Agricultural Students’ Perceptions of Farm Practical Year Programme at University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria

Agriculturae Conspectus Scientificus (ACS) 12/2008; 73(4).
Source: DOAJ


Farm Practical programme addresses the short comings in curricular of agricultural graduates enabling them to acquire knowledge and practical skills needed to become proficient in agriculture. The study contributes in providing insights into perceptions of level 400 agricultural students regarding the Farm Practical Year (FPY) programme at the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria. A total of 261 sample students were selected through stratified sampling procedure from 11 core agricultural departments and administered with pre-tested questionnaire. Results show that the programme provided students with ‘hands-on’ experience and opportunity to apply theory learnt in classroom to a real-life fi eld situation in which students had to adapt and solve problems on daily basis. Students also felt strongly that the farm practical would contribute to their professional career and employability on graduation. However, certain perceived problems were raised by students such as lack of on-campus accommodation, delay in payment of allowances and paucity of resources. It is recommended that greater efforts are needed to mentor students to take active interest in farm practical while human and material resources strengthened to deliver this mandate.

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    • "One can conclude that partly is because of lower investment in agricultural activities, but mainly because these graduates have insufficient capabilities including not enough self reliance, not sufficient skills of know-how, and not being able to see the employment opportunities in agriculture (Nasrollahi, 2009). Alibaygi and Gravandi (2007); Oloruntoba (2008) have indicated that undergraduate agricultural university students must be able to identify the farm problems and decide how to solve that problem. Challenges of this method are existing differences between theoretical and practical content of the university courses, insufficient access to farm inputs, proper technologies, well trained instructors, and proper learning environment, insufficient on the job training for instructors, the challenge of making proper relationship between the theoretical, practical and the farm content and skills. "
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