Course requirements, exam and thesis information, financial aid, research, application instructions, and more for the Master’s Degree (M.S.) program

Departmental Expectations

A student in the M.S. degree program will be knowledgeable about the field of food science in general. This knowledge will be acquired primarily through satisfactory completion of required coursework. Additionally, our students will develop the ability to learn independently by determining, finding, and using necessary resources. Our students will also develop the ability to make decisions and judgments based on their knowledge. Furthermore, the student will be capable of addressing a research problem through a series of sustained, logical experiments and bring his or her work to a satisfactory conclusion in the form of a M.S. thesis. Finally, it is expected that the thesis research will be of publishable quality and, as a minimum, will be communicated through at least one oral presentation or poster session at a scientific meeting.

Checklist of Action Items

PDF document, 99.2 KB

M.S. degree checklist of action items to guide a student through the program.

Course Requirements

Minimum requirements for the M.S. degree in Food Science.


Any member of the Penn State Food Science faculty with at least assistant professor rank may participate in the guidance and examination of master's candidates and sign master's thesis signatory pages.

Exam and Thesis

Master's students are required present their thesis to the committee and pass an oral examination.