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Food Science

Food Science Major

The Food Science major is offered through the Department of Plant Sciences in the College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources. It is designed to prepare students for a career in the food industry, the “world’s largest industry,” which is responsible for feeding the world.

The program is structured to develop an understanding of the nature, properties, and characteristics of foods through foundation courses in biochemistry, chemistry, microbiology, physics, and other related sciences. Applications include the study of food safety, processing, preservation, sanitation, storage, and marketing of foods. The analysis and microbiological and biochemical characterization of food products are also studied. Additionally, elective courses in economics and business administration are available to students intending to enter a management career.

Note: Transfer credits in food science from other institutions must have grades of 'C' or better to be accepted for the food science program at NDSU. The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) approves the curriculum in the food science program. Students majoring in food science, therefore, are eligible to compete for the prestigious IFT scholarships.

The program also provides the opportunity to gain industrial experience during undergraduate study by means of industry internships. Upon completion of the program, graduates will be able to recognize, critically analyze, and solve problems realistically in both industrial and academic environments.

Major Requirements

Major: Food Science

Degree Type: B.S.
Minimum Degree Credits to Graduate: 128

General Education Requirements for Baccalaureate Degree

  • A list of approved general education courses is available here .
  • General education courses may be used to satisfy requirements for both general education and the major, minor, and program emphases, where applicable. Students should carefully review the major, minor, and program emphases requirements for minimum grade restrictions, should they apply.
Communication (C)12
College Composition I
College Composition II
Fundamentals of Public Speaking
Upper Division Writing
Quantitative Reasoning (R) 3
Science and Technology (S) 10
Humanities and Fine Arts (A) 6
Social and Behavioral Sciences (B) 6
Wellness (W) 2
Cultural Diversity (D) *†
Global Perspectives (G) *†
Total Credits39

 May be satisfied by completing courses in another General Education category.

 May be satisfied with courses required in the major. Review major requirements to determine if a specific upper division writing course is required.

Major Requirements

Required Core Courses for Food Science
AGRI 150Agriculture Orientation (Not required students transferring in 24 or more credits.)1
AGRI 189Skills for Academic Success 11
ABEN 263Biological Materials Processing2-3
or CFS 430 Food Unit Operations
ANSC 340Principles of Meat Science3
CFS 210Introduction to Food Science and Technology2-3
or CFS 200 Introduction to Food Systems
CFS 370Food Processing I3
CFS 450Cereal Technology3
MICR 453Food Microbiology3
CFS 460Food Chemistry3
CFS 461Food Chemistry Laboratory1
CFS 464Food Analysis3
CFS 470Food Processing II3
CFS 471Food Processing Laboratory1
CFS 474Sensory Science of Foods3
CFS 480Food Product Development (Capstone)3
SAFE/CFS/AGEC 452Food Laws and Regulations3
Supporting Courses
Select one of the following:4
Elements of Biochemistry
Foundations of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology I
and Foundations of Biochemistry I Laboratory
BIOL 150General Biology I3
CHEM 121
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry I Laboratory (May satisfy general education category S)
CHEM 122
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory (May satisfy general education category S)
CHEM 341
Organic Chemistry I
and Organic Chemistry I Laboratory
CSCI 114Microcomputer Packages (May satisfy general education category S)3
or MIS 116 Business Use of Computers
ECON 201Principles of Microeconomics (May satisfy general education category B and G)3
HNES 250Nutrition Science (May satisfy general education category W)3
MATH 146Applied Calculus I (May satisfy general education category R)4
or MATH 165 Calculus I
MICR 350
General Microbiology
and General Microbiology Lab
PHYS 211
College Physics I
and College Physics I Laboratory (May satisfy general education category S)
STAT 330Introductory Statistics (May satisfy general education category R)3
Total Credits82-84

AGRI189 is only required for first-time, first-year students--A first-time, first-year student is defined as a student who has not yet completed a college course as a college student.  Students that are not first-time, first-year students that either transfer into the university or change their major are not required to take AGRI 189.

Degree Requirements and Notes:                                                                                      

  • A 2.00 cumulative GPA is required for graduation and to remain in program.