Course overview

You'll gain technical knowledge and hands-on experience of practical brewing. Our expertise means that you'll understand the scientific principles behind the brewing process. We'll give you the skills to innovate, problem solve, and carry out robust scientific experiments.

  • Expert guidance from teaching staff and specialist brewing practitioners
  • Build your practical brewing experience
  • Learn at the International Centre for Brewing Science
  • Develop career skills and networking opportunities

Brewing research project

You'll apply the knowledge, skills and experience gained throughout the course. It gives you ownership of your particular piece of research. Design, conduct, evaluate, report and communicate a piece of time-limited academic research.

Ideally the research area should be of value to the company hosting the project. You should use appropriate experimental design strategies and statistical methods of analysis. This will also develop your skills in writing research papers.

Key facts

  • The UK Midlands region has strong historic links to brewing
  • Our campus is close to the famous brewing centre of Burton-upon-Trent

Why choose this course?

Blended learning

Access additional resources like videos and e-learning between classes

Expert teaching

Learn from experienced brewers and leading academic researchers in the field 

Practical skills

Learn how to design and brew beers and develop practical research skills 

Build your career

We have strong links to the brewing industry and a high percentage of graduates whose first destination job is in brewing

Course content

Brewing research project - 60 credits

Typically, projects are conducted in partnership with industry providing opportunities for work experience. You'll use the skills and knowledge gained from taught modules to devise and carry out an innovative piece of research.


Fundamentals of Brewing 20 credits

This module will provide you, if new to brewing, with the necessary underpinning knowledge enabling you to benefit from the already existing modules which form the current part-time MSc in Brewing Science. It covers the fundamentals of the brewing process, definitions of beers and other associated beverages and brewery design and operation.

  • Historical perspective and the factors which have shaped the modern brewing industry
  • Beer definitions and styles (including RTDs)
  • The brewing process (traditional and modern and to include a description of the various options for process and plant that can be used to perform individual stages in the brewing process)
  • Brewery design and layout including a description of tank design, pipe-work layout, types of pump and valve
  • Brewery operation and planning
  • Engineering aspects of brewing including choice of materials for construction, heat exchange, refrigeration, and gas control
  • Definitions of scientific units used in brewing and the methods used for their measurement
  • CIP and hygiene
  • Environmental considerations
  • The impact of legislation on brewing practices
  • The impact of R&D on modern brewery practice
  • Future trends and career opportunities in brewing and other topics as deemed appropriate
Practical Brewing 20 credits

This module will provide you, if new to brewing, with the necessary practical skills to enable you to brew and pack beer. It will be largely practically based using the nano and AB InBev micro-brewery facilities, but also supplemented with appropriate lectures, tutorials and visits to external commercial breweries. The module will culminate in an assessed group exercise, the object of which will be the production of a batch of packaged beer of style and recipe chosen by each team.


Raw Materials for Brewing 20 credits

This module provides an understanding of the significance and quality parameters of the key raw ingredients used in brewing and of the underlying science and technology. Links between raw material and product quality factors will be considered. The collaborative group project will develop teamworking, communication and ultimately presentation skills at the assessment event.

Beer Maturation and Filtration 10 credits

This module considers biological and chemical processes that contribute to the maturation of beer once fermentation is complete. You will be introduced to scientific principles and relevance to industrial practice of 

  • Maturation: flavour and aroma changes. Techniques to achieve product specification
  • Formation of non-biological hazes and stabilisation against non-biological haze
  • Carbonation: carbon dioxide addition, saturation and recovery
  • Clarification and filtration. Removal of yeast and beer recovery, beer filtration
  • Specialised beer treatments: low-alcohol, alcohol-free, ice beers, diet beers, bottle conditioning
Fermentation and yeast handling 10 credits

This module considers brewing fermentations and the importance of yeast within the process. It considers:

  • pitching and yeast quality
  • fermentation and flavour metabolism
  • fermentation systems and operations
  • yeast flocculation, cropping and storage

Operational practice and challenges as well as potential innovative technologies are discussed.

Brewery Yeast Management 10 credits

This module considers brewing yeast management in relation to brewery fermentations. You are introduced to scientific principles and their relevance to industrial practices:

  • Brewing taxonomy
  • Brewing yeast cell biology
  • Brewing yeast genetics
  • Brewing yeast biochemistry
  • Brewing yeast replication and growth
  • Yeast culture maintenance and supply
  • Methods of analysis (genetic, biochemical and physiological)
  • Brewing yeast propagation and pitching
Brewhouse Processes 10 credits

Develop an understanding of the science underpinning the processes utilised in the production of wort from raw materials. To consider the key constituents of wort which impact upon beer quality and the influential processing parameters involved. The module forms a part of the ‘brewing process’ component of the MSc in Brewing Science and links directly into the raw materials, fermentation and flavour development modules whilst also forming a core knowledge base for students studying the cross-disciplinary parts of the course in subsequent years.

