Course overview

The Advanced Sensory Science and Topical Techniques course form part of the Post Graduate Certificate in Sensory Science which is run jointly by the University of Nottingham and Campden BRI. It is designed to provide both a fundamental and practical understanding of human sensory perception and the techniques used to examine them.

The course starts with an update on the mechanism of sensory perception and considers aspects of individual variables such as genetic factors, age and gender. This is followed by an introduction to psychophysics, including 'threshold testing' and signal detection theory which underpins the use of d’ and R-index measures. We consider the use of newer ‘labelled magnitude scales’ and temporal measures of sensation including 'time intensity' and 'Temporal Dominance of Sensations' methodologies.

We also look at the relative merits of the ‘Rapid Methods’ now available to sensory scientists and finish by bringing the senses together in consideration of the concept of multimodal perception and interactions between the senses.

This course is particularly relevant to developing scientists who wish to broaden their experience and understanding of the varying roles played by psychophysics, perception and physiology in sensory science.

The course can be taken as a stand-alone training course but can also form part of the PGCert in Sensory Science (at the University of Nottingham) or postgraduate award in Agrifood.

Learning outcomes

You will gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • The biological basis of sensory receptors
  • psychophysical laws and sensory perception
  • principles of multimodal flavour perception

You will gain the following intellectual skills:

  • collect, integrate and critically evaluate evidence for discussion
  • evaluate the subject matter and its implications for sensory testing

You will gain professional practical skills to:

  • carry out sensory techniques to investigate perception

Also you will learn to:

  • present orally in a concise and effective manner -
  • communicate clearly and concisely in a written form
Additional Course Information

Areas covered will include:

Receptor mechanisms

Individual variation in perception

An introduction to psychophysics

Evaluating methods for threshold testing

Signal detection theory, d' and R-index

Temporal methods including temporal dominance of sensations

Rapid methods for profiling

Multimodal perception



    Key facts

    Course Dates
    Course - 4 days - The course can be taken as a stand-alone training course but can also form part of the PGCert in Sensory Science or postgraduate award in Agrifood.
    Entry Requirements
    Graduate level or experienced within the agrifood industry.
    IFST Membership
    Your course enrolment also entitles you to one year of free membership to the IFST (Institute of Food, Science and Technology).
    Course Provider
    University of Nottingham
    Provider Reference Number
    Course Arrangements
    Full joining instructions will be confirmed by the course provider.
    Course Location
    University of Nottingham
    Mixed Cohort
    My AFTP training course has given me greater confidence day-to-day and more insight into the impact of new techniques and technologies.
    Andy Russell - Fresh Produce Technologist, Bakkavor

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