You are here

Food Studies

Food Studies: Introduction

​​​​​​​​​​​​​Lead Faculty

University of Toronto Scarborough

Participating Degree ​Programs

Anthropology—MA, PhD
East Asian Studies—MA, PhD
Environmental Science—PhD
Geography—MA, MSc, PhD
History—MA, PhD
Information—MI
Museum Studies—MMSt
Nutritional Sciences—MSc, PhD
Public Health Sciences—PhD
Sociology—MA, PhD

Supporting Units

Culinaria Research Centre

Overview

Food Studies is an interdisciplinary field dedicated to understanding where our food comes from and how it shapes our bodies and identities. The production and consumption of food has gone through tremendous changes in the past few hundred years. Before industrialization, most food was grown in the place where it was eaten. With the rise of global commodity agriculture, it is often hard to find out exactly what our food is and where it comes from. Then, famine was a constant spectre, whereas today, over-eating has become a significant health problem.

Particular attention will be given to the material nature of food, the way it tastes and smells, and the changes it undergoes through natural decomposition and through the human intervention of preservation and cooking. Students will learn the importance of food in religion, society, the family, gender roles, the environment, agriculture, urbanization, immigration, colonialism, and race and ethnicity. Food Studies will leverage the University’s urban location and its proximity to Canada’s agricultural heartland to broaden students’ experience. The study of food provides both theoretical understanding and practical knowledge for professional careers in health care, business, government service, non-governmental organizations, and educational and community programs. This specialization will draw on a variety of disciplinary approaches emphasizing different knowledge and skills.

The collaborative specialization is open to master's and PhD students in the participating graduate programs listed above. Upon successful completion of the degree requirements of the participating home graduate unit and the collaborative specialization, students receive the notation “Completed Collaborative Specialization in Food Studies” on their transcript and parchment.

Contact and Address

Web: www.utsc.utoronto.ca/culinaria
Email: culinaria@utsc.utoronto.ca
Telephone: (416) 208-8175

Collaborative Specialization in Food Studies
University of Toronto
1265 Military Trail
Toronto, Ontario M1C 1A4
Canada

Food Studies: Master's Level

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants must meet the admission requirements of both the home graduate unit and the collaborative specialization.

  • Applicants must apply to and be admitted to both the collaborative specialization and a participating master's degree program.

  • A curriculum vitae (CV).

  • Applicants must demonstrate superior writing and research skills, as well as an interest in the socio-cultural aspects of food. Applicants will submit to the collaborative specialization committee a research paper (maximum 30 pages) that has been submitted to the home graduate unit, or one that is focused on food studies.

  • Letters from two references. The letters of reference should describe the student’s academic ability and career aspirations, and comment on the student’s potential benefit from the collaborative specialization.

  • Some undergraduate experience in food-related coursework is desired.

 

Specialization Requirements

MA in Anthropology; MA in East Asian Studies (Thesis Option); MA and MSc in Geography; MA in History; MSc in Nutritional Sciences; MA in Sociology (Research Paper Option); MI Concentration Plus Thesis Option; MI General Pathway Plus Thesis Option
  • Students must meet all the degree requirements of the School of Graduate Studies, the participating home program, and the collaborative specialization.

  • Successful completion of the seminar FST 1000H Comparative Research Methods in Food Studies (0.5 full-course equivalent [FCE]).

  • Regular and active participation in SRM 3333H Culinaria Seminar Series.

  • The major research paper or thesis in the participating degree program will be on a topic in food studies, approved by the collaborative specialization committee. 

  • Collaborative specialization courses may be taken as electives for the purpose of satisfying home program requirements.  

 

Specialization Requirements

MA in East Asian Studies (Coursework-Only Option); MA in Sociology (Coursework-Only Option)
  • Students must meet all the degree requirements of the School of Graduate Studies, the participating home program, and the collaborative specialization.

  • Successful completion of the seminar FST 1000H Comparative Research Methods in Food Studies (0.5 full-course equivalent [FCE]).

