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Agriculture Communication

Interested in agricultural advocacy? Then the Agriculture Communication emphasis is for you. In a time in our society where information and misinformation are readily available, it is important to have students in the agriculture field who are capable and adept communicators. With a vast knowledge of both agricultural and communication studies, students will be better equipped to tell the story of agriculture and the environment.

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A student feeding some sheep hay

Program Overview

An emphasis in agricultural communication prepares students to understand and communicate specialized agricultural science and information through journalism, public speaking, advertising, public relations, graphic design, and other media.

Faith-focused faculty. Challenging curriculum. Top-of-the-line facilities. All focused on helping you discover a fulfilling, meaningful career in agriculture.

What You'll Learn

As an agriculture major, you’ll learn the fundamentals of agricultural literacy. As an Agriculture Communication emphasis you’ll also take courses in public relations, interpersonal communication, mass communication, and journalism. Simply put, you will learn how to tell the story of agriculture to a wide variety of audiences.

What You Can Do With A Missions Emphasis

Maybe you want to tell the story of agriculture. Perhaps you want to work with consumers, farmers, organizations, legislators, and a host of other key stakeholders. Whatever the case may be, an agriculture communication emphasis can help your pursue that path.

Farm Operations Supervisor

A Farm Operations Supervisor oversees the production of crops, coordinates the care of animals, and maintains the records of the farm.

Agricultural Consultant

An Agricultural Consultant works as a resource for farmers and organizations in a wide variety of agricultural fields.

Students who choose the agriculture communication emphasis will complete courses in agriculture, chemistry, and communication. Students will be required to complete eight agriculture courses, six communication courses, and one chemistry course. In addition to the required courses, students will take two agriculture electives and two communication electives.

