HNE-30506 Sensory Science I: Principles of Sensory Science


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Practical intensively supervised56
Course coordinator(s)prof. dr. ir. C de Graaf
dr. S Boesveldt
Lecturer(s)prof. dr. ir. C de Graaf
ir. N Zijlstra
S Kremer
dr. MA Stieger
dr. J Mojet
dr. G Jager
dr. S Boesveldt
prof. dr W Bredie
Examiner(s)prof. dr. ir. C de Graaf

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

Knowledge about food & nutrition, basic statistics

Continuation courses:

HNE-30606 Sensory Science II


During this course, an overview will be given of the field of sensory science. The different aspects of sensory science as well as the relationships between these aspects will be discussed and presented. This overview will be related to the structure and planning of this international MSc specialisation. Several (guest)lectures are given on the basic theoretical knowledge of sensory science with a focus on the human person. Classical sensory methodology and physiology of the senses are important topics in this course, which will be studied in-depth. Furthermore, basic experimental psychology, behavioural observation and different factors that influence sensation & perception (context, memory, learning) will be discussed. During the course, the students read literature in the field of sensory science, and will critically reflect on this literature. Furthermore, the students will perform a classical sensory test with regard to one food category. They will analyse the data with simple statistics (such as ANOVA, regression) and write a scientific report about the results with their own practical group. The students will have an excursion to the Restaurant of the Future to show them more extensive possibilities of sensory research facilities (behavioural observation).
The topics covered by this course: - classical sensory methodology: discrimination, descriptive and affective tests (in-depth); - sensation and perception: physiology & functions of the senses (in-depth); - psychophysics (in-depth); - experimental psychology in relation to the design of experimental studies and in relation to memory, learning, emotions and reward; - behavioral observation; - context & bias in sensory studies; - simulation of situational research; - ethical aspects of sensory research.

Learning outcomes:

After the course, the student is expected to: - have basic theoretical knowledge on sensory science;
- understand the basic sensory methods and their appropriate application regarding the research question;
-understand the function and physiology of the senses (smell, taste, sight, touch and hearing);
- have the practical skills to perform a sensory test in a scientific way;
- have the skills to analyse and interpret the sensory data in a correct way;
- critically reflect on sensory literature.


Follow lectures on sensory science theory, literature study, group work practical (sensory test), writing a scientific report and having an excursion to the Restaurant of the Future.


Written examination.


Will be announced.

Compulsory for: MFTFood TechnologyMScG: Sensory Science1AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScD: Sensory Science1AF
Restricted Optional for: MFTFood TechnologyMScD: Ingredient Functionality1AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScC: Molecular Nutrition and Toxicology1AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScA: Epidemiology and Public Health1AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScB: Nutritional Physiology and Health Status1AF
Compulsory for: WUQPCBSc Minor Quality of Fresh Plant Products in Supply Chains1AF