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VCE Food Studies


Food Studies enables students to develop as informed and capable food citizens by investigating the reasons behind food decisions and acquiring the practical food skills to assist students in taking ownership of food.

Students will develop an understanding of:

  • Practical food skills in the planning, preparation, evaluation and enjoyment of food

  • The principles of nutrition, food science and sensory evaluation to food planning and preparation

  • Food origins, cultures, customs and behaviours

  • Global and local systems of food production, distribution and governance

  • The influences on food choice

  • The issues relating to economic, environmental and ethical dimensions of our food system

  • Food advertising and current food trends


Units 1 and 2:  Demonstration of achievement of outcomes and satisfactory completion of a unit is determined by evidence gained through the assessment of a range of learning activities and tasks. 

Unit 3: School assessed Coursework (30%)

Unit 4: School assessed Coursework (30%)

End-of-year Examination (40%)

UNIT 1:  Food origins 

UNIT 2:  Food makers 

This unit focuses on food from historical and cultural perspectives. Students explore how humanity has historically sourced its food, examining the general progression from hunter-gatherer to rural-based agriculture, to today’s urban living and global trade in food.  

Students look at Australian indigenous food prior to European settlement and how food patterns have changed since, particularly through the influence of food production and immigration. Students investigate cuisines that are part of Australia’s culinary identity today. 

In this unit students focus on commercial food production industries and the production of food in small-scale domestic settings. Students use practical skills and knowledge to produce foods and consider a range of evaluation measures to compare their foods to commercial products. In demonstrating their practical skills, students design new food products and adapt recipes to suit particular needs. They consider the possible extension of their role as small-scale food producers by exploring potential entrepreneurial opportunities. 

UNIT 3:  Food in daily life

UNIT 4:  Food issues, challenges and futures 

This unit investigates the many roles and everyday influences of food. Area of Study 1 explores the science of food: our physical need for it and how it nourishes and sometimes harms our bodies. Students also investigate the functional properties of food and the changes that occur during food preparation and cooking.  

Area of Study 2 focuses on influences on food choice: how communities, families and individuals change their eating patterns over time and how our food values and behaviours develop. 

In this unit students examine debates about global and Australian food systems. Area of Study 1 focuses on issues about the environment, ethics, farming practices, food wastage, and the use and management of water and land.  

Area of Study 2 focuses on individual development of food knowledge, skills and habits to empower consumers to make discerning food choices. Students will navigate contemporary food fads, trends and diets. They will practise and improve their food selection skills by analysing the marketing terms used on food packaging.  

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