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Food Science and Nutrition MSc

Course Description

Providing nutritious food is a key target for the government, which is keen to encourage industry and academic experts to work together to improve food standards. The politics of food in society, involving manufacturers, retailers, consumers and health professionals, are complex and continually evolving.

Throughout the programme you’ll investigate the scientific aspects of food, nutrition and the wider implications of diet on our health and wellbeing. You’ll balance your studies between the scientific studies on food, nutrition and related health aspects.

The breadth of the programme gives an appreciation of key positions of food and health, as well as in food composition, and the manufacture of foods. At the interface between food and nutrition, graduates will be key in the development of new healthy eating trends.

Course content

Throughout the programme you’ll tackle issues such as the nutritional significance of processed foods in the diet, the effects of nutrition labelling and nutrition claims, functional foods; and catering technology and nutritional quality.

Alongside developing current techniques in food analysis, structure and processing you will gain in-depth knowledge of current health topics such as heart disease, and antioxidants and their health benefits. You also gain knowledge and understanding of the functions of food and nutrients and their relationship to health and disease.

Course structure

Compulsory modules

  • Microbiological and Chemical Food Safety 20 credits
  • Food Processing 20 credits
  • Research Project 60 credits
  • Diet and Cardiovascular Health 10 credits
  • Impacts of Food Processing on Nutritional Quality 10 credits
  • Structure and Function of Food Components 20 credits
  • Food Analysis 10 credits
  • Functional Foods 10 credits
  • Professional Development for Employment and Research 20 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Food Science and Nutrition MSc in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

Teaching is by lectures, practical classes, tutorials, seminars and supervised research projects. Extensive use is made of IT and a wide range of materials is available to enable you to study at your own pace and in your own time to enhance and extend the material taught formally.


Assessment is by course work and written exams which take place at the end of the semester in which the module is taught.

Career opportunities

Postgraduates from the School go into careers in research, in the food industry, into regulatory and public bodies across the world, backed by the confidence and skills gained from studying at one of the leading schools of food science and nutrition internationally.

Our graduates are in big demand and food companies come to Leeds to recruit the best talent. Some of our past graduates hold key positions in the food industry and government agencies.

There are many opportunities open to you within the food industry, from jobs in nutrition and new product development to roles in the supply chain, purchasing, logistics and distribution. You may decide to become a development scientist, working on new foodstuffs and producing food which is safe and nutritious with a consistent flavour, colour and texture. There are roles within this area in industry, but also within government and local authority food inspection departments. Other job roles include industrial buyer, retail buyer, production manager or quality assurance manager.

Read more about typical career paths:

Further study

A Masters in food science will also serve you well in progression to research-led projects. Many of our students go on to undertake PhD research here at the University of Leeds in one of the School’s research groups. Read about postgraduate research in the School of Food Science and Nutrition.

Careers support

The School of Food Science and Nutrition has its own dedicated Employability Enhancement Officer who can offer quality advice and support with regards to careers, CV and cover letter writing, job applications etc. The Employability Enhancement Officer promotes a range of opportunities available to students to ensure they maximise their capabilities through a process of personal development and career planning.

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

Visit the Food Science and Nutrition MSc page on the University of Leeds website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Elizabeth Hernandez Zenil

5036.jpg Why did you choose to study food science and nutrition at master’s level?

My first degree was in clinical nutrition, and I had a couple of food science related modules that really spiked my interest in the area. After finishing the BSc I decided to take on some cooking and baking courses, which led me to be even more interested in how the properties of food components effect the final product. Afterwards, I started working in the National Institute of Public Health in Mexico, where I was involved in a couple of projects regarding food environment and child obesity, and that is where I realised what an important role food science can play in trying to create a better food environment to decrease and prevent diet related diseases. That was the final push that led me to choose food science and nutrition at a master’s level.

Why did you choose the University of Leeds?

While looking for programmes on food science I was aiming at Europe, as I wanted to experience a completely different environment educationally and culturally. While looking up the different universities, I felt that the programme offered by The University of Leeds was definitely one that covered all the aspects I wanted to learn about and the School of Food Science and Nutrition is considered one of the best in the UK.

