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Academic Majors


Agricultural Economics

Agricultural economics combines the technical aspects of agriculture with the business aspects of management, marketing, and finance. Students are prepared for a wide variety of exciting careers in the marketing of commodities sold and inputs purchased by agricultural producers; agricultural finance; and management of agribusinesses, farms and ranches. In addition, many graduates pursue successful careers in government service, economic development, commodity promotion and agricultural policy analysis.

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The Program

The agricultural economics program emphasizes decision making, technical expertise and communication with a focus on agriculture and the food industry. Students are trained to be decision makers through course work and practical experience in agriculture, analytical and communication skills, team building, economic theory and agricultural policy.

The agricultural economics program is flexible. Students may complement required courses with classes from within the Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics, as well as from other programs across campus. Students planning careers in production agriculture are encouraged to enroll in courses in crop and livestock sciences, agricultural systems or other production oriented courses within the college. Students wanting careers in the food industry may select courses in food science and food safety, transportation or business. Students wishing to work in agricultural education, communication or extension can add courses in production agriculture, education or communication to their programs. By working with their academic advisor, agricultural economics students can identify courses that allow them to pursue interests in renewable energy, risk management, rural economic development, finance and natural resource management. Regardless of student selection of elective courses, the agricultural economics program contains a common core of classes introducing students to economic theory, farm management, agricultural finance, crop and livestock marketing, quantitative methods, and laws and policies important to agriculture.

The Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics also offers majors in agribusiness and in economics and offers minors in agribusiness and economics.

The Faculty

The department has 20 faculty members involved in teaching, research and extension. Our faculty have received numerous prestigious teaching and research awards, including the Burlington Northern Foundation Faculty Achievement Award; the Fargo Chamber of Commerce Distinguished Professorship Award; the Chancellor’s Award for Academic Leadership; the Western Agricultural Economics Association’s Outstanding Educator Award; the Premier Forecaster Award; the Eugene R. Dahl Excellence in Research Award, Senior Faculty; and the Teaching Award of Merit from the National Association of Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture. Faculty expertise varies across a wide range of specialties, including agricultural marketing, production, natural resource management, economic development, trade, finance, cooperatives and agricultural law.

Career Opportunities

Agricultural economics graduates have become loan officers; managers of farm supply, equipment firms and grain elevators; sales representatives with chemical, seed, feed and fertilizer companies; economists with state and federal agencies; and commodity merchandisers. About 30 percent of the graduates choose to farm and ranch. While many graduates remain in North Dakota or Minnesota, others begin careers throughout the nation and the world.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Several $500 scholarships are available to outstanding freshmen entering the program each fall semester. Scholarships also are available to transfer students and students already in the agribusiness program at North Dakota State University.

The department annually awards $50,000 in scholarships (ranging from $500 to $2,500) to agribusiness and agricultural economics majors.

The College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources awards scholarships each year. Contact the Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics for information about any of these scholarship opportunities.

Student loan, grant and work-study information is available from the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships or One Stop.

Sample Curriculum

General Education Requirements
    First Year Experience
1     AGRI 189 - Skills for Academic Success
3     COMM 110 - Fundamentals of Public Speaking
3, 3     ENGL 110, 120 - College Composition I, II
3     English Upper Level Writing Course
    Quantitative Reasoning
3     STAT 330 - Introductory Statistics
6   Science & Technology
4        CSCI 116 - Business Use of Computers
6   Humanities & Fine Arts
    Social & Behavioral Sciences
3     ECON 201 - Principles of Microeconomics
3     ECON 202 - Principles of Macroeconomics
2   Wellness
-   Cultural Diversity
    Global Perspective
-   ECON 201 - Principles of Microeconomics
40   Total
Credits   Major Requirements
3   AGEC 242 - Introduction to Agricultural Management
3   AGEC 244 - Agricultural Marketing
3   AGEC 246 - Introduction to Agricultural Finance
3   AGEC 339 - Quantitative Methods and Decision 
3   AGEC 342 - Farm and Agribusiness Management II or 
       AGEC 344 - Agriculture Price Analysis or
          AGEC 346 - Applied Risk Analysis
3   AGEC 375 - Applied Agricultural Law or
     AGEC 484 - Agricultural Policy
9   Agribusiness and Applied Economics Electives
9   Science and Technology Electives
3   Capstone Experience
39   Total
Credits   Related Requirements
3-6   ACCT 102 - Fundamentals of Accounting or 
       ACCT 200, 201 - Elements of Accounting I, II
1   AGRI 150 - Agriculture Orientation
3   ECON 341 - Intermediate Microeconomics
3   ECON 324 - Money and Banking or
      ECON 343 - Intermediate Macroeconomics
4   MATH 144 - Mathematics for Business
2 or 3   STAT 331 - Regression Analysis or 
      ECON 410 - Econometrics
3   Communication Electives
30   Electives
39   Total

This sample curriculum is not intended to serve as a curriculum guide for current students, but rather an example of course offerings for prospective students. For the curriculum requirements in effect at the time of entrance into a program, consult with an academic advisor or with the Office of Registration and Records.

Barry Hall 500
Barry Hall is located in downtown Fargo at 811 2nd Ave. N. (Campus Map)

Contact Information

Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics
North Dakota State University
Barry Hall 500
Dept #7610, PO Box 6050
Fargo, ND 58108-6050

Tel: (701) 231-7441 / Fax: (701) 231-7400

Office of Admission
North Dakota State University
Ceres 114
Dept #5230, PO Box 6050
Fargo, ND 58108-6050

Tel: (701) 231-8643 / Fax: (701) 231-8802



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Office of Admission
North Dakota State University
Phone: +1 (701) 231-8643 / Fax: (701) 231-8802
Campus address: Ceres Hall 114
Physical/delivery address: 1301 Administration Ave., Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 5230 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Page manager: NDSU Webmaster

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 06, 2017 11:15:57 AM
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