Master of Food Science Program


Academic Advisor, 2007 to 2010

The Master of Food Science Program was launched in September 2007 by the Faculty of Land and Food Systems. This professional masters degree is a 1-year course-based program. Students are required to complete 24 credits of course work between September and April and enrol in a 6-credit practicum course in the summer. We had approximately 20 students in each year. Most of them were international students and some of the students were mature students with industry work experience.

As the students’ Academic Advisor, I was the students’ first point of contact once they were admitted. In addition to guiding them through course selection and understanding the learning environment at UBC, I worked with various units, such as English Language Institute, Housing, International House, Graduate Student Society and Library and offered workshops to help students prepare for their academic studies at UBC. Although I did not teach any course for the Master of Food Science Program, I had a direct involvement in a few ­projects that had major impact to the overall quality of the learning environment. These projects are:

Summer Orientation

A schedule of the Summer Orientation is included in Appendix.

Most students in the MFS program are international student new to Canada. To ensure that they are fully prepared for their academic work at UBC in September, I designed, implemented and led Summer Orientations for international students in the MFS program.

The major objective of the Orientation was to introduce active learning and inquiry-based learning to the students as most of them came from a culture where they trust and memorize every details provided by their professors.  As a result, the Orientation program was filled with field trips and tours.  Guiding questions were provided during the field trips to facilitate their understanding.  Food Science content was also introduced from problem-based learning exercises.  Students also gained important presentation skills through lots of practices.  They also learned about giving and receiving constructive feedback. Students set their own learning goals and we reviewed our goals on a regular basis.  Students commented that the Orientation was a transformative experience and felt confidence at the end of the summer.

FOOD 531 Practicum Project – a Capstone Course

Course outline and evaluation framework are included in the Appendix.

All students were required to enrol in this 6-credit practicum course.  Each student was partnered up with an industry sponsor and helped the industry sponsor solve/examine an existing situation or problem.  Students conducted literature search, developed hypotheses, designed an experiment plan, carried out the research and reported their finding to the sponsors.

I developed a course outline using existing course outlines from similar courses such as undergraduate thesis and undergraduate research paper and feedback from faculty members in FNH.  A simple evaluation framework was developed to help our industry sponsors provide both formative and summative feedback to the students.

An exit survey was also developed.  We planned to use the information to enhance the partnership.  It was important that the industry sponsors were getting some useful data from the research and the students gained some research experience through this practicum opportunity.

Program Evaluation and Exit Survey

These are included in the Appendix.

I developed a program evaluation for graduating students and an exit survey for alumni of the MFS program.  The surveys were administrated using an on-line system.  The information gathered would be used to identify gaps in the programs. The exit survey allowed us to know where our alumni are on their career path and if we need to develop any continuing programs to support their needs. In addition, we like to use the exit survey as a mean to maintain relationships with our alumni.


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