Agricultural Education is defined as a systematic program of instruction for students desiring to learn and educate around the science, business, and technology of agriculture, food and environmental/natural resource systems. Agricultural Education prepares students for successful careers and informed choices regarding agriculture. Agricultural Education is a major in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics and the School of Education – Center for Educator Preparation. CSU focuses on two delivery concentrations in Agricultural Education: Teacher Development for school-based agricultural education, and Agricultural Literacy for application in non-formal and informal learning spaces. The department also offers a minor in Agricultural Literacy.
The successful student will demonstrate:
- Significant knowledge, skills and dispositions in agriculture
- Ability to create instruction opportunities that are adapted to diverse learners
- Employment of innovative instructional methods and assessment techniques to promote learning in agriculture
- Effective program management and techniques in program evaluation
Graduates in Agricultural Education are in demand to fill a continuous shortage of agricultural teachers in Colorado and nationwide. Two-thirds of the CSU graduates have become teachers or administrators in public schools or with commodity and other agriculture-related entities that hire education/marketing specialists. Other graduates take agribusiness positions with livestock, seed, fertilizer, feed, machinery, or finance firms. Students are also prepared to teach in community or junior colleges, area career and technical schools, and technical institutes. Participation in internships is required to enhance practical training and development.
A Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Education with an Agricultural Literacy concentration will enable students to guide, direct, plan, deliver and assess agriculture programs for non-formal or informal programs such as museums, business or industry programs, county or state fair displays or integrated after-school programs. A Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Education with a Teacher Development concentration leads to teacher licensure by the state of Colorado. Teachers combine classroom, laboratory, and hands-on experiences, and leadership education to teach high school students about the myriad agricultural topics. The curriculum requires students to demonstrate a competent knowledge of educational theory and a broad-based understanding in agricultural content.
Advanced studies after graduation include graduate studies in agricultural education, extension education and administration, or more in-depth studies in other areas of agriculture, food and natural resources. Upon completion of these advanced degrees, additional opportunities exist for program completers including leadership positions in agricultural education, post-secondary agriculture teacher, agribusiness or agriservice representative, cooperative extension agent, education specialist, 4-H Agent, youth development specialist, science teacher.