Agricultural Science, B.S.

Program Code: AGSC_BS

Program Description

This major enables students to develop programs of study to serve their individual needs by assembling courses selected from various departments within the College of Agricultural Sciences. The student develops either a broad background in agriculture or a special program of study not currently offered within departments of the college. Students are expected to focus study on one or more disciplines of the agricultural sciences by selecting a minor from the approved list of minors offered by the College of Agricultural Sciences. The student, in consultation with an adviser, is given considerable flexibility for selecting courses to satisfy individual interests and aspirations.

Students can prepare themselves for careers in the following:

  • Agricultural and natural resource related sales, and /or public relations
  • Food, agricultural and natural resource commodity groups
  • Agricultural finance
  • Governmental and conservation agencies
  • The Cooperative Extension Service
  • Land use and appraisal
  • International agriculture agencies

What is Agricultural Science?

The Agricultural Science major allows students to explore the many aspects of agriculture and the environment. Students are able to determine their interests in agriculture and take part in shaping their course work to help them gain the knowledge and skills needed to enter the workforce when they graduate.

You Might Like this Program If...

  • You would like a major that allows you to tailor your coursework to fit your career goals, blending together many disciplines of the agricultural sciences to give you a wide skill set

Entrance to Major

In order to be eligible for entrance to this major, a student must:

  1. attain at least a C (2.00) cumulative grade-point average for all courses taken at the University; and
  2. have third-semester classification.

READ SENATE POLICY 37-30: ENTRANCE TO AND CHANGES IN MAJOR PROGRAMS OF STUDY

Degree Requirements

For the Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Science, a minimum of 123 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 45
Electives 6-26
Requirements for the Major 82-90

18-30 of the 45 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes: 0-3 credits of GA courses; 0-3 credits of GHW courses; 9 credits of GN courses; 0-6 credits of GS courses; 9 credits of GWS courses.

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits

Knowledge Domains

  • Arts (GA): 6 credits
  • Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 6 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 6 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 9 credits

Integrative Studies (may also complete a Knowledge Domain requirement)

  • Inter-Domain or Approved Linked Courses: 6 credits

University Degree Requirements

First Year Engagement

All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.

Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.

First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.

Cultures Requirement    

6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements

  • United States Cultures: 3 credits
  • International Cultures: 3 credits

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

Requirements for the Major

To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn a grade of C or better in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

Prescribed Courses
AEE 360Leadership Development for Small Groups3
AEE 460Foundations in Leadership Development3
CAS 100Effective Speech Keystone/General Education Course3
ENGL 15Rhetoric and Composition Keystone/General Education Course3
Additional Courses
AEE 311Developing Youth Leadership through Organization and Program Structure3
or AEE 465 Leadership Practices: Power, Influences, and Impact
AEE 330WCommunication in Agricultural and Natural Resource Careers3
or AEE 440 Communication Methods and Media
CHEM 101Introductory Chemistry Keystone/General Education Course3
or CHEM 110 Chemical Principles I Keystone/General Education Course
ENGL 202CEffective Writing: Technical Writing Keystone/General Education Course3
or ENGL 202D Effective Writing: Business Writing Keystone/General Education Course
Select one of the following options:3-4
Introductory Biology I Keystone/General Education Course
and Introductory Biology II Keystone/General Education Course
Biology: Basic Concepts and Biodiversity Keystone/General Education Course
Environmental Science Keystone/General Education Course
Select 3-4 credits in Crop Managment 13-4
Select 3 credits in any HORT except X95, X963
Select 3 credits in Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology 23
Select 3 credits in International Agriculture of the following:3
Global Agriculture Education
International Development, Renewable Resources, and the Environment
Introduction to International Agriculture Keystone/General Education Course
Any College of Agricultural Sciences international course
Select 1-2 credits in Careers in Agriculture of the following:1-2
Agricultural Education Orientation
Job Placement Skills and Strategies
Exploring Careers in Agriculture
Careers in Animal Agriculture
Careers and Issues in Environmental Resource Management
Select 3-4 credits in any ANSC except 291, X95, X963-4
Select 3 credits in Technology in Agriculture of the following:3
Principles and Practices of Organic Agriculture Keystone/General Education Course
Principles of Integrated Pest Management
Animal Products Technology
and Animal Products Technology Laboratory
Environmental Factors and Their Effect on Your Food Supply Keystone/General Education Course
Introductory Food Science
Landscape Soil and Water Management
Select 6 credits in Natural Resources/Ecology of the following:6
Atmospheric Environment: Growing in the Wind Keystone/General Education Course
Introductory Agroecology
Energy and the Environment Keystone/General Education Course
Watershed Management
Environmental Sustainability Keystone/General Education Course
Introductory Soil Science Keystone/General Education Course
Soil Ecology
Wildlife and Fisheries Conservation Keystone/General Education Course
Select 3 credits in Agricultural and Environmental Policy of the following:3
Introduction into Ethics and Issues in Agriculture Keystone/General Education Course
AGECO 134
Introductory Environmental and Resource Economics
Food Facts and Fads Keystone/General Education Course
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Select 9 credits in Agriculture9
Supporting Courses and Related Areas Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 18-21 credits for College of Agricultural Sciences Minor18-21

