Food is necessary for human survival, is an important source of pleasure, and plays an enormous role in the global economy. Microbes play an essential role in food preservation and safety, food for health and food biotechnology. These are growing areas in all global economies. UCC Microbiology has established a global reputation in food microbiology, based on its research profile and the impact of its graduates in the food industry.
This course covers the breadth of classical and modern food microbiology, including food safety and spoilage; food fermentation; food biotechnology; hygienic production of food; the impact of diet on health; the molecular mechanisms of infectious microbes and the role of the gut microbiota in human health.
The MSc in Food Microbiology is a structured one-year full-time course which includes a six-month lab-based research dissertation. The aim of this course is to educate you to an MSc level in food microbiology, emphasising areas in which UCC engages actively in research, e.g. food biotechnology, food fermentations, food safety, food for health.
The course will give you the knowledge and skills to contribute to Irish and international food industries. Modules will be chosen with the approval of the Programme Board depending on your background.
After completing this course you will have:
advanced theoretical education and practical training in the area of food microbiology
greater knowledge and understanding of current issues in food microbiology
laboratory research practice in food microbiology
knowledge from different aspects of food microbiology and formulation of appropriate judgements on scientific research
ability to survey scientific literature at a professional level
knowledge, understanding and problem-solving skills to address practical issues in the food industry and work there at management level.
Further details on the content and modules are available on the Postgraduate College Calendar.
Why Choose This Course
UCC is one of Ireland's oldest institutions of higher education, the first Irish 5 Star University and the Sunday Times Irish University of the year 2011-12. Microbiology in UCC can trace its history to 1924 and we are now the leading microbiology academic centre in Ireland (based on publication output). Much of the course is delivered by active research staff who are global leaders in a number of food microbiology fields (microbiological safety of foods, food/milk fermentation, probiotics, and bacteriocins). Our first-rate facilities include extensive, well equipped laboratories with state of the art analytical/technology platforms.
Placement or Study Abroad Information
Candidates generally carry out their research in the laboratories of the University. It may be possible, with the prior approval of the Programme Co-ordinator, to undertake the research project in another appropriate academic or industrial setting.
Candidates must be holders of an honours BSc degree, or equivalent qualification, in a discipline with a significant element of laboratory science, with a minimum of second class honours Grade 2 or equivalent. However, candidates with equivalent academic qualifications may be accepted subject to the approval of College. The number of places is limited and selection will be made on the basis of the candidate's performance in his/her primary degree or interview.
English Language Requirements
Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.
For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland
Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, please find our grades comparison by country here.
For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.
Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants.
For more information please contact the International Office.
The course uses a variety of assessment methods. Most modules are assessed by in-term continuous assessment and/or end-of-year examinations. In-term exams can be either multiple choice type questions (MCQs) or written papers (normally 1.5h duration). Most modules include assignments, dissertation and reports as part of the assessment methodology. Modules that contain workshop/practical components are also assessed using written reports/assignments. The laboratory research project is assessed by a combination of laboratory performance, written report and oral presentation. The research project (MB6007) is written up in the form of a dissertation and approved by an external examiner.
1 year Full-time
Start Date 7 September 2020
Post Course Info
Skills and Careers Information
The MSc in Food Microbiology is designed to equip graduates to work in a range of management, research and innovation roles within the Irish and international food, beverage and associated industries. Graduates will be in a position to support new product development, innovation and quality assurance functions in the dairy, meat, consumer foods, soft and alcoholic beverages and food ingredients sectors. Graduates will also be equipped to work in a range of other areas such as contract food-testing laboratories, the regulatory and consumer protection sectors. Graduates also have the option of proceeding to further studies at PhD level.