  • Successful completion of 1.0 elective FCE related to food studies.

  • Regular and active participation in SRM 3333H Culinaria Seminar Series.

  • Collaborative specialization courses may be taken as electives for the purpose of satisfying home program requirements.  

 

Specialization Requirements

MI Coursework-Only Option
  • Students must meet all the degree requirements of the School of Graduate Studies, the participating home program, and the collaborative specialization.

  • Successful completion of the seminar FST 1000H Comparative Research Methods in Food Studies (0.5 full-course equivalent [FCE]).

  • Successful completion of the practicum INF 2173H (0.5 FCE) in an area related to food studies.

  • Successful completion of 1.5 elective FCEs related to food studies.

  • Regular and active participation in SRM 3333H Culinaria Seminar Series.

  • Collaborative specialization courses may be taken as electives for the purpose of satisfying home program requirements.  

 

Specialization Requirements

MMSt Coursework-Only Option
  • Students must meet all the degree requirements of the School of Graduate Studies, the participating home program, and the collaborative specialization.

  • Successful completion of the seminar FST 1000H Comparative Research Methods in Food Studies (0.5 full-course equivalent [FCE]).

  • Successful completion of 2.0 FCEs from a combination of:

    • an internship MSL 3000Y (1.0 FCE) related to food studies;

    • a project MSL 4000Y (1.0 FCE) related to food studies;

    • up to 2.0 elective FCEs related to food studies.

  • Regular and active participation in SRM 3333H Culinaria Seminar Series.

  • Collaborative specialization courses may be taken as electives for the purpose of satisfying home program requirements.  

Food Studies: Doctoral Level

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants must meet the admission requirements of both the home graduate unit and the collaborative specialization. 

  • Applicants must apply to and be admitted to both the collaborative specialization and a participating doctoral degree program.

  • Students who complete the collaborative specialization at the master's level will be eligible for the program at the doctoral level, but will be expected to complete an additional topics course (see below).

  • A curriculum vitae (CV).

  • Applicants must demonstrate superior writing and research skills, as well as an interest in the socio-cultural aspects of food. Applicants will submit to the collaborative specialization committee a master’s-level research project paper or thesis. Experience in a food-related field (either practical, scholarly, or policy/political/social service) is beneficial.

 

Specialization Requirements

  • Students must meet the degree requirements of the School of Graduate Studies, the participating home program, and the collaborative specialization.

  • Successful completion of the seminar FST 1000H Comparative Research Methods in Food Studies (0.5 full-course equivalent [FCE]), if not already taken at the master's level. Students who have completed the Food Studies collaborative specialization at the master's level are exempted from this requirement.

  • Successful completion of the topics course FST 2000H Food, Culture, and Society (0.5 FCE). The course theme will be decided each year by the collaborative specialization committee.

  • Regular and active participation in SRD 4444H Culinaria Seminar Series

  • The student's dissertation in their home graduate unit must be on a topic in food studies, approved by the specialization committee.

  • Collaborative specialization courses may be taken as electives for the purpose of satisfying home program requirements. 

Food Studies: Courses

Required

​FST 1000H​
Comparative Research Methods in Food Studies​​
​FST 2000H
​Food, Culture, and Society

Electives

These courses may have prerequisites and enrolment limits. These courses may not be offered every year. Students may take courses not listed below with approval of the collaborative specialization director.

ANT 4039H
The Origins and Nature of Early Resource Producing Societies
CHL 5652H Foundations of Practice III
​HIS 1301H
History of Food and Drink
JPG 1429H The Political Ecology of Food and Agriculture
LHA 1197H The Pedagogy of Food
​​MST 1370H
From Farm to Market: Social and Economic Transformations in Medieval Europe
​NFS 1201H
​Public Health Nutrition
NFS 1212H Regulation of Food Composition, Health Claims, and Safety
NFS 1216H Selected Topics in Nutrition
NFS 1218H Recent Advances in Nutritional Sciences
SOC 6519H Sociology of Food