2004-2006 University of Guelph Graduate Calendar

VIII. Graduate Programs

Food Science

PhD Program


The objective of this program is to develop highly competent scientists who will provide leadership in academic institutions, or as managers in Food Science research and development institutes in industry or government. Written comprehensive exams ensure that students have a solid background in food chemistry, processing/engineering and microbiology. Creativity and the ability to perform independent research is fostered by requiring PhD students to submit a written research proposal and defend it orally. Having obtained research skills during their MSc studies, PhD students are expected to conduct autonomous research. The preparation of a PhD thesis and scientific publications ensures that graduates have attained prowess in research and communication.

Admission Requirements

The usual requirement for admission into the PhD program is a research-based MSc degree with a minimum 'B' average and supportive letters of reference. Students whose first language is not English require a TOEFL score of at least 550 (paper-based) or 213 (computer-based).

To assist in identifying a suitable thesis advisor, applicants should submit a short statement of research interests. Admission into the department is contingent on the student obtaining a scholarship or GRA. It is also possible for a student to transfer from the MSc program without completing a master's thesis if the student has an excellent academic record and shows a strong aptitude for research which can be expanded to the doctoral level. Students may be admitted into the fall, winter or summer semesters.

Degree Requirements

The major emphasis in the PhD program is research and the preparation of an acceptable thesis. There are no specific course requirements except for a seminar course which provides training in technical communications. It is usual however for most students, in consultation with their advisory committee, to select prescribed studies and additional courses in preparation for the qualifying examination and thesis research. The qualifying examination is in two parts, written and oral, and evaluates the student's knowledge in the fields of food chemistry, food microbiology and food processing/engineering. In addition, the advisory committee is required to submit a written evaluation of the student's performance to date in research and the student's potential as a researcher. The PhD program is completed by the submission and successful defense of an acceptable thesis.