What have you enjoyed most about your course?

I love the fact that it has been quite practical, in the sense that for some of the modules the theory was related to practice through lab work. I am a person that learns more efficiently through practice, as I think it helps connect the theory to real life. Also that some of the invited lecturers were people who work in the food industry, and they gave us a better view of real problems faced in the industry, which are not really taught in books. Last but not least, the amount of people from different nationalities and cultural backgrounds I got to know on the course. I believe that helped enrich the experience by broadening the view into how different countries address issues related to food science and nutrition.

(Student Profile)

Bridget Dooshima Igbetar

5039.jpg Why did you choose to study food science and nutrition at master’s level?

I wanted to build a more defined career in Food Science. I come from a country where, to be considered in your field of study, you need to make extra effort because of the growing rate of graduates. A master degree especially from the UK is an added advantage. Additionally, after graduating with a BSc in Food Science and Technology, and working with NAFDAC (National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control) in Nigeria, I felt a hunger to take the step to further develop myself.

Why did you choose the University of Leeds?

I chose the University of Leeds for two reasons. Firstly, my father studied here a long time ago, and on his return to Nigeria, he never stopped speaking highly of this University and as such, I too looked forward to coming over to get a feel. Secondly, when the opportunity of studying abroad presented itself, and I already had a foundation in Food Science, I did a quick check on University of Leeds, and it was rated the second best in my field of interest in the UK. I didn’t need to scout any further.

Has the course lived up to your expectations?

Of course it has, I have over time developed a better understanding of the relationship between Food Science and Nutrition. At first, it was difficult catching up because it became apparent to me that I knew so little, but, gradually I’ve caught up. I think it is important to add that, the guidance given to me by my lecturers, personal tutor and project supervisor here was remarkable.

What have you enjoyed most about your course?

I enjoyed a warm student-lecturer relationship and the different yet acceptable views about Food Science and Nutrition during our routine meetings. The lecturers were all accessible, willing to listen to me at any point in time. This made my learning easier. I loved the style of receiving lectures, where it was more like an interactive session than just sitting and listening.

(Student Profile)

Wenyun Liu

5040.jpg "Food is not only essential for living but an important factor that affects the quality of our lives. This field of study provides me with different perspectives of how food can influence our lives and also how we can manipulate processing in order to achieve the organoleptic and nutritional properties of safe food products.

I'm a person who always looks forward to applying the theoretical knowledge I've acquired from my study into practice, and doing a Masters degree in food science and nutrition helps me to achieve this.

The School of Food Science and Nutrition ranks first among universities that provide similar courses in the UK. Also, affordable living costs, good public transport and beautiful parks and nature attractions around the city I'd found online before I came, all contributed to my decision to come here. I already felt home even before I came to Leeds.

Outside of studying, I found a volunteer opportunity at Food Cycle. I help to cook free meals for people at risk from food poverty and social isolation. I feel very proud I've joined them because I'm helping others while doing something I have a passion for. I hope that this type of charity, redistributing food resources, may one day become big enough relieve world hunger.

I would definitely recommend coming to Leeds for postgraduate study. You will love your choice to come to Leeds, not only because of the excellent teaching and research, the best Students Union and lovely people you will meet, but also because you gain a broadened horizon of perceiving things and exploring the self you want to be."


Dean's International Postgraduate Masters Scholarships - 10 Awards

These awards are competitive, based on high achievement.

Value of Scholarship(s)



There are up to 10 partial-fee scholarships available worth £3,000 each. These awards are open to international candidates who have been accepted for admission onto a full-time MSc programme in the School, and who are eligible to pay tuition fees at the full international rate.

Application Procedure

Eligible applicants will automatically be considered for these awards at the time of application, so are not required to complete an application form.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A bachelor degree with a 2:2 (hons) or equivalent in a relevant science subject. English language requirements: IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in all components.

Last Updated

08 August 2017

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