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(Interdepartmental Graduate Major)
Coordinating Committee: M. Liebman, Chair; B. Wells, Associate Chair; R. Salvador, Director of Graduate Education.
The Graduate Faculty Members in Sustainable Agriculture: Acker, Agarwal, Al-Kaisi, Allen, Anderson, Anex, Asbjornsen, Blackmer, Brumm, Brummer, Butler, Cambardella, Colletti, Cruse,Danielson, Delate, DeWitt, Duffy, C. Flora, J. Flora, Ford, Gibson, Gleason, Grudens-Schuck, Harl, Hartzler, Hatfield, Helmers, Hollinger, Honeyman, Huang, Hurburgh, Ilahiane, Jannick, Jones, Kanwar, Karlen, Keeney, Kirschenmann, Kliebenstein, Lamont, Liebman, Logsdon, Loynachan, Mallorino, Marquis, Martin, Mazur, Miranowski, Mize, Morton, Muenchrath, Mullen, Natrajan, Negreros-Castillo, Nutter, O'Neal, Owusu, Pease, Powers, Salvador, Sandor, Schulte, Schultz, Steward, Thompson, Trenkle, Xin, Wagner, Wells, Wiedenhoeft, Wolf, Woodman, Yang.
The graduate program in sustainable agriculture is an interdepartmental major offered through faculty in seventeen participating departments: Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, Agricultural Education and Studies, Agronomy, Animal Science, Anthropology, Community and Regional Planning, Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology, Economics, Entomology, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Horticulture, Landscape Architecture, Marketing, Natural Resource Ecology and Management, Philosophy and Religious Studies, Plant Pathology, and Sociology. M.S. and Ph.D. degrees are offered within the major.
Master's students should have a bachelor's degree in one of the life, social, or engineering sciences, or a bachelor's degree plus equivalent experience in these areas. Doctoral students must have a master's degree and either an undergraduate or master's degree in one of the majors in the College of Agriculture or its equivalent.
Graduates of the program will be equipped with skills to design and manage agricultural systems that increase food security, enhance human communities, and protect environmental quality. To acquire these skills, students learn agroecological principles, study social relations underlying sustainable farming and food systems, and gain experience with practical techniques of sustainable agriculture. The program seeks to balance narrower disciplinary knowledge and perspectives with broader, system-level analyses. It integrates technical and social sciences through a sequence of team-taught interdisciplinary core courses emphasizing higher-order critical thinking skills and active, collaborative approaches to engaged learning. Students choose an area of emphasis, and additional course work in this area is developed via consultation with the student's advisor and Program of Study committee.
Graduates of the program will be qualified to work in a variety of settings, including university research, education, extension, agribusiness, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and farming.
Information on applications procedures, research interests of the faculty, and specific requirements of the major can be obtained from following Internet address: http://www.sust.ag.iastate.edu/gpsa or by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
Courses for Graduate students
SusAg 509. Agroecosystem Analysis. (Same as Agron 509, Anthr 509, Soc 509.) (3-0) Cr. 3. F. Prereq: 6 credits in social sciences, 6 credits in natural, biological or engineering sciences and senior or above classification. Salvador. Field study of commercial farming systems within the context of global energy flows and biogeochemical cycles, including ecological, agronomic, and social perspectives.
SusAg 515. Integrated Crop and Livestock Production Systems. (Same as A E 515, Agron 515, An S 515.) (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. F., offered 2005. Prereq: 509. Richard, Russell, Wiedenhoeft. Managing productivity and minimizing ecological impacts of agricultural systems by understanding nutrient cycles, crop residue and manure management, and multispecies interactions. Consideration of crop and livestock production within landscapes and watersheds. The course includes a significant off- campus component with teams analyzing Iowa farms.
SusAg 530. Ecologically Based Pest Management Strategies. (Same as Agron 530, Ent 530, Pl P 530.) (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. F., offered 2006. Prereq: 509. Liebman, O'Neal, Gleason. Durable, least-toxic strategies for managing weeds, pathogens, and insect pests, with emphasis on underlying ecological processes.
SusAg 546. Organizational Strategies for Diversified Farming Systems. (Same as Agron 546, Hort 546, Soc 546.) (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. S., offered 2006. Prereq: 509. Hinrichs, Liebman. Examination of the organization and operation of complex, diversified farming systems using tools and perspectives drawn from ecology, agronomy, and sociology. The course contains a significant component of fieldwork focused on an Iowa farm.
SusAg 590. Special Topics. Cr. 1-3. F.S.SS. Prereq: Graduate classification, permission of instructor. For students wishing to do individual research in a particular area of sustainable agriculture.
SusAg 599. Creative Component. Cr. Var. F.S.SS. Pre-enrollment contract required. Advanced topic for creative component report in lieu of thesis.
SusAg 600. Sustainable Agriculture Colloquium. (1-0) Cr. 1. F.S. Weekly seminar for graduate students in the Sustainable Agriculture program.
SusAg 610. Society and Technology in Sustainable Food Systems. (Same as A E 610, Anthr 610, Soc 610.) (3-0) Cr. 3. Alt. S., offered 2007. Prereq: 509. Anex, Wells, Hollinger. Social and technological dimensions of sustainability in food systems. Emphasis on ethics and strategies for evaluating existing and emerging options.
SusAg 699. Research. Cr. Var. F.S.SS. M.S. and Ph.D. thesis and dissertation research.