CSU, Chico

Assessment Plan - B.S. in Agricultural Business

Assessment Plan - B.S. in Agricultural Business

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 Faculty assessed the following Goals - Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Aware of the complex interrelationships of the production and movement of agricultural products from the farm gate through the marketplace.
    • Recognize consumer responsiveness to changing market conditions.
    • Recognize producer responsiveness to changing market conditions.
      • In: ABUS 301 (Ag Production Economic Analysis)
      • In: ABUS 415 (Agricultural Price Analysis)
  • Aware of the complex interrelationships of natural and agricultural systems.
    • Describe the integral nature of agricultural sustainability, comprising economic, social, and environmental components.
      • In: AGRI 331 (Agricultural Ecology).
  • Capable of communicating clearly and concisely.
    • Demonstrate effective written communication in an agricultural business environment, i.e., use terminology associated with industry trends, situation, and outlook.
      • In: AGRI 482 (Agricultural Issues)


ABUS 301 is designed to provide a foundation of intermediate economic theory useful for exploring agricultural production and markets.  Quiz questions were designed to force students to apply the economic concepts they have learned to a hypothetical example.  Economic theory predicts a specific behavioral response corresponding to the correct answer.  The 14-17% improvement observed suggest that students are learning key economic concepts. Faculty are reviewing the assessment questions in order to clarify questions.


ABUS 415 integrates economic theory with empirical approaches to develop the basic analytical and decision-making skills required in agribusiness profession.  Overall, average student scores improved 38% to 52.5%. Price analysis stands out as the area where students showed the most improvement, followed by statistics and microeconomics. Students enrolling for the ABUS 415 class do not have the required foundation in statistics and microeconomics.  Results are supportive of the general tendency among undergraduates to be less interested in theoretical concepts and to be more focused on applied learning. Further attempt will be made in the price analysis class to integrate statistics and microeconomics concepts with real world examples to improve student understanding of critical concepts.


AGRI 331 is designed to provide students in agriculture an understanding of, and appreciation for the unique nature of all land, and ecological functions and processes of ecosystems that exist on this land. There was an 11% increase in scores between the midterm and final on the multiple choice questions regarding key ecological principles.  Results suggest introducing important ecological principles earlier in the course and reinforce them during lab exercises.  


AGRI 482 is designed to develop critical thinking and writing skills and develop an understanding for current issues facing the agricultural industry.  Students gain an appreciation for the diversity of agriculture and agricultural policies.  This analysis looked to see if there were differences in students who were required to take 4 WI courses vs. only 2.   Grades were compared in the College wide writing proficiency course (AGRI 482) for each population.  It is assumed that students had completed either 1 WI course or three prior to taking the Capstone WP course.   Mean grades in the capstone course were higher for students taking 2 additional WI course, but not statically significant (p>0.05).  As a result, the College of Agriculture sought and received WI designation for AGRI 490 (Agricultural Experimentation) and ABUS 451 (Agricultural Policy) to promote better writing among its majors.

2015-16 Annual Program Assessment Status Update

2015-16 Annual Program Assessment Report




Faculty assessed the following Goals - Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Technically competent in agricultural business and able to make sound judgments.
    • Prepare and utilize financial statements needed in business decision making.
      • In: ABUS 311 (Agricultural Markets and Pricing)
    • Apply core marketing principles to the unique structure of the agricultural sector.
      • In: ABUS 321 (Agribusiness Management)
  • Aware of current issues confronting the food and fiber sector.
    • Identify and analyze issues in the marketplace; make appropriate recommendations.
      • In: ABUS 311