University of Sydney Handbooks - 2018 Archive

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Food Science

About the major

The Food Science major will equip you with knowledge and skills relevant to the food and agribusiness sector, with a focus on the underpinning science of food products and processes. The major will develop analytical, problem-solving and research skills, with food industry as the context. The interdisciplinary and applied nature of the major will also provide you with transferable skills that are complementary with many other fields of study in the life and environmental sciences.

Requirements for completion

A major in Food Science requires 48 credit points, consisting of:

(i) 12 credit points of 1000-level core units
(ii) 12 credit points of 2000-level core units
(iii) 24 credit points of 3000-level core units

A minor in Food Science is available and articulates to this major.

Pathway through the major

The requirements for a major in Food Science are spread out over three years of the degree (possibly four years if students are completing a combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degree).

A sample pathway for the Food Science major (over three years of a degree) is listed below.

Sample pathway: Food Science major (48 credit points)



Units of study


Semester 1

Core: CHEM1XX1 Chemistry 1A

Semester 2

Core: BIOL1XX7 From Molecules to Ecosystems


Semester 1

Core: AGEN2002 Fresh Produce Management

Semester 2

Selective: 2000-level units listed for major


Semester 1

Core: AGCH3025 Chemistry and Biochemistry of Foods

Semester 2

Core: AGEN3004 Food Processing and Value Adding

Core: AGEN3001 Food Product Development

Semester 1 or Semester 2

Core: AGEN3XXX Food Technology and Biotechnology

Please Note. This sample progression is meant as an example only. Depending on unit prerequisites, students may be able to complete these units in a different sequence from that displayed in the table above.

For details of the core and selective units of study required for the major or minor please refer to the Food Science section of the unit of study table, Table S, in this handbook.

Fourth year

The fourth year is only offered within the combined Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Advanced Studies course.

Advanced coursework
The Bachelor of Advanced Studies advanced coursework option consists of 48 credit points, which must include a minimum of 24 credit points in a single subject area at 4000-level, including a project unit of study worth at least 12 credit points. Space is provided for 12 credit points towards the second major (if not already completed). 24 credit points of advanced study will be included in the table for 2020.

Requirements for Honours in the area of Food Science: completion of 24 credit points of project work and 12 credit points of coursework.

Honours units of study will be available in 2020.

Contact and further information


T +61 02 9351 4262

School of Life and Environmental Sciences
Level 5, Carslaw Building F07
University of Sydney NSW 2006

Dr Kim-Yen Phan-Thien
T +61 2 8627 1049
Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate from Food Science will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the core sciences in the context of food science.
  2. Understand how knowledge from food science is integrated and applied in industry practices.
  3. Demonstrate basic knowledge of agriculture, business and social science as they apply in food and agribusiness value chains.
  4. Explain the role and relevance of food and agribusiness in society.
  5. Understand the major biophysical, economic, social and policy drivers that underpin and influence food production, management and business practices.
  6. Understand how information is adopted and the context within which value chain actors make decisions.
  7. Identify contemporary issues and opportunities in food and agribusiness.
  8. Gather, critically evaluate and synthesise information from a range of relevant sources and disciplines.
  9. Select and apply appropriate and/or theoretical techniques or tools in order to conduct an investigation.
  10. Collect, accurately record, analyse, interpret and report data.
  11. Understand methods of effective two-way written and verbal communication with different audiences.
  12. Communicate with a range of audiences using a variety of modes.
  13. Be independent and self-directed learners.
  14. Work effectively, responsibly and safely in an individual and team context.
  15. Demonstrate knowledge of the regulatory frameworks relevant to food and agribusiness.
  16. Practise ethical conduct.