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Abstract

Agricultural extension systems have been developed for people living in rural areas to deal with farm production and marketing activities which have been the main livelihoods of these people. Agricultural Extension is defined as the use of communication methods in a planned manner to help farmers make ideas and right decisions in every subject they need. However, people engaged in agriculture need help in production techniques, input use, marketing, and other activities regarding rural society. For this reason, agricultural extension agents, also called change agents, participate in the extension process to determine the problems of farmers by the most consistent and positive manner. Moreover, these agents provide a two-way link between research institutions and farmers and cooperate with rural development organizations.The overall purpose of this study is to examine the roles, responsibilities, and competencies of the agricultural extension agents in the extension systems,and to determine common strategies that maximize the impact of extension agents’ efforts for agricultural and rural development.The study begins with a basic need assessment for agricultural extension services and extension agents in the agricultural development process. Qualitative research methods were utilizedsince this was a review study.In this context, published articles, conference proceedings, books, statistics from official institutions and the private sector, and various web sites were used. The study concluded that an extension agent has a variety of roles and responsibilities. Furthermore, they need professional, individual, and technic competencies to fulfill their roles and responsibilities. It is thought that the research results will provide useful information for agricultural politicians, scientists, farmers, and extension staff.

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