This 3-week PhD course is an extension of a co-operation between the Centre of Excellence for Nutrition (CEN) at the North-West University (NWU), Potchefstroom, South Africa and the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, University of Ghana (UOG), Accra,  Ghana. The course is financially supported by the Nutricia Research Foundation (NRF, The Netherlands).



The aim of the 3-week programme will be to provide complementary training, in addition to the training that PhD students receive at their home institutions. It will prepare and enable participating students to successfully navigate the PhD programme at their home institutions and to make the most of it. This short programme is specifically designed for 1st and 2nd year human nutrition PhD students, in a number of core methodological subjects that are indispensable for the successful completion of a PhD. By attending the programme, participants will significantly improve their skills in planning and executing research projects typically associated with their PhD programmes.



The target group is first or second year PhD candidates from South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Malawi, Ghana and Kenya (CEN-UG Network Countries). A small number of seats are available for PhD candidates from other English speaking African countries.



The programme will focus on specific elements of the research process from protocol writing to analysis and publication of results. Some ofthe topics include study designs, nutritional epidemiology, dietary methodology, data capturing and analysis, presentation skills and how to write a scientific article. A provisional programme is available on the website. The programme will be updated regularly.



International and local experts will be used to teach in each of the components of the programme.




25 March - 12 April 2019


The programme will be hosted at the Sports Village, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa.( 


Participants will be accommodated at the Sports Village, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa ( Participants living in/nearby Potchefstroom may also arrange their own accommodation.


The programme language will be English.



PhD candidates must apply to participate in the programme by completing the application form. The application form is available from edelweiss.wentzel-viljoen@nwu. or the website: http://health­ The application form must be completed and emailed to edelweiss.wentzel-viljoen@nwu. not later than Friday 16 November 2018.



All applications will be subjected to a selection process to compete for the 32 available positions. Applicants will be informed about the outcome of the selection by end of November 2018.



CEN-UG Network countries (South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Malawi, Ghana and Kenya)

A limited number of grants are available to candidates from CEN-UG Network countries - South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Malawi, Ghana and Kenya. The grant covers the tuition fee, all meals and accommodation at the Sports Village, and travel costs. South Africans who receive grants will, however, not be eligible for any travel or accommodation support. The application form includes the application for a grant. Recipients of the grants will be informed if their application was successful or not at the same time as the outcome of the selection process is announced.

Other English speaking African countries

The organizers have a limited number of grants available to cover the tuition fee and accommodation at the Sports Village. Travel costs are not covered by this grant.



Tuition fee:

€ 750.00. Tuition fee includes printed materials, coffee/tea during breaks, lunches and one get­ together dinner. The date when the tuition fee is payable (for those not receiving a grant) will be announced with the outcome of the selection process.


Accommodation at the Sports Village can be booked upon request, but will have to be paid by the participant. Breakfast is included with the accommodation at the Sports Village (



Participants are expected to arrange and purchase their own flight tickets (reimbursement will be made where a grant has been awarded for this purpose). Participants must arrive on Sunday 24 March 2019 and depart on Saturday 13 April 2019.  If this will not be possible, please inform the organizers to assess if alternative arrangements can be made. Where possible, the organizers will assist with transport from OR Tambo International Airport, South Africa to Potchefstroom. Transport will be available from OR Tambo to Potchefstroom on Sunday 24 March 2019 at 10:00 and at 14:00. Transport will be available from Potchefstroom to OR Tambo on Saturday 13 April 2019 at 08:00. The travel time between OR Tambo International Airport and Potchefstroom is about 2 hours.



 After you have been enrolled into the programme and the payment/grant has been confirmed, there are a few practical matters that need attention.


Nationals from certain countries require a VISA to enter South Africa, where the programme will be held. You are responsible for obtaining the VISA. VISA costs will not be refunded. All participants will receive an invitation letter for this purpose. More information about VISA and application procedures can be found on the website of the South African Department of Home Affairs http://www.home­ or  htlp:/


Travel and medical insurance for full grant holders will be covered by the grant via NWU. Other participants will be responsible for their own insurance.



The cancellation policy will be announced with the outcome of the selection process.

Substitution of a participant by another PhD candidate will be done by the Administration using a 'reserve' list based on the applications.



Programme Leader: Dr Robin Dolman, CEN

Project Manager: Prof Edelweiss Wentzel-Viljoen, CEN

Financial Manager: Mrs Henriette Claasen, CEN

Administrative Assistant: Ms Marlise Korf, CEN

Project manager (NRF): Prof Fre Pepping, NRF

Co-programme Leader: Dr Matilda Asante (University of Ghana)