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Sensory Evaluation (FOOD90028)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codeFOOD90028
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

Sensory evaluation is a scientific method used to evoke, measure, analyse, and interpret those responses to food products as perceived through the sense of sight, smell, touch, taste and hearing. Sensory evaluation guides development and commercial strategy within the food industry. It plays a critical role steering decisions throughout the product development process, in food formulation, in quality control of food products, and in the innovation of healthier food products with improved taste. It can also provide vital insights into fundamental human behaviour and perception. Sensory evaluation can be broken down into four major methods which will be covered in detail in this course: Trained panel testing, discrimination testing, rapid profiling, and consumer testing. The course will also examine how sensory perception is influenced by both physiological and psychological factors. Furthermore, the course will address how food scientists can use techniques in food formulation to optimise the sensory properties of food, and how different forms of sensory data can be processed to draw appropriate conclusions (including statistical tools for sensory analysis). The subject is supported by practical laboratories.

Intended learning outcomes

Upon completion of this subject students will

  • Understand the basic anatomy and physiology of the sensory organs used to evaluate food
  • Understand psychological and physiological variables that influence sensory perception
  • Understand how to design and undertake sensory testing using different types of methodologies
  • Understand how to identify which sensory methodology is the most suitable for a given problem, question, or situation
  • Understand how to analyse sensory data and draw appropriate conclusions
  • Understand how food formulation and food structure can be modified to improve the sensory properties of new food products while also improving health properties
  • Understand the role sensory science plays in product development, quality control and marketing within the food industry

Generic skills

  • An in-depth understanding of the importance of sensory evaluation within the food industry
  • Skills in observation, critical analysis and report writing
  • A capacity for independent critical thought, rational inquiry and self-directed learning and research
  • An ability to drive, interpret and analyse social, technical or economic information from multiple sources
  • The ability to work effectively as a member of a team

Last updated: 21 September 2019