Oklahoma State University's graduate program in agricultural education is designed to prepare students for entry into or advancement in formal and non-formal teaching careers. This program also provides development of professional leadership skills for other careers in agribusiness, government service, extension, or adult education. This graduate program is among the most respected in the nation, with internationally recognized faculty and state-of-the-art laboratories.
The master's degree program in agricultural education, with its multiple options, provides a flexible program, which can be tailored to meet each student's unique situation. In addition to the wide variety of professional courses in agricultural education, offerings are also available from all academic departments in the Division, including agricultural economics, biosystems and agricultural engineering, plant and soil science, animal science, biochemistry, entomology and plant pathology. Specialization areas such as educational administration, supervision, counseling, community education, occupational education, adult education, and career education are also available through cooperation with the College of Education.
Master of Science Admission Criteria
Master of Science Degree Options
Summary of Procedures for the Master of Science Degree
Graduate College Rules and Regulations
Department Employment Opportunities for Graduate Students
Agricultural Education and Communications Graduate Faculty
Graduate Student Handbook
Helpful Graduate Student Web Sites
Admission to the Master of Science degree program in Agricultural Education requires the following:
1. A bachelor's degree in an appropriate field such as agricultural education, agricultural communications, or an agriculturally related area from an accredited university;
2. An acceptable grade point average in undergraduate studies (a minimum GPA of 2.80 or 3.0 in the last 30 hours);
3. Recommendations from three people knowledgeable of the applicant's professional qualifications;
4. A statement of purpose for pursuing the master's degree; and
5. Acceptable scores on the Graduate Record Examination.
The Master of Science in agricultural education is designed primarily for students interested in research. The program develops the students' theoretical and research foundation for further graduate studies in addition to further knowledge and skills in agriculture and education. Two options are available in the Master of Science degree program.
This program requires 30 approved credit hours of coursework including a six-credit-hour formal thesis. The thesis is a report of scholarly research conducted by the student. The scope of the study will normally be of state or national interest, and the thesis will include an in-depth analysis of the findings.
Formal Report Option
The program requires 32 approved credit hours of coursework including a two-credit-hour formal report. Although the formal report is the result of original research, the literature review or statistical analysis may lack the depth required of a thesis.
The summary of credit-hour requirements below outlines the requirements for the plan of study. Both the thesis and the formal report must follow the Graduate College format outlined in the Oklahoma State University Thesis & Dissertation Handbook (which is available on the Graduate College home page at www.gradcollege.okstate.edu).
Table 1. Summary of credit-hour requirements for Master of Science plans of study in Agricultural Education
Research & Seminar (AGED 5000)
Research Methods (AGED 5983)
Statistics (REMS 5953 or equivalent)
Agricultural Education & Leadership (two of the following: AGLE 5303, AGED 5823/5863/6103/6223)
Graduate Seminar (AGED 6100)
* The electives may be chosen from technical agriculture, education, other areas or a combination of areas which most effectively achieve the student's educational goals.
** Totals must include a minimum of 21 credit hours of 5000 or higher and a maximum of 9 transfer credit hours.
Throughout these procedures, "thesis" refers to a report or thesis unless otherwise noted. Again, refer to the University Catalog, the Graduate College web site, and the official thesis and dissertation handbook for additional information.
1. Apply to the Graduate College, pay a $40.00 application fee ($75.00 for international students), and provide one official copy of all college or university transcripts to the Graduate College, 202 Whitehurst Hall, Stillwater OK 74078.
2. Submit statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, and GRE scores to the Graduate Coordinator, Department of Agricultural Education, Communications & Leadership, 456 Agricultural Hall, Stillwater OK 74078-6032.
3. After the application is reviewed by the departmental admissions committee, the student will receive notification of admission from the Graduate College.
4. Consult a requested or assigned temporary advisor regarding enrollment during the first semester of classes.
5. Select graduate committee of three graduate faculty (consisting of at least two members of the Agricultural Education, Communications and Leadership graduate faculty, one of which will serve as committee chair), and develop plan of study.
