Agricultural Sciences Education and Communication

Projects & Grants

Creating a Pipeline for Agricultural Education Teachers in Indiana
Funding Indiana Education Roundtable

The goal of this project is to develop an innovative teacher recruitment and retention model to address the shortage of Indianan Agriculture teachers and increase the number of undeserved individual receiving an agricultural education degree from Purdue University and thus possessing the credential to teach agricultural science at the Indiana middle and High school level.

Agro-ecosystem Approach to Sustainable Biofuels Production via the Pryolysis-Biochar
Funding Purdue University

Adapting the iGEM model to engage students in agricultural science and bioenergy

Online Educational Resources to Enhance Horse Care and Management
Funding United States Equestrian Federation

Development of a series of learning lessons and webinars to educate USEF membership, and the general horse industry. These educational resources are targeted in areas of USEF grant funding, such as laminitis, rehoming of retired racehorses, business management and current disease and biosecurity issues.

Developing Targeted Tools to Optimize the Success of an Equine REscue FAcility: An online educational resource
Funding American Association of Equine Practitioners

The goal of this project is to develop an educational resource area for rescue operations. The resource area will be available on-line and thus national and international rescues can access the information. Information will be of vital importance to individuals or groups wanting to start a rescue. Resources will include AAEP's Care Guidelines for Equine Rescue and Retirement Facilities (2012) and utilize the vast amount of information on My Horse University and eXtension's HorseQuest web-sites. This proposal addresses Goals B,C, D and of the AAEP Foundation. The curriculum proposed will increase access of members of the equine community and the veterinary profession to important information regarding one of the most vital issues currently facing the horse industry; the care and well-being of unwanted horses.  Horse rescues, both formal and informal, have increasing pressures put on them due to changing economic conditions and owner confusion regarding how to manage unwanted horses.  This has resulted in the opening of more rescues and increasing demands on existing rescue facilities. Funding of this proposal will result in a better understanding of the educational needs of the rescue industry, and facilitate development and delivery of curricular materials that will enable rescue facilities to more effectively care for, rehabilitate, and place the horses in their facility. This curriculum will serve as a resource that veterinarian's can use to educate their clients, and in their work with animal control professionals in their communities.

Engaging New Audiences through Science Communication
Funding Ag Alumni Trust Fund

Multimedia Kits for Science Communication
Funding Provost's Instructional Equipment Program - Purdue University

Indiana Military 4-H Club
Funding 4-H National Headquarters/USDA, Army CYS services, Airforce Airman and family services, and Navy CYP

Funding to support Military 4-H Club programming at Crane Naval Reserve Center

Operation: Military Kids
Funding USDA/ US Army

Funding for Operation: Military Kids programming

Cultural Engagement and Professional Development in Agricultural Communication: Service-Learning Program in Romania
Funding Purdue University International Programs

Quality Assurance Modules-IBAT
Funding Purdue Extension-IBAT program

The purpose of the proposed project is to develop online modules that are age appropriate, and teach Quality Assurance for all meat animal species (beef, sheep, goats, and swine). Team members Neary, Claeys and Reid have developed materials in beef and small ruminants for online delivery that will become a part of these modules. Team member Fox has indicated that he can assist in seamlessly connecting the Online Modules to the existing Extension Database system which will enable county educators to easily see the status of their youth regarding this training; and generate completion documentation to be presented at exhibition time.

Malawi graduate student
Funding USAID

Engaging Underrepresented Populations in the food and Agricultural Sciences through Urban Agriculture

Urban secondary students need an appropriate, relevant context to explore the content and career opportunities in the food and agricultural sciences. This project uses Urban Agriculture to provide a contextual, hands-on learning environment. Additionally it uses school[-based plots to demonstrate how students can produce a supply of fresh vegetables. The project will increase the number and diversity of students pursuing a 2- or 4-year post secondary degree in the food and agricultural science.

