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Agricultural Economics

Program Description

Just the Facts

Agricultural Economics. A program that focuses on the application of economics to the analysis of resource allocation, productivity, investment, and trends in the agricultural sector, both domestically and internationally. Includes instruction in economics and related subfields as well as applicable agricultural fields.

This program is available in these options:

  • Certificate / Diploma
  • Associate degree
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Graduate Certificate
  • Master's degree
  • Doctoral degree

High School Courses

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Additional Information

Agricultural economics students are concerned with a wide range of issues -- anything from the effect of foot and mouth disease on livestock, to the price of green chilies in Ghana.

"They will be able to discuss a wide set of questions and issues -- everything from free trade to greenhouse gases to the politics of genetically modified foods," says Murray Fulton. He is a professor of agricultural economics.

Students learn about microeconomics. That includes things like consumer choices, the supply of merchandise and foods and the use of natural resources.

They also investigate macroeconomic issues. These are things like economic development, income distribution, international trade and government policy.

Students also learn about statistics, marketing, finance, public policy, natural resources and international development.

A relatively new specialty within agricultural economics is called agribusiness. Agribusiness is concerned with the commercial side of agriculture and how to manage it.

Agribusiness students are interested in things like the latest wholesale prices from international markets and import regulations on agricultural products.

High school classes in math, English and science will help you prepare for an agricultural economics program, says Don Ethridge. He chairs a department of agriculture and applied economics.

Program costs may include:

  • Tuition
  • Books
  • Photocopying fees

Agricultural economics graduates have a broad range of career possibilities. Some graduates become agriculture salespeople, loan officers, commodity merchandisers, professional farm managers, public relations specialists, marketing advisors or farmers, says Ron Deiter. He is a professor of economics in the agriculture college at Iowa State University.


Occupational Outlook Handbook
For more information related to this field of study, see: Agricultural Workers

Agricultural & Applied Economics Association: Outreach Publications
Get the latest news on economics and food, farm or rural issues

National institute of Food and Agriculture
Provides leadership and funding to advance agriculture-related sciences


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