Food Safety, Inspection and Control BSc (Hons)

 

Course Code

UCAS Code: D600
International Code: HLSU214

Location

Coventry University (Coventry)

 

Study mode

Full-time
Sandwich

Duration

3 years full-time
4 years sandwich

Start date

September 2022
January 2023


Course overview

Study level: Undergraduate

This course has been designed for people who have a passion for food safety, inspection, regulation and global food developments and want to make a difference to the quality of the food we eat.

Additional key points:

  • Ranked No.6 for Food Science in The Complete University Guide 2021
  • This course incorporates the academic content of the Higher Certificate of Food Control, the baseline qualification for food hygiene and standards, official controls and the inspection of food premises within the UK.
  • We use simulation to develop the skills you will need in industry, for example preparing and presenting a court prosecution case.
  • Our multi-million-pound Alison Gingell Building features a suite of analytical and biological laboratories where you can gain hands-on experience in food safety, inspection and analytical techniques.
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Global Ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

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Teaching excellence

Taught by lecturers who are experts in their field

Resume icon displaying a paper and a pen

Employability

Career ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Why you should study this course

As we strive to meet increasing global demands, the safety and authenticity of the food we eat and the hygiene of food premises that manufacture, prepare and serve food is of paramount importance.

The Food Safety, Inspection and Control BSc (Hons) encompasses a variety of food issues with both a UK and international focus. Designed to meet the needs of the food industry and regulatory agencies, it covers skills including how to assess food safety risks, advise on food hygiene and safety, inspect food and food premises, and understand and apply legislation relating to food.

There is a big emphasis on practice during this degree and our teaching team aim to impart their own research and professional experience into their teaching, alongside organised visits from practitioners and professionals from industry and various regulatory authorities (subject to availability). There are opportunities within the course to undertake practical inspections of food and food premises and to prepare and present a court prosecution case, together with many more practically based teaching sessions.

Our multi-million-pound Alison Gingell Building features a suite of analytical and biological laboratories where you can gain hands-on experience in food safety, inspection and analytical techniques.

Seminars by our practitioner staff and visiting lecturers aim to cover the latest issues on a wide range of food safety-based research topics e.g. food safety packaging seminar from food manufacturers and local authority inspectors.

The course also includes the academic content for the CIEH accredited Higher Certificate in Food Control (HCFC). This must be supplemented with a Competency Development Portfolio (which may be completed during an appropriate placement year or after graduation) and professional discussion to meet the requirements of the CIEH - this can be expected to take an additional year.

No. 6

for Food Science in

The Complete University Guide 2021

Accreditation and Professional Recognition

This course is accredited and recognised by the following bodies:

Chartered Institute of Environmental Health logo

Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH)

Eligibility for membership of the CIEH upon successful completion of the Higher Certificate in Food Control academic content, Competency Development Portfolio and professional discussion. Additional costs may apply. Please check with the membership body (CIEH) for details.

Affiliate membership of the CIEH is available for students during their study.



What you'll study

The first year of the course introduces you to the principles of human nutrition, public health, food chemistry and food law, alongside skills for study and preparation for future employment.

Year one is a combined first year of study alongside students on the Nutrition and Health BSc (Hons) and Food Science BSc (Hons), allowing an interdisciplinary view of food-related topics from the perspective of food science and technology, human nutrition and health and food safety.

Modules

  • This module aims to develop key skills that are of value both for successful undergraduate study and also for future employment. You will be introduced to, and practice, effective literature searching and retrieval, the expectations for scientific writing at degree level, numerical and problem-solving skills, oral presentation and effective team working. The ability to work safely in both the laboratory and the academic kitchen, to design experiments and to analyse and present data will be covered. You will begin, in this module, to assemble a portfolio to demonstrate your competency, to reflect on your learning and to develop effective strategies in order to improve performance, supported by your Academic Personal Tutor.