Program Learning Objectives

  • Students enrolled in the Agricultural Science major will be able to analyze a group’s leadership and communication dynamics and propose changes that could enhance the group’s effectiveness.
  • Students enrolled in the Agricultural Science major will be able to describe and analyze leadership behaviors and skills.
  • Students enrolled in the Agricultural Science major will be able to identify a problem in a community, evaluate the situation based on leadership theory, and propose a solution to the situation.

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee's unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.

READ SENATE POLICY 32-00: ADVISING POLICY

University Park

Chrystal Wheeler
Academic Adviser
201 Armsby Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-865-0467
cav151@psu.edu

Suggested Academic Plan

The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2021-22 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition (Note: the archive only contain suggested academic plans beginning with the 2018-19 edition of the Undergraduate Bulletin).

Agricultural Science, B.S. at University Park Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGL 15, 30H, or ESL 15‡†3General Education Course (GQ)‡†3
General Education Course (GQ)‡†3CHEM 101 or 1103
BIOL 110, 11 and 12, or BISC 33-4CAS 100, 100A, 100B, or 100C‡†3
AGSC 1001General Education Course3
Agriculture Course (any College of Agricultural Sciences course)3Agriculture Course (any College of Agricultural Sciences course)3
General Education Course3 
 16-17 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ANSC 290, AEE 100, ERM 151, AG 100, or SC 101 (Careers in Agriculture)1-2AGECO 144, 457, PLANT 217, ENT 457, ERM 210, FDSC 200, or ANSC 207 and ANSC 208 (Technology in Agriculture)3
Animal Science Course (any ANSC course)3SOILS 412W, AGECO 122, EGEE 101, FOR 470, METEO 122, CED 327, SOILS 71, SOILS 101, or WFS 209N (Natural Resources/Ecology)3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3
AG 160, AGECO 134, CED 201, FDSC 105, or STS 105 (Ag and Environmental Policy)3General Education Course3
 13-14 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGL 202C or 202D‡†3AEE 400, AGBM 338, CED 420W, CED 450, FOR 418, FOR 488Y, or INTAG 100 (International Agriculture)3
AEE 311 or 4653AEE 3603
SOILS 412W, AGECO 122, EGEE 101, FOR 470, METEO 122, CED 327, SOILS 71, SOILS 101, or WFS 209N (Natural Resources/Ecology)3Horticulture Course (any HORT course)3
AEE 330W or 4403General Education Course3
College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
AEE 4603Crop Managment Course (any AGECO, AGRO, or ENT course)3
College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3
College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3
Ag Economics & Rural Sociology Course (any AGBM, CED, or RSOC course)3Agriculture Course (any College of Agricultural Sciences course)3
Elective 3Elective 3
General Education Course (GHW)1.5General Education Course (GHW)1.5
 16.5 16.5
Total Credits 122-124

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.

Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.

All incoming Schreyer Honors College first-year students at University Park will take ENGL 137H/CAS 137H in the fall semester and ENGL 138T/CAS 138T in the spring semester. These courses carry the GWS designation and replace both ENGL 30H and CAS 100. Each course is 3 credits.

Advising Notes:

  • Students must complete a minor in the College of Agricultural Sciences (18-21 credits).
  • Work with your academic adviser in the development of your plan as some courses are not taught every semester.

Agricultural Science, B.S. at Commonwealth Campuses

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGL 15, 30H, or ESL 15‡†3General Education Course (GQ)‡†3
General Education Course (GQ)‡†3CHEM 101 or 1103
BIOL 110, 11 and 12, or BISC 33-4CAS 100, 100A, 100B, or 100C‡†3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3Agriculture Course (any College of Agricultural Sciences course)3
 15-16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
SOILS 412W, AGECO 122, EGEE 101, FOR 470, METEO 122, CED 327, SOILS 71, SOILS 101, or WFS 209N (Natural Resources/Ecology)3ENGL 202C or 202D‡†3
Agriculture Course (any College of Agricultural Sciences course)3SOILS 412W, AGECO 122, EGEE 101, FOR 470, METEO 122, CED 327, SOILS 71, SOILS 101, or WFS 209N (Natural Resources/Ecology)3
Elective 3General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3Agriculture Course (any College of Agricultural Sciences course)3
 15 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
AEE 311 or 4653AEE 400, AGBM 338, CED 420W, CED 450, FOR 418, FOR 488Y, or INTAG 100 (International Agriculture)3
AGECO 144, 457, PLANT 217, ENT 457, ERM 210, FDSC 200, or ANSC 207 and ANSC 208 (Technology in Agriculture)3AEE 3603
AEE 330W or 4403Horticulture Course (any HORT course)3
ANSC 290, AEE 100, ERM 151, AG 100, or SC 101 (Careers in Agriculture)1Animal Science Course (any ANSC course)3
College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3
 13 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
AEE 4603AG 160, AGECO 134, CED 201, FDSC 105, or STS 105 (Ag and Environmental Policy)3
College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3Crop Managment Course (any AGECO, AGRO, or ENT course)3
College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3
Elective 3College of Agricultural Sciences Minor Course*3
Ag Economics & Rural Sociology Course (any AGBM, CED, or RSOC course)3Elective 3
General Education Course (GHW)1.5General Education Course (GHW)1.5
 16.5 16.5
Total Credits 121-122

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.

Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.

Advising Notes:

  • Students must complete a minor in the College of Agricultural Sciences (18-21 credits).
  • Work with your academic adviser in the development of your plan as some courses are not taught every semester.

Career Paths

Faculty and professional academic advisers in the Agricultural Science program support and serve students in career development and preparation, including career decision-making, tailoring the AG SC major to fit career goals, internship and job search strategies, interview preparation, and preparing for employment or graduate school.

Careers

Students have the opportunity to explore career opportunities through internships relevant to the Agricultural Science major. These internships often lead to career opportunities with the same companies that provided the internship. Students’ career options are very diverse, often based on their selection of which minor to explore in conjunction with their major. Many students enter careers directly related to their minor selection.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT POTENTIAL CAREER OPTIONS FOR GRADUATES OF THE AGRICULTURAL SCIENCE PROGRAM

Contact

University Park

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS, SOCIOLOGY, AND EDUCATION
201 Armsby Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-865-0467
agsc@psu.edu

http://aese.psu.edu/majors/agscience/contact