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Physiological and Psychological food choice determinants (P²FOOD)

Course content

About the Master’s Degree

P²food is a 2 year, course-based, full-time international research Master's Degree focused on the physiological and psychological determinants of food choice, offered by the University of Burgundy - Franche-Comté and AgroSup Dijon.


Course content

Food plays a much bigger role in consumers' lives than simply feeding them. Each day, humans make several food choices. Their diet has considerable impact on their nutritional status and health, but also on the environment.

A greater understanding of the reasons for consumers' choice of foods is needed in order to set up effective programs and develop new products, to improve dietary patterns in line with recommendations, and to increase food sustainability. Although seemingly simple, food choices are complex behaviors that depend on many factors and their interactions. In this Master’s Degree, a key focus is placed on the physiological and psychological factors of food choice.


As a student in this Master’s program, you will gain in-depth knowledge about food properties and fundamental insights about human food behavior. You will acquire sensory and consumer research methodology. You will come to understand the mechanisms of hunger, satiety and satiation, and the factors involved in palatability. You will study the influence of stress and mood on food behaviors, and explore the ways in which cultural context influences food choices. You will examine the importance of representation and consumer attitudes towards food, as well as the reasons for resistance to dietary change. You will understand why it is necessary to take on this issue in an interdisciplinary way.


Program description

Our approach is student-centered and participative. It combines lectures, seminars and practicals, workshops and individual/team projects. The modules below are indicative of those offered in this program. This list is based on the current organization and may change year to year in response to new needs in the food industry:


1st year (60 credits)

1st Semester:

  • Unit 1~: Methodology and tools 
  • Unit 2~: : Chemosensory perception, emotions, memory and food choices
  • Unit 3: Perception and sensory evaluation
  • Unit 4 :Microbiology and microbiological process
  • Unit 5: Food Chemistry and physiochemistry

2nd Semester:

  • Unit 6: Introduction to Psychology
  • Unit 7: Nutritional composition and information
  • Unit 8: Physiological regulation of eating behavior
  • Unit 9 : Professionalization
  • Unit 10 : internship (2 months)*

* 1st year research internship is 8 weeks long, in January-February.

2nd year (60 credits)

  • U12: Chemosensory determinants of food perception
  • U13: Cognitive processes implied in food perception and consumption
  • U14: Brain and food consumption
  • U15: Dynamics of feeding behavior over a lifetime
  • U16: Research methodology and training, including a research project 

During the 2nd year, students carry out a 6 month research internship.

About the University

The University “Bourgogne Franche – Comté” has been ranked 2nd best French University in the field of Food Sciences (Shangaï, 2017). Most of the lecturers and scientists involved in the Master’s program are members of the Research Center for Taste and Feeding Behavior (CSGA), an internationally renowned research center dedicated to interdisciplinary research on chemosensory perception and food consumption behavior. In addition to the pedagogical team, international invited lecturers will be involved.

Funding and tuition fees

As an international postgraduate you will benefit from France’s low tuition fees and have access to a wide range of funding programs (Grants from French embassies, AUF bursaries, etc.). You can also apply for funding from the Université Bourgogne Franche - Comté (25 grants in 2017).



This Master’s Degree aims at providing students with job-relevant competencies and skills for a career in industry (project leader or research engineer in nutrition; consumer science and R&D departments of international companies) or an academic position (food and consumer research; sensory and cognitive neuroscience research; food, nutrition and health research, etc.)

 More Information




Visit the Physiological and Psychological food choice determinants (P²FOOD) page on the Université Bourgogne Franche Comté website for more details!





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