BSc Agriculture

The information on this page relates to September 2016 entry. For 2017 information, including grade requirements, please check our prospectus.

A BSc Agriculture student holding a lamb

In choosing the Agriculture Degree (D401) at Aberystwyth University you will be joining one of the most highly regarded departments in the UK. Agriculture is the mainstay of rural communities, and a significant UK industry sector. The breadth of the Agriculture degree includes agricultural diversification, environment management, and agricultural production systems and it will provide you with the practical and theoretical understanding to manage a sustainable business. With a 9 month work placement, and with access to the numerous university farms, upon successful completion of the Agriculture Degree you will have the core capabilities and skills demanded by employers. 

Here is why we think that Aberystwyth is a great place for you. . . .

  •  State-of-the-art teaching that provides you with the practical skills and scientific knowledge base to underpin your future career
  •  Visits to farms and businesses that are industry leaders in innovation and technical know-how
  •  Nine months of work experience as a core component of the course
  • Study through the medium of English or Welsh.

Click and expand the sections below to find out more... 

Overview

This BSc in Agriculture offers you a detailed tour of all aspects of the agricultural industry, looking at a range of highly important subjects such as sustainability, environmental management and technology. This course will prepare you for work in this modern industry, which demands detailed knowledge across a broad range of areas.

You will study a fascinating blend of science, technology and management methods, starting with a firm grounding in business, economics and land use. You will move on to cover topics including the physiology of animal groups in the context of environmental conditions, biodiversity of habitats, conservation, productivity and human impact on the countryside.

Why study Agriculture at Aberystwyth?

This degree is delivered by our award-winning Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), which is also the home of the Farm Business Survey. Aberystwyth University has a long-established and enviable reputation throughout the world for its teaching and research in agriculture and rural science, and the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences is the largest and best-resourced university department of its kind in the UK.

Aberystwyth itself is surrounded by a great diversity of farmland and agricultural terrain. In addition, you will have access to the 1,000 hectare university farms, which are managed commercially by the Institute and used for teaching and research.

A prize-winning institute that can help you achieve your full potential

  • Our students have won the “Biology Student of the Year” award at the European Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET) Awards, and the Welsh Ornithologists’ Union Student Prize!
  • Our Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) received the ''Outstanding Contribution to Innovation and Technology'' award at the 2013 Times Higher Education Awards. 
  • Our Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) in conjunction with Bangor University had the 5th strongest submission in the UK for the Research Excellence Framework assessment (2014).

The Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences also won one of the first ever Excellence with Impact Awards from the BBSRC, the UK’s Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council. The award recognises those university departments which are most active in embedding a culture that promotes and values the achievement of impact alongside excellent research. 

This four-year programme includes a 9 month work placement in your third year in which you can apply your academic and vocational knowledge and gain valuable experience of agriculture in practice.

The Department offers a number of modules taught through the medium of Welsh. Further details may be obtained from the Department.

Our Staff

The majority of teaching staff at the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences are qualified to PhD level and are research active. Vocational courses also have staff whose background lies within industry.  The Institute has a large number of research only staff with whom students may have contact.

Course Content

Welsh medium modules available

Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

Year 1 Core (50 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

Agricultural Technology BR10210

Business, Economics And Land Use BR10400

Crop And Grassland Management BR10700

Semester 2

Business, Economics And Land Use BR10420

Crop And Grassland Management BR10720

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Bioleg Cymhwysol Anifeiliad BG13300

Applied Animal Biology BR13300

Semester 2

Bioleg Cymhwysol Anifeiliad BG13320

Applied Animal Biology BR13320

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 2

Y Diwydiant Amaethyddol - Sgiliau Cynllun-benodol BG11110

The Agricultural Industry - Scheme Specific Skills BR11110

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Cyflwyniad I Systemau Cynhyrchu Da Byw BG11400

Introduction To Livestock Production Systems BR11400

Semester 2

Cyflwyniad I Systemau Cynhyrchu Da Byw BG11410

Introduction To Livestock Production Systems BR11410

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Sgiliau Astudio A Chyfathrebu BG12410

Study And Communication Skills BR12410

Year 1 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 2

Llystyfiant Ac Ecosystemau BG12920

Vegetation And Ecosystems BR12920

Year 2 Core (40 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

Farm Business Management And Appraisal BR21000

Semester 2

Agronomy And Crop Improvement BR20320

Farm Business Management And Appraisal BR21020

Year 2 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Bwyd, Ffermio A'r Amgylchedd BG21920

Food, Farming And The Environment BR21920

Year 2 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Maeth Anifeiliaid Fferm, Ceffylau Ac Anifeiliaid Anwes BG20720

Applied Nutrition Of Livestock, Horses And Companion Animals BR20720

Year 2 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Dulliau Ymchwil BG23400

Research Methods BR23400

Semester 2

Dulliau Ymchwil BG23420

Research Methods BR23420

Year 2 Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Systemau Cynhyrchu Da Byw BG20400

Livestock Production Systems BR20400

Semester 2

Systemau Cynhyrchu Da Byw BG20420

Livestock Production Systems BR20420

Year 3 Core (120 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

Work Experience RSS0000

Work Experience RSS0100

Semester 2

Work Experience RSS0060

Work Experience RSS0160

Final Year Core (60 Credits) You must take the following modules

Semester 1

The Agri-environment BR30420

Farm Planning And Advanced Farm Management BR31600

Semester 2

Farm Planning And Advanced Farm Management BR31620

Crop And Grassland Production Science BR32020

Final Year Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Taith Astudio Amaethyddol A'r Amgylchedd Gwaith BG34010

Agricultural Study Tour And The Work Environment BR34010

Final Year Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Gwyddor Cynhyrchu Da Byw BG30800

