Introduction to Food Processing and Engineering

University of Reading

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Introduction to Food Processing and Engineering

  • Host University

    University of Reading

  • Location

    Reading, England

  • Area of Study

    Nutrition and Food Science

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Module Provider: Food and Nutritional Sciences
    Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
    Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring / Summer module
    Non-modular pre-requisites:
    Modules excluded:
    Module version for: 2016/7

    Summary module description:
    This module serves as an introduction to food processing and food texture/mouth-feel, and includes the physical properties of food systems and the quantitative principles and underpinning processing operations. In this module important food processing and food textural quality defining parameters and principles will be introduced. This module is intended to be a prerequisite to study food processing sciences and physicochemical aspects of food quality and storage.

    - Explain the principles of selected physical aspects of biological systems and to understand their role in transporting, processing, storage and analysis of such materials.
    - Improve numeracy, quantitative and laboratory skills by integrating lectures with practical work and numerical problems in the subject area.
    - Provide the building blocks for further courses in food processing and biotechnology.
    - Understand the role of physical properties in food processing operations and food quality/mouth-feel assessment.
    - Use experimental methods to determine physical properties.
    - Use compositional data or reference sources to estimate physical properties.
    - Provide examples of typical values for the main physical properties.

    Assessable learning outcomes:
    On completion of the module, students should be able to:
    - identify key physical properties of foods which critically influence processing and mouth-feel
    - Do simple numerical calculations related to mass and heat balances around individual food processes and process plants.
    - state the units of relevant physical properties of foods in SI and other units and be able to convert from SI units to other practical units and vice versa.
    - Perform simple laboratory experiments for determining selected physical properties and perform calculations to determine their values.
    - Produce meaningful laboratory reports.
    - Estimate some physical properties of food from food composition data.
    - Food safety.

    Additional outcomes:
    The students would be able to appreciate the role of physical properties, in conjunction with chemical, biochemical and microbiological aspects, in determining food safety and quality.

    Outline content:
    Autumn term will review basic mathematical skills necessary to understand the material taught in Spring term. Autumn term will contain:
    Real number system. Use of calculator functions. Units and conversions. Topics in basic algebra. Elements of co-ordinate geometry, straight lines and other graphs. Laws of indices. Logarithms. Simultaneous and quadratic equations. Derivatives. Elementary statistics, averages, probability distributions, hypothesis testing, data correlation, linear regression. Introduction to spread sheets, manipulating data sets using spread sheets, plotting graphs, correlating data and interpreting relevant statistics.

    Spring term will contain:
    Composition of biological materials and its effect on physical properties. Units and dimensions and dimensionless groups. Introduction to physical concepts such as velocity, acceleration, momentum, force, pressure, work, energy and power. Circular motion. Mass and energy balances, energy conversion processes. Size shape, density, porosity, specific heat, latent heat and, enthalpy. Introduction to rheological properties, fluid statics and hydrodynamics. Interfacial properties and optical, electromagnetic and electrical properties.
    Summer term will contain:
    Food processing practicals.
    During the year, students will also be given the opportunity to obtain the level 2 Award in Food Safety for Manufacturing.
    Global context:
    The global context of the content covered in this module is food manufacturing including food processing, food formulation and food safety and quality ? which are critical to ensuring food security.

    Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
    The course will be taught by a combination of lectures, practical sessions and tutorials (including problem sheets).

    Contact Hours:
    Lectures 26
    Practicals, Classes and Workshops 3
    Supervised Time in Studio/Workshop 9
    Guided Independent Study 62
    Total Hours by term 100

    Summative Assessment Methods:
    Written exam 50
    Report 40
    Class test administered by School 10

    Other information on summative assessment:
    Coursework assignments will include assessed problem sheets to evaluate understanding of basic mathematical skills and 3 project reports in the Spring term and 5 short practical reports in the Summer term.

    Length of examination:
    1.5 hours

    Requirements for a pass:
    overall mark of 40%

    Reassessment arrangements:
    By written examination during the University re-examination period in August.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.


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