MESA Child sexual abuse prevention in migrant farm worker communities
Funding Ms. foundation for Women

Funding Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Uniting Local Stakeholders to Recognize At-Risk Horse and to Strategize to Prevent Unwanted Horses
Funding Morris Animal Foundation

Multicultural Efforts to end Sexual Assault (MESA)
Funding Indiana State Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Rape Prevention Education

Volunteer Engagement & Activation Resource (VEAR)
Funding Monsanto and National 4-H Council

Utilization of VEAR promotional/recruitment resources to recruit diverse 4-H Volunteers.

Indiana 4-H Adult Congress
Funding Monsanto and National 4-H Council

Funding 4-H 2013 Indiana 4-H Adult Congress

Migrant Farm Worker Project
Funding TMC Migrant Head Start

Operation: Military Kids
Funding USDA/ US Army

Funding for Operation: Military Kids programming

Enhancing Science Capacity in Introductory Animal, Plant, and Food Sciences Courses
Funding USDA/HEC

Enhancing STEAM Learning and Career Development through Life Science Education Contexts
Project Directors:Project Directors: Neil Knobloch, Colleen Brady, Natalie Carroll, Levon Esters, Kathryn Orvis & Roger Tormoehlen
YDAE Graduate Students: Megan Anderson, Annie Davis, Cecilia Espinoza Morales, Elizabeth Gall, Amy Jones, Matt Kararo, Lisa Keefe, Kendra Lancaster, Lindsay Nobbe, Rebekah Nortrup, Robbie Ortega, Noah Shields, Melissa Voigt, Faith Weeks, Melissa Welsh
Funding United States Department of Agriculture Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service Hatch Project

Innovative educational experiences, both in the classroom and outside of the classroom, are essential to develop science literacy and inquiry skills, motivate youth to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, agriculture, and mathematics. Life science education provides K-16 students with learning contexts to engage them to learn and apply math and science in agriculture, technology and engineering. Students are more interested and retain more when they learn abstract concepts in math and science through concrete, relevant applications. Learning math and science using natural resources, plants, animals, and food are real objects in which youth are typically interested and can relate. Learning interactively with these real-world objects will help students learn academic concepts and career opportunities that will motivate them to study science, math, technology, engineering, and agriculture, and hopefully prepare them to pursue careers in these fields as well.
A team of researchers known as the Life Science Education Signature Area in the Department of Youth Development and Agricultural Education organized the research capacity via this proposal to study the impact experiential and outreach programs in the life sciences have on human capital. We believe developing science literacy, understanding, and inquiry, and motivating students to learn science and pursue STEM careers in the life sciences develops human capital is needed for Indiana to become the crossroads of life science. Life science includes plants, animals, food, and natural resources within science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Because agriculture is recognized as being a STEM-related discipline, the acronym will be referred to as STEAM hereafter because of the inclusion of agriculture as contextualized STEM learning.
The goal of the project is to determine effective curricula and outreach programs that create engaging contexts for K-16 students to learn life science and pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, agriculture, and mathematics (STEAM). The objectives of the project include: (1) Identify why students are interested to learn life science, participate in experiential and outreach programs, and pursue STEAM majors; (2) explore and describe how learning contexts create student interest and human capital outcomes for learning life science; (3) identify cognitive and motivational beliefs of formal and informal educators that are related to science literacy, inquiry, and motivation for STEAM learning and careers; and, (4) determine the effectiveness that life science curricula and outreach programs have on developing human capital, such as: K-16 students' academic achievement; science, agricultural, and environmental literacy; inquiry skills; and, motivation to learn life science and pursue STEAM careers.
Experiential and informal learning provide learning contexts and processes to engage K-12 and college students in the life sciences in formal and informal education. Programs (and courses) facilitated by teachers, professors, and educators will be studied to determine the influence the learning context (i.e., content, roles, setting) had on students' academic performance, motivation, and human capital outcomes. Informal and outreach education programs, school enrichment programs, afterschool programs, self-directed projects, summer camps, workshops, and learner-centered courses that meet the criteria for experiential learning, life science education, and human capital development will be studied using the following methods. Multiple methods (i.e., QUAL and quan, simultaneous qualitative and quantitative design with an inductive theoretical drive) will be used to address the four research objectives.
Expected outputs from the project include: surveys, case studies, experiments; workshops; consulting; new fundamental knowledge of contextual learning; applied knowledge of best practices for learner-centered teaching, experiential learning, and informal education; database of educational programs and resources; networks and collaborative partnerships; a website with best practices, research-based knowledge, and information for individuals and programs; and students graduated in agricultural education.

