module specification

DT5052 - Food Science and Microbiology (2021/22)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2021/22
Module status DELETED (This module is no longer running)
Module title Food Science and Microbiology
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 150
115 hours Guided independent study
35 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50% 35 Food Microbiology Laboratory report (1500 words)
In-Course Test 50% 35 Online assessment (3 x 20 minutes in-class tests)
Running in 2021/22

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Monday Afternoon

Module summary

This module looks at the microbial world and how microorganisms could cause food spoilage and foodborne diseases as well as contributing towards preservation of our food.  The major microorganisms in food and their characteristics will be discussed, focusing on intrinsic and extrinsic factors affecting their growth in food. The module discusses in some detail how microorganisms are controlled through food preservation and food processing methods. The module also focusses the effects on nutrients and anti-nutrients of processing and preservation. The basics of proximate food analysis techniques and measuring food energy will be discussed within a food labelling context. In addition, the module contains laboratory practicals on basic food microbiology.

The overall aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. This module aims to give learners insight into how and why foods are processed and the effects of processing on nutrients. It also covers the principles of food spoilage and preservation and hygiene and safety of the food. The module also seeks to develop competence in discussion and written work, encouraging clarity and scientific rigour.

The learners must pass with an overall mark of 40%. In addition learners must normally obtain at least 35% in each component of assessment within this module. A mark of between 35% and 39% may be compensated by other components.

Prior learning requirements

Human Nutrition (NU4003)


The specified learning outcomes will be developed around a framework based on the following subject matter:
Microbial world, Factors affecting the growth of microorganisms, Food spoilage, Food infection and intoxications, Traditional food preservation and processing methods, Emerging technologies in food preservation, Major groups of microorganisms causing food-borne diseases. Nutrition and food processing, Principles of food safety & hygiene, Diet & gut flora, Basics of food labelling and food analysis
Safe working practices, including the selection of appropriate hazard control and risk management, reduction.
Selection and correct use of personal protective equipment.

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

The syllabus will be developed through lectures, tutorials/case studies and laboratory work. A significant amount of learning materials will be made available through the University Weblearn. The topics will be delivered to ensure direct relevance to the future careers of the learners – as dietitians. In class, learners will be given opportunities to assess the development of their knowledge and understanding of the topic through the use of short reflective exercises. Learners will also have practical insight of some of the basic microbiological techniques in foods, which will be demonstrated in the Science Centre Laboratory and using on-line resources, such as video clips.
Learners will be required to undertake further study in-depth on their own to develop their knowledge.
Employability: Learners will develop their ability to analyse strategies to manage food spoilage and food-borne diseases at home, care homes and hospitals and to establish a healthy diet.

Learning outcomes

On completing this module learners should be able to:
1. Demonstrate an understanding of the causes of food spoilage, food preservation, food-borne disease and strategies for prevention in relation to dietetic practice
2. Demonstrate an understanding of the human microbiome and the influences of the diet
3. Interpret food labels with respect to nutrition, ingredients and legal requirements and understand the principles of food analysis and food processing

Assessment strategy

This module will be assessed by on-line in-class assessments (3 x 20 minutes progress tests), covering syllabus topics including food spoilage, food infection and intoxication, food preservation methods as well as diet and gut flora and the two practical sessions. The three on-line tests, each designed for 20 minutes, will be given in teaching weeks 19, 23 and 26 to engage learners with the taught material and provide both formative and summative assessment, with opportunity for formative feedback. The average of 3 on-line tests has a weighting of 50% towards the module. Students have one attempt to take each test. The learners also expected to submit a coursework (food microbiology laboratory report) based on the food microbiology practicals conducted on this module . The coursework will be summatively assessed.

Learners must obtain at least 40% to pass this module. In addition, learners must normally obtain at least 35% in each component of assessment within this module. A mark of between 35% and 39% may be compensated by other component. If the module is passed on reassessment, then the maximum mark awarded will be 40%.

Component                           Marks          Learning outcomes
Coursework 1500 words       50%           1, 2
Progress test (3 x 20 min)      50%          1, 2, 3

Learners are required to attend the laboratory practical sessions.


Adams, M.R. & Moss, M.O. (2007) Food Microbiology, 3rd ed. Cambridge: Royal Society of Chemistry. (CORE)
Campbell-Platt, G. (2009) Food Science and Technology. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
Fellows, P.J. (2009) Food Processing Technology, 3rd ed. Cambridge: Woodhead Publishing Limited.
Forsythe, S.J. (2002) The Microbiological Risk Assessment of Food. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.
Henry, C.J.K. & Heppell, N.J. (eds) (1998) Nutritional Aspects of Food Processing and Ingredients, New York: Aspen Publishers.
Lean, M. (2009) Fox and Cameron's Food Science, Nutrition and Health, 7th ed. London: Hodder Arnold. (CORE)
Nielsen, S.S. (2010) Food Analysis, 4th ed. New York: Springer Science.
Roe M,A., Finglass P.M. and Church S. (2004) McCance & Widdowson's The Composition of Foods. 6th Edition. Cambridge: Royal Society of Chemistry.
Nielsen, S.S. (2010) Food Analysis, 4th ed. New York: Springer Science.
Shafiur Rahman, M. (2007) Handbook of food preservation, 2nd ed. Cambridge: CRC Press.
Webb, G. (2012) Nutrition 4E: Maintaining and Improving Health, 4th ed. Cambridge: CRC press
Wheelis, M.L. (2008) Principles of Modern Microbiology. Sudbury: Jones and Bartlett.