Catalogue of Modules, University of Nottingham

D24BS9 Beer flavour development and sensory analysis
(Last Updated:03 May 2017)

Year  12/13

Total Credits: 20

Level: Level 4

Target Students:  students registered on the MSc in Brewing Science  Available to JYA/Erasmus students.

Taught Semesters:

Spring Assessed by end of Spring Semester 

Prerequisites: Qualification for entry on to MSc in Brewing Science

Corequisites:  None.

Summary of Content:  Flavor quality across the brewing process, examining the key materials, processes & quality parameters which influence beer flavor from grain to glass. Develops understanding of multisensory flavor perception & theoretical aspects of the sensory evaluation of beer. Beer Flavour Development: Key components of beer flavor (volatile / non-volatile flavor components & balance; sweetness-bitterness balance; chloride-sulfate ratio; trigeminal effects: temperature/ carbonation; mouthfeel (e.g. beer foam, viscosity) influence of pH; multisensory considerations). Interactions between the senses. Range of beer styles and their flavor characteristics. Development & control of key beer flavor characters or off-notes throughout the brewing process. Trouble-shooting flavor defects in beer Flavor stability / staling of beer during storage: oxidation/ maturation. To include methods for monitoring beer staling; current theories of beer flavor stability; separate contributions of materials & process to flavor stability; potential markers for beer staling Sensory analysis: Theory of sensory analysis/ designing & running sensory trials Facilities & recruitment of assessors Introduction to main sensory methodologies (e.g. discrimination testing/ quantitative methods/ descriptive/ profiling, threshold determination/ hedonic tests) Beer flavor wheel/ QDA of beer Ethical considerations/ consumer testing and behavior. Experimental design & analysis of sensory data; ANOVA, PCA Module Web Links:
  • Beer flavour development
  • (Web CT)

    Method and Frequency of Class:
    Specific Activities are not listed

    Method of Assessment: 

    Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
    Exam 1 75 2 h written exam 
    Coursework 1 25 Prepare draft publication (2500 words) from data given 

    Dr D Cook

    Education Aims:  To develop an understanding of the components of flavour quality in a wider sense. To foster a cross-disciplinary approach to brewing science, which enables an overview of flavour formation to be gained, together with a perspective on the important control points and checks required to ensure flavour quality and consistency. The module will familiarise students with contemporary techniques in sensory analysis and their application to Brewing Science. The module teaching will be informed by the principles of multisensory perception, showing how information from the senses of taste, aroma, vision and somatosensation interact to define flavour quality.

    Learning Outcomes:  a Knowledge and understanding A1: The fundamental, cross-disciplinary principles and practices that underpin current understanding of the flavour quality of beer and their commercial and research applications. A2: A range of key, specialist information primarily focussed on the development of flavour quality throughout the brewing process. A3: The ways in which industry is utilising fundamental and applied research findings from the field of flavour and sensory science. A4: A range of research topics related to the development and control of flavour quality in beer A5: A range of relevant practical techniques and their uses (e.g. sensory analysis/GC-MS/ GC-Olfactometry), together with appropriate procedures for analysis of data. A1, A2, A3 & A4 will be learnt through lecture materials, e-assignments and whilst researching and writing Coursework 1 & Coursework 2. A5 will be practiced in the practical sessions during the residential taught course. b Intellectual skills B1: Critically evaluate current research and advanced scholarship related to i) the development and maintenance of flavour quality in beer and ii) sensory evaluation of beer. B2: Acquire substantial quantities of information systematically and process it selectively and effectively. B3: Develop ideas, form opinions and make interpretations based upon the use of information from a wide variety of sources. B1, B2 & B3 will be developed as part of researching and writing both Coursework 1 and Coursework 2. B1 will also be self-assessed using e-learning materials. c Professional practical skills C2: Search for and retrieve information from a wide range of sources including electronic and print systems. C3: Present scientific data in a range of formats (written work assignment) to a standard consistent with the expectations of the professional scientific community. C4: Work safely in a laboratory environment and respond appropriately to relevant safety issues. C2 will be developed throughout the module by drawing on the full range of e-materials and through researching and preparing both Coursework 1 and Coursework 2. C3 will be practiced and assessed in both elements of Coursework. C4 will be learnt and practiced during the practical sessions. d Transferable (key) skills D1: Communicate effectively in written and verbal forms. D2: Critically appraise and present information from a wide range of sources D3: Use general IT tools, Internet and other learning resources to generate concise scientific overviews and to advance their own knowledge base. D4: Act autonomously and exercise personal responsibility in planning and implementing tasks D5: Participate effectively in team working activities. D1, D2, & D3 will be practiced and appraised during both Coursework 1 & Coursework 2. D3 is practiced throughout the self learning component. D4 and D5 will be promoted, learnt and practiced by design of the practical sessions which will employ a team-based problem solving approach requiring planning and initiative.

    Offering School:  Biosciences

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