    As part of this module, you will complete a Food Safety in Catering award which will contribute to your future employability. On successful completion you will receive a University Certificate that will document your understanding of the importance of personal and workplace cleanliness for safe food preparation.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and test

  • This module extends many of the topics that were introduced in Skills for Food and Nutrition Sciences 1, as well as introducing new concepts in preparation for the next level of study. You will extend your understanding of scientific data analysis using appropriate software packages for data manipulation, presentation and introductory statistical analyses. You will utilise your cooking skills and food safety awareness to prepare and evaluate a dish/meal. You will demonstrate your competency in the laboratory and kitchen, and reflect on your developing personal, study, professional and employability skills. You will be introduced to placement/study abroad opportunities in this module and are encouraged to actively prepare for future placement and/or employment.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and portfolio

  • The module introduces you to concepts of public health and disease, with a focus on the role of food and nutrition in disease prevention and health promotion. It covers the origins and basis of public health in current British society as well as aspects of sociology and psychology that relate to public health. The module will explore nutrition policies and programmes aimed at changing dietary behaviour and improving the health of the population with a focus on diet related diseases, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer.

    The module also considers public health issues relating to food safety and food-borne infection and it will introduce you to the fundamental properties of micro-organisms and their safe manipulation in the laboratory.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Test and presentation

  • The module aim is to provide you with an introduction to the UK and global key stakeholders in food safety law and policy. It will consider the current legal framework and national strategies to protect public health and enable safe food trade. You will review current food safety issues and the various ways in which emerging risks are identified and controlled by food safety policy and food law. You will critically evaluate previous and current food safety issues such as the BSE crisis, horse meat scandal and melamine in milk powder. They will therefore judge how risk assessment, risk management and risk communication work within the different law-making and enforcing agencies to prioritise and protect public health.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and presentation

  • This module aims to introduce you to basic concepts of chemistry and in particular the chemistry of foods. The aim is to contextualize the chemistry of carbohydrates, proteins and lipids in relation to particular food commodities such as fruits and vegetables, cereal products, dairy and flesh foods and apply these concepts to aspects of food production. It also aims to give you the practical knowledge and skills to be able to analyse foods.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and test

  • The aim of this module is to provide an understanding of the principles of nutrition, biochemistry and human physiology that are central to the study of nutrition and food sciences. The module places a strong emphasis on the structure and function of the human body, both physiological and biochemical, in relation to health and disease. The requirements, sources and functions of macronutrients and micronutrients will be explored, in addition to UK dietary guidelines for healthy adults.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and test

  • You will also be able to take an Add+vantage module which can allow you to develop your CV by taking credits in an area of study that doesn’t have to be related to your degree. The assessment type will depend on the type of Add+vantage module you wish to take.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and exam

In your second year, we will build on the principles explored in year one and begin to apply them in a practical context. Second year modules cover the subjects of hygiene management systems, food microbiology, food regulation and practical food inspection in relation to a huge variety of foods and food premises.

Modules

  • The aims of this module are to extend research focused skills acquired in Skills for Food and Nutrition Sciences 1 and 2, and to support you to reflect on your own skills and competencies in preparation for graduate level employment.

    The module further considers experimental design, questionnaire and survey design, research ethics, academic writing and structured literature searching. Data analysis and presentation skills, including more advanced statistical analysis techniques and additional software training, will be covered. These aspects will prepare you for final year projects.

    The module also includes aspects of employability in preparation for placement or short work experience opportunities, future careers or further study. Entrepreneurship is also considered with advice on the practicalities of self-employment as a consultant and setting up a business.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Test and portfolio

  • Microorganisms play beneficial roles in food production and digestion, but also result in health and economic concerns through food spoilage and food borne infection. This module considers the role of a variety of microbes in food fermentation and in food contamination, leading to spoilage or food poisoning. The gut microbiome and human health, plus host defences to microorganisms are considered. Natural antimicrobials derived from plants and other microorganisms and microbial aspects of food preservation are discussed. This module also aims to develop skills and competencies that are essential for modern food microbiological analysis.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and test

