Culinary Sciences

MERIDIAN SCHOOL OF CULINARY SCIENCES

GRADUATE PROGRAM HANDBOOK

 

         ENROLLMENT INFORMATION

 

The School of Culinary Sciences offers a graduate program. Students desiring to graduate need to complete an enrollment form and mail it to the College Dean. The Dean and Registrar will maintain a roster of enrolled students and will keep students advised as to the classes they need to graduate.  Students will maintain their own transcripts.  Classes are open to all.

Out-of-Kingdom students are welcome and are eligible to graduate from the College. All students may receive credit for courses taken in other Kingdoms and/or from modern universities. Students should contact the College Dean for a review of courses they wish to transfer.

Students who do not complete an enrollment form with the College will be considered “non degree-seeking” (NDS) students. NDS students should keep a personal record of the classes they take, in case they may wish (in the future) to change from an NDS student to a degree-seeking student.

 

COURSE EVALUATION

For SCA Classes not previously accredited with this College, the following information should be furnished to the College Dean for a review and credit determination. (1) Title of Class (2) Instructor’s name (3) Date and Location of Class (4) If possible, please furnish a copy of the class outline or handout.

For modern classes, furnish some proof of the course taken, such as a copy of a college or university transcript or completed test forms.  (Depending on the degree being sought within RUM and the complexity of the modern class, more than one credit could be given.  Applications will be handled on a case-by-case basis.)

 

CLASS SCHEDULES AND CLEP EXAMINATION

 

Classes will be offered by accredited instructors at the Royal University of Meridies, Kingdom Arts and Sciences, local Collegiums, and various local events. A passing grade will be awarded to all students who attend IN ITS ENTIRETY any accredited course, unless the instructor notifies the College Dean in writing otherwise.

CLEP Examinations: There is no limit to the number of CLEP exams that may be taken at a given event, but the same CLEP exam can only be taken once a month. CLEP tests will be graded on a pass/no pass grading system. Each CLEP test may have a separate grading system based on staff recommendations. Transferred courses: Will be evaluated by the College Dean and a determination shall be made on a case-by-case basis.

 

FINANCIAL INFORMATION

 

There is no charge for enrollment in this College beyond the basic RUM registration fee. Instructors may charge a fee for handouts and/or materials.


GRADUATION – DEGREES

 

Each degree has a number of topics that are required to be covered, with the remainder being made up of elective courses of the student’s choice.  Course names may vary, but the main subject matter of the required courses should be the same.  Students enrolled in the School of Culinary Sciences may receive any of the following degrees based on their choice of studies:

 

  • Associate of Medieval Foods & Food Pathways– centered on SCA Period food, availability, trade routes, and animal husbandry
    1. 4 Required Courses
      1. Feast Appreciation
      2. Overview of Culinary History – Food Timeline
      3. Overview of Agricultural Practices or Botany for the SCA
      4. Trade Routes –Supply and Demand
    2. 11 Electives

 

  • Associate of Medieval Feasting – centered on SCA Period Food Preparation, Feasting and Fasting, Period Techniques, and SCA Feastcratting.
    1. 5 Required Courses
      1. Feast Appreciation
      2. Medieval and Renaissance Food Texts
      3. Feastcratting 101
      4. Budgeting, Planning, and Purchasing
      5. Humoral Theory
    2. 10 Electives
      1. Head Cook at an SCA Feast (optional: up to 5 credits total)

 

 

  • Associate of Botanical Studies –centered on SCA Period use of Herbal Medicine, Period Herbals, Gardens and Gardening, and Agricultural Practices
    1. 4 Required Courses
      1. History of Herbals
      2. Period Gardens
      3. Overview of Agricultural Practices or Botany for the SCA
      4. Humoral Theory
      5. 11 Electives

 

 

  • Associate of Brewing and Vintning –centered on the study of fermented beverages in the SCA period of study.
    1. 3-5 Required Courses (TBD)
    2. 10-12 Electives

 

 

 

 

DEGREE DESCRIPTIONS

 

Degree #1 is for the person who studies the foods and the history of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance.

Required courses include: Feast Appreciation; an overview of culinary history or a food timeline; Botany for the SCA or an overview of agricultural practices; and a class on the spice trade such as the Silk Road or Urban Spice Merchants.

Electives can include: classes on spices and seasonings; a class on the introduction of various foods to European cultures throughout the time period; agricultural methods; animal husbandry; etc.

