Curriculum Enhancement and Reform to Meet the Needs of Smallholder Farmers in Developing Countries: Survey of Literature
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An agriculture-focused development agenda requires building and strengthening three core institutions— education, research and extension. These are the three nodes of what is referred as the “Agriculture Knowledge and Information System” (AKIS) or simply the “knowledge triangle” (FAO 2000, Rivera et al. 2006). Smallholder farmers are at the heart of the knowledge triangle. The agricultural education system plays an important role in developing knowledge resources and preparing well-trained individuals who serve smallholder farmers through these three core institutions (i.e., researchers, educators, extension staff) as well as prepare the labor force that becomes part of the public sector (government), the private sector (entrepreneurs, farm producers, agri-business entities) and the NGOs. An education system that is innovative and responsive to the complex and rapidly changing work environment is critical to ensure the effectiveness of all the institutions that contribute to agricultural development agenda. To make the education system responsive requires developing and implementing curriculum and teaching programs that are relevant to the production needs and employment demands of the agricultural sector. This paper reviews recent literature on experiences gained in the development of innovative and demand-driven curriculum to make the agricultural education system serve the needs of smallholder farmers in developing countries. The focus is on curriculum enhancement and reform in the post-secondary agricultural education system.
WorldAgInfo Project Literature Review
World Ag Info Project
Information Systems; Agriculture; ICT; Agricultural Development; International Development; Agricultural Education