A Guide to Teaching Agricultural Economics in Nonspecialist Courses in a Developing Economy: Experience of Teaching for Rural Change in Malawi

Bunda College of the University of Malawi provides all university level agricultural education in Malawi. Currently there are around 240 students, with a planned expansion to about 420. College entrants are largely from rural backgrounds. On qualifying, a wide range of occupations is open to students: after three years of training, diplomates find employment in both public and private sectors; after five years, graduates are employed predominantly in the public sector. There are 40 staff members distributed over a wide range of disciplines constituting the School of Agriculture, which is grouped into four departments : agricultural engineering, crop production, livestock production, and rural development. The latter is multidisciplinary, and during 1976-78 was headed by a professor of agricultural economics. Throughout 1975-78, considerable time was concentrated on restructuring the curricula for the general degree and diploma in agriculture. The present curricula and experience of their development provide bases for discussion and the identification of recurrent themes and guidelines. There is no claim to perfection; curriculum development is a dynamic process. Experience from the microcosm of a single university college can provide insights which pragmatic academic staff may appreciate more readily than generalizations from surveys.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2020-10-28

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