Livestock Production Science BR30800

Semester 2

Gwyddor Cynhyrchu Da Byw BG30820

Livestock Production Science BR30820

Final Year Options This CORE MODULE is offered bilingually: choose your preferred language

Semester 1

Traethawd Estynedig BG32300

Dissertation BR32300

Semester 2

Traethawd Estynedig BG32330

Dissertation BR32330

Employability

You will be fully supported with developing your employability skills throughout the degree scheme. The degree will allow you to develop specialist skills such as the ability to undertake a range of practical estate skills and on-site project planning as well as developing a range of transferable skills highly valued by employers. You will join a department that has excellent facilities to support your studies; £55 million pounds has been invested over the last five years in IBERS infrastructure. These facilities enable students to develop their specialist skills and knowledge preparing them for a successful transition into the workplace. With a 9 month work placement, and with access to the numerous university farms, upon successful completion of the Agriculture Degree you will have the core capabilities and skills demanded by employers. IBERS staff have close links with many learned societies which provide a route for students to network with others in their discipline and explore funding opportunities and recognition for their work. Guest lecturers and expert external teachers also contribute to the curriculum to pass on their expertise and knowledge.

The department has resources on the virtual learning environment, Aberlearn Blackboard to support your development and has a dedicated Twitter feed to keep students informed of developmental opportunities and work experience. 

Your BSc in Agriculture opens up a range of exciting opportunities for employment and further training. You will be a strong candidate for work as an agricultural consultant, farm manager, agronomist and animal nutritionist, and a wide range of roles in the ancillary industries and with government and local authorities.Throughout your training you will develop a wealth of skills that can be easily transferred into almost any graduate or professional employment situation.

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

What will I learn?

In the first year you will be introduced to the technologies that are increasingly being developed for and adopted by the agricultural industry. You will investigate the factors that influence land use and explore the primary resources required to operate a rural business. You will gain useful business management skills, including the preparation of farm budgets and the analysis of commodity markets.

In the second year you will study the impact of agriculture and food supply systems on the environment. You will examine British livestock industries, crop production systems and strategies, and will learn how to analyse, budget and appraise a farm business.

Your third year will be spent in industry on a farm or in an agri-related business, gaining valuable work experience and putting your academic knowledge to practical use. Prospective employers will look very favourably upon the skills, knowledge and experience you will gain during this sandwich year.

In the fourth year you will examine business planning techniques, and will learn how to construct fully detailed farm business plans. You will also look at recent developments in systems of crop production, modern plant breeding strategies and the use of crops for bioenergy production, alongside animal production systems and the environmental impacts of different agricultural systems. A week-long field course involving visits to farms, rural businesses and organizations involved in the regulation and management of the countryside will enable you to see the practical business applications of your theoretical and academic learning.

How will I be taught?

This course will be delivered through a programme of lectures, seminars, workshops and field visits. Some aspects of the course will rely on student-centred e-learning, supported by computer workshops. You will have numerous opportunities to apply your academic learning in practical activities and workshops. You will also look at the connection between research and analysis and their real-world outputs in the form of improved technology, crops and animal welfare.

You will be assessed through numerous methods including essays, practical exercises, oral presentations, worksheets, reports, statistical exercises, wikis, reflective diaries, business plans, literature reviews, magazine articles, field notebooks and exams. A compulsory dissertation in your final year will allow you to perform in-depth research under the guidance of a supervisor. Your project may be based on laboratory experiments or fieldwork exercises, comprise a computer modelling exercise, or involve a critical review of published scientific literature.

The university's vibrant culture of academic and vocational learning will support you in your agricultural training and encourage you to take advantage of the many opportunities within the department and the university to develop your theoretical and practical expertise so that, upon graduation, you are perfectly positioned for the next stage of your career.

You will be assigned a personal tutor throughout your degree course, who will help you with any problems or queries, whether these are academic-related or personal issues. You should feel free to contact them at any time for help and advice.

You will also have the opportunity to complete a Personal Development Plan (PDP) at Aberystwyth. This is a structured process of self-appraisal, reflection, and planning, which will enable you to chart your personal, academic and professional development throughout your time at university. By recording your academic performance, and highlighting the skills you already have and those you will need for future employability, the PDP portfolio will equip you with the necessary tools to plan effectively, develop successful approaches to study, and consider your future career options and aspirations.

Student Views

The Agriculture course (D401) has a great mix of modules which has opened my eyes to many other aspects of agriculture. The information given in lectures on important subjects is usually simple but thorough which makes work easy to both understand and remember. Farm visits are also enjoyable as it gives you a chance to observe and understand different systems. It's also interesting to hear the views of the farmers and the different ways they implement systems to suit their business. Aled Rhys Lewis

What do I love about Agriculture at Aberystwyth University? The people - students from a wide range of backgrounds, all getting together, sharing experiences and learning together; lecturers with a passion for their subject, who are down to earth and approachable. The place - the green hills, quiet woods, impressive views, and the sea. The course - learning about a topic which is foundational to society; stretching my mind with new knowledge, and shivering out in freezing farmyards (yes, even that has a kind of pleasure to it!). That's what I love about agriculture here. Benjamin David Latham

Key Information Set

Places available in Clearing

0800 121 40 80 (Freephone)

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Key Facts

UCAS Code: D401

Please note that the tariff below may not apply during Clearing. Contact us on 0800 121 40 80 or fill in the form above for more information.

Tariff Required: 250 - 280

Entry Requirements: GCSE: Grade C in English or Welsh and Mathematics and a Science subject. Grade C in relevant A level Science. Students not taking relevant Science A Level may be made an offer based on individual merit following interview.

Course Length: 4 Years

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