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This online Global Food Security (Food Safety) postgraduate programme will be delivered by leading research active staff within the internationally recognised Institute for Global Food Security (IGFS) based at Queen’s University Belfast.

This unique food safety course will comprise specialist modules such as chemical and microbiological feed and food safety, health, global food legislation, food fraud and advanced analytical methods for detecting food safety issues. The course is particularly suitable for those working in the agri-food industry, regulatory agencies and analytical communities who wish to develop their knowledge to a higher level.

Awards will be available at Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert) and Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) level, and to Masters level following completion of a dissertation-based module.


On-line module delivery is currently planned to be 15 weeks long, with required estimated student time per week of between 15-20 hours.

Each module is available for a specified 20 week period each academic year. On-line material will be released over a 15 week content delivery period with a further 5 weeks for completion and submission of the final assessment element.

Module content will be opened up on a block-by-block basis every 3 weeks and students will work at their own pace through content completing continuous assessment tasks to agreed schedules.

Start dates for next DL modules are:

  • Food safety and health: Monday 24th September 2018
  • Food integrity, fraud and traceability: Monday 4th March 2019 
  • Advanced Analytical Tools for Food Security: Monday 23 September 2019
  • Global food standards and legislation: Monday 2 March 2020

For further information email or send us a message on WhatsApp


Students can study the Masters part-time over a period of 3 years, the Postgraduate Diploma part-time over a period of 2 years and the Postgraduate Certificate part-time over a period of 1 year. You can also enrol initially for a 1 year Postgraduate Certificate and if successful continue to the Postgraduate Diploma and /or Masters.

Students aiming for MSc qualification will study 60CATS each year, normally the two Postgraduate Certificate modules [60CATS] in the first year, the additional two modules for the Postgraduate Diploma [60CATS; total 120CATS] in second year, and the Dissertation [60CATS; total 180CATS] in third year as described below:


Food Safety and Health 

The contents of this module will centre on the exploration of various chemical and microbiological risks associated with animal feed and human food safety, and an examination of the reported links to health defects/disease progression.

Food Integrity, Fraud and Traceability 

This module will investigate examples of highly varied, internationally relevant and difficult to detect incidences of food fraud and compromised food traceability. The range and types of food fraud will be discussed and the means of detecting such incidences to ensure that food is safe, wholesome and authentic demonstrated. The economic consequences of food product recall due to food contamination incidents will be assessed highlighting the need for traceability across the whole food supply chain, together with an exploration of consumer willingness to pay for improvements to aspects of food safety and traceability.


Advanced Analytical Tools for Food Security 

This module will review the principles behind current and emerging monitoring technologies for rapid/early detection of feed/food contamination incidents and disease. Overviews and applications of various screening and confirmatory test platforms for food security analysis will be covered in this module.

Global Food Standards and Legislation

This module introduces international food standard setting, with a focus on the Codex Alimentarius Commission standard setting process and its impacts on international trade and World Trade Organisation agreements related to food in addition to trends of modernisation of food safety legislation internationally.



This module (60CATS) consists of research work and a written dissertation carried out around a hypothesis, case study, critical incident or other significant activity relevant to the programme. Students will prepare a project proposal for approval before registering on the module and develop a full project proposal upon which they are interviewed before carrying out the project work. Interim reports and a draft introduction will be submitted at required intervals in addition to regular contact with an assigned IGFS academic supervisor and submission of a completed thesis by an agreed deadline. Online teaching delivery will relate to project management skills, plagiarism, researching and writing techniques.

For further information email or send us a message on WhatsApp

Visit the Global Food Security (Food Safety) - Online Distance Learning page on the Queen’s University Belfast website for more details!






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