Bachelor in Agricultural Technology in the Philippines

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Program Overview

Bachelor of Agricultural Technology (BAT) is a four year ladderized degree program that focuses entirely on plant and animal technology. The program aims to help students gain a fundamental understanding of agricultural processes and the types of equipment and tools used to grow plants, breed animals and maintain outdoor environments.

The Bachelor of Agricultural Technology program teaches students the practical and theoretical knowledge in animal production, crop production, postharvest technology, pest management and agribusiness management.

Ladderized program

Since the BAT program is a ladderized program, a student who successfully completes each year will be given a certificate from TESDA:
  • For completing the first year of the BAT program, TESDA will award students certificates in Agricultural Crops Production NCII and Horticulture NCII.
  • For the second year, students will receive the Animal Production and Slaughtering Operations NCII certificates.
  • Students who successfully finish the third year will receive a certificate in Animal Health Care Management/Agricultural Crops Production NC III.

Subjects and Curriculum

The subjects in the BAT curriculum are divided into the following categories:
  • General Education courses: Language and Humanities Cluster, Mathematics, Computer and Natural Science Cluster, Social Sciences Cluster, Mandated Subjects
  • Fundamental Agriculture courses: Introduction to Agriculture, Soil Science, Introduction to Diversified and Integrated Farming Systems, Organic and Inorganic Farming, Introduction to Community Development, Agro Forestry, Basic Accounting and Bookkeeping, Indigenous Development of the Philippines - Problems and Prospects
  • Professional courses: Field Work and Laboratory, Integrated Pest Management, Rice Corn Production, Poultry and Livestock Production, Water Resource Management, Applied Diversified and Integrated Farming Systems, Vegetable and Root Crops Production, Plant Propagation, Seed Production, Project Proposal in Agriculture, Fish Farming and Aqua Culture, Processing and Marketing Management, Community Development and Immersion, Life and Harmony with Nature
  • Elective and specialization subjects
Lessons in the BAT program are taught to students in a variety of teaching methods: classroom lectures, hands-on and practical exercises and seminars. Students are also required to join a community immersion where they are able to experience the work that agriculturists and farmers do.

A Field Practice or On the Job Training and a final project must be completed to be able to qualify for graduation.

Comparing Bachelor of Agricultural Technology with other agricultural degrees

Bachelor of Agricultural Technology revolves around two important topics only, Animal Production Technology and Crop Production Technology. The BAT program does not include business subjects as in the BS in Agriculture program, nor does it deal with the more complex aspects of Agricultural Development as in the BS in Agricultural Engineering program.

BS in Agriculture is focused on topics such as animal science, soil cultivation, crop production, livestock raising and the preparation and marketing of Agri-products. The curriculum of BS in Agriculture is different because it contains Agribusiness and Entrepreneurship subjects.

BS Agricultural Engineering involves all the technical aspects of Agricultural Development, including the application of engineering principles in the production, processing, handling and storage of food, fiber and materials. It also covers areas such as irrigation and drainage of agricultural land, soil erosion control, the planning of agricultural buildings and structures, post-harvest technology and agricultural waste management. BS in Agricultural Engineering

In terms of duration, Bachelor of Agricultural Technology and BS in Agriculture both take four years to complete, while BS in Agricultural Engineering takes five years. All three courses require their students to undergo an On the Job Training. BS in Agriculture and BS in Agricultural Engineering both have a board exam, while Bachelor of Agricultural Technology does not.

Is Agricultural Technology a profession?

Agricultural Technology in itself is not a profession; however the program does include specific technical knowledge in animal and crops production that would take months or years to acquire on the job, and it also provides graduate with a TESDA certificates that will be useful in the job market.

Many job offers in the agricultural sector, particularly in the public sector or in large corporation, will include a bachelor’s degree in agricultural related field as a requirement. Other jobs will require a specific TESDA certificate in agriculture.

What are the admission requirements for the BAT program?

Requirements at each school may differ, but generally are the basic college admission requirements:
  • Must be a high school graduate.
    Those who did not complete high school education may opt to first attend Alternative Learning System (ALS) and pass the Philippine Educational Placement Test (PEPT) to qualify for college. However, some universities only offer selected courses for PEPT passers
  • College entrance exam: must pass the college entrance examination with a specified rating set by the school.
  • Interview: must pass the interview conducted by the college dean/faculty.

What skills, traits and attitude will help you succeed in this course?

  • Interest in Farming – knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques
  • Mechanical Inclination – the craft of farming really is about solving problems using your hands in combination with equipment. Even the simplest of hand plantings need a basic level of mechanical inclination; to keep your row straight, to space rows, to get a seed furrow, etc.
  • Love for the outdoors
  • Love/tolerance for manual labor – in the course of the study, you will be asked to perform manual labor and be exposed in farms where you have to do manual labor. A person who is not inclined to performing tiresome and dirty work cannot survive this course.
  • Being a quick learner – picks up and understands instructions easily; able to execute tasks in a fast and efficient way
  • Mild interest in Science – the BAT program is not focused on science, but does include a few science and lab subjects
  • Planning skills – the ability to organize and prioritize activities/tasks effectively; must be able to think of ways on how to do a job efficiently
  • Patience – the work involved is time consuming and will involve manual labor thus patience is very essential

How difficult is Bachelor of Agricultural Technology?

