Browsing by Subject "Agriculture"
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- ItemMetadata onlyAG364A: Integrated Pest Management(2020-04) Prabhuraj, AInsect pests cause huge economic loss to crops across the globe affecting total food production which is essential to meet the demands of growing human population. Avoiding such loss is of the immediate concern for all and this is achievable through Integrated Pest Management (IPM). // This course on IPM will cover the basics of insects and their dominance in nature, insects as pests, reasons for their outbreak resulting in crop loss, types of pests, and mode of surveillance, sampling methods and economic damage levels of pest populations. The course also explains about the principles and concepts of pest management and different components of IPM: legal, ecological, physical, cultural, mechanical, behavioral, biological, botanical, chemical and biotechnological approaches. // This course also talks on Integration of different IPM tactics, their pros and cons and Implementation of AESA - Agro-ecosystem Analysis in pest management. Lastly, successful IPM cases in Cereals (Paddy), Commercial Crops (Cotton, Sugarcane), Pulses (Redgram, Soybean), Oilseed Crop (Groundnut), Vegetable Crops (Cabbage, Tomato) and Fruit Crops (Mango, Grapes) will be discussed.
- ItemMetadata onlyAG393B: Generation of employment among rural youth through agricultural entrepreneurship(2020-04)The youngest country in the world is India, where more than 65 percent of the population is under 35 years of age while more than 50 percent of the population is under 25 years of age. It is also a big challenge for our country with great potential to train youth with modern skills so that the youth are not able to run after the job and make others capable of giving jobs. Today there is a lot of discussion about skill development and entrepreneurship, Youths are being encouraged towards entrepreneurship with schemes like Start-up India, Mudra Yojana, Rufftar. Today we are in the 21st century where changes are seen in the appearance of the market every day.
- ItemOpen AccessAgricultural Higher Education in the 21st Century: Non-traditional educational models(2015-06-16) Kanwar, Asha; Balasubramanian, K; Balaji, VenkataramanSpeech delivered by Professor Asha Kanwar at 'Agricultural Higher Education in the 21st Century: A global challenge in knowledge transfer to meet world demands for food security and sustainability'. Zaragoza, Spain June 2015.
- ItemOpen AccessAgriculture MOOCs: Learnings from Five AgMOOCs(2016) Mishra, GauravIIT Kanpur and the Commonwealth of Learning delivered five agriculture based massive open online courses (MOOCs). This report provides insights on learners’ feedback on the course pedagogy and its relevance, content, convenience and ease of use of the technological medium, and overall perceptions of learners towards the delivered courses.
- ItemOpen AccessAlternative Learning Platforms for Agri-Students through e-Mediation: An initