Courses & Units

Food Microbiology KLA396



KLA396 may form part of a microbiology major in the BSc degree course, together with three or more of CJA313, CJA314, KLA304, KLA346, KLA392, KLA394, KLA304 (if taken in conjunction with KLA396) and/or KLA398.  Interested students who have not undertaken one of the nominated prerequisite units should contact the Unit Co-ordinator to discuss possible entry to the unit.


This unit considers the role of microorganisms in the production, deterioration and safety of foods, from both ecological and physiological perspectives, including the effect of temperature, pH, water activity and other factors on the growth and decline of microbial populations in foods. Specific topics include:

- microbial physiology and ecology relevant to foods
- microbial spoilage processes and their inhibition
- beneficial microbial fermentations (including other, non-food, biotechnological examples)
- microbial hazards associated with foods and molecular physiology and ecology of food-borne pathogens
- and a brief introduction to current approaches to food safety assurance including HACCP, detection methods, quantitative risk assessment and predictive microbiology (n.b., these topics are covered in greater detail in KLA394/602).

The unit includes practical instruction in methods and approaches routinely used in food microbiology testing laboratories as well as research-oriented and novel methods (in a form of a small group project), including emerging methods that are not yet well established. Excursions to at least two food processing plants are included to illustrate how the science of food microbiology is employed in industry, whether to preserve foods, produce foods or food ingredients, or to protect foods from harmful microorganisms.


Unit name Food Microbiology
Unit code KLA396
Credit points 12.5
College/School College of Sciences and Engineering
Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture
Discipline Agriculture and Food Systems
Coordinator Mr Chawalit Kocharunchitt
Teaching staff Professor Thomas (Tom) Ross
Available as student elective? Yes
Delivered By University of Tasmania
Level Advanced


Location Study period Attendance options Available to
Hobart Semester 1 On-Campus International Domestic


International students
Domestic students

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Key Dates

Study Period Start date Census date WW date End date
Semester 1 21/2/2022 22/3/2022 11/4/2022 29/5/2022

* The Final WW Date is the final date from which you can withdraw from the unit without academic penalty, however you will still incur a financial liability (see withdrawal dates explained for more information).

Unit census dates currently displaying for 2022 are indicative and subject to change. Finalised census dates for 2022 will be available from the 1st October 2021.

About Census Dates

Learning Outcomes

  • Outline the importance of microorganisms and their role in the production, deterioration and safety of foods, from both ecological and physiological perspectives.
  • Explain scientific information about food-borne microorganisms to minimise potential food safety risks and maintain the microbiology quality of foods.
  • Select appropriate microbiological methods for study, control and manipulation of food-borne microorganisms
  • Conduct a research project in food microbiology through the application of microbiological methods
Field of Education Commencing Student Contribution 1 Grandfathered Student Contribution 1 Approved Pathway Course Student Contribution 2 Domestic Full Fee
010911 $1,002.00 $1,002.00 not applicable $2,354.00
  • Available as a Commonwealth Supported Place
  • HECS-HELP is available on this unit, depending on your eligibility3
  • FEE-HELP is available on this unit, depending on your eligibility4

1 Please refer here more information on student contribution amounts.
2 Information on eligibility and Approved Pathway courses can be found here
3 Please refer here for eligibility for HECS-HELP
4 Please refer here for eligibility for FEE-HELP

If you have any questions in relation to the fees, please contact UConnect or more information is available on StudyAssist.

Please note: international students should refer to this page to get an indicative course cost.



(Admission into a Masters course) OR ((KLA210 - Microbiology OR CJA214 - Microbiology B (Pharmacy) OR JFA214 - General Microbiology OR CXA241 - General and Medical Microbiology))


AssessmentExamination - take home (40%)|Report on Nominated Set Practical (15%)|Essay Based on Reading Topic (15%)|Short Answer Questions (X4) (5%)|Small Research Project (25%)
TimetableView the lecture timetable | View the full unit timetable



Required readings will be listed in the unit outline prior to the start of classes.

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