  • This module will extend some topics considered in year one to discuss the principles of food production and preservation for reasons of food safety, along with the application of different packaging technologies to extend shelf life. You will learn about common key food production methods and how these are assessed to ensure the safe production of foods. They will learn how processes are designed to control hazards and what can happen when these processes go wrong. The food manufacturing environment can also introduce food safety hazards such as foreign bodies. You will learn about the different foreign body detection methods and further laboratory analysis techniques that assist in identifying them.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and presentation

  • This module assesses the competence to inspect food for safety and apply common food standards legislation at the point of retail sale. It introduces you to a comprehensive range of foods which might be encountered by a food inspector or by food industry personnel. It develops the theory and practice behind assessing food safety, food composition and food authenticity. You will gain experience in inspection techniques and the communication skills needed to inspect food competently for safety and standards, as well as the ability to decide upon the most appropriate intervention when issues arise.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and test

  • The module aim is for you to understand the main framework of UK and European food safety hygiene legislation, UK enforcing regulations and relevant standards and guidance. You will also learn to apply appropriate risk-based judgement to the determination of offences and the application of appropriate enforcement tools. You will therefore be able to interpret legislation and determine the most appropriate course of action and intervention in relation to a variety of food-based scenarios. They will also become familiar with techniques for food premises inspection and auditing, through classroom workshop learning, mock inspection and participation in an interactive online food safety inspection.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and portfolio

  • This module aims to integrate knowledge and skills from previous Level 5 modules by applying this knowledge and understanding into different food safety management systems such as HACCP, ISO quality systems and allergen management. You will learn the legally defined steps within the HACCP risk assessment process and be able to develop HACCP plans and critically evaluate them for food safety and legal compliance. They will also see how such systems can be applied to specific hazards such as allergens. The operation of quality systems will also be evaluated to demonstrate how they complement food safety systems. You will also understand how HACCP is applied internationally and how it links with UK national policies on the reduction of foodborne disease. HACCP itself is built upon the foundation of pre-requisite underpinning systems such as cleaning management and pest control management. The principles and appropriate application of such systems are taught for how they exist in isolation and also their application into broader food safety management systems.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and test

  • You will also be able to take an Add+vantage module which can allow you to develop your CV by taking credits in an area of study that doesn’t have to be related to your degree. The assessment type will depend on the type of Add+vantage module you wish to take.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and exam

Following your second year, you will have an option to apply for a one-year professional work placement or study abroad in a partner institution.*

Modules:

  • Professional Experience Year
  • Study Abroad

*Please note that we are unable to guarantee any placement/internships, work experience, industry visits, field trips or study abroad and international opportunities and that any such opportunities referred to may be subject to additional costs (e.g. travel, visas and accommodation etc), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the requirements in this regard, please contact the International Office for further details if you are an EU or International student.

The final year of your course provides you with the opportunity to carry out an independent research project in relation to an area of food safety which interests you. If you opted for the professional experience year, this could follow on and be in partnership with your placement provider (subject to the provider’s approval).

You will be expected to utilise your theoretical and practical knowledge of food hygiene and safety to inspect both food premises and foods for their compliance with legislation. The final year modules are designed to expand your understanding of epidemiology and food borne diseases, food chain security and sustainability, food law enforcement, food control and food fraud.