Bachelor of Agricultural Technology is not a difficult course. Agricultural Technology only contains a few science subjects, and the workload for this course is not heavy. The program is fairly easy and is conducive to take even if you don’t want to work in farming and just want to earn a college degree.

The more difficult parts are the hands-on exercises where you will be required to perform a demonstration on the use of certain farm machineries and equipment and the community immersion where you will live with farmers or agriculturists and perform tasks. In addition, the Field Practicum or On the Job Training may involve manual labor and exposure to tiresome duties thus you need to be prepared for dirty work and be patient for long hours of work.

How long does it take to complete the BAT program in the Philippines?

The Bachelor of Agricultural Technology program takes four years to complete (Note: this may change due to the K-12 integration). The program may be completed in a shorter time in schools that follow the trimestral curriculum.

On the Job Training

A student of the Bachelor of Agricultural Technology program is required to attend a Field Practicum or On the Job Training (OJT) in a farm, Agri-related establishments and private/public agencies. During the OJT, students are given the opportunity to apply their knowledge and practice their skills in actual settings. The OJT is done under the supervision of an authority in the farm or establishment who will evaluate the student periodically and submit the evaluation form to the assigned faculty member.

The number of hours required for the OJT varies from one school to another.

Specializations

  • Animal Production – teaches students the science and art of raising and growing domestic animals with specific topics like breeding, nutrition, growth, behavior, and management.
  • Crop Production – its curriculum centers on teaching students the methods and technology in plant cultivation which includes the cultivation of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, herbs, sprouts, mushrooms, algae, flowers, seaweeds and non-food crops such as grass and ornamental trees and plants.

Career opportunities for Bachelor of Agricultural Technology graduates

  • Entry Level jobs

    Jobs requiring no prior to minimal level of experience:
    • Agricultural Technician – conduct experiments and research on farms to better production in crops or plants. They work with scientists in analyzing and recording data.
    • Agricultural merchandise representatives – sells and promotes a line of products offered by a company; must be familiar with a type of equipment and how it operates or have knowledge in such areas as fertilizers and how they affect crops.
    • Laboratory Animal Technician – under immediate supervision, provides primary care of routine husbandry and sanitation for medical education and research animals
    • Sales representative of agricultural chemical companies
    • Sales Representatives in Feed Companies
    • Staff in government and private agricultural agencies
    • Animal Care Specialist – provide basic needs for animals to insure their health and safety.
  • Mid-Level Positions

    Require trainings and prior job experience of a few years:
    • Farm supervisors and/or managers of commercial farms – work in either animal production, dairy or crop production although some do work with all three. Livestock on farms tends to be pigs, cows or sheep while crops can cover cereals, oilseed rape, vegetables and salad.
    • Animal Nutritionist – create diets for a number of different types of animals, from birds and fish to mammals.
    • Fish farm manager – responsible for the breeding and rearing of fish for the wholesale or retail trade
    • Artificial Insemination Technician – responsible for assisting with the breeding of livestock species
    • Companion (pet) Animal Breeder – responsible for producing animals that may be used for a variety of purposes such as companionship, show, sport, or consumption
    • Livestock/animal production specialists – responsible of enhancing the refinement of the animal health and production system in order to develop a sustainable system of access to sufficiently advice on animal health as well as livestock production and productivity.
    • Farm owner/Agricultural Business Entrepreneur
  • Jobs not related to the BAT program

    • Call center agent – answers phone calls and inquiries of clients and provides customer support, usually to people from other countries
    • Administrative Staff – personnel responsible for the organization and management of office duties and tasks; positions that include office secretary, personal assistant and office clerk
    • Freelancer working online – doing online jobs for clients abroad, such as data entry, article writing, SEO, customer support, administrative support etc., which mainly depends on your skills

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Reviews of Bachelor of Agricultural Technology graduates:

Vergilio Quimba
◈ Studied Bachelor in Agricultural Technology
◈ At University of Southeastern Philippines
◈ Graduated 1997

list bulletAbout my college education:
It took 4 years and a half for me to graduate the said degree because I wasn't able to march for graduation on my fourth year due to my ROTC subject.

During my four years of Education, the Lord was so great and even until now because He gave me a university in which offered a full scholarship program. Tuition was free, the dormitory, books and even they gave us stipend.

Those things were availed because I maintained my grades to the highest level. Many skills were needed for me to survive. I even encountered plowing the field, planting rice, corn and vegetables, raising animals and even going to the market to sell our produce.

It was an unforgettable experience!

list bulletMy current job:
I'm currently teaching kids and at the same time English Program Coordinator of a government school in Thailand with a total population of more than four thousand students, two hundred Thai teachers and almost thirty foreign teachers from different countries around the world.

list bulletAm I using what I learned in college:
Actually not all but for sure, I am using a little part of it. Instead of selling commodities in the market and or raising animals, I'm teaching little kids, interviewing and coordinating foreign teachers.

list bulletHow long did it take to find a job after graduation:
It took me two months to land a job after graduation but not in relation to Agriculture. I was tasked to do some office works in Manila.

list bulletDo I recommend studying Agricultural Technology:
Bachelor in Agricultural Technology? In terms of employment opportunities, interesting career and salary level, I won't recommend but if you have no budget to pay for your education and want to have a college degree this is the best way and or you can look for another course offering free tuition allowance.
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