AP2A20-Agricultural Field Study Tour (Agric & ABM)

Module Provider: Agriculture
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring / Summer term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2020/1

Module Convenor: Dr Yiorgos Gadanakis
Email: g.gadanakis@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

This module is a two-part, 3-day residential field trip aiming to expose you to a range of farming types, businesses and systems, particularly those not common in the Reading area, to understand the commercial realities affecting the industry and to discuss current trends in farm practices across the UK. In addition, the field trip will facilitate understanding of abstract concepts and will motivate you by provoking interest and curiosity and by increasing student-student and student-lecturer social interaction. The skills developed are relevant for those interested to work in agriculture and the auxiliary businesses. This module is only available to BSc Agriculture and BSc Agricultural Business Management students.


To expose students to a range of farming types, businesses and systems, particularly those not common in the Reading area, understand the commercial realities affecting the industry and to encourage team spirit among students. In addition, the field trip facilitates the teaching of abstract concepts making learning more effective, motivate students through increased interest and curiosity and increase student-student and student-lecturer social interaction.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module students will be able to:

  • Understand how the four factors of production lead to diversity in farming systems.

  • Compare a range of farming systems in relation to their biological, physical and economic attributes.

  • Discuss current trends in farm practice in a specific region of the UK.

  • List a range of opportunities and threats for the industry derived from the various discussions with farmer s, farm managers and professional of the industry

Additional outcomes:

Additionally, the module aims to encourage interaction between students within the cohort, farmers, managers and staff. Students will be expected to involve themselves in debate and questioning and to keep a record of their activities. Hence, develop written communication (express ideas clearly and confidently) and verbal communication (express ideas clearly and confidently in speech).

Outline content:

The module consists of two residential visits in geographic regions different to the Reading area. During this time students visit a range of farms, businesses, enterprises and organisations, examples of which are provided below:

  • Hill  farms

  • Large rural estate  

  • Intensive cereal farm  

  • Innovative stock or dairy farm

  • Horticultural producer

  • Diversified businesses
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  • Research farm

Global context:
Students are encouraged to discuss the wider implications of agricultural trade within the European Economic Area and beyond and how this directly affects production within the UK.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The focus of the residential field trip is discussion groups with question and answer sessions. The farm visits usually consist of guided tours and in some cases video presentations or slide shows. The field trip is used to integrate theory with practice, teach concepts of farm management and to summarise material studied throughout Part 1 and Part 2.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 2
Fieldwork 38
Guided independent study: 60
Total hours by term 2 98
Total hours for module 100

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 25
Oral assessment and presentation 25
Set exercise 25
Class test administered by School 25

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

The summative assessment will take place during the field visits:

  1. Short answer questions tests: Short tests to assess a range of knowledge/skills across a range of farm visits

  2. Field reports: Students will be asked to prepare and submit SWOT analysis and an ANSOFF matrices during the field visits

  3. Observation:  Students will debate on selected topical issues during the field visits

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:

The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:
A mark of 40% overall

Reassessment arrangements:

Re-examination in August

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

1) Required text books:  None

2) Specialist equipment or materials:  None

3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:  A pair of Wellington boots, a waterproof pair of trousers and a windproof, waterproof jacket are essential during the farm visits

4) Printing and binding:  None

5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:  None

6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:  None

Last updated: 21 June 2021


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