Students in the new Certificate in Precision Agriculture will learn how to manage crops precisely to increase both production and sustainability. This includes knowledge of the technologies used in precision agriculture (satellite imagery, global positioning and information systems, big data, yield mapping, management zones) to understand what drives within-field crop yield variability from year to year.
The new certificate program will be housed in the College of Agriculture and Bioresources and will bring together USask students from AgBio, the College of Engineering, and the Department of Computer Science to prepare them to be leaders in the rapidly evolving area of ag tech.
“The Certificate in Precision Agriculture is the third new academic program announced by the College of Agriculture and Bioresources in the last year,” said Dr. Angela Bedard-Haughn (PhD), dean of the College of Agriculture and Bioresources. “Our college is continually growing and strives to respond to student and community needs: providing hands-on training that combines both the ‘how’ and the ‘why’ and learning directly from industry-leading researchers. With this new certificate program, we continue to equip students with the critical thinking skills they need that will go beyond when a certain technology may become obsolete.”
“Many of the world’s leading precision agriculture companies are based in Western Canada and look to USask to hire our graduates,” said Dr. Steve Shirtliffe (PhD), professor in the Department of Plant Sciences at USask. “By leveraging competencies from their unique academic discipline (AgBio, engineering, or computer science), students in the certificate program will be prepared for a variety of careers with a special focus on precision agriculture including agronomists, sales and marketing specialists, programmers and data analysts, and engineering machinery and control design.”
USask students can earn the Certificate in Precision Agriculture concurrently with a degree program from the College of Agriculture and Bioresources. This certificate is also available to USask students studying computer science or engineering. The first cohort will begin classes in September 2023. Questions about the program can be directed to AgBio Student Services.