We recognize designing courses from scratch can be time-consuming for busy educators. To help, we created a repository of curriculum materials from up-and-running alternative protein courses. Check out these examples of online courses, undergraduate- and graduate-level university courses, modules, and syllabi. Visit the how-to section for guidance on how to get the most out of this resource.

A blue, green, and yellow graphic illustration of students reading books and studying using a laptop
Sample syllabi

Build your syllabus

Want to develop a course on alternative proteins but need help figuring out where to start? Get started with these example syllabi from university programs and online courses. You can also use our course syllabus template.

Sample project-based graduate course

Explore materials from graduate-level university courses

Project-based courses can be a launching pad for students to enter the alternative protein industry. That’s why GFI Israel, GFI India, and GFI APAC developed an advanced curriculum that centers around a student research project. Since 2020, this course has been taught at multiple universities across Israel and Singapore.

Ben-gurion university
The hebrew university of jerusalem
Nanyang technological university
National university of singapore
The university of north carolina at chapel hill
Sample lab-based undergrad course

View lab protocols from undergraduate-level university courses

By creating flagship alternative protein courses, instructors position their universities to attract top talent increasingly interested in alternative proteins. For example, Tufts University offers multiple courses on cellular agriculture, mostly focused on the bioengineering behind cultivated meat. This featured course helps students gain laboratory experience in cell culture and biomaterials processing.

Sci23059 curriculum repository page graphics tufts university logo
Sample modules

Watch video modules on cultivated meat science

The Knowledge Society (TKS) is a World Economic Forum-backed community of the world’s most ambitious young people who want to make an impact using emerging technologies and sciences. GFI partnered with TKS to develop video modules on the basics of cultivated meat science. Instructors can integrate these videos into biology, chemistry, food science, material science, and tissue engineering courses.

Sci23059 curriculum repository page graphics the knowledge society logo
Sample online course

Adapt slides and recorded lectures from GFI’s online course

Our open-access online course, The Protein Transition, explores the science behind alternative proteins. This introductory-level course covers three production platforms: plant-based, fermentation, and cultivated. Feel free to use these materials as the building blocks for your alternative protein course.

Learn with gfi

Explore all teaching materials

Browse the entire repository, sorted by alternative protein production platforms: plant-based, cultivated, and fermentation. Filtering options include resource type, university or organization, instructor, technology area, discipline, level, and more. Check out the how-to section for guidance on how to get the most out of this resource.

Sci23059 curriculum repository page graphics production platforms image
All materials

Search the library

Plant-based curricula

View all plant-based meat, eggs, and dairy materials

Plant-based meat uses plant-derived ingredients to mimic conventionally produced meat’s taste, texture, and nutrition.

Cultivated curricula

View all cultivated meat materials

Cultivated meat, also known as cultured meat, is genuine animal meat (including seafood and organ meats) that is produced by cultivating animal cells directly.

Fermentation curricula

View all fermentation materials

Fermentation uses microorganisms to improve the properties of alternative protein ingredients, to create specific high-value ingredients, or directly as a protein source in alternative protein products.

The future of alternative protein education

To ensure a robust talent pool for the alternative protein industry, we need more university programs like the Certificate in Cellular Agriculture at Tufts University and the Protein Diversification focus area within EIT Food’s Master in Food Systems program. Program requirements would include courses from food science and other key disciplines for alternative proteins and electives providing historical, economic, and societal context for food technology. An alternative protein “track” could be nested within an existing biotechnology or food science program. Complete majors might focus on one of the leading production platforms: plant-based meat, cultivated meat, and fermentation. Look at the proposed programs below to see which alternative protein pillars align best with your university’s disciplinary strengths.

Sci21035 feature image
Biotech track: Alternative proteins

Requirements for an alternative protein track

A track or specialization is a curated cluster of courses within an existing degree program (e.g., biotechnology, food science). Alternative protein tracks may include classes from key disciplines and 1-3 dedicated alternative protein courses. 

Here’s how we envision an alternative protein track within an undergraduate biotechnology major.

Preparatory requirements for biotechnology major

Biology
General chemistry
Organic chemistry
Calculus
Physics
Statistics
Intro to biotechnology

Specialized requirements for biotechnology major

Gene expression
Cell biology
Biomolecules & metabolism
Ethics in biotechnology
Microbiology
Molecular biology

Alternative protein track requirements

(choose 7 courses)

General options
Intro to alternative proteins (required)
Genetics and biotechnology lab
Functional genomics
Food microbiology lab
Food processing
Bioprocess engineering lab

Plant-based options
Principles of plant biotechnology
Plant biochemistry
Plant genetics
Plant breeding
Evolution of crop plants

Cultivated options
Recombinant DNA cloning & analysis
Tissue engineering
Systemic physiology
Biomaterials
Protein engineering

Fermentation options
Recombinant DNA cloning & analysis
Yeast molecular genetics
Fermented foods
Microbial diversity

Major: Plant-based meat science

Requirements for a plant-based meat major

The potential for plant-based meat expertise is associated with solid departments of agricultural science, biological science, food science, and engineering.

Preparatory core requirements

Biology
General chemistry
Organic chemistry
Calculus
Physics
Statistics
Intro to food science & technology
Intro to plant-based meat

Specialized core requirements

Biochemistry
Molecular biology
Plant biology or botany
Agronomy or horticulture
Food chemistry and analysis
Food processing
Food sensory
Food safety
Meat science

Electives

Plant genetics and breeding
Historical geography of crop plants
Biology of macromolecules
Process chemistry & engineering
Cell biology
Food microbiology
Materials science
Biomaterials characterization lab
Food product design
Computer science
Nutrition
Business/economics
Marketing
Food packaging
Anthropology of food
Psychology
Culinary science
Food laws and regulations

Major: Cultivated meat science

Requirements for a cultivated meat major

The potential for cultivated meat expertise is associated with a university with strong departments of chemical engineering, biological science, food science, stem cell biology, tissue engineering, and materials science.

