Graduate students may choose one of three specializations to help them build competencies for a targeted career market: (1) Agricultural and Extension Education, (2) Agricultural and Science Communication, and (3) Life Science Education.
Agricultural and Extension Education
Agricultural and Extension Education focuses on the study of formal and non formal education systems that generate and disseminate knowledge. People-oriented studies are combined with work in selected technical and scientific areas to prepare individuals for successful careers while building awareness of and leadership for the world's food, fiber, and natural resources system. Clientele of the graduate program in Agricultural and Extension Education include: (1) Persons preparing for employment and advancement in the Cooperative Extension Service in county, district, or state positions; (2) persons who are now or preparing to be teachers, supervisors, or administrators in agricultural education; (3) persons preparing to be teacher educators or college teachers in agricultural education; and (4) persons preparing for training, marketing, and management positions in agribusiness corporations.
Agricultural and Science Communication
The Agricultural and Science Communication specialization will enable graduate students to develop focused and in-depth expertise in mass communication research and scholarship relative to a specific area of food, agriculture or the environment. Research emphases may be developed in such areas as risk or science communication, issues management, agricultural journalism, agricultural communication education, or a related area. Completion of the Agricultural and Science Communication specialization at the master’s level would demonstrate the candidate’s ability to apply social science research principles and communication techniques in the professional communication workplace. Completion of the Agricultural and Science Communication specialization at the doctoral level would signal the candidate’s ability to interpret, use and conduct social science research to advance communication of food, agricultural or environmental issues to various target audiences.
Life Science Education
The Life Science Education specialization will enable graduate students to develop focused and in-depth expertise in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) learning and career development research in the agricultural and life sciences. Students will develop focused knowledge and skills regarding teaching and learning in the context of life science education (i.e., animal, plant, food and natural resource sciences). Competency would be demonstrated through coursework, research, and professional experiences. Completion of the Life Science Education specialization at the master’s level would demonstrate the candidate’s ability to apply educational research principles and educational strategies of the life sciences in the professional workplace. Completion of the Life Science Education specialization at the doctoral level would demonstrate the candidate’s ability to interpret, use and conduct educational research to advance life science education to various target audiences.