Modules

  • Foodborne disease infections and intoxications are of great concern to governments and the food industry. This module aims to provide an overview of reporting and monitoring methods at local, national and international levels, along with the main epidemiological methods used to identify and quantify disease. You will also understand how outbreak investigations require a multidisciplinary team comprised of different agencies bringing different expertise, with skills such as clinical medicine, epidemiology, laboratory medicine, food microbiology and chemistry, food safety and food control, and risk communication and management. You will also understand how outbreak investigations are managed at a local and national level and they will critically analyse published outbreaks and government strategies related to foodborne disease management. They will also produce a short video clip on food safety in the home for health education purposes.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework

  • The application of the law will be developed further in this module with applying the rules of evidence gathering under the law. Interviewing and evidence gathering under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 and associated codes of practice will be explored. You will be expected to carry out an inspection or audit of a catering or a manufacturing premises and then apply knowledge and principles gained in the previous modules to assess health risks and then apply appropriate legal controls abiding by legal rules of evidence. The inspection or audit process will therefore require the application of activities such as sampling, photographing, interviewing, evidence gathering and critical evaluation of food safety management systems along with the preparation of legal correspondence and notices. You will furthermore be prepared to write up a prosecution file and present this work during a mock trial role play exercise. This will involve you both planning and presenting your evidence in both the correct legal file format and presenting the evidence during examination and cross-examination of evidence, as in magistrates’ court of law hearing.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and Viva

  • The module will consider the concepts of food security and food chain sustainability as defined by UN Sustainable Development Goals. It will therefore consider economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to facilitate dietary needs and preferences and what factors lead to food chain insecurity. Alongside this, sustainability of the food chain will be studied to look at the impact that current food consumption has, not just on human health, but also the impact of agriculture on the environment in its use of resources and generation of waste. Interventions required for control will be discussed in light of current policy and future projections.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework

  • The terms food fraud or intentional violations refer to actions that violate national criminal law applicable to food. These actions are usually motivated by economic gain and can present serious risks to consumer wellbeing and health. Such fraudulent activities have been seen to cross country borders which can cause complications with investigation and prosecution due to communication problems between countries. In this module you will investigate the weaknesses in the food chain and how the security of the food chain can be protected by the application of Threat Analysis Critical Control Point (TACCP) and Vulnerability Assessment Critical Control Point (VACCP). You will analyse such issues along with measures taken to strength the detection and enforcement of food fraud along with prevention strategies. As food is transported on a global scale the further laws relating to the import and export of foods from EU member states and third countries will be explored along with the justification for specific bans and restrictions that are placed on particular foodstuffs.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework

  • In this module, you will prepare for your final year research project. The module will support you through the process of defining your research question, planning your research investigation and considering the most appropriate data analysis methods. The module will enhance skills in literature searching, research and experimental design, scientific writing, data processing and statistical analysis. You will be required to submit your proposal for ethical and health and safety approval, and to address key aspects of project management and logistics.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework

  • The aim of this module is for you to conduct a piece of investigative research, which may be laboratory/kitchen or non-laboratory/kitchen based, in a specialised area of food and nutrition sciences. This module follows from Research Design in Food and Nutrition Sciences and you implement your research proposals in this module. You will be allowed a defined period of time in which to implement your experimental plan and collect data. During this phase you will be supported and guided by your supervisor, however you are expected to demonstrate increasing independence, organisational and time management skills, technical skills and awareness of ethical and health and safety issues. You will need to work collaboratively with other academic and technical staff to utilise resources effectively. You will maintain appropriate records in the form of a project workfile, which includes all ethical and risk assessment requirements, raw data and scientific reflection on research activities and data; this will be submitted for assessment.

    The experimental data will be analysed, including use of statistics as and where appropriate. The project will be presented as a written formal thesis, evidencing understanding of relevant and current scientific literature and the ability to effectively present and critically analyse your data in this context.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework

  • You will also be able to take an Add+vantage module which can allow you to develop your CV by taking credits in an area of study that doesn’t have to be related to your degree. The assessment type will depend on the type of Add+vantage module you wish to take.

    Compulsory

    Assessment: Coursework and exam

We regularly review our course content, to make it relevant and current for the benefit of our students. For these reasons, course modules may be updated.


How you'll learn

Teaching methods include lectures, workshops, tutorials, presentations, group and individual problem-based learning projects, and practical case studies and application. In a typical teaching week, you will have up to 20 ‘contact’ hours of teaching. In addition, you will be expected to undertake a further 20 hours of self-directed study each week e.g. working on coursework assignments.