Brewing Microbiology 10 credits

This module considers the occurrence, frequency and biology of non-brewing microorganisms that are associated with spoilage during the brewing process or the final product. The impact of microorganisms on process and beer will also be considered. You will be introduced to:

  • Spoilage microorganisms associated with the brewing process and final beer product
  • Sampling, detection and identification of brewery microorganisms
  • Disinfection of brewery yeast
  • Cleaning- in – place (CIP) operations
  • The principles and practice of brewery hygiene
Beer Analysis and Quality Management 10 credits

Development of the key chemical & physical properties of beer which determine its’ quality & the analytical techniques which are used to measure them. When & where in the process should measurements be taken using a Brewery Analysis Plan and how are these measurements integrated into the necessary Brewery Quality Systems?

Brewing Research Project (full-time) 60 credits

You will be required to carry out a practical project in brewing science which involves the application of contemporary concepts, theories and methodologies relevant to a selected topic. Content will be agreed with the course supervisor (and where appropriate industrial supervisor) appointed to the project to ensure that the academic content is suitable for a postgraduate course. Ideally the project will be carried out as a placement in industry to address a real situation; however, where this is not feasible or dependent upon the requirements of the research project, a laboratory-based project may be undertaken. Although an individual responsibility, the project will usually involve working with others and may be part of a team project (e.g. developing, brewing and marketing a new beer brand in collaboration with a local brewer).

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Tuesday 25 January 2022.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

  • Lectures
  • eLearning
  • Tutorials
  • Practical classes
  • Problem-based learning
  • Workshops
  • Field trips

All taught modules comprise of a lecture program which is built around online study for flexible learning. Laboratory and pilot plant classes teach core practical skills. Industry visits offer key learning opportunities for this applied field of study. You'll learn the practical, technical and engineering skills required in modern industry.

Teaching is provided by experienced academic staff, supported by regular guest speakers from across the brewing and allied industries, including a team of Honorary Professors who are acknowledged experts in their field. Technical staff, PhD students and post-doctoral researchers provide additional support in small group and practical classes.

How you will be assessed

  • Examinations
  • Coursework
  • Presentation
  • Essay
  • Lab reports
  • Dissertation
  • Poster presentation

Modules are assessed using a variety of individual assessment types which are weighted to calculate your final mark for each module. Typically all taught modules have one or two pieces of coursework and/or an exam.

You will need an average mark of 50% to pass the MSc overall. You will be given a copy of our marking criteria when you start the course and will receive regular feedback from your lecturers and tutors.

Contact time and study hours

Each 10 credits of taught module comprises 20-25 hours of formal contact time and an overall study time of 100 hours (inclusive of e-learning, self-directed study, coursework and revision time).

You will work on your research project between June and September, either based at the University or via an industry placement.

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2022 entry.

Undergraduate degree2:2 (or international equivalent) in biological, chemical, or biochemical engineering or another relevant science subject
Work experience

Relevant workplace experience may, in some circumstances, be accepted as qualification for entry to this course.


Our step-by-step guide covers everything you need to know about applying.

How to apply


Qualification MSc
Home / UK £9,000
International £28,000

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you may be asked to complete a fee status questionnaire and your answers will be assessed using guidance issued by the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) .

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).


There are many ways to fund your postgraduate course, from scholarships to government loans.

We also offer a range of international masters scholarships for high-achieving international scholars who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding


We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students.

Expert staff can help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.

Each year 1,100 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Graduate destinations

This course is primarily aimed at science graduates who wish to pursue a career in the brewing and allied industries.

Our graduates would typically follow a career in:

  • process, production and technical governance
  • hypothesis-led problem solving and innovation in brewing
  • brewery management
  • the craft brewing sector

Recent employers have included AB InBev, Molson Coors, Carlsberg Marston's, Robinsons and Camden Town Brewery amongst others.

You will also be ideally placed to continue your research to PhD level, for example, and to pursue an academic career in the field of brewing science.

Career progression

80.7% of postgraduates from the School of Biosciences secured employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual salary for these graduates was £23,333.*

* Data from UoN graduates, 2017-2019. HESA Graduate Outcomes. Sample sizes vary.

Two masters graduates proudly holding their certificates

Related courses

This content was last updated on Tuesday 25 January 2022. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur given the interval between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.