Degree Program Profile
Master Degree in
EHEA First Cycle; EQF Level 6
Number of Years/credits
2 years; 120 ECTS
Mode of Study
*All Degree Programmes are planned and organised for full-time students. It is possible, however (without special arrangements), to proceed through the course of study at one's own rhythm. This makes it possible, if necessary, to accommodate employment or other non-university activities or obligations.
Name of Course Director and other contact information
President of the Degree Course Council:
Prof. ANNAMARIA RANIERI
Department of SCIENZE AGRARIE, ALIMENTARI E AGRO-AMBIENTALI
Internationalization Coordinator (CAI):
Prof. Riccardo Gucci
Language of Teaching
Italian First cycle qualification (Laurea) or foreign equivalent in the same or related subject area, with possible extra work if required competences are lacking.
Possible assessment prior knowledge and competences
Assessment of competences acquired in First Cycle studies in related or un-related subject areas to determine admission by Degree Programme Council with possible assignment of extra work to be done before admission.
Required knowledge and competences support programmes
Students whose curricula show lacuna may need to take extra first cycle course units before admission.
The Degree Programme in Biosafety and Food Quality provides students with a broad education in animal, plant and microbe biological systems, which allows to assess whether a food, both of vegetable or animal origin, present the required level of safety and how much of its peculiar characteristics are preserved after processing, from primary production to the table of the consumer. The graduate will own advanced and interdisciplinary knowledge that will allow them to manage the various issues related to food production, particularly with regard to the control and protection of safety and quality requirements of food, monitoring and traceability throughout the food chain, processing and preservation of food products, the design and development of new foods, even with improved nutraceutical characteristics, the optimization of production processes, improvement and preservation of local products.
Key Learning Outcomes
Graduates of the Programme will be able to demonstrate:
-an essential knowledge on basic sciences in perspective of their future professional application
- deep knowledge of metabolic processes of animals, vegetables and microorganisms
- basic knowledge concerning the activities and problems of food processing and storage
- ability of the management of technological and methodological tools for applications in biotechnology and food processing
-advanced knowledge of the techniques of genomics and post-genomics related to animal systems, plant and microorganisms.
- understanding of kinetic laws in order to assess the impact of remediation techniques (in particular thermal pasteurization and sterilization) on the microbial contamination and biological quality of food
- basic knowledge of cell lines cultivation techniques
- ability to develop new food product with high nutraceutical value
- ability to set up sensorial analyses
Occupational Profile/s of Graduates
The degree prepares the students for employement in:
-public and private agencies responsible for controls relating to food safety, quality and traceability;
-public agencies and private consulting centers dealing with aspects of health and well-being connected with it;
- industries that produce metabolites of food interest and molecules of animal, vegetable and microbial origin with high nutritional value (proteins, vitamins, antibiotics);
- observers and public and private agencies for the sanitary control of food through the use of biotechnology;
- industry of production, processing, storage, administration and distribution of food as experts in safety and quality of products.
- public and private research centers that deal with the development of innovative microbial cultures for specific characteristics of quality and safety of diagnostic molecular methodologies, design and development of new types of foods (novel foods) and foods with high nutraceutical characteristics;
- companies that produce micro-organisms to use as starter for the food industry and for silage;
- public agencies and private laboratories for the detection of genetically modified organisms in the agri-food and environmental matrices.
Access to further study
The Laurea Magistrale degree in FOOD BIOSAFETY AND QUALITY allows the graduate to compete for entry into a Third Cycle programme/doctoral school.
Assessment methods, examination regulations, and grading
Assessment is normally by means of an oral or written examination; in some cases there are intermediate exams during the course; other elements (participation in discussion, written or oral reports, comment of texts etc. ) are foreseen in specific course units and are described in the Course Unit Profiles.
The grading system for the course units consists of 30 possible points, plus 'lode' (cum laude) in case of excellence. Marks are given by the lecturer on the basis of performance as ascertained in a public examination by a board of at least two teachers. Main exam sessions are held in June/July; September; and January; students may resit exams**. Actual grading curves differ in different degree programmes. The University of Pisa provides an ECTS Grading Table, which shows the actual distribution, of examination and final grades among students of each degree programme, in order to facilitate comparison with other grading systems. ---> Link to ECTS Grading Table
An overall mark is given on occasion of the 'Final Exam', when a written research text is presented and discussed. The final overall mark is calculated on the results of the marks obtained in the single course units and the final exam, and is based on 110 possible points, with the possible further mention of honours ("lode" or cum laude).
**The exam sessions are organised in sessions (the dates vary according to the Department and are published in the Department's academic calendar). In each session there are a certain number of 'appelli' [calls], or dates on which the examination for each course unit may be taken. The 'appelli' are fixed by the teacher. The student chooses which of the appelli he or she wishes to respond to. In most cases it is obligatory to sign up before the specified date.
Requirements (regulations) to obtain the qualification
The final dissertation, to which 22 ECTS are allocated, must demonstrate the knowledge of the above mentioned professional skills.