Each module is supported by online material to help prepare you for your taught sessions and to assist with your personal study.

Where possible, coursework uses applied tasks that mimic the skills needed in jobs to help prepare you to be attractive to future employers, such as collection and interpretation of food safety policies and real-life inspection scenarios. The course also offers you the opportunity for numerous practical industry visits and fieldtrips e.g. visits to food manufacturers.


Assessment

This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which could vary depending upon the module. Assessment methods include coursework, tests, essays, practical or project work, formal examinations, group work, presentations and posters.

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards the achieving the intended learning outcomes. Assessments may include exams, individual assignments or group work elements.


Job ready

This course aims to help prepare graduates for future careers within the food industry, with regulatory bodies and as food inspectors. It is designed to be practical in nature and gives you opportunities to put the skills you develop into practice in real world settings, for example previous students have undertaken inspections of food and food premises. We also use simulation to develop the skills you will need in industry, for example preparing and presenting a court prosecution case.

You also have the opportunity to gain real-world experience by spending an optional enhancement year in industry in the UK or overseas*.


International experience opportunities

Food safety practice takes place in higher education institutions, regulatory bodies and industry throughout the world. This international perspective is reflected in a number of modules on the course, which deal with issues of global importance, such as epidemiology and food borne illness, food fraud, food inspection and global food security and sustainability.

There may also be an opportunity for you to apply to spend your optional enhancement year in an international setting, should a suitable international partner be identified. In addition, there are also opportunities to attend an international food safety conference.* The course may also provide the opportunities for online collaboration with overseas institutions on a joint problem-based learning assignment.


Entry requirements

Typical offer for 2022 entry.

Requirement What we're looking for
A Level BBC to include Biology or Chemistry or Food Technology. Excludes General Studies.
BTEC DMM in the BTEC Level 3. Extended National Diploma in a Biology or Chemical Science related subjects.
IB Diploma 30 points to include a minimum of grade 5 in Biology or Chemistry at Higher Level.
GCSE requirement Minimum 5 GCSEs at grade 9-4 / A*-C including Mathematics, English Language and two Sciences.

We recognise a breadth of qualifications, speak to one of our advisers today to find out how we can help you.

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A levels

A level applicants are required to have three
 A levels. In some courses it may be necessary for entrants to have passed specific A Levels in nominated subjects.

Access Diplomas

Coventry University welcomes applicants who have completed, or who are studying, the Access to HE Diploma developed by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA). Successful completion of the course will require you to gain 60 credits with at least 45 to be achieved at Level 3 (with the remainder at Level 2). In some cases we will require you to have gained Merit or Distinction grades in a number of units or in nominated subjects. For more information on the entry requirements for your chosen course please see the relevant course pages.

BTEC Level 3 Diplomas

The University will accept the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma for entry to most courses. In some cases we will require applicants to have studied either certain named modules or a specific named Diploma.

We will accept Extended Diploma or Diploma in combination with another A level equivalent

Are you eligible for the Fair Access Scheme?

We believe every student should have the opportunity to dream big, reach their potential and succeed, regardless of their background.

Fair Access Scheme

Select your region to find detailed information about entry requirements:

You can view our full list of country specific entry requirements on our Entry requirements page.

If you do not have the typical entry requirements, you may want to consider studying this course with an international foundation year. Upon successful completion our International Foundation Year - Biosciences will provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to progress onto this undergraduate degree.

Alternatively, visit our International hub for further advice and guidance on finding in-country agents and representatives, joining our in-country events and how to apply.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.0 overall, with no component lower than 5.5.

If you don't meet the English language requirements, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course. 

For more information on our approved English language tests visit our English language requirements page.