6. Submit plan of study to Graduate College prior to completing the 17th credit hour of enrollment (which should include two of the five core courses in agricultural education and/or agricultural leadership).
7. All students must indicate on their plans of study whether or not their research will involve human subjects. If human subjects are to be used, approval must be received from the Office of Research Compliance prior to the beginning of the research. (See Office of Research Compliance (formerly IRB) information in Graduate Rules and Regulations.)
8. All students must complete the Responsible Conduct of Research tutorial for Basic Social Science Research, accessible on the Graduate College website, before their plans of study will be approved by the department.
9. Submit an "Application for Diploma" online at the Registar's website for the semester in which the degree is to be conferred.
10. Complete research, prepare a draft copy of your thesis and submit it to your thesis advisor at least two weeks prior to the draft deadline established by the Graduate College.
11. Complete oral examination within two weeks of submitting final copy of the thesis to the Graduate College (deadlines available from Graduate College).
12. Upon successful completion of the oral examination, ask the departmental graduate secretary to make a copy of the signed form for your file and hand carry the form to the Graduate College.
13. For electronic submission of the thesis or formal report, refer to the instructions and deadlines on the Graduate College Web page. Supply the department with one copy for the thesis library and one copy for your adviser.
All graduate students are expected to read and to comply with the written regulations as printed in the general University Catalog. All matriculating students are eligible for one free catalog upon their initial enrollment in the Graduate College.
Graduate students must complete a minimum of six hours during each 12-month period to be continuously enrolled. Failure to maintain continuous enrollment requires reapplication and readmission to the program. Graduate students must be enrolled in at least two hours during any semester in which they are utilizing university resources including the semester in which they graduate. Graduate assistants must meet minimum enrollment requirements as follows: 0.50 or greater FTE - 6 hours in fall or spring; 3 hours in summer; less than 0.50 FTE - 9 hours in fall or spring; 3 hours in summer. All students (including those enrolling in research hours only) must be enrolled by the deadlines listed in the Schedule of Classes.
All requirements must be completed within the following periods calculated from initial enrollment in the program: master's candidates - 8 years. No course on the plan of study may be more than 10 years old at the time of graduation. Students must follow deadlines for submission of theses and for completing final exams as listed in the catalog.
Students whose cumulative graduate GPA falls below 3.0 are subject to being placed on Strict Academic Probation (SAP). Students on SAP may be suspended if they receive any grade below a B. To graduate, a student must have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA in all course work (excluding research hours). No course in which the assigned grade is lower than a C can be placed on a plan of study.
Master's students may transfer a maximum of 9 hours from another university or from special student status at OSU.
Plan of Study
The plan of study for a Master's candidate must be filed prior to the completion of the 17th graduate credit hour of enrollment.
All students must indicate on their plans of study whether or not their research will involve human subjects. If human subjects are to be used, approval must be received from the Institutional Review Board prior to the beginning of the research.
University Research Compliance
Federal regulations and Oklahoma State University policy require review and approval of all research studies that involve human subjects before investigators can begin their research. University Research Compliance conducts this review to protect the rights and welfare of human subjects involved in biomedical and behavioral research. In compliance with the aforementioned policy, each graduate student doing research involving human subjects is required to submit an application for Review of Human Subjects Research to University Research Compliance at 219 Cordell North, (405) 744-5700. Applications are available from University Research Compliance and its web page at http://compliance.vpr.okstate.edu. In addition, all students must satisfactionaly complete the Responsible Conduct of Research tutorial appropriate for their degree program.
Students must file a diploma application at the beginning of the semester in which they are expecting to graduate. If they fail to graduate during that semester, the diploma application may be moved forward one semester. Students who need to submit a revised plan of study should turn it in at the beginning of the semester of anticipated graduation. Published deadlines for theses are strictly enforced.
Graduate assistantships have been established at Oklahoma State University to encourage scholarship and the promotion of research. After admission by the Graduate College, a student who is making satisfactory progress toward a graduate degree may be appointed to an assistantship. A limited number of research and teaching assistantships are available in the Department of Agricultural Education, Communications and Leadership each year. Assistantships are usually one-quarter (.25 FTE) or one-half time (.50 FTE). According to University guidelines, all graduate assistants work 10 hours per week for a quarter-time appointment and 20 hours per week for a half-time appointment.