Preparatory core requirements

Biology
General chemistry
Organic chemistry
Calculus
Physics
Statistics
Bioengineering fundamentals
Intro to food science & technology
Intro to cultivated meat

Specialized core requirements

Biochemistry
Cell biology
Molecular biology
Meat science
Tissue engineering fundamentals
Product development
Bioprocess development
Bioprocess engineering
Biological reactor design
Food sensory
Safety and regulation (for both food and pharma)

Electives

Environmental science
Life cycle assessment (LCA) fundamentals
Energy infrastructure and the environment
Marine biology/Marine science
Food science
Protein engineering 
Genetic engineering
Principles of synthetic biology
Materials science
Heat and mass transfer
Fluid dynamics
Hydraulic transport in biological systems
Heat and mass transport in biosystems engineering
Process simulation
Modeling for systems biology
Food product design
Computer science (esp. courses related to automation)
Nutrition
Business/economics
Marketing

Major: Fermentation science

Requirements for a fermentation major

The potential for fermentation expertise is associated with a university with strong departments of microbiology, chemical engineering, bioengineering, and food science.

Preparatory core requirements

Biology
General chemistry
Organic chemistry
Calculus
Physics
Statistics
Intro to food science & technology
Intro to fermentation

Specialized core requirements

Microbiology
Biochemistry
Synthetic biology
Product development
Bioprocess development
Industrial fermentation
Food mycology/microbiology
Food processing
Food sensory
Food safety and quality

Electives

Microbial genetics/molecular biology
Genetic engineering
Recombinant protein production
Biological thermodynamics
Transport phenomena in biological systems
Instrumental analysis lab
Food product design
Computer science
Nutrition
Business/economics
Marketing

A graphic including a stack of books, glasses, and an apple

Alt Protein Pipelines:
Rethinking curriculum design with a startup mindset

Discover how university course offerings are evolving to meet the increasing demand for trained professionals in the alternative protein field. Watch the webinar to learn from a pioneering team shaping innovative curriculum design!

How to use the teaching library

Filter: You can filter the teaching library by alternative protein production platform, technology area, discipline, resource type, university or organization, instructor, level, and more. You can also download the database as a CSV file. 

Adapt: Use the materials in our library as building blocks for your alternative protein course, module, or other educational program. All featured resources are open-access, ready for educators to adapt them.

Cite: Please cite any materials used in building your alternative protein curriculum. The materials in our library are licensed under Creative Commons BY 4.0. This means you must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. For example: “This lecture was adapted from ‘Cellular Agriculture 101’ by the David Kaplan group at Tufts University, used under CC BY 4.0.” Read more about best practices for attributing CC-licensed materials.

Submit: For this resource to have the highest impact, we need your help filling in the gaps. A comprehensive library would contain course materials for all alternative protein production platforms—plant-based, cultivated, and fermentation-derived—and for an audience varying in academic levels, learning styles, and preferred languages. Contribute your educational materials using the form below.

Submit your materials

Once you have created your alternative protein curriculum, we encourage you to add your adapted materials to our curriculum repository. As a curriculum developer, you play a vital role in accelerating the development of alternative protein by creating much-needed educational content. Expand the impact of your work beyond your classroom by empowering educators worldwide to adapt your materials to their academic institutions.

Teacher writing on a whiteboard

"*" indicates required fields

Please include your home department, if applicable (e.g. Assistant Professor, Biological Sciences
Please ensure that anyone with this link can view your materials. See the field below for an alternative method for submitting your materials.

Alternatively, you can upload your materials to our submission folder on Google Drive.

Please check this box if you use the Google Drive option.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
An educator speaks to students in a classroom

Resource

Join the alt protein educator community

Join our alternative protein educator community and help bring alternative protein education into classrooms around the globe.

Email newsletter sign up icon

Contact us

If you want help building your alternative protein education or training program, don’t hesitate to contact our team. We’d love to help!

To accelerate progress in the alternative protein field, we need to widen the talent pool of scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs. Learn more about education and training needs below.

  • Cultivated icon Cultivated
  • Fermentation icon Fermentation
  • Plant-based icon Plant-Based

Building alternative protein programs and majors at universities

To ensure a strong talent pipeline, there is a need to launch robust university programming, ranging from certificate programs to short multi-course modules, centered around alternative protein. Full majors would…

Read more
  • Cultivated icon Cultivated
  • Fermentation icon Fermentation
  • Plant-based icon Plant-Based

Increasing the number, quality, and diversity of alternative protein-relevant university courses

There is a significant and urgent need to launch and support university and online courses in order to build and extend the talent pipeline of students going into the alternative…

Read more
  • Cultivated icon Cultivated
  • Fermentation icon Fermentation
  • Plant-based icon Plant-Based

Building workforce capacity through vocational programs

Given the strong and persistent growth in alternative protein production, the industry has a pressing need for a trained workforce. Technical colleges should establish programs to help train the next…

Read more
  • Cultivated icon Cultivated
  • Fermentation icon Fermentation
  • Plant-based icon Plant-Based

Industry workshops, courses, and training programs

The alternative protein industry has a significant need for workers and innovators with specialized knowledge spanning multiple traditional disciplines. However, since few universities offer alternative protein majors or dedicated subject…

Read more