Michael O'Mahony

Michael O'Mahony

Michael OMahony, Ph.D.

Position Title
Professor and Sensory Scientist Emeritus

Food Science and Technology


Food Science (1977-2017)

 Professor O'Mahony retired in March of 2017.


Ph. D. University of Bristol, 1972


Professor O’Mahony performed research in the senses and brain processing and how they relate to sensory and consumer testing. Topics like bias in fine discriminations between similar foods, bias when estimating the strength or liking for food flavors, vanishing tastes and smells, inventing a language for flavor, solving the problem of false preferences and designing a food that people will like, even though it doesn’t yet exist. Professor O'Mahony conducted this research so that better methods could be developed for sensory and consumer testing.

Selected Publications

  • Wichchukit, S., O’Mahony, M. A transfer of technology from engineering: Use of ROC curves from signal detection theory to investigate information processing in the brain during sensory difference testing. Journal of Food Science, 2010, 75, R183-R193.
  • M. Santosa, M. O’Mahony. Sequential sensitivity analysis for same-different tests: Some further insights
    Journal of Sensory Studies, 2008, 23, 267-283.
  • R. Ishii, C. Stampanoni, M. O’Mahony. A comparison of serial monadic and attribute-by-attribute descriptive analysis protocols for trained judges. Food Quality and Preference, 2008, 19, 277-285.
  • R. Ishii, H, Kawaguchi, M. O’Mahony, B. Rousseau. Relating consumer and trained panels’ discriminative sensitivities using vanilla ice cream as a medium    Food Quality and Preference, 2007, 18, 89-96.
  • H-J. Kim, S.Y. Jeon, K-O. Kim, M. O’Mahony. Thurstonian models and variance I: Experimental confirmation of cognitive strategies for difference tests and effects of perceptual variance  Journal of Sensory Studies, 2006, 21, 465-484.
  • Nicolas, L. Marquilly, C., O’Mahony, M. The 9-point hedonic scale: Are words and numbers compatible? Food Quality and Preference, 2010, 21, 1008-1015
  • Weiss, B.H., O’Mahony, M., Wichchukit, S. Various paired preference tests: Experimenter effect on ‘Take Away’ choice. Journal of Sensory Studies, 2010, 25, 778-790.
  • O’Mahony, M. The tetrad test: Looking back, looking forward. Journal of Sensory Studies, 2013, 28, 259-263.

Awards and Honors

  • Keys of the City of Veracruz, Mexico

Extension of Knowledge Activities 

  • FST 107 - Food Sensory Science
  • FST 117 - Design and Analysis for Food Sensory Science
  • FST 217 - Advanced Food Sensory Science
  • Short courses in United States of America, Canada, Mexico, Jamaica, Costa Rica, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Norway, Korea, China, Philippines, Thailand, Australia and New Zealand
  • Seminars in United States of America, Canada, Mexico, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Neitherlands, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Japan, Korea, China, Thailand, Philippines