UCC Adult courses

Food Science and Technology - Dip

About This Course

Fact File

  • Title

    Food Science and Technology

  • Code


  • College

    Science, Engineering and Food Science, Adult Continuing Education

  • Duration

    2 years

  • Teaching Mode


  • Qualifications


  • NFQ Level

    Level 7

  • NFQ Award Title

    Special Purpose

  • Fees

    €2,800 per academic year See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Entry Requirements

    NFQ/FETAC Level 5 qualification or have relevant experience/qualifications. See Requirements for full details.

  • Closing Date


  • Next Intake


  • Venue


  • Start Date

    September 2020

Course Outline

The Diploma in Food Science and Technology is a part-time course over two years. The course gives you an understanding of food science, microbiology, food processing technology, nutrition and food business. It will allow you to upgrade your knowledge, skills and competencies. Particular emphasis is placed on linking basic principles with their practical application in industry.

  • In year one you will take modules in Food Chemistry, Food Microbiology, Food Technology, Food Engineering and Nutrition.
  • In year two you will take modules in Food Chemistry, Food Microbiology, Food Process Technology, Quality Systems and Food Business.
  • You also complete an individual assignment each year designed to integrate and apply the knowledge and understanding acquired on the course to a chosen topic.

Course Practicalities

This course takes place on the weekend with seminars from October to May


Atudents are assessed by end of module written examinations and a work-related assignment.

Why Choose This Course

The Irish food and drinks sector is one of Ireland’s most important indigenous industries. It has been identified as having a key role to play in Ireland’s export-led economic recovery. This is the only Diploma in Food Science and Technology in Ireland that is offered on a part-time basis.


  • Applicants should hold NFQ/FETAC Level 5 qualification or have appropriate experience/qualifications in a food related area as deemed relevant by the Academic Director and Programme Manager.
  • Applicants should have at least two years experience work.

Diploma programmes are offered subject to a minimum number of eligible applicants registering for the programme. Following completion of year 1 of this programme, should a sufficient number of eligible students not wish to progress form year 1 to year 2 of this programme as to make the year 2 viable, students will graduate with a certificate at that point. Programme viability is determined by reference to fee income and applicable costs in running the programme.

Fees and Costs

€2,800 per academic year. Successful applicants will be required to pay this fee after acceptance to the programme.

How Do I Apply

Apply Now

Contact details for this course

Year 1 Modules

  • FC1800: Food Chemistry I (5 credits)
    Basic chemistry for the food scientist. Introduction to the chemistry and the main properties of the principal constituents of foods, lipids, proteins, carbohydrates.
  • FN1800: Food Engineering (5 credits)
    Heat and temperature. Water. Boilers and steam. Heat transfer. Fluid, pumps and associated equipment. Introduction to electricity in the food industry.
  • FS1800: Food Microbiology I (5 credits)
    Characteristics of different micro-organisms of significance in food systems. Factors effecting the growth of micro-organisms in food. Food preservation. Major sources of micro-organisms in food. Microbiology of selected food products. Role of micro-organisms in spoilage and food-borne illness.
  • FS1802: Work Related Assignment I (5 credits)
    Preparation of an assignment, accessing information. The student is required to submit a 3,500 word assignment. The assignment consists of a product description under the headings: food forumation, manufacturing process quality control, nutritional value, packaging, distribution and marketing. Where the student's employer is not involved in the manufacture of a product an alternative topic relevant to the company can be agreed with the programme manager.
  • FT1800: Food Technology (5 credits)
    An introduction to food technology. Product screening, selection and separation techniques. Food mixing and stabilizing systems. Unit operations in food processing and preservation, including heat treatments, chilling, evaporation, drying, fermentation and additives. Food labelling legislation and traceability.
  • NT1800: Nutrition (5 credits)
    Introduction to nutrition, carbohydrates, fats, proteins. Energy needs and food composition. Digestion and absorption of major nutrients. Minerals and vitamins. Changing nutritional needs through the life cycle from infancy to old age. Nutrition and public health. Diet and weight control. Diet and chronic disease, obesity, hypertension, cancer and cardiovascular disease. Food safety issues, food additives, contaminants, natural toxicants, food allergies and intolerance. Functional foods.

Year 2 Modules

  • FC2800: Food Chemistry II (5 credits)
    Physiochemical properties of food.
    Milk - composition, factors affecting composition. Milk constituents - protein, fat, lactose, salts. Milk products - butter, cheese, liquid milk, milk powders, lactose, whey proteins, casein.
    Meat, poultry and fish - muscle structure, changes occurring post-mortem, the effects of lipids, cooking properties, processing meats.
    Cereals - composition and properties, effects of processing, conversion of wheat flour to bread, conversion of barley to malt and then wort, study of oats.
    Fruits and vegetables - composition, changes during growth, ripening and post harvest, effects of processing.
    Egg - structure, egg lipids, egg proteins.
    Water in foods - structure, significance, control.
  • FS2800: Food Microbiology II (5 credits)
    Classification of micro-organisms associated with foods. Analytical methods for their detection and enumeration. Rapid methods. Role of micro-organism in food borne disease outbreaks - case studies. Microbiology of selected food products - dairy, fermented foods and fish.
  • FS2801: Quality Systems (5 credits)
    Introduction to food safety and quality legislation, introduction to food safety and quality agencies and organisations, introduction to food legislation and standards, Bord Bia Quality Assurance Schemes, Food safety and quality audits, company visit.
  • FS2802: Food Business (5 credits)
    Introduction to food marketing and distribution with particular reference to consumer behaviour and marketing strategy. Specific marketing issues considered include: market segmentation, consumer choice, pricing, promotion, distribution in food markets. An introduction to new food product development and relevant analytical techniques.

    Overview of the Irish Food sector including size, structure, employment profile, industry capability and future strategies. Competitive advantage - matching resources to marketing opportunities, innovation and product development. Specific issues considered include consumer trends and new food product introductions, introduction to food marketing channels, the managerial process and the role of information in business development.
  • FS2803: Work Related Assignment II (5 credits)
    Preparation of an assignment, presentation skills, accessing information. The student is required to submit a 3,500 word assignment. The topic to be covered is decided by the student in association with their employer and should include the development of a new product or the evaluation of a new process or the study of a particular problem or a literature review. The student is required to give a short presentation on their assignment to the class and lecturer.
  • FT2800: Food Process Technology (5 credits)
    An exploration of food production methods in the dairy, muscle foods (meat, poultry and aquaculture) and cereals (baking, brewing and distilling) sectors; raw material selection and acceptance, formulation, procuction steps that influence characteristics and quality, identification of defects and causes. Environmental legislation and IPPC licensing, air pollution control, water treatment, wastewater treatment, process instrumentation and control.

Year 3 Modules

Year 4 Modules

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact