Three-year Undergraduate Degree
The Three-Year Undergraduate Degree in Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures produces gastronomes who can influence food systems, improving their sustainability and sovereignty, and work in promoting and adding value to food.
The course provides a high-level academic education through an interdisciplinary learning process. Classroom lectures and theoretical study are supported by study trips and experiences in the field, laboratory teaching and encounters with key figures from the world of food and gastronomy, in order to explore all aspects of food from production to consumption.
Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures graduates study social sciences and the humanities. Classes – and related academic materials – are in English the first year, and mainly in Italian the second and third years of the program.
The degree is characterized by a number of innovative learning methods:
- classroom teaching covers the entire arc of the gastronomic sciences from an interdisciplinary perspective and is based on progressive teaching tools such as group work, presentations, databases, e-learning and social networks;
- experiential training with tastings in the classroom and the sensory analysis lab and activities in the educational food garden;
- meetings with leading figures from the food world including seminars, conferences, workshops and presentations;
- study trips and field experiences: 15 study trips in Italy and the rest of the world to deepen students’ understanding of food products and their places of origin, to meet the people directly involved in food and gastronomy and to develop a national and international network of contacts.
Building a global network with an undergraduate degree
The Three-Year Undergraduate Degree in Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures is aimed at international students and allows them not only to acquire cross-cultural knowledge and skills but also to develop a global network, thanks to:
- a close-knit community of alumni and students from 87 different countries;
- meetings with key figures in the food world thanks to diverse activities on the Pollenzo campus and during the study trips;
- businesses and other organizations belonging to the University of Gastronomic Sciences network;
- a direct relationship with Slow Food’s projects and its network.
The Three-Year Undergraduate Degree in Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures is designed to train multi-skilled professionals able to work and carry out research in many different fields connected to food systems.
The main employment sectors for graduates are:
- Food businesses
- National and international institutions
- Specialized and large-scale food distribution
- Wine and spirits
- Communication and publishing
- Education and training
- Restaurants and catering
- Food and wine tourism
Within the different employment sectors, graduates can apply their knowledge and skills to research and development, innovation, gathering and analysis of information and data, education, communication, marketing, food processing and production, sales, quality control and buying.
Program director: Prof. Lorenzo Bairati
Maximum number of students per year: 100
First round: March 29, 2018
Second round: June 14, 2018
Third round: August 27, 2018
Ranking list publication dates
First ranking list: April 6, 2018
Second ranking list: June 22, 2018
Third ranking list: September 3, 2018
Course start: September 17, 2018
Deadline for pre-enrollment and visa application practices through the Italian consulate is July 24
Both humanities and sciences are taught within the Undergraduate Degree in Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures. Practical learning, lab work, and study trips to discover products and their regions of origin complement in-class lessons in order to provide students with an interdisciplinary approach to the world of gastronomy.
The following list of subjects and course modules comprise the Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures program of study. Each may include seminars dedicated to a specific issue, and course content may vary from year to year.
Class hours and contents may vary.
Food Biodiversity and Human Ecology
Molecular and Taste Sciences
Sociology of Cultures, Communication and Gender Differences
Ecology of Law and History of Sovereignty
Gastronomic Lab I
Linguistic Skills – Italian/English Language
Study Trips, Fieldwork Research and Film Techniques – 1st Year
Agroecosystems and Sustainability
Travel Sciences, Society and Environments
Food History from Prehistory to the Middle Ages
Food Product Sciences
Gastronomic Design Sciences
Contemporary Food History
Gastronomic Lab II
Study Trips and Fieldwork Research – 2nd Year
Food and Health
Food Systems and Global Law
Business Economics for Food Companies
Philosophy of Food and Gastronomic Communication
Ethnobiology and Food Scouting
Gastronomic Lab III
Study Trips and Fieldwork Research – 3rd Year
Meetings and Conferences
Study trips at UNISG are learning tools that give students unique access to knowledge about the world’s gastronomic cultures.
The focal points during these travels revolve around comparisons between opposites: of scale and geography (small-scale versus industrial, rural versus urban) and of production (new trends and mass production methods versus artisanal traditions).
The study trips highlight these opposites that characterize different gastronomic cultures, transmitting a deeper understanding to the students. To do this, they generally develop around chains of production, processing, distribution and consumption, with visits, workshops, guided tours and tastings.
These learning experiences are focused on products, which are always studied within their surrounding context. The itineraries are designed so that similar attention is paid to small-scale producers and production on an industrial scale. This makes the trip a highly effective way of understanding the gastronomic culture of a region or a country, inevitably the result of migrations, hybridizations and the dynamics of the global market.
The students’ classroom studies are integrated into the trip, making it possible to study food cultures and processes through direct, personal experience in the field. The trips represent essential opportunities for synthesis and a realization of the holistic ambition that characterizes UNISG’s vision and activities.
