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TECH207 Food and Society


TECH207 Food and Society

Teaching organisation

5 hours per week for twelve weeks or equivalent of lectures, tutorials and workshops.

Unit rationale, description and aim

In order to achieve accreditation in Food Technology from the New South Wales Standards Education Authority and fulfil a role as a secondary teaching professional, students need to undertake a sequence of advanced Food Technology units to acquire conceptual, procedural, and professional levels of discipline-specific technologies subject content knowledge and skills. In this advanced unit, students will explore the role of food in the context of the Australian food industry. Students will develop knowledge of how past, current, and emerging food technologies influence principles and processes of food design and production through examples and case studies. An industry excursion will allow students to synthesise and further contextualise their knowledge of food technologies contexts, design and manufacturing processes, and industry issues. Students will conduct scientific food testing to evaluate the functional and sensory properties of foods and food components. The aim of this unit is for students to analyse the process of new food product development and then produce an advanced self-directed food design project that responds to specific user-centered needs in the context of the Australian Food Industry.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Identify and discuss food production and technologies in the context of the Australian food industry (GA4, GA8, GA9)

LO2 - Analyse the principles that guide legislation on safe food production (GA4, GA5, GA8)

LO3 - Evaluate the sensory properties of food (GA5, GA8)

LO4 - Develop and evaluate a new food product (GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10).

Graduate attributes

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 

GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media 

GA10 - utilise information and communication and other relevant technologies effectively.


Food safety

  • Spoilage microorganisms
  • Pathogenic microorganisms
  • WHS and HACCP
  • Hurdle technology

Sensory characteristics of food

  • Sensory evaluation
  • Sensory tests

Food production and processing

  • Technologies
  • Equipment
  • Systems
  • Unit operations
  • Process flow charts
  • Quality management
  • Packaging

Food regulation

  • Legislation
  • Policies
  • Advisory groups

Australian food industry sectors

  • Agriculture and fisheries
  • Processing and manufacturing
  • Food retail
  • Food service and catering

Contemporary food issues

  • Innovative food products
  • Food trends
  • Sustainability

Management practices for technology teachers including safety and risk management, budgeting, selecting, storing, maintaining and replacing materials, equipment and other resources related to Food Technologies.

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

A student-focused, problem-based learning approach is used in this unit. Students encounter concepts and principles of food technologies and design through lectures, concepts are discussed and broadened through analysis of manufactured food products and further informed by independent research as students complete food design projects. In practical workshops students design, produce and evaluate new food products. Food product development skills are introduced through a practice-oriented learning method. This method involves the parallel development of procedural and conceptual skills required for design, development and evaluation of food material products in technologies. Students develop solutions to food design problems using design thinking and conceptual knowledge in food alongside procedural knowledge of food manufacturing technologies through practical food technologies projects. These methods enable the development of conceptual, procedural and professional knowledge and skill which allows students to solve problems in food design technologies contexts.


Mode:              On campus lectures, and practical workshops.

Duration:        Five hours per week for twelve weeks or equivalent.

This is a 10-credit point unit and has been designed to ensure that the time needed to complete the required volume of learning to the requisite standard is approximately 150 hours in total across the semester. To achieve a passing standard in this unit, students will find it helpful to engage in the full range of learning activities and assessments used in this unit, as described in the learning and teaching strategy and the assessment strategy. 

Assessment strategy and rationale

The problem-based learning strategy employed in this unit is supported by the integration of progressive authentic assessment tasks completed by students at critical points of the students’ learning. Theoretical and conceptual knowledge and practical skills-based knowledge are developed simultaneously in that acquisition and assimilation of knowledge develops during the application of food technologies and design practices. Initially students acquire knowledge in food by undertaking research and developing a report on key concepts introduced in the lecture and develop skills in design and manufacture through practical workshop classes. Practical workshops provide opportunities for formative assessment which supports assimilation of knowledge. The first assessment task aims to assess students’ application of knowledge and skills (conceptual, procedural and professional) competencies through a report, the second, a design folio, and the third, an examination. The assessment in this unit aims to assess students’ achievement of a synthesis between design theory and practice in food. Therefore, the main assessment method used is design projects which include design documentation and designed and/or manufactured product or products. Documentation records students design processes and includes evidence of project definition, research, ideation and critical evaluation.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1

Report: Requires students to analyse food products and technologies.



GA4, GA8,


Assessment Task 2

Folio: Requires students to design and critically evaluate a food product.


LO2, LO3, LO4

GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10

Assessment Task 3

Examination: Requires students to demonstrate synthesis of knowledge of the Australian food industry, food manufacture and food product development.

30 %

LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4

GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10

A range of assessment procedures will be used to meet the unit objectives consistent with University assessment requirements. Such procedures may include examinations, report, folio and practical work. Assessment tasks will address all learning outcomes as well as relevant graduate attributes.

Representative texts and references

Croxford, S., & Stirling, E. (2017). Understanding the science of food: From molecules to mouthfeel. Crows Nest, NSW: Allen & Unwin.

CSIRO. Food Nutritional Sciences. (2010). Make it safe: A guide to food safety. Collingwood, Vic.: CSIRO Pub.

Downie, M., Gualtieri, R., Malone, P., & Mayo, F. (2017). Food tech focus: Stage 6. South Melbourne, Vic: Cengage Learning Australia.

Fuller, G. W. (2016). New food product development: From concept to marketplace (3rd ed.). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Han, J. H. (2014). Innovations in food packaging (2nd ed.). Amsterdam: Elsevier Science.

Jeantet, R. (2016). Handbook of food science and technology 3: Food biochemistry and technology. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Preedy, V. (2015). Processing and impact on active components in food. London, England: Academic Press.

McWilliams, M. (2017). Foods: Pearson new international edition: Experimental perspectives (8th ed.). New Jersey USA: Pearson Education.

Shaw, I. C. (2018). Food safety: The science of keeping food safe (2nd ed.) Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.



Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology

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