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Combining Theory and Practice in Online Cooking Course

Educator and physician Maya Adam MD recently added online college courses to her experience as a lecturer at Stanford University in California. Maya Adam’s 2013 class, Child Nutrition and Cooking, offered participants instruction in the science and practice of making healthful meals for young people and families.The epidemic of childhood obesity, which some say is due to the prevalence of processed foods, formed the background of the course. Students learned how advertising and marketing shapes individual opinions and preferences about eating. Early on, students cooked a simple breakfast and learned stir-fry techniques. Further instruction covered more elaborate meals and using portion control to satisfy hungry children. Later, participants learned about making nutritious school lunches and shopping for vegetables and fruits. The course then shifted to using gardening to engage children’s interest in wholesome eating. It concluded with a summary of healthful eating ideas; the cooking segment of the class included making a stew and creating a homemade salad dressing. To take the course, learners needed only to have basic kitchen tools and a willingness to experiment.


Online teaching, child health, nutrition, childhood obesity

Work experience

Jan 2009Present

Lecturer, Program in Human Biology

Stanford University


Doctor of Medicine

University of British Columbia


Stanford University

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