Agricultural Systems Analysis

Subject 202-313 (2009)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2009. Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 3 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2009:

Semester 2, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Lecture (2hrs) 6 x semester; Tutorial (2hrs) 6 x semester; Practical PBL (6hrs) 6 x semester
Total Time Commitment: Contact hours 60. Estimated total time commitment (including non-contact time): 120 hours.
Prerequisites: Nil
Corequisites: Nil
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Ms Ros Gall
Subject Overview:

Agriculture is, by nature, a systems-based activity. Farm productivity is a result of interactions between soil, plant, animal, climatic and human factors. This subject aims to develop the skills required to analyse these interactions and support decision-making in agricultural and natural resource management enterprises. The subject is taught using problem-based learning. Students will participate in six case study analyses during the semester, and submit a detailed report on four of these. Each case study addresses an aspect of systems analysis and management, and is based on a commercial farm or resource management business. Case study analysis will require students to clearly identify the problem to be solved and the context for problem solving (including business and personal goals of the owners and their approach to management and decision making), analyse options for solving the problems and meeting goals, and communicate their findings to the 'client'. Case study visits are supplemented by lectures and tutorials that develop the theory and practice of systems analysis and thinking. The subject integrates traditional biophysical science disciplines, economics, and human systems elements. It is designed to enable students to work effectively with the owners and managers of resource management and agricultural businesses in bringing about change in their business.


On completion of this subject, students will have gained:

  • a basic understanding of systems theory and practice
  • experience in practical situation analysis and skills in problem solving, in 'real world' settings
  • recognition of the importance of adult learning and decision-making processes in the management of agricultural businesses and natural resources
  • an understanding of the way technology is adopted in the management of agricultural businesses and natural resources, and
  • the opportunity to apply knowledge gained earlier in their course to the solution of practical problems.

Four case study reports, each equivalent to 2500-3000 words and worth 25% of total marks.

Prescribed Texts: Nil
Recommended Texts:


Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of this subject, students should have developed their:

  • problem solving and analytical skills
  • capacity to tackle systemically and integrate knowledge from different disciplines
  • communication skills, through written and oral presentations to a 'client'
  • quantitative analysis skills, and
  • ability to plan work, be efficient in time management, and deliver results within a prescribed time line.
Related Course(s): Bachelor of Agriculture

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