Learning in practice

Course structure

Distribution centreThe degree is based around a number of core modules, with other optional modules selected with guidance from your Personal Tutor and Programme Director. Our aim is to develop a number of key management, marketing and economics skills and techniques yet still provide you with a flexible programme by offering multiple optional modules through which you can explore your own interests.

The course requires a substantial amount of independent reading, research and study. Students are expected to take personal responsibility and show initiative in developing their knowledge and understanding of the field of study. Students will also have the opportunity to enhance and develop their communication, presentation, information handling and problem solving skills, and the use of information technology. Students will learn to work independently, under time pressures, and will be expected to set priorities and manage their time in order to meet strict deadlines.

We use a variety of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials and visits from industry speakers, and complement this with mixed methods of assessment including projects, class tests and examinations.

Project Work

The interior of the Agriculture building at the University of ReadingTo encourage the development of independent learning skills and other skills graduate employers are seeking, students are required to undertake a piece of project work in all three Parts of the degree. The Applied Project in Part 1 (10 credits) lays down the essential framework for carrying out a research project. The Food Business Group Project in Part 2 and 3 (15 credits) and the Individual Project in Part 3 (30 credits) make a major contribution to overall degree assessment.

Working in groups on the Food Business Group Project , you will act as consultants for a food business on a marketing research assignment. Often linked to new product development, this is a great opportunity to try out some of your newly acquired marketing and business skills. Previous clients include both retailers (Sainsburys, Waitrose, and Marks & Spencer) and manufacturers (Mars, Proctor and Gamble, United Biscuits). You will also gain invaluable commercial experience in team-working, problem-solving, report writing and presentation skills.

Client list includes:

  • Sainsburys, Safeway, Waitrose, Marks & Spencer
  • Proctor and Gamble, Kraft Foods
  • Day Chocolate
  • Muller, Coutts Retail Communication
  • Samworth Brothers,
  • United Biscuits,
  • Meat & Livestock Commission,
  • Day Chocolate Company
  • Monsanto

All students in their final year conduct a major individual project on a topic of their own choice within the scope of the degree. This will give you an opportunity to specialise further in an area that best suits your needs and interests – helping to tailor the degree to your requirements and career direction.

Other Opportunities

You will have the opportunity to attend events of relevance to your degree, such as the one day conference 'Food and Agriculture in the UK - Opportunities and Threats through to 2015' held at the School and organised by the Department of Agricultural and Food Economics, the Institute of Agricultural Management and the Food & Drink Group of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

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