.
Tara LaRowe (Coordinator, Didactic Program Dietetics), Ph.D., C.S.S.D., RDN
Makayla Schuchardt, M.S., RDN, CNSC
Julie Thurlow, DrPH, RDN

Senior Lecturer

Pete Anderson, M.S.

Academic Advisor

Sarah Golla, MSW, GCDF

Graduate coordinator

Katie Butzen, MS.Ed.