Indiana Military 4-H Club
Funding 4-H National Headquarters/USDA, Army CYS services, Airforce Airman and family services, and Navy CYP

Funds to support Military 4-H Club at Crane Naval Support Center

Agro-ecosystem Approach to Sustainable Biofuels Production via the Pyrolysis-Biochar Platform (AFRI-CAP)

Multi-state project cellulosic biofuels $9,750,000 to Iowa State; $698,261 to Purdue

Heifer Romania: A Culture-Centered Service-Learning Program in Agricultural Communication
Funding Purdue University International Programs

OMK Camp
Funding Office for the Secretary of Defense

Funding for OMK Camp, Summer 2013

Partnership for Research and Education in Plant Breeding and Genetics and Purdue University
Funding USDA NIFA Agricultural and Food Research Initiative Grant

Enhancing Science Capacity Introductory Animal, Plant and Food Sciences Courses
Project Directors:Neil Knobloch, Bryan Hains, Mark Balschweid, Tameshia Ballard, Colleen Brady, Levon Esters, John Graveel, Mickey Latour, Andrea Liceaga, Kathryn Orvis, Mary Rossano, Lori Unruh Snyder, William Slyvia, & Michael Zanis
YDAE Graduate Students Supported: Lisa Keefe, Lindsay Nobbe

This project focuses on improving the learning experiences for undergraduate students in introductory courses through engaging online learning enhancement modules that will improve students' knowledge, interests, and abilities to apply science concepts in animal, plant, and food sciences. Three instructional design teams consisting of content, pedagogy and content-pedagogy specialists will design, develop and pilot-test the online learning enhancement modules for their respective areas of animal science, food science, and plant science. The modules will not focus on content being delivered, but will be designed to help freshmen and sophomore college students learn and apply science concepts through instructional games (active learning), video demonstrations and lab-simulations (inquiry learning), and interactive case studies (contextualized learning). An innovative faculty development workshop will be conducted for 30 professors and teachers in the animal sciences, plant sciences, and food sciences. Faculty and teachers will learn how students learn science concepts in agricultural contexts, and be trained on how to integrate the learner-centered teaching online modules in their animal science, plant science, food science, and agricultural education teacher preparation courses. An expanding access study will be conducted with prospective audiences to determine the potential utility of the online learning enhancement modules for university biology courses, 1890 Historically Black Colleges and Universities, urban and suburban high schools, high school agriculture and science courses, 4-H animal science projects, and informal science education. The project will have the following impacts on students, faculty & teachers, and education: (1) Undergraduate students will have a greater understanding of science terminology, concepts, and how those concepts are applied in industry settings. Students (and their instructors) will have renewed interest in learning (and teaching) science in agricultural contexts; (2) professors and high school teachers increase their knowledge of learner-centered teaching pedagogy, science knowledge, and how to more effectively teach science concepts in both, college and high school classrooms; and, (3) a new educational network of university professors, community college instructors, and high school teachers will be created to engage in rich instructional conversations, which will increase communications, collaborative projects, and better articulation across the career pathways of animal sciences, plant sciences, and food sciences.

Healthy as a Horse: Using the Equine Model to Educate High School Students in the Science of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology- Planning Conference Proposal

Operation: Military Kids
Funding USDA/ US Army