These experiences are constructed around the local communities, which grow stronger through the process of opening up to travellers, while also enriching the host students with a new understanding and awareness. It is within this space of negotiation that the Pollenzo project develops, creating hybrid forms of tourism and travel that prioritize the unique nature of traditional cultures and recognize food as a primary point of interest.
Through the study trip project, the university also contributes to the development of new forms of collaboration and interaction between restaurateurs, producers, local communities and leaders in the host regions, promoting a model of cooperation between stakeholders on an international scale, underpinned by food.
The university’s objective is also to dialog with leading food market players active in the visited area. Only in this way can the trips offer students the chance to develop a complete vision of the complex economic, cultural and demographic dynamics that characterize the areas visited and are always in constant evolution.
Following the educational experience, students will be able to develop an autonomous capacity to analyze the phenomena observed during the trip, thereby becoming promoters and bearers of innovation and protagonists of constant cultural exchanges.
The Career Center supports UNISG students during the delicate transition into the professional world.
While the students are here in Pollenzo, the Career Center provides constant support to develop their own unique career design through the “Cultivating your Career” program, which consists of collective workshops and individual coaching sessions.
Through the Career Fair, the office helps students in gaining a better understanding of different professional sectors to start or continue their career.
Upon graduation, the Office continues monitoring the careers of alumni, fostering a strong and active professional network that puts together new and experienced gastronomes worldwide.
Fees, Financial Aid & Scholarships
The annual fees for the Three-Year Undergraduate Degree in Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures starting in the academic year 2018/19 are €14.500, and includes:
- all academic activities, including conferences, tastings, and seminars;
- books and other print materials;
- all study-trip expenses as programmed;
- participation in all UNISG and Slow Food events as included in the undergraduate program;
- civil insurance coverage;
- private insurance policy covering urgent healthcare for non-European students;
- dining hall pass with 4.000 credits for use at UNISG Academic Tables (corresponds to €400). For more information about the meal service, click here >
- access to Career Center services (food sector job placement).
Note: Fees do not include accommodation and the cost of obtaining an Italian permit of stay (“permesso di soggiorno”, around €150). Non-EU citizens must apply for a permesso di soggiorno at the post office, ideally with the assistance of the Al Elka Foreigner Services Center, within 8 working days after arriving in Italy. For more information, please see the Bureaucratic Procedures page on our website.
– Italian high school graduates – students who have a secondary school diploma obtained in Italy.
– Graduating Italian high school students – students who will obtain their high school diploma from an Italian high school in 2018, at the conclusion of the 2017/2018 academic year.
– Non-Italian high school graduates* – students who have earned a non-Italian high school degree and are eligible for university enrollment (as reported on the Declaration of Value (Dichiarazione di Valore) issued by the relevant consular authorities).
*Important information for applicants with a U.S. High School Diploma: According to Attachment 1 of the “Procedures for entry, residence and enrolment of foreign/international students for higher education courses in Italy during the 2017-2018 academic year″, updated on August 3, 2017 (and viewable here online), US candidates must possess one of the following:
(1) a U.S. high school diploma and at least 3 successfully completed Advanced Placement exams
(2) Two years of college or university credit with all exams passed
For more information, please contact the Italian embassy or consulate in the United States. All non-EU candidates must enroll through the Italian consulate nearest their place of residence. Candidates should contact the Italian consulate as soon as possible to ensure sufficient time to complete the enrollment process.
Applicants whose native language is not English must have a minimum level of English language proficiency equivalent to a B2-level, (in accordance with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) demonstrated at the English language entrance examination.
Applicants whose native language is not Italian must have a minimum level of knowledge of the Italian language equal to A1/A2 (in accordance with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) demonstrated during the Italian language interview/admission test.
For further details, see the final paragraph entitled Language requirements and bibliography in the Admission Process Instructions – Undergraduate Degree 2018
Students from all countries are eligible to apply. Note that diplomas issued from institutions not accredited in Italy must be accompanied by an Italian consular accreditation (the “Dichiarazione di Valore” or “DV”) as part of the admission process, which candidates must obtain and submit to the Registrar Office. The original document must be handed in to the Student Registrar Office no later than the first day of the program and will be kept by the university for the duration of the program. (The consulate may choose to send the document directly to UNISG.) The application to UNISG must be completed through an Italian consular representative. Applicants should contact their local Italian consulate as early as possible to ensure adequate time for all consular processes. For more information, please see the Bureaucratic Procedures page on our website.
In order to apply to the three-year Undergraduate Degree in Gastronomic Sciences and Cultures, candidates must complete the following steps online:
- registration process;
- supporting dossier;
- Written Analytical Exam;
- Online Interview.
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