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Course options

  • Qualification

    MSc - Master of Science

  • Location

    Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh

  • Study mode

    Full time

  • Start date


  • Duration

    1 year

Course summary

This innovative master’s programme will help you gain a better understanding of the complex role that food plays in shaping our lives and the world around us.

The MSc Gastronomy takes a multidisciplinary approach to examining and better understanding how food works in our world. Many other food-related studies, whether in health sciences, hospitality, agriculture, marketing or social sciences, approach food from a particular angle. Our MSc Gastronomy programme recognises that none of these specialities operate independently, and that the inter-connected nature of food is one of its most important, and most over-looked, characteristics.

Why QMU?

Our innovative MSc Gastronomy course offers students the opportunity to engage in the multidisciplinary study of food. Unique in the UK, the programme explores how food touches and influences all parts of our lives, examining the role of food in the complex connections between culture, communication, systems, science, sustainability, production and politics.

The tutors aim to make the course as experiential as possible, using field trips, site visits, practical workshops and expert speakers to explore food from a wide range of angles. Students gain invaluable insight into the many different ways that food shapes the world around us, as well as examining how a better understanding of food can help to address not just food-related problems but many of the world’s most pressing social, environmental and public health issues.

The course builds on QMU’s history as an innovative provider of food-related courses and is continues to break new ground in this developing field. After studying this inspirational and transformational course, we promise that you’ll never eat the same way again!

This is not a cookery course. Building on the definition of gastronomy as ‘the study of all things concerning the nourishment of humankind’, students are exposed to a wide range of topics and debates including physiology and microbiology, taste and quality, anthropology and sociology, economics and politics, agriculture and the environment, nutrition and public health. Understanding how all of these topics and issues are linked and influence each other is the basis of the gastronomical approach.

Course overview

It is increasingly recognised that reductionist approaches to tackling food-related issues are ineffective and that a more comprehensive and holistic approach is required if we are to understand the many ways that food influences our lives, and effectively address the many injustices and inequalities that are manifest in the current food system. This programme takes an engaged, critical and broadranging approach to examining the many ways that food ‘nourishes’ us, how it shapes who we are and how it can be used as a tool for positive social and environmental purposes.

Your studies will be brought to life with field trips to a diverse range of foodrelated businesses and organisations – from livestock markets to Michelin starred restaurants, large-scale farm operations to artisan food producers, supermarket distribution warehouses to government research centres and more. Through input from a wide range of specialist, expert and industry speakers, you will gain exposure to the diverse influences that affect how we produce, process, represent, practise and consume food. Scotland is often the showcase for this, but we retain a global outlook and the concepts covered are transferable to other cultures and countries.

Exit awards

MSc (180 credits)/ PgDip (120 credits)/ PgCert (60 credits)

Tuition fees

Students living in United States
(international fees)

£ 14,500per year

Tuition fees shown are for indicative purposes and may vary. Please check with the institution for most up to date details.

University information

Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh

  • University League Table


  • Campus address

    Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, Queen Margaret University Drive, Musselburgh, Edinburgh, EH21 6UU, Scotland

Subject rankings

  • Subject ranking

    27th out of 39 4

  • Entry standards

    / Max 171
    155 73%


  • Graduate prospects

    / Max 100
    60 60%


  • Student satisfaction

    / Max 5
    3.83 77%


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