This is an archived copy of the 2012-2013 catalog. To access the most recent version of the catalog, please visit

Public Service and Administration in Agriculture

College of Agriculture—Public Service and Administration in Agriculture

The curriculum in public service and administration in agriculture is designed for students who desire an interdisciplinary education to pursue a career with agriculturally related governmental and nonprofit agencies, or with businesses and industries that are concerned with public services in agriculture, natural resources or rural communities. Students will explore the planning and implementing of rural and agriculturally related programs in organizations, communities (town, city, or county), multicounty areas, states, regions, and at the federal level.

The curriculum has a broad base of general education subjects including credits in communications, mathematics, physical and biological sciences, social sciences, and humanities. The technical subjects represent a combination of sociology, economics, public administration and agriculture, with emphases on social and economic change, history of public services, complex organizations, interagency relationships, community leadership, community action, adoption and diffusion, group dynamics, and political and legal behavior as they relate to agriculture and rural areas. For the Interdisciplinary Studies major in Criminology and Criminal Justice, see Liberal Arts and Sciences, Curriculum.

Graduate Study

The department offers work for the degrees master of science and doctor of philosophy with majors in sociology and rural sociology and minor work for students majoring in other departments. For M.S. and Ph.D. departmental requirements, see Program of Graduate Study for Degrees in Sociology and Rural Sociology, available from the department office. The department offers concentrations in a number of areas, e.g., community studies and development; sociology of families, inequality, food systems, agriculture and environment; methodology; social change and development; criminology; the economy, organizations and work; and social psychology. The Department of Sociology does not offer a nonthesis master’s program.

Graduates have a broad understanding of sociology, address complex societal problems, and communicate effectively with scientific colleagues and the general public in both formal and informal settings. They understand sociological theory, conduct research, and are prepared to educate college students and contribute to public policy. Although the department stipulates no language requirement for either the degree master of science or the degree doctor of philosophy, specifying competence in one or more languages may be desirable in some instances.

The department also participates in the interdepartmental program in interdepartmental majors in sustainable agriculture, transportation and water resources, and interdepartmental minors in gerontology (see Index).

Curriculum in Public Service and Administration in Agriculture

Administered by the Department of Sociology

Total Degree Requirement: 128 cr.

Only 65 cr. from a two-year institution may apply which may include up to 16 technical cr.; 9 P-NP cr. of free electives; 2.00 minimum GPA.

International Perspective: 3 cr.
U.S. Diversity: 3 cr.
Communications Proficiency (C or better):
6 credits of English Composition 6
Three credits of Speech Fundamentals 3


ENGL 150 Critical Thinking and Communication 3
ENGL 250 Written, Oral, Visual, and Electronic Composition 3
SP CM 212 Fundamentals of Public Speaking 3
JL MC 305 Publicity Methods 3
LIB 160 Library Instruction 0.5


Humanities and Social Sciences: 6 cr.
3 credits from approved humanities list 3
3 credits from approved social science list 3

Ethics: 3 cr.

3 cr. from approved list.

Life Sciences: 6 cr.
BIOL 101 Introductory Biology 3
or BIOL 211 Principles of Biology I
Three credits from approved life sciences list 3
Total Credits 6


Mathematical and Physical Sciences: 12 cr.
MATH 150 Discrete Mathematics for Business and Social Sciences 3
STAT 101 Principles of Statistics 4
Five credit hours from:  
MTEOR 206 Introduction to Weather and Climate 3
AGRON 206 Introduction to Weather and Climate 3
Total Credits 13


Sociology 15 cr.
SOC 110 Orientation to Public Service and Administration in Agriculture R
SOC 130 Rural Institutions and Organizations 3
SOC 325 Transition in Agriculture 3
or SOC 382 Environmental Sociology
SOC 415 Dynamics of Social Change 3
SOC 420 Complex Organizations 3
or SOC 380 Sociology of Work
SOC 464 Community Action and Leadership 3
Total Credits 15


Economics and Agricultural Education and Studies: 16 cr.
ECON 101 Principles of Microeconomics 3
ECON 102 Principles of Macroeconomics 3
ECON 235 Introduction to Agricultural Markets 3
or ECON 380 Environmental and Resource Economics
ECON 344 Public Finance 3
AGEDS 451 Agricultural Law 4
Total Credits 16


Political Sciences: 15 cr.
POL S 215 Introduction to American Government 3
POL S 310 State and Local Government 3
POL S 371 Introduction to Public Administration 3
POL S 475 Management in the Public Sector 3
C R P 455 Community Economic Development 3
Total Credits 15

Additional Pol S, Econ, or Soc at 300 level or above.

Agricultural Sciences: 9 cs.

Complete 9 cr. from MTEOR 206 Introduction to Weather and Climate or Agron, An S, AST, Ent, FS HN, Hort, or NREM.

Area of Concentration: 15 cr.

Complete 15 cr. from approved specialization area.