Apr 16, 2024  
2023-2024 Academic Catalog 
    
2023-2024 Academic Catalog

Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging Video

Nutritional Science, MS



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The Master of Science in Nutritional Science program is designed to meet the needs of the student who has a baccalaureate degree and seeks advanced preparation in nutrition science, nutrition education, geriatric nutrition, and foodservice/restaurant management and packaging. The program is intended to prepare candidates to assume leadership roles in their profession and communities and to provide the opportunity to acquire a foundation for doctoral study. Our MS graduates have earned doctorates, become college and university faculty, been employed in private, federal, and state research institutions, and have established their own private practice or consulting business. In the process of fulfilling requirements for the MS degree, it is possible to complete the academic requirements of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) and the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) toward becoming a registered dietitian. Courses are scheduled to accommodate the time needs of working graduate students.

Additional information is available on the Department of Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging  website: www.sjsu.edu/nufspkg.

University Admissions

Applicants must submit a complete graduate application by applying through the CSU Cal State Apply system and meet all the university admission requirements. See the GAPE Graduate Admissions website and this Catalog for general information about graduate admissions at SJSU.

Applicants from countries in which the native language is not English must achieve a minimum English-language proficiency test score as indicated on the Graduate Program Test Requirements webpage at GAPE. For TOEFL Requirements, see the Policies and Procedures  section, Graduate and Post-Baccalaureate Information .

Requirements for Admission to Classified Standing

Candidates must meet all the university admission requirements . Students can be admitted to the MS, Nutritional Science program in either classified or conditionally classified standing. All prospective students submit one application to obtain approval for university-level admission and department-level admission into the M.S. in Nutritional Science program. A departmental selection committee will rank applicants for admission to classified standing on the basis of information provided in the application. Criteria include:

  1.  BS degree in Nutritional Science, Food Science, Food Management, Packaging or equivalent

  2. Grade point average of B.S. upper division coursework

  3.  Grade point average of prerequisite science courses as described in the MS, Nutritional Science graduate handbook

  4. GRE scores

  5. Letter of intent

  6. Letter of recommendations

  7.  Research and professional experience

Requirements for Admission to Conditionally Classified Standing

Students seeking an MS, Nutritional Science degree who meet requirements for admission to the Graduate Division,but do not have a B.S. degree in Nutritional Science, Food Science, Foodservice Management, Packaging or equivalent a, may apply for conditionally classified standing in the department. The decision to accept the student for study in this program will be made by a departmental selection committee. Criteria include:

  1. BA or BS degree

  2. Grade point average of B.S. or B.A. upper division course work

  3. Number of prerequisite course requirements completed and grade point average. Course requirements described in the MS, Nutritional Science graduate handbook.

  4. GRE scores

  5. Letter of intent

  6. Letter of recommendations

  7. Research and professional experience

Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the MS - Nutritional Science

Prior to registering for the first time (or upon re-entering), a student should consult with the Graduate Coordinator to develop a schedule of courses. Advancement to candidacy  for the Master’s degree in Nutritional Science requires favorable action of the Graduate Committee of the Department of Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging and of the university’s Office of Graduate Admissions & Program Evaluations. In general, students will be recommended for candidacy when they:

  1. Fulfill all university requirements for advancement to candidacy.
  2. Attain classified graduate standing
  3. Complete a minimum of 9 units of letter-graded approved courses.
  4. Receive a minimum 3.0 grade point average in all classes listed on the candidacy form.
  5. Successfully complete NUFS 217  with at least a “C” to meet the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) .
  6. Select a graduate advisor and thesis or project topic.

Requirements for Graduation

University Graduation Requirements

Students must complete all residency, curriculum, unit, GPA, and culminating experience requirements as outlined in the Graduation Requirements  section of the Graduate Policies and Procedures .

MS - Nutritional Science Graduation Requirements

Completion of 30 units of approved course work including the core courses. Maintenance of a 3.0 GPA is necessary.  Completion of the culminating experience that will be of such scope and manner as determined by the student’s graduate committee. As shown below, the program consists of 30 semester units of approved work, including 6 units of Plan A (Thesis) or 3 units of Plan B (Project).

Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement

At SJSU, students must pass the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) .

Culminating Experience

Plan A (Thesis)

For this plan, the student is required to complete 6 units of NUFS 299 - Master’s Thesis . The student is required to complete a research project under advisement of a Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging faculty. The research must result in the generation of a thesis that meets the University Master’s Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation Guidelines. The student must pass an oral examination defending the research to a departmental faculty committee. The student must prepare an oral presentation or poster presentation for the public. 

Plan B (Project)

For this plan, the student is required to complete 3 units of NUFS 298 - Special Studies in Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging . The student is required to complete a project under advisement of a Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging faculty. The student is required to  submit a written project in publication format, pass an oral examination defending the project to a departmental faculty committee, and prepare an oral presentation or poster presentation for the public.

Master’s Requirements (30 units)


Culminating Experience (3-6 units)


Complete Plan A (Thesis) or Plan B (Project)

Plan A (Thesis) (6 units)


Plan B (Project) (3-6 units)


Specialization Area (9-12 units)


9-12 units electives selected in consultation with the graduate advisor

Total Units Required (30 units)


Elective courses must be planned in consultation with the Graduate Advisor.

The maximum number of upper-division undergraduate units that can be applied toward the master’s degree is 15.

Upon completion of the degree requirements, the student must have achieved minimum candidacy and SJSU Cumulative grade point averages of 3.0 in order to graduate.

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