Agriculture Production Technology

Gain hands-on agriculture production experience while earning an Associate in Applied Science degree. As technology continues to evolve, workers need as much specialized training as possible to prepare for a career in the agricultural industry. You will receive on-the-job training working on our 300+ acre college-owned farm.

With the option to specialize in crops, swine or beef, you will become familiar with a wide variety of production methods and examine the latest developments in agriculture technology. In addition to working in the farm laboratory, you will become acquainted with today’s technologies, which include GPS/ GIS, VRT, real-time Ultra-sound, electronic identification, artificial insemination, embryo transfer and various computer software programs.

Start your career in the production sector of agriculture with the skills and experience of a specialist. Gain knowledge of agriculture principles as well as the role of marketing and effective communication in agriculture. Through our Occupational Experience portion of the program, you’ll also have the opportunity to earn money while gaining experience in the agribusiness environment.

Faculty Contact

Kelly Dodge
Assistant Professor, Agriculture
712-852-5329 | kdodge@iowalakes.educreate new email
Stacey Benson
Assistant Professor, Agriculture Technology
712-852-5232 Ext: 5232 | sbenson@iowalakes.educreate new email
Tom Quastad
Assistant Professor, Agriculture
712-852-5239 | tquastad@iowalakes.educreate new email

Program Details

PROGRAM LENGTH: 5 terms

DEGREE: Associate in Applied Science (78 credits)

CAMPUS: Emmetsburg

Internship/Practicum

Did You Know?

Starting Salary: $29,108

Average Salary: $42,607

Projected Employment Growth: 0.5%

Last Dollar Scholarship Program

What you'll learn

In the Agriculture Production Technology program at Iowa Lakes, you will learn the following:1

  1. Construct a business plan for an agricultural operation.
  2. Compare common crop enterprises important to our region.
  3. Differentiate management principles to livestock operations.
  4. Demonstrate safe operation of agriculture equipment.
  5. Apply current technology in agricultural systems.
  6. Relate skills to obtain and keep a job.

1The What You’ll Learn section of our website provides a description of Learning Outcomes for students who successfully complete all requirements for obtaining an Agriculture Production Technology Associate in Applied Science degree from Iowa Lakes Community College.

Curriculum

Term 1

Credits: 3

An introduction to basic soil formation, classification, physical properties, water, organic matter, pH, and fertility.


Credits: 1

This course teaches American Red Cross basic first aid and American Heart Association cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).  Students will obtain a 10-Hour Occupational Health and Safety Association (OSHA) card, included in this training: tractor safety, chemical safety, and livestock safe handling practices.


Credits: 3

Occupational Experience


Credits: 3

This course includes basic knowledge of computer hardware, software and operation with an agriculture emphasis. Students will explore agricultural related applications.


Credits: 3

This course is an introduction in animal science including vari­ous species and breeds of domestic animals and gives them an appreciation for the principles of production, biological principles, stewardship, and animal industries as they relate to animal pro­duction in the U.S. and the world.


Credits: 3

Students are given the opportunity to apply human relations concepts and evaluate experience and observations. Social skills required in various occupational settings will be developed, emphasizing how appropriate personal attitudes lead to social and business success.


Plus choose from AGA, AGB, AGC, AGS: 2 credits

Term 2

Credits: 3

Preparation for the student to pass the state of Iowa Commercial Pesticide Applicator Manual examination. Includes the safe use and handling of pesticides.


Credits: 3

Covers the basic principles of crop production, including classification, soil-plant interrelationships and growth process in response to environment.


Credits: 3

Occupational Experience


Credits: 3

Nutritional principles, digestive systems, composition and nutri­tional characteristics of common feedstuffs, ration formulation and recommended feeding programs for farm animals.


Credits: 2

Introduction to electric, gas, wire and oxyacetylene welding.


Plus choose from AGA, AGB, AGC, AGS: 2 credits

Term 3

Credits: 1

Studies the application of crop production and animal science production practices through field studies trips. Study trips will involve research farms, industry field days, extension field days and area farms.


Credits: 3

Introduction to the commodity futures markets, with information on contract specifications, exchanges, basic trading information, and fundamental and technical market information.


Credits: 3

A course in elementary mathematical skills for technicians. Topics covered include fundamental operations with whole numbers, fractions, decimals and signed numbers; percents; geometric figures and basic constructions; area and volume formulas; English/Metric systems; measurements; and basic algebraic equations and applications.

Prerequisites: Appropriate placement score


Credits: 3

This is a general survey course which includes sets; number systems; elementary algebra; exponents; equations and inequalities; fractions; ratios; proportion and variation; probability and statistics; elementary graphing; consumer mathematics; and an introduction to geometry.

Prerequisites: Appropriate placement score


Choose either MAT 772 or MAT 110
Plus choose from AGA, AGB, AGC, AGS: 5 credits

Term 4

Credits: 3

Introduces the basic principles of accounting and the recoding of simple business transactions using the double entry system. Includes the accounting procedures of journalizing transactions, posting to the ledger, making a trial balance, creating receipt and disbursement of cash.


Credits: 2

This course includes current principles and practices of farm business management. Topics include strategic planning, decision making, production enterprise budgets, partial budgets, and cash flow budgets.This course includes current principles and practices of farm business management. Topics include strategic planning, decision making, production enterprise budgets, partial budgets, and cash flow budgets.


Credits: 1

Preparation for using a versatile computerized farm accounting system.


Credits: 1

This course includes basic machinery maintenance and adjustment of farm equipment.


Credits: 2

An introduction to the use of Global Positioning System (GPS) as it impacts agricultural producers. Students will use field mapping software and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) as part of the class.  Students will gain an understanding of these technologies and analyze their economic impact.


Credits: 3

Occupational Experience


Credits: 3

This course focuses on composition and editing of curriculum-specific technical and business-related writing projects. Instruc­tion includes formatting, information gathering, document drafting, editing, and written employment strategies.


Credits: 3

Emphasis on expository and argumentative writings including a review of usage and mechanics.

Prerequisites: Satisfactory score on the ACT, Accuplacer, ASSET,COMPASS as determined by Iowa Lakes policy


Credits: 3

The fundamentals course develops the basic skills involved in a variety of communication situations, including oral presentations and interpersonal speaking.  Emphasis is placed on organization, audience analysis, vocal and physical delivery, listening, nonverbal communication, critical thinking, and methods of dealing with communication apprehension through class discussion and activities.


Choose either AGM 102 or AGP 242
Choose either COM 781 or ENG 105
Plus choose from AGA, AGB, AGC, AGS: 1 credit

Term 5

Credits: 3

This course is a study of the terminology and tools of agricultural finance. It emphasizes the use of credit, preparation of financial documents, evaluating financial condition, and discusses financial risk strategies.


Credits: 1

Preparation of the farm management student for entry into the non-family farm job market.


Plus choose from AGA, AGB, AGC, AGS: 11 credits