New Online Master’s Degree from UA for Agriculture Students

University of Arizona (UA) is offering a new master's degree option that is helping working professionals already in the agriculture world gain even more education, although not able to attend a traditional campus. The program is mostly online, but is also a hybrid program, titled the Master of Science in agricultural education, but the program also focuses on professional agriculture techniques and theories. The new degree will be offered for the first time this August.

"We continually get requests from people, especially in the Yuma area, who are working professionals in agriculture or extension who either want to get a master's degree or they need a master's degree for their job," said Ryan Foor, assistant professor and director of graduate studies for the UA's agricultural educational department.

Those students will be interested in the traditional track program now offered to them with the new MS degree, and for working students who don't live close to campus, this program won't be difficult to complete unlike other thesis-based traditional degrees offered at UA's agriculture school. Students have both options available however: a traditional research approach, which will include the completion of a thesis; or the professional agriculture option, which provides distance learning options for professionals and requires students to do a cumulative project instead of a thesis.

Students who do choose the partially online option will need to complete nine units of required coursework online and can choose their 21 other courses from those that fit best to their career. The students also have to complete a cumulative project that is meant as a practical and applicable project to the work that they are already doing in their professional work.

"We decided that a Master of Science in agricultural education does not have to be a thesis-based degree. The cumulative project is not a thesis, but it still could be a research project, or it could be an evaluation, or, depending on your job, it could be creating educational units for adults or youth, for example," said Foor.

Working individuals interested in the program should find out more information from the School of Agriculture at UA or go online to

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