Jul 21, 2024  
2021-2022 General/Graduate Catalog - Expires August 2027 
2021-2022 General/Graduate Catalog - Expires August 2027 [Archived Catalog]

Agricultural Science (BS)

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Academic Programs

Affiliation: School of Sciences & Mathematics


Pursuit of an undergraduate degree in Agricultural Science affords the opportunity for students to experience a holistic approach to the study of food and fiber production and their association and interaction with societal concerns. Our focus is on a sustainable agricultural system. For majors, the goals of the agriculture program are:

  1. To offer students a unique, liberal arts and sciences-based preparation for advanced study in graduate school, veterinary medicine, or other professional schools. A solid foundation in basic agricultural concepts along with advanced focus courses also prepare students for entry-level positions in business, agriculture production or government settings where a multidisciplinary, problem-solving approach is useful. Areas of specialization within agricultural science include:

Pre-Veterinary Medicine/Animal Science
Equine Studies
Agricultural Business

Due to differences in career focus, the Bachelor of Science requirements and Required Support courses differ for the Agricultural Business specialization as compared to the other three (science-based) specializations.

  1. To graduate students possessing a multidisciplinary understanding of agriculture. Students gain philosophical, historical, sociological, political, economic, business, scientific, technical, and multicultural perspectives on the mobilization of agricultural inputs and their relationships with the production, processing, and delivery of food and fiber and the intricate association with society and the environment.
  2. To graduate students with proficiency in basic skills, higher order thinking and problem-solving skills, leadership and management capabilities, and an appreciation for the need for collaboration.
  3. To empower students with a well-developed understanding of their personal values.
  4. To graduate students with the technical skills and scientific knowledge needed for entry into the agriculture industry and to foster a life-long approach to learning. 

For students seeking a minor or students with non-degree seeking interest in agricultural science, the goals of the program are twofold. The first is to educate students about the agrarian contributions to human culture, about food and fiber production, and about the environmental and social consequences of using agriculture-related technology. The second goal is to promote and foster skills and attitudes associated with a liberal education and to utilize those skills on multidisciplinary investigations concerning science and society as a whole. 


All Agricultural Science majors will develop their skills as speakers and as writers.  Courses in the Agricultural Science core curriculum require establishing familiarity with conventions of scientific writing, producing written products of varying lengths and formats, and speaking and presenting.  For example, students in the Animal Agriculture class engage in critical thinking and writing through a comparative analysis of animal production systems; students in Ethical Issues in Sustainable Agriculture prepare a research paper on an agricultural practice or technique and also develop public speaking skills by leading and participating in large- and small-group discussions; students in the Agriculture Practicum Capstone present the results of their group project via a written report and oral presentation.  As students take elective courses specific to their particular area of interest within agriculture, they further practice written communication specific to that area, from writing summaries of peer-reviewed research articles for an animal science class to writing a business plan for a course in equine business management.


Students who excel in all areas of scholarly activity may be eligible for Departmental Honors. Recipients of Departmental Honors must meet all of these criteria:

  1. 3.50 or above cumulative GPA.
  2. Achieve 75th percentile or higher on approved senior test for agriculture.
  3. Complete an experiential learning activity and present outcome. This criterion may be fulfilled by any of the following:
     a.  Perform individual faculty-mentored research project, with results presented at the Student Research Conference (or other approved meeting).
     b.  Study abroad and present experience and major learning outcomes to peers and faculty.
     c.  Complete an internship related to agriculture and present experience and major learning outcomes to peers and faculty.
  4. Approval of a majority of non-abstaining AGSC faculty. 


Dialogues Requirements: 42-61 Credits

Missouri Statute (1-4 credits)

Bachelor of Science Requirement: 6-9 Credits

Option 1: Agricultural Science:

Option 2: Agricultural Business:

One course from the following list:


The Agricultural Science major consists of three (3) parts: Required Support, Major Requirements, and the Learning Plan. Each student must complete all parts.

Part I: Required Support: 11-13 Credits

Part III: Learning Plan***: 30 Credits

  • The 30-credit learning plan must include a minimum of 15 credits of courses with the AGSC prefix (not to include core major requirements identified in Part II, above.)


Agricultural Science is a very broad and diverse field of study, with many possible areas of focus and career opportunities. The Learning Plan allows students to select courses which broaden their knowledge and skill in one or more areas of study, with four primary areas of specialization supported: 1) pre-veterinary medicine/animal science, 2) equine studies, 3) agricultural business, and 4) horticulture/agronomy.

Each student consults with his or her faculty advisor to develop a written Learning Plan consisting of a list of courses plus a rationale statement explaining how the course selections are consistent with the student’s career and learning objectives.

Students should submit their Learning Plan for faculty approval during the spring semester of the sophomore year (or transfer students during the second semester at Truman). 

Students submit their proposed Learning Plan for approval through the “Individualized Plan for MAJOR and MINOR Degree Requirements” link under the Student tab on TruView.

The Learning Plan requires approval by the student’s faculty advisor and the Agricultural Science department chair.

The Learning Plan must include a minimum of 15 credits of Agricultural Science Electives (courses must be designated with the AGSC prefix or if from another discipline, have been previously approved by the AGSC departmental faculty as counting as an Agricultural Science Elective). Remaining courses can come from AGSC or from any discipline(s) related to the student’s future goals. Completion of minors within the Learning Plan is encouraged, as is inclusion of internship and research experiences completed for credit.

There are limits on the number of hours of Research, Internship, and Special Problems credits that can be applied toward a degree in Agricultural Science, as detailed below:

  • A maximum total of 10 credits (total across all three categories) of Internship, Special Problems, and Research can be used in the student’s Learning Plan.

Additionally, the following limits apply to the number of allowable credits within each of the three categories:

  • A maximum of 5 credits of Internship (up to 4 credits of AGSC 391 and 1 credit of AGSC 392) can be used in the Learning Plan;
  • A maximum of 6 credits of Special Problems (AGSC 301) can be used in the Learning Plan; and
  • A maximum of 6 credits of Research (sum total of AGSC 441 and AGSC 442 and AGSC 443) can be used in the Learning Plan.

Further, a combined maximum of 9 credits of the courses AGSC 133 - Ag Consortium Topics  and AGSC 333 - Ag Consortium Advanced Topics  may be used in the Learning Plan.

Electives to Total: 120 Credits

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Academic Programs