Postgraduate study
Science & Environment

MSc Food Science and Biotechnology (with Advanced Practice)

Food and drink manufacturing is vital to the UK economy. It is the single largest manufacturing sector in the UK, employing 15% of the entire manufacturing workforce. Food producers must address environmental concerns, social responsibility and economic viability when designing sustainable food processing techniques.

Course information

Full-time

  • 2 years

More full-time details

January 2018 entry

September 2018 entry

Part-time

  • Not available part-time

Contact details

Further information

  • Facilities

    Microscopy laboratory

    Here at Teesside we have world-class facilities, including our microscopy laboratory, it's a 360 video so have a scroll around.

 

This innovative and topical programme is ideal for graduates new to this dynamic and exciting sector. It’s also particularly suitable if you’re seeking career enhancement by studying food science and biotechnology at master’s level. The programme will be of particular interest to graduates with an interest in developing knowledge and skills in subjects such as food biotechnology, food safety management and analytical techniques currently used in the food industry. It is also suitable if you already work in the industry and wish to develop your skills in these areas. You can study MSc Food Science and Biotechnology either as a one-year master’s programme or as a two-year programme which includes Advanced Practice. The one-year programme is a great option for students who want to gain a traditional MSc qualification, graduate and start their career path within 12 months.

The two-year MSc Food Science and Biotechnology (with Advanced Practice) is an opportunity to enhance your qualification by spending one year completing an internship, research or study abroad experience. Although we cannot guarantee an internship, we can provide you with practical support and advice on how to find and secure your own internship position. A vocational internship is a great way to gain work experience and give your CV a competitive edge. Alternatively, a research internship, develops your research and academic skills as you work as part of a research team in an academic setting – ideal if you are interested in a career in research or academia. A third option is to study abroad in an academic exchange with one of our partner universities. This option does incur additional costs such as travel and accommodation. You must also take responsibility for ensuring you have the appropriate visa to study outside the UK, where relevant.

We are highly praised for the links we maintains with local and national industries and businesses such as Marlow Foods (Quorn), SK Chilled Foods and Sainsbury’s. Our commitment to integrate with industry in the Tees Valley and beyond is reflected in our record of producing employment-ready problem solvers and innovators. This postgraduate programme embeds key transferable skills through visits to industry and talks by industry speakers. 

For the MSc award you must successfully complete 120 credits of taught modules and a 60-credit master's research project.

You develop a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of food science and bioprocessing in the 21st century. You focus on food production and processing, biotechnology and sustainability alongside food quality and supply chain management. You also have the option to explore food product development and enterprise, food microbiology and safety, or project management in great depth, depending on your interest or desired career choice.

You are encouraged to take a voluntary placement within local industry to conduct real-world research projects. 

Course structure

Modules include

Food Biotechnology

An introduction to current research and development across food biotechnology. You explore examples of the impact of biotechnology on food science, nutrition, food processing and food safety.

Traditionally, fermented foods such as cheese, yoghurt and alcoholic beverages were all produced by the action of micro-organisms converting simple raw materials into a range of products with enhanced organoleptic properties. Modern applications of these technologies include bioconversion of raw materials into high-priced commodities such as starch into sugar.

In addition, the development of genetic engineering techniques has permitted the modification of microbes, plants and animals. This is a highly controversial development potentially offering a diversity of new and enhanced food products, but there is a perceived risk to the environment and consumers.
The principles of microbial fermentation are investigated, with examples from food production including managing waste. This element of the module builds on a grounding in microbial physiology, prior to exploring types of reactor systems and their analysis and operation. The module also explores the recombinant DNA technologies which underpin the genetic modification of organisms and their applications to the food and agricultural sector.

Food Chemistry Composition and Analysis

The chemical composition of food is the key focus of this module. You critically examine the major physical and chemical changes to food as a result of applying a range of food processing technologies and storage conditions. You develop a comprehensive and critical understanding of the current and emerging analytical techniques used by the food industry.

Food Product Design and Manufacturing Process Development

The module introduces you to the food product development and food manufacturing processes. It allows you to connect to the real world through the experience of developing a new food product either through an industry-based or industry-linked project. You experience challenges similar to those encountered in the launch of a new food product from laboratory to the table, including consideration of full economic costs and the development of a business plan. As part of this learning, you integrate graduate research skills and develop entrepreneurship.

Food Safety Engineering and Management

You examine a range of traditional and emerging technologies to ensure food safety. You explore a range of current food-related safety issues, for example analysing risk using standard industry tools such as hazard analysis critical control points. You review current hygiene practices in the food industry including emerging new sectors, such as biotechnology, which have brought with them new challenges associated with food quality and safety.