  • Agri 101 Biology, Care, and Production of Domestic Animals: History, management, physiology, breeding, lactation, feeding, health, and products of cattle, swine, sheep, poultry, companion animals, and other species as they relate to humans and the creation. Three lectures and one three-hour laboratory period per week.
  • Agri 105 Orientation and Agriculture Safety: Classroom discussion, lecture, and practical experience are used to familiarize the students with the Agriculture Department, Agricultural Stewardship Center (ASC), and the greenhouse to develop understanding and competency in operating equipment at the ASC and classroom labs. Students will receive instruction in agricultural safety to develop an understanding and competency in the areas of current agricultural production practices and safety procedures. Students will be certified in CPR and complete first aid training. The course meets for seven weeks. Two lectures and one three-hour laboratory per week.
  • Agri 111 Introduction to Plant Science: Students will study plants, their care and use within agroecosystems, as well as their role in creation. Students will be introduced to how agriculture both influences and is influenced by human cultural development, how humankind’s understanding of stewardship influences creation care, and how plants serve as sources of food, fiber, fuel, and fascination. Plant biology concepts including plant structure and function, growth, development and reproduction, and plant/environment interactions will be introduced. The course will demonstrate how these biotic and environmental factors integrate with plant biotechnology, crop breeding and propagation, protection, cropping systems, and crop economics and utilization. Three lectures and one three-hour laboratory per week.
  • Agri 221 Introduction to Farm Business Management and Accounting: The study of the principles, financial statements, and analyses of farm business data using actual farm data and scenarios. Topics include decision making processes, whole business planning, goal setting, record keeping, balance sheets, budgeting, cash flow statements, income statements, budgeting, balance sheets, income statements, cash flow statements, investment analysis, tax planning and risk analysis. Three lectures and one three-hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite: sophomore standing. Business Administration 202 or Core 260 recommended.
  • Agri 290 Perspectives in Agriculture Policy: Worldviews relating to contemporary agriculture systems are discussed. In addition to examining historical policies, the participating stakeholder groups and development of domestic and international agricultural policies are also studied. Several views on these topics are examined and a reformed perspective is developed. Two lectures and a one-hour small group discussion period per week. Prerequisites: sophomore standing. CORE 110 and 120 recommended.
  • Agri 361 Agriculture Senior Seminar: An integration of departmental courses, research, and analysis of current topics with emphasis on Christian perspective for persons involved in agriculture. Issues will include government policies, world hunger, the family farm, meat production, and others. Three lectures per week. Prerequisites: CORE 200; junior or senior standing in the agriculture department; or permission of instructor
  • Agri 370 Agroecology: An introduction to the principles of agricultural ecology with an emphasis on Christian stewardship of God’s world. Topics include the development and characteristics of agroecosystems, ecological disturbance and succession, diversity, pest management, nutrient cycling, environmental quality, energy use, climate change, social capital, conservation practices, and global food production. The interaction of agroecosystems with surrounding ecosystems is studied, and the utilization of ecological principles in agroecosystem design and management are examined. Two lectures and one three-hour laboratory per week. Prerequisites: Agriculture 101, 111 or Biology 122, 215 or Environmental Studies 151, 152; junior or senior standing. [Cross-listed: Earth Science 370]
  • Agri 380 Directed Study- Class Component: Students will receive instruction and guidance for the development of a group agriculture capstone project. Student groups will identify a relevant problem, review background information, develop a project with an advisor, and gain its approval prior to implementation. A Capstone Agriculture Project Handbook will provide guidance for project expectations. Graded on a pass/no record basis. Prerequisites: Agriculture 101, 105, 111, 221; Agriculture 290 or 370; junior or senior standing.
  • Agri 381 Directed Study- Project Component: A continuation of Agriculture 380. The student groups will implement an approved capstone project, report the results of the project in writing, and give a public oral presentation of their work. A Capstone Agriculture Project Handbook will provide guidance for project expectations. Prerequisite: Agriculture 380.
  • Chem 110 General Chemistry: A first course in the fundamental principles of chemistry for students in all science disciplines. Topics include measurement, the mole and reaction stoichiometry, atomic and molecular structure and bonding, intermolecular forces, gases, types of reactions, and energy in chemical reactions. An introduction to laboratory safety and chemical hygiene is included in the laboratory. Three hours of lecture and one three-hour laboratory period per week.
  • Chem 111 Principles of Chemistry: A study of the fundamental principles of chemistry and an introduction to foundational issues in science. Topics include atomic and molecular structure, chemical equilibria, chemical kinetics, chemical thermodynamics, and electrochemistry. An introduction to laboratory safety and chemical hygiene is included in the laboratory. This is the first course in chemistry for majors in the physical and life sciences. Three lectures and one three-hour laboratory period per week. Prerequisite: completion of online mini-course or Chemistry 110.
  • Comm 180 First Semester Seminar: Designed to introduce the beginning communication student to some basic principles and thought in the field of communication. Offered in a seminar style, each week we will meet to cover key concepts of communication, such as the communication model, areas of communication, and preparing for a career in communication. This introductory course is designed for new communication students, but anyone wanting an overall understanding of communication and its principles will benefit as well.
  • Comm 222 Interpersonal Communication: The study of concepts, problems, and responsibilities in communication between two or more persons, focusing on conversation with consideration of many variables and contexts. [Cross-listed: CORE 254]
  • Comm 240 Introduction to Mass Communication: An introduction to the concept of mass communication and its application to electronic and written media. The course will survey the historical development of technology and the impact of mass communication on culture and society.
  • Comm 241 Introduction to Journalism: An overview of how journalists should tell the world’s stories and how journalism can be used to sustain and build communities in a free society. The course emphasizes storytelling. Students practice several types of creative but factual journalism for print, audio, and video media. Students also will explore the reporter’s role and mandate in society, the current state of the news media, and how Christians can use journalism to serve the public good by helping citizens better understand and then confront their community’s challenges. [Cross-listed: English 241]
  • Comm 260 Public Relations: As an introduction to public relations, this course will set the background for additional courses in communication and business administration. After a study of the history of public relations, students will learn what is expected of public relations workers, study the various publics, become familiar with current problems and issues in public relations, analyze several cases, and develop a Christian perspective for the continued study of public relations.
  • Comm 323 Communication Law and Ethics: The course examines the legal roots behind the notion of a public media. Students will explore the laws protecting communication in the public square. Students will study the ethics highlighting a communication professional’s responsibilities in the face of these legal freedoms and protections. Paying particular attention to principles from a Christian perspective and using case studies, mock trials, and role playing, students will look at both what a communicator can do and what a communicator should do
  • Comm 380 Senior Seminar 3: The capstone course for all communication majors – communication studies, digital media, healthcare communication, journalism, and public relations. Students will research, discuss, and struggle with major issues in communication such as freedom of speech, media impact, modern technology, and the information superhighway. Students will be pressed to expand and refine their Christian perspective regarding communication with the study of the role and responsibility of communication in society. Students will examine current communication theories, research, and research design.

See the course catalog for more information.

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With experience in a variety of fields, our faculty members are equipped and ready to help you succeed.

Agriculture Stewardship Center

With an emphasis in agriculture communication, you’ll have the opportunity to spend time in Dordt’s Agriculture Stewardship Center. This unique location includes 200 acres where students will raise livestock and grow crops, small grains, and produce.

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The front of the Agriculture Stewardship Center

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