Pilot Project.

The AgLTAS project extends the successful work of the Learning and Teaching Academic Standards Project for Science [1], the LTAS@UTAS project [12] and a successful 2012 pilot project at the University of Tasmania to adapt science-wide standards, focusing on Agricultural Science [13].

Key findings of the pilot project were that the statement on the nature, and extent of Agricultural Science needed to capture its multi-disciplinary nature and that TLOs should incorporate minimum levels of achievement in vocational knowledge [13]. The draft Threshold Learning Outcomes for Agricultural Science (pilot project) were presented to the Australian Council of Deans of Agriculture (ACDA) Spring Meeting in Canberra in November 2012.

There was general consensus at the meeting of a need for nationally agreed TLOs for Agriculture that will enable the discipline to demonstrate compliance with the Higher Education Standards Panel requirements for regulation and quality assurance of tertiary education against agreed standards. However, attendees at that meeting recognized that significant variation in structure, availability, transparency, and accessibility of degree requirements and curricula for Agriculture and related disciplines among institutions will require a multi-step method process to produce nationally-useful TLOs [2].
1. Jones, S., B. Yates, and J. Kelder, Learning and Teaching Academic Standards Statement for Science, 2011.
2. McSweeney, P. and J. Rayner, Developments in Australian agricultural and related education. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, 2011. 33(4): p. 415-425.
12. Holmes, J., S. Jones, and B. Yates, Being TEQSA Ready: Mapping helps provide the evidence, 2012.
13. Botwright Acuña, T.L., et al., Developing Threshold Learning Outcomes for Agricultural Science. International Journal of Innovation in Science and Mathematics Education, 2013. 21: p. 43-55.

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