You also look at implementing, auditing and evaluating appropriate processes and procedures, and controls for safely processing foods. This module provides you with the necessary skills to synthesise and critically appraise different aspects of food safety technologies and food safety management in complex contexts.

Research Project

This module considers the principles of evidence-based practice and facilitates the development of research skills including systematic reviewing, research ethics and integrity, and project management. You will apply your learning from previous modules by conducting a self-initiated research project.

You are allocated a supervisor who acts in a role as a consultant. The in-course assessment (20%) is a research proposal including mini systematic review of the literature. The end-course assessment (80%) is the write up of the your final research project in the form of a research article.

 

Advanced Practice modules

Research Internship

Develop your research and academic skills by undertaking a research internship within the University. Experience working as part of a research team in an academic setting – ideal if you are interested in a career in research or academia.

Study Abroad

Take part in an academic exchange with one of our partner universities and experience study, student life and culture in a different environment. This option offers a valuable life experience and enhances your ability to adapt to working and living internationally. This option does incur additional costs such as travel and accommodation. You must also take responsibility for ensuring you have the appropriate visa to study outside the UK, where relevant.

Vocational Internship

Spend one semester working full-time in industry. We have close links with a variety of local companies who can offer you the chance to develop your knowledge and professional skills in the workplace through an internship. Although we can’t guarantee you an internship, we will provide you with practical support and advice on how to find and secure your own internship position. A vocational internship is a great way to gain work experience and give your CV a competitive edge.

 

Modules offered may vary.

How you learn

Making the transition to postgraduate-level study can be challenging. Support with making this transition is seen as an important element of this programme. 

Support is provided during the programme induction and within the module, Food Product Design and Manufacturing Processes. This support is designed to help you understand the requirements of academic study at postgraduate level, to enhance your skills in academic writing and referencing, and to help you develop the skills necessary to operate professionally, safely and ethically in planning and implementing a master’s-level research project.

By including work-based problem-solving projects and case study exercises this programme emphasises real-world working. This helps to blend theory and knowledge in the context of business, allowing you to develop the skills employers are seeking to set you on a successful career path. 

A significant feature of the programme is the inclusion of blended learning to provide a rich and varied learning experience. This also provides additional flexibility if you are in employment.

On campus you have access to a dedicated food product development laboratory and a pilot-scale processing equipment facility, allowing you to gain valuable hands-on experience of food processing and product development. Fully equipped microbiological and chemical analysis laboratories enable you to undertake a series of relevant practical investigative projects, through which you explore a range of ingredients and food products.

How you are assessed

You are assessed on subject knowledge, independent thought and skills acquisition through formative and summative assessment. 

Assessment may include:
• examinations
• oral presentations
• technical interviews
• technical reports
• laboratory reports 
• literature surveys, evaluations and summaries
• dissertation or thesis (MSc only).

You are presented with an assessment schedule providing details of the submission deadlines for summative assessments.

Career opportunities

Food and drink manufacturing is vital to the UK economy. It is the single largest manufacturing sector in the UK, employing 15% of the entire manufacturing workforce. Food and drink manufacturing companies make up 7% of all manufacturing businesses, and they buy two thirds of all the UK’s agricultural produce. The industry generates 18% of total manufacturing turnover. 

To meet the demands of this dynamic sector, the food industry needs to recruit more than 49,000 new skilled professionals and managers by 2022 which is great news for the next generation of talent wanting to study toward a rewarding career in a dynamic and highly innovative sector (The National Skills Academy for Food & Drink). 

Graduates can seek jobs in many areas in the food sector including:
• food analysis 
• new product development 
• quality management and food safety management
• food production management 
• technical management.

Work placement

There may be short-term placement opportunities for some students, particularly during the project phase of the course.

Entry requirements

Applicants are normally expected to have at least a UK 2.2 honours degree, or equivalent, in a subject related to science, engineering or technology. 

In addition, international students normally need at least a 6.0, with no component below 5.5, in the International Language Testing System (IELTS) test.

If your first degree is not in one of the subject areas listed above please contact our admissions team for guidance and advice on how you might become eligible. We may be able to offer you alternative access routes.

For additional information please see the entry requirements in our admissions section

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country

Course information

Full-time

  • 2 years

More full-time details

January 2018 entry

September 2018 entry

Part-time

  • Not available part-time

Contact details

Further information