The food industry is under constant pressure to produce innovative products while maintaining food safety, economic viability and environmental standards. The MSc Food Science course has been specifically designed to develop your theoretical and practical knowledge of the science underpinning Food Processing and Food Quality Assurance. You will gain practical experience of a range of modern methods and techniques used in Food Science research, while developing key transferable skills that are valued by employers, with an emphasis on project management, critical thinking, problem solving and independent learning.
This course can be taken full-time over one year or part-time over two years.
Food Safety and Quality - This module is designed to provide you with an appreciation of the value of quality assurance and quality control procedures in the production of food, satisfying both legal requirements and the customers need for quality and safety. Application of recognised quality and safety systems such as International Standards Organisation (ISO) and Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) is studied in detail, together with the ability to apply them to implementation of an effective food safety management system.
Aspects of Food Processing - This module covers the principal processes used in the food industry for the preservation of foods including thermal preservation, freezing, high-pressure processing, dehydration and the use of preservatives. Speakers from the industry and visits to factories will be included in this module so that you will be able to draw on industrial expertise and observe how theory is put into practice in an industrial setting. Assessed laboratory sessions will compliment the theory and provide you with an opportunity to apply such knowledge.
Nutrition and Food Policy - This module is designed to develop further knowledge and understanding of policy development and implementation in health promotion and disease prevention. Policy aspects will be reviewed in the context of the current agencies involved (e.g. FSA, WHO, SACN) and the ways by which policies evolve over time in response to emerging research.
Nutrient Analysis and Sensory Perception - This module will help you to develop your understanding of the scientific principles and practical methods which underlie the development of new food products, including formulation, sensory evaluation of products (eg taste, appearance) and nutrient analysis for labelling and quality assurance purposes. You will look at the procedures involved in developing new and existing products from product concept to product launch (including packaging, labelling, marketing, pricing and advertising). The principles of sensory evaluation of food will be discussed, including the relevant physiological aspects of the senses such as taste thresholds. Finally you will study sensory evaluation methodology and industrially accepted methods for nutrient analysis.
Graduate Science Research Methods - This module will help you to develop your skills in the use of the literature and in quantitative methods. You will learn how to evaluate and contribute to the scientific literature and to interpret and disseminate scientific information. You will appreciate the desirable properties of research design and be able to select an experimental design appropriate to a given system and create the design matrix. You will be able to select, apply, and interpret the output from statistical methods of data analysis and evaluate the results of statistical analyses as applied to a given data set.
Subject Exploration - This module is designed to provide you with an opportunity for advanced exploration into a subject area of interest so that you can develop a critical appreciation of primary research within a relevant field and apply your pre-existing scientific/technical knowledge. It will also enable you to further develop your key skills including information retrieval, evaluative, analytical, and problem solving skills.
Project - This module will give you the opportunity to carry out a research-based dissertation, encompassing a wet-laboratory based, computer-based or theoretically-based project. All projects will include the development of research skills and discussion of results as well as an opportunity to compose a written dissertation.
COURSEWORK AND ASSESSMENT
You will benefit from modern laboratory facilities including designated laboratories for Food Technology, Sensory Evaluation, Food Analysis, Microbiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. You will also be able to use the facilities throughout campus including IT laboratories and the Library.
The modules are assessed via combinations of coursework, laboratory reports and seminar presentations.
The course will enhance your career opportunities in Food and related industries, particularly in aspects related to Food Safety and Quality Assurance, Food Product Development and Food Analysis, together with consultancy, research or education. If you would prefer to do further study, the course will prepare you for further academic research.