AGR220 Extension (8)


Extension involves 'the conscious use of communication of information to help people form sound opinions and make good decisions' (van den Ban & Hawkins, 1996). In practice this includes building and enhancing the knowledge of people in rural communities. For students the subject is about people and change in the agricultural and equine industries. It introduces the role of the social sciences in agriculture and equine industries - emphasising social relationships and networks as well as the physical and biological components of the farm and industry systems. It gives students an appreciation of social processes as a means of change and improvement in whichever industry and role they see themselves. It uses methods and theory from communication and social science to provide an understanding of the forces and process of change, and to develop the skills necessary to assist people achieve change.

+ Subject Availability Modes and Location

Session 1
InternalCY O'Connor - Muresk Institute
InternalOrange Campus
InternalWagga Wagga Campus
Distance*Wagga Wagga Campus
*This subject offering contains a residential school. Please view following information for further details.
Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: AGR220
Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject information

Duration Grading System School:
One sessionHD/FLSchool of Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
- Understand the social component and processes in the agricultural and equine industries.
- Understand the process of change, its effect on the people and how it can be worked within the extension role.
- Understand and use communication theory to analyse and improve extension.
- Be able to communicate skilfully and effectively in interpersonal situations.


The subject will cover the following topics:
- Extension concepts and practice. The history and development of Australian agriculture - including agricultural education. - Communication theory. The Information business. Basic skills. Communication models to improve and criticise practice. - The professional talk. Choosing the topic, planning, and constructing the talk. The theory, choice and construction of visual aids - Diffusion and adoption behaviour of farmers and equine business operators. The sociology and behaviour of managers and owners. - Bottom-up change. Community particiption and rural development. The enhancement of improving complex problems and using local knowledge and skills. - Marketing, economics in the public and private sectors. - Social research - its relevance to community research and development - Group dynamics and group exercises. The knowledge and skills required. - Mass communication. Understanding and knowing who to use. - An optional unit on participation by farmers, rural communities in extension and research. Includes Rapid Rural Appraisal, bottom-up methods, Farming Systems Research, and Action Research.

Residential School

This subject contains a compulsory 2 day residential school. The Res School activities incorporate group work and media skills working in an interactive environment.


The information contained in the 2016 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: 06 September 2016. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.