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Fees and funding

2022/23 Tuition fees

Student Full time Part time
UK £9,250 per year Not available
International £16,650 per year Not available

For advice and guidance on tuition fees and student loans visit our Undergraduate Finance page and see The University’s Tuition Fee and Refund Terms and Conditions.

We offer a range of International scholarships to students all over the world. For more information, visit our International Scholarships page.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessments, facilities and support services. There may be additional costs not covered by this fee such as accommodation and living costs, recommended reading books, stationery, printing and re-assessments should you need them. Find out what's included in your tuition costs.


Facilities

SuperLab

SuperLab

The Alison Gingell Building contains a state-of-the-art SuperLab. The lab's facilities include equipment for microscopy, DNA testing and more.
 
 

specialist equipment

Specialist equipment

Specialist industry-standard facilities include analytical equipment such as Gas Chromatography and High-Performance Liquid Chromatography machines. You will also have access to facilities for texture profile analysis of food and drink.

Centre for Academic Writing

Academic support

No matter which degree you’re studying, you’ll find a lot of support on campus including the Centre of Academic Writing and sigma, which offers mathematics and statistics support.
 


Careers and opportunities

This course is designed to meet the needs of the food industry and regulatory agencies by covering skills including how to assess food safety risks, advise on food hygiene and safety, inspect food and food premises, and understand and apply legislation relating to food.

We aim to share knowledge about how technologies will aid the food quality assurance process, and the problems of maintaining a sustainable global food chain. In addition, there will be opportunities for you to develop skills in problem solving, teamwork and effective communication that may be applicable to non-discipline specific graduate career routes.

The course includes the academic content for the CIEH accredited Higher Certificate in Food Control (HCFC). This must be supplemented with a Competency Development Portfolio (which may be completed during an appropriate placement year or after graduation) and professional discussion to meet the requirements of the CIEH.

Coventry University is committed to preparing you for your future career. The university’s Talent Team provide a wide range of support services to help you plan and prepare for your career.


How to apply

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  • Student Contract

    By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the university. A copy of the 2021/22 Contract can be found here. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the university will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the university.

    Tuition fees

    The tuition fee for the course that is stated on the course webpage and in the prospectus for the first year of study will apply. We will review our tuition fees each year. For UK and EU students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, we may increase fees for each subsequent year of study in line with any such changes. Note that any increase is expected to be in line with inflation. Following the UK’s exit from the European Union, EU students should be aware that there may be a change to UK laws following the UK’s exit, this may change their student status, their eligibility to study part time, and/or their eligibility for student finance. We will act in accordance with the UK’s laws in force in relation to student tuition fees and finance from time to time.

    For International students the tuition fee that is stated on the course webpage and in the prospectus for the first year of study will apply. We will review our tuition fees each year. For international students, we may increase fees for each subsequent year of study but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation.

    Accreditations

    The majority of our courses have been formally recognised by professional bodies, which means the courses have been reviewed and tested to ensure they reach a set standard. In some instances, studying on an accredited course can give you additional benefits such as exemptions from professional exams (subject to availability, fees may apply). Accreditations, partnerships, exemptions and memberships shall be renewed in accordance with the relevant bodies’ standard review process and subject to the university maintaining the same high standards of course delivery. 

    Facilities

    Facilities mentioned on this page may not be relevant for every course. Due to the ongoing restrictions relating to COVID-19, some facilities (including some teaching and learning spaces) and some non-academic offerings (particularly in relation to international experiences), may vary from those advertised and may have reduced availability or restrictions on their use.

    Placements and study abroad opportunities

    Please note that we are unable to guarantee any placement or study abroad opportunities and that all such opportunities may be subject to additional costs (e.g. travel, visas and accommodation etc.), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the requirements in this regard, please contact the International Office for further details if you are an EU or International student.

    Additional costs

    This course may incur additional costs associated with any field trips, placements or work experience, study abroad opportunities or any other opportunity (whether required or optional), which could include (but is not limited to), equipment, materials, bench fees, studio or facilities hire, travel, accommodation and visas).