Perception of and Interest in Distance Education in Agriculture among Extension Agents in Trinidad and Tobago

Agricultural Extension is the key instrument that supports agricultural development in many Caribbean countries. Through the extension process, the role of change agents is critical in interfacing with farmers in order to create new opportunities for production, a competitive base for local and international trade and a sustainable agriculture. As a result, competent extension agents are needed to make decisions and train farmers. Distance Education training can be a powerful tool to increase the competence of agents. This can be utilised for extension in-service training because it provides the benefits of lower training costs due to lack of travel requirements and the ability of agents and specialists over a large geographic region to exchange information and ideas. Responses to a self-administered questionnaire to extension agents in Trinidad and Tobago revealed that they were strongly receptive to this form of training. The questionnaire showed that there are existing resources which support the use of distance education within the environment of the extension agent. The survey goes on to show some of the perceived limitations to implementation of distance education programs within the extension service, willingness of agents to pay for the service and areas identified for further training. Information was also obtained on the present ways extension agents gather information, satisfaction of current farmer training, and factors limiting current extension efforts. From the survey it can be concluded that there is great potential for the use of distance education training of extension agents in Trinidad and Tobago.

Issue Date:
Jul 09 2002
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
Record Identifier:
Total Pages:

 Record created 2017-11-29, last modified 2018-01-23

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