Cooperative Extension

Cooperative extension refers to a set of services provided through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in conjunction with state and locally supported extension services at land-grant universities. Services include education, funding, data and statistical resources, research, and technical assistance. The federal component of cooperative extension is nested within the National Institute of Food and Agriculture in the Rural Development agency of the USDA. This entry discusses the history of cooperative extension, how cooperative extension works, and challenges.

History of Cooperative Extension

Cooperative extension traces its roots to the early 18th century when farm families shared resources and supported each other in agricultural societies that encouraged adult education in short, noncredit courses. Farmers published their best strategies in American Farmer, the first journal dedicated to such issues.

The ...

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