Agriculture is the principal sub-sector in the economies of many developing countries in the absence of a strong industrial sector. Indeed in Kenya Agriculture in its widest sense is ―the goose that lays the golden eggs‖. It is a source of income to farmers, affiliated entrepreneurs, source of employment and earns foreign exchange etc. In many developing countries, agriculture is carried out on small farms with inherent differences in agro-ecological conditions, limited resource base and basic technology.
The training programme for the degree of bachelor of science in agricultural economics is conceptualised and designed to produce manpower that is expected to contribute towards the goal of self-reliance and motivation in skilled manpower for national development especially for the agricultural sub-sector in entirety, the objective of the programme is to produce graduates trained in the discipline of agriculture, economics and management with good blending of practical work to promote agricultural development and living standards. At the completion of the training, the BSc. Agricultural Economics graduates should be able to:
i) Analyse and explain the physical, ecological land agricultural policy and carry out effective extension work among farmers (Farm and Market Analysis Interpretations and Extension).
ii) Plan and administer in both private and public sectors by identifying and analysing particular socio-economic constraints and opportunities in various sectors of the economy (Sector Planning).
iii) Carry out agricultural project planning and policy formulation (Project Planning).
iv) Teach economics in agricultural institutions of learning as well as conduct research (Teach and Research).
v) Participate in the general direction and actual implementation of agricultural development
vi) Programmes and projects (agricultural project development and administration).
vii) Where possible run their own individual farm – firms and agri-business enterprises include consultancy (self employment).
viii) Pursue graduate studies in agricultural Economics (Further studies).
The BSc. in Agricultural economics programme was started in 1987.The programme endeavours to produce graduates who can participate in agricultural industry in a variety of roles, notably, self – employment where feasible, agricultural extension and credit administration, agricultural project planning and implementation, marketing consultancy and teaching agricultural economics.
The Department of Agricultural Economics has a long history going back to 969 when it was created to train man power for farm management to meet the needs of the Agricultural sub-sector in the first decade of Kenya‘s independence.The main emphasis of the programme inter alia include: agriculture, Farm Management, Economics, Marketing economics, Agricultural extension and practical work.The original programme has of necessity been pragmatic and subject to change, over the years consistent with changing circumstances and emphasis in farming industry.Currently the curriculum endeavours to produce practically oriented people who are competent and sensitive to address issues related to increased small farm productivity and development.
A curriculum for Diploma in Agricultural and Food Marketing was developed and launched in 1982 to cater for marketing problems and issues in agriculture – (food marketing).However, this programme was phased out from 1988; hence training in this area came to a halt in 1990.The department offers the following programs: Diploma in Farm Management, Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Economics, Bachelor of Agri-business Management, Master of Science in Agricultural Economics and Doctor of Philosophy in Agricultural Economics. The department is also involved in the Bachelor of Commerce Program based at the Egerton Nakuru Town Campus.
Applicants must satisfy the minimum entry requirements for admissions into the University by attaining an average grade of B- in the 8 subjects they offer at KCSE or equivalent examinations.
In addition to one above, applicants must offer passes in the following subject;
-Biology B or Biological Sciences B- Chemistry B- or Physical Science B
An added advantage will be given to applicants who have passed with at least a C grade pass in economics, commerce or Agriculture. Admission may be granted to outstanding diploma holders who have passed with distinction, Credit or their equivalence in farm management, agriculture or other related disciplines from recognised universities or colleges.
Course Structure and Duration
The grading system for BSc Agricultural Economics courses offered by the Department of Agricultural Economics and Business Management is as follows;
i) All Course Codes begin with an abbreviation ―AGEC‘ indicating that the course is offered from the Department.
ii) The abbreviation is followed by a set of four digits as follows;
(a) The first digit denotes the year the course is offered.
(b) The second digit denotes the course discipline within the Department. A course falls under any of the five disciplines as follows;
Category 1.Introductory, economic theory and quantitative economics
Category 2. Resource and development economics
Category 3.Agricultural marketing and trade.
Category 4. Farm management and production economics
Category 5.Agricultural law and policy
Category 6. Industrial/Field Attachment
(c) The last digit denotes the course ranking within the discipline.
All examinations for this programme shall be conducted in accordance with the examination regulations as stipulated in the Egerton University Statute XXVIII.
The grading of examinations for this programme shall be conducted in accordance with Egerton University Statute XXVIII.
To graduate, a student shall be required to take and pass all scheduled courses within the stipulated period.
Degree classification shall be in accordance with Egerton University Statute XXVIII.