Development of a 'Learning and Teaching Academic Standards Statement' for agriculture

T. Acuna, J. Kelder, A. Able, G. McDonald, Y. Guisard, B. Bellotti, P. Wormell, R. Doyle, H. Meinke

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We report on the process and outcomes of a national project that has developed a Learning and Teaching Academic Standards (LTAS) Statement for the Agriculture discipline. Agricultural research and teaching relies on strong links with industry due to the applied nature of the discipline. Without these links, sustainable and profitable practice change in agricultural systems cannot be achieved. A pilot project, in 2011-2012, with academic staff from three Australian universities identified Threshold Learning Outcomes (TLOs) for the sub-discipline of Agricultural Science. The AgLTAS project provided the opportunity to validate or refute these TLOs by seeking input from a wider group of stakeholders, including industry. National consensus was sought by a process of iterative consultation with academics, students and industry stakeholders and tested across four Australian universities. We have collected qualitative and quantitative data from participants who attended a series of workshops across most Australian States and Territories and via an online survey. The need for students to attain highly developed problem solving and communication skills was highly valued by participants because of the perceived capability of graduates to generate new opportunities and innovation in agriculture. Industry-specific (vocational) knowledge was generally regarded as attainable during on-the-job training after graduation. The next phase of the project aims to trial the Standards Statement for Agriculture by benchmarking the academic standards achieved in four universities that teach Agriculture and related disciplines, using an online Curriculum Mapping Tool.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventComBio2014 - National Convention Centre, Canberra, Australia
Duration: 28 Sept 201402 Oct 2014 (program)


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