Graduate Research Assistantships
A graduate research assistant (RA) conducts research under the supervision of a faculty member in the department to develop not only technical and manipulative skills but also to foster originality, imagination, judgment, and patience, the traits of an independent scholar. Specific research responsibilities for an RA are determined by the supervising faculty member.
Graduate Teaching Assistantships
Graduate teaching assistants share the faculty's responsibility for undergraduate teaching. Graduate teaching assistants are assigned to a specific course and faculty member in the department.
Applications for Assistantships
Applications for departmental assistantships are available from the office assistant in 455 Agricultural Hall. Additionally, assistantship opportunities in other departments and offices are generally posted on the graduate student bulletin board in the Department of Agricultural Education, Communications and Leadership.
Graduate students at OSU can participate in a number of student organizations. There are many undergraduate organizations in which graduate students can become involved. Those affiliated with the Department include Collegiate Farm Bureau, Collegiate FFA, ATA, Collegiate 4-H, and Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. Gamma Sigma Delta, the Honor Society of Agriculture, and Phi Delta Kappa, an honorary educational society, also meet monthly at OSU.
The Oklahoma State University Graduate Student Association is composed of representatives from every graduate degree-granting department. It operates independently of the undergraduate Student Government Association and is the voice of graduate students on all issues. Its goal is to improve all aspects of graduate education. Most work is completed through a committee structure and non-representatives are encouraged to become involved. The Association sponsors travel to professional meetings, professional development seminars, and external speakers for graduate students.
The Department of Agricultural Education, Communications and Leadership also has its own Graduate Student Association. The group holds monthly business meetings, discussing upcoming events and OSU Graduate Student Association updates, as well as hosting various social and educational events throughout the year.
Robert Terry Jr., Department Head and Roger Howell Professor, Ph.D., Texas A&M University.
Research Interests: Teaching and learning in agriculture and natural resources. Including agricultural literacy, teacher development, content design and delivery.
Cindy Blackwell, Ph.D., Texas A&M University.
Research Interests: Ethics in leadership and agricultural communications. Academic integrity and ethical issues in agricultural communications.
Dwayne Cartmell, Ph.D., University of Missouri.
Research Interests: Media evaluation, urban/rural interface, and gatekeeping strategies.
Charles B. Cox, Ed.D., Oklahoma State University.
Research Interests: Youth development, volunteer management, and agricultural literacy.
Craig Edwards, Ph.D., Texas A&M University.
Research Interests: Time and teacher behaviors in student learning, preparation and induction of beginning agriculture teachers, the student teacher-cooperating teacher relationship, in-service education for mid- and late-career agriculture teachers, agricultural education in post-communist countries.
Kathleen D. Kelsey, Ph.D., Cornell University.
Research Interests: Stakeholder involvement in land-grant universities, and research and evaluation methods, especially qualitative methods.
James P. Key, Ed.D., North Carolina State University.
Research Interests: Water quality, evaluation, and distance education.
Traci Naile, Ph.D., Oklahoma State University.
Research Interests: disaster management and communications, branding agriculture, and new media.
Jon W. Ramsey, Ph.D., Oklahoma State University.
Research Interests: Teacher induction, professional development of agricultural educators.
Shane Robinson, Ph.D., University of Missouri-Columbia.
Research Interests: Preparation of beginning agriculture teachers, recruitment and retention of secondary agricultural education teachers, assessment of the employability skills and job satisfaction of college-wide graduates in agricultural sciences.
Jeff Sallee, Ph.D., Oklahoma State University.
Research Interests: Youth leadership and life-skill development, youth-adult partnerships, STEM literacy.
Shelly R. Sitton, Ph.D., Oklahoma State University.
Research Interests: Agricultural communications, content analysis and curriculum evaluation.
Penny L. Weeks, Ph.D., Texas A&M University.
Research Interests: Leadership education and studies.
William G. Weeks, Ph.D., Texas A&M University.
Research Interests: Leadership, teaching and learning.