A total of up to 5 elective credits will be allowed as practicum classes on the production of specific food products.

Additional specialization in this area can be pursued with classes on topics such as: specific foods; guilds; geographical regions; dietary requirements; the Humoral Theory; etc.

 

Degree #2 is for the person who is interested in studying the dining habits of period, and can include the cook who actively re-creates those foods.

Required courses include: Feast Appreciation; a study of sources including Medieval and Renaissance food texts; SCA Feastcratting (a class or one [1] feast cooked); Budgeting and Planning and Purchasing; and the Humoral Theory.

Electives can include: Effective Hall Stewarding; Basic Feast Planning; redacting and scaling up recipes; technique classes and workshops on specific topics; etc.

Additional specialization in this area can be pursued with classes on topics such as: a focus on a particular region or time period’s feasting practices; subtleties; sauces; butchering; sugar creations (sugar plate, marzipan); service methods/banquet officers; feast and fast day/holiday observances; etc.

 

Note – this is not a degree based on number of feasts cooked.  Holding the position of Head Cook at an SCA Feast can cover the required Feastcratting course, and up to an additional 4 more elective credits (or 5 elective credits for a total of 5 credits), depending on the menu, research, and cooking techniques displayed.  Credits will be awarded on a case-by-case basis.

 

Degree #3 includes those pursuing the use of herbs in period; the history of medicine; agriculture; gardeners/horticulturists; and some areas of animal husbandry.

Required courses include: History of Herbals; Period Gardens; Botany for the SCA or an overview of agricultural practices; and the Humoral Theory.

Electives can include: the use of various herbs and herbal preparations; period medical practices using herbs; in-depth study of the Humoral Theory; period farming, crops and livestock; etc.

A total of up to 5 elective credits will be allowed as practicum classes on the production of specific botanical products.

Additional specialization in this area can be pursued with classes on topics such as: Nostradamus’ cures for the plague; honey produced from clover fields as compared to wildflowers; the migration of lavender from the Mediterranean to Northern Europe; etc.

 

Note – animal husbandry would not include horses (see Equestrian College Degree Requirments) or any topic other than animals and animal products bred for human consumption such as livestock, fish and bees.

 

Degree #4 will focus on the study of fermented beverages in the SCA period of study.

Required courses include: (to be determined)

Electives can include: production and distribution, overviews such as “Beer Through the Ages” or other individual beverages such as ales, mead, cider, and wine; etc.

Additional specialization in this area can be pursued with classes on topics such as: fortification techniques; customs surrounding consumption such as toasting, boasting and gifting; recipes calling for fermented beverages in cooking; wet coopering for barrels and kegs; etc.

 

Note: Some electives can include practicums, although this is a scholarly degree as opposed to an entire course in the production of alcohol for drinking.  A total of up to 5 elective credits will be allowed for individual workshops for actual alcohol production.

 

 

GRADUATION – REQUIREMENTS

 

  • 5 required and 10 elective classes (a total of 15 classes) must be completed in order to graduate.
  • Graduation ceremony will take place at RUM.
  • Current SCA membership is required for graduation.
  • Students are eligible to attain Associate Degrees within the College at any time.
  • In order to attain a Lector’s degree, the Student must have a completed Scholar’s Degree.
  • Students who specialize and receive 2 separate Associate Degrees and have completed a Scholar’s Degree will be awarded the distinction of Lector of Culinary Sciences.

 

 LIMITATIONS

 

As with other degrees within RUM, these degrees are meant to show that a graduate can be considered as knowledgeable enough to teach a class, write a paper, or be a resource point for those interested in further study of a particular area.

 

There is no certification for practical application attached or implied.

 

Culinary Sciences covers all things that are considered edible: food, spices, herbs, beverages, and the various disciplines that are involved with them.

There are many topics that bleed over into other areas.  Medieval Medicine is a good example.  The use of herbs is a large part of it as is the Humoral Theory, which is also tied directly to foods.  However, when you start studying surgery, blood-letting, charms and other modalities, you have crossed out of the Culinary realm and into Medieval Sciences.  Animal Husbandry is another good example, it only really becomes Culinary when you are talking about what the animals are eating or how the animals are bred for human consumption.  When you get into care, breeding techniques, etc., you cross out of the Culinary area.  There is not currently a College of Medieval Sciences, but there is one of Practical Arts, and if someone wanted to explore a degree focused on “Medieval Medical Practices”, that would be the college that would best suit the topic.