Clemson Graduate School

Clemson Graduate School

Food Nutrition & Technology

General Information

Degrees Offered


The MS research thesis option requires a minimum of 24 credit hours of coursework and 6 credit hours of Research (FDSC 891). Core courses include FDSC 810, FDSC 811, FDSC 812, and seminar every spring. Other possible courses include BIOCH 606, BIOCH 815, BIOCH 817, BIOCH 821, BIOCH 822, EXST 801, EXST 802, and EXST 805. Coursework must be approved by each student’s Graduate Committee which is comprised of a major advisor and two other faculty. The student must complete an in-depth research project, defend the research thesis to the committee, and complete a thesis approved by the Committee and the Graduate School.

Each student is strongly encouraged to select a major faculty advisor before starting a graduate degree.  The program offers a MS research thesis option.

The Food Technology doctoral program is offered by selected faculty from the departments of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Animal and Veterinary Sciences, Horticulture, Microbiology and Molecular Medicine, and Packaging Science. Applicants must have a strong background in food technology, human nutrition, or related areas. Each student is strongly encouraged to select a major faculty advisor before starting a graduate degree.

About the Program

For additional information, please contact the program coordinator (Paul Dawson)

Application Requirements


To apply, you should have a strong background in food science; human nutrition; physical, chemical or biological sciences; or engineering. Proficiency in food science must be demonstrated by the satisfactory completion of course work in food chemistry, food microbiology, food processing and biochemistry.

You may apply on the web at You must submit your completed application, GRE General Test scores (most successful students will have a total GRE score of at least 1000), all academic transcripts (minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0), three letters of recommendation and a statement of objectives and professional experience. International students must submit a satisfactory TOEFL score (most successful students score at least a 575) in addition to documentation of adequate financial support for their studies. All candidates must identify a research advisor who is prepared to accept the applicant as an advisee. Applications are processed on a rolling basis; however, international students should contact the Graduate School for admission deadlines.

Required Documents

For additional information, please contact the program coordinator (Paul Dawson)

Financial Aid

To see the proposed Graduate Tuition Rates for this academic year, click here.

The School or Program offers a number of graduate assistantships to students each year based on merit. These are offered in the form of stipends and the additional benefit of tuition remission. Students must be enrolled in a minimum of 9 credit hours per semester to qualify for a graduate assistantship and must work a minimum of 10 hours a week as a teaching or research assistant or perform other tasks assigned by the School or Program.

Tuition for 2007-08 is $3,157 per semester for in-state students and $6,317 per semester for nonresidents. Off-campus rates are $330 per hour for in-state students and $660 per hour for nonresidents. Graduate assistants pay a flat rate of $950 per semester. Graduate fellows pay South Carolina resident fees.

A limited number of research assistantships are available from grant funds. If awarded one of these assistantships, you will be working on research endeavors financed by the grant funds. Interested applicants should contact individual faculty members. Applicants whose files are completed by February 15 are given preferential consideration.

Course of Study

Program of Study

MS: The MS degree program in food, nutrition and culinary sciences at Clemson University requires a minimum of 24 credit hours of course work and six credit hours of thesis research. Only 600-level courses and higher may be used for graduate credit, and at least one half of the 24 hours of course work must be 800-level or higher. Required courses include:

  • Statistical Methods 1*
  • Food Preservation and Processing
  • A one-credit seminar offered each spring
  • 18 credit hours of advanced-level courses**
  • Six credit hours of thesis research
  • In addition, a minimum GPA of 3.0 is required to maintain good academic standing and to be eligible for graduation.

*Or its equivalent
**May include classes in food science or in such areas as animal and veterinary sciences, biochemistry, chemistry, cell biology, microbiology, nutrition or statistics

PhD: There are no set course requirements for the PhD in food technology. As a PhD candidate in the program, you will gain a comprehensive understanding of the principles of food science, with an expanded knowledge that covers your focused research areas. Your research committee has final approval on all course work. You must pass both the written and oral qualifying examination given by your advisory committee. Upon passing the examinations, you must also write and defend a research dissertation to the satisfaction of your advisory committee. You should also expect to publish a minimum of two refereed research manuscripts from your dissertation.

Current Program


The program offers a wide array of research equipment and facilities, including the following: Hewlett Packard gas chromatograph (mass spectral detector) with HP headspace injector; Hewlett Packard gas chromatograph (FID) with Tek-Mar headspace injector; Hewlett Packard HP Chemstation analytical software; Gow-Mac gas chromatograph (TCD); Hewlett Packard gas chromatograph (FPD); Neotronics Electronic Nose 4000; -70C freezer; deionized and distilled water equipment; Kjeldahl nitrogen analyzers; BYK-Gardner Spectrocolorimeter; Seward stomacher 400 laboratory blender; colony counters; rapid PCR analytical equipment; HPLC-MS sensory analysis facility; a food-science teaching laboratory; state-of-the-art culinary preparation equipment and bench research facilities.

Once in the program, you will have access to the research facilities of several departments, including the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, the Department of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, the Department of Horticulture and the Department of Packaging Science. These departments have a collection of modern research labs, farms and more. Go online to for links to these departments and their facilities.

Our Students

Of the 20 students in the MS program, 16 attend on a full-time basis, six are international students, and 13 are women. Of the 15 students in the PhD program, 12 attend on a full-time basis, nine are international students, and seven are women.

Program Coordinator

Additional Contact

  • Kim Collins
  • 223 Poole Agricultural Center
  • Phone: (864) 656.3397
  • Email:

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