International Master’s Degree In Agricultural Sciences (IMAS)

 

Objectives of the training program

The research-oriented International Master’s program in Agricultural Sciences (IMAS) is at the core of the IMPLANTEUS Graduate School (GS), which has been designed to address the challenge of adapting Mediterranean agricultural systems for fruit and vegetable production to the constraints of global change all while fostering high nutritional quality.

The IMAS program includes a curriculum in English covering the fundamental aspects of plant and environmental sciences, food chemistry, food processing, microbiology, human nutrition, consumer science with a common objective of developing the production and consumption of safe and high-quality plant food in a Mediterranean context.

This integrated research-oriented training and the financial support of research internships and international mobility aim at fostering both i) awareness to research & innovation and ii) a doctoral experience.

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Conditions for admission

  • Admission to M1 level: a Bachelor’s degree in chemistry or biology, transcripts from the Bachelor’s curriculum, a letter of motivation, any document attesting to the level in English
  • Direct admission to M2 level: a M1 level or a complete Master’s degree (or equivalent degree) in chemistry or biology, transcripts from the Bachelor’s and Master’s curricula, a letter of motivation, any document attesting to the level in English

Note: Regarding the level in English, the admission jury may decide a case-by-case evaluation (face-to-face or by phone).

Initial skills

  • Fundamental bases in chemistry, biochemistry and/or biology
  • A strong motivation to learn outside your initial disciplinary field through the multidisciplinary teaching program proposed by the Graduate School
  • A good level in English. Candidates must be able to attend classes and seminars delivered in scientific English (oral + visual support)

International

The IMAS program has a strong international character as shown by:

  • A systematic use of English in the teaching program.
  • Aids for outgoing mobility. Master’s students will benefit from a dynamic policy encouraging their outgoing mobility during their internships. This policy will heavily rely on the dense global network of international partners of the IMPLANTEUS Graduate School.
  • A strong involvement of international academic partners in the teaching program (through seminars and Summer schools) and in the hosting of Master’s students for their research internships.

Internships & Project

By enrolling in this competitive Master’s curriculum, M1 and M2 students are committed to:

  • Completing their two internships in the research labs associated with the Graduate School (including international partners) with adequate financial support from IMPLANTEUS via research grants and mobility aids
  • Developing a project in collaboration with the private sector and mentored by a socio-economic partner. Each year, proposals by M2 students will be validated and supported (g., to cover travel costs). Projects may deal with research, innovation and any topic at the science – society interface.

Note: A scientific mentor will be assigned to each Master’s student. During the first semester, appointments will be held between the student and his/her mentor to discuss the curriculum and prepare the research internship (lab contacts, bibliography…).

Academic perspectives

Given the research orientation of the IMAS curriculum and the two internships in research labs for a total of 10 months, Master’s students are naturally encouraged to consider pursuing a Doctoral diploma, in particular in the laboratories associated with the Graduate School and that are part of the Agricultural sciences & Sciences Doctoral School (ED536).

ED536 in brief: 14 Research Units. Roughly 200 researchers and 120 – 130 doctoral candidates with 75% involved in agricultural sciences.

A competitive examination for allocating three-year Doctoral grants funded by Avignon University, its Research Federation Tersys and the IMPLANTEUS Graduate School will be held each year in June for Doctoral candidates who will enroll in the university as of Sept. 1 of the same year.

Professional perspectives

The IMAS program aims to train:

  • Future researchers to promote the sustainable production, transformation and consumption of safe high-quality plant food
  • Future managers in innovation for the agro-food industry with an experience of research

Note: Support for professional insertion will be provided to IMAS students via the program’s effort to:

  • Promote student projects in collaboration with the private sector
  • Involve the socio-economic partners in the following actions:
  • Train through keynotes and short modules focused on R&D, in particular
  • Tutor student projects
  • Host students for short periods in relation with their lab internships
  • Organize an annual Job Fair and workshops for job placement

Training program

The IMAS program is part of the Master’s program in Agricultural Sciences (MAS), which also proposes 3 other curricula (in French) centered on plant production (C1), water & soil science (C2) and agro-food production (C3). See: http://univ-avignon.fr/rechercher-une-formation/

 

First semester of Year 1 (M1S1)

Year 2020-2021

  • The non-specialized common core of the 3 MAS curricula (140h, in French): microbiology (40h), toxicology (30h), experimental methodology & data treatment (20h), building a professional project (20h), English (30h)
  • Specialized teachings (95h, in French): nutrition & integrated metabolism (35h), bases of agro-food sciences (30h), agronomy: plant & environment (30h)
  • Specialized teachings (50 – 80h, in French) to choose among the 3 MAS curricula.

 

Years 2021-2025

The Graduate School will gradually aim at making the M1S1 curriculum fully accessible to non-French-speaking students via visual supports in English, new non-specialized teaching in English, innovative learning practices mixing campus-based and distance teaching.

Second semester of Year 1 (M1S2)

  • One third of the GS’s teaching program (ca. 100h, multidisciplinary, in English)
  • A 4-month lab internship

First semester of Year 2 (M2S1)

  • Two thirds of the GS’s teaching program (ca. 200h, multidisciplinary in English)
  • A collaborative project with mentoring by a socio-economic partner

Second semester of Year 2 (M2S2)

  • A 6-month lab internship

Note: Seminars and Summer schools (in English) with participation of the GS’ international partners are a full part of the IMAS program.

Multidisciplinary Teaching specific to the Implanteus graduate school (in English)

Proposal for Academic Year 2020-2021

Teachings proposed in M1 are specified

BLOCK I: Production of plant products in Mediterranean contexts (91h)

  • Historical perspectives: 6h (lectures) Proposed in M1 (repeated in M2 for newcomers)
  • Plant ecophysiology (parts 1 & 2): 30h (15h lectures, 15h practical & tutorials) Half in M1
  • Plant breeding (parts 1 & 2): 25h (lectures + 3h tutorials)
  • Plant health: 15h (5h lectures; 10h tutorials)
  • Agroecology: 4h lectures + 11h practical & tutorials

BLOCK II: Preservation, extraction, transformation and formulation of vegetable matter (65h)

  • Conventional conservation and transformation techniques (20h) Proposed in M1
  • Green and innovative food processing. Conservation and transformation (21h)
  • Formulation of food products (9h)
  • Conversion of agricultural and food processing wastes into added-value products (15h)

BLOCK III: Plant food, health, consumer’s behavior (71h)

  • Plant food and phytochemicals: from bioavailability and effects in the gastro-intestinal tract to cardiometabolic and systemic health effects (40h). Half in M1
  • Safety of the production chain of fresh or processed fruits and vegetables (24h). Half in M1
  • Consumer science (7h)

BLOCK IV: Interdisciplinary teaching (67h)

  • Data treatments & Statistics: hypothesis testing, linear mixed model and data analysis (20h)
  • Modeling (20h)
  • Quality control & analysis, metabolomics (9h)
  • Imaging and techniques of internal investigation (12h)
  • Ethics & scientific integrity (6h) Proposed in M1 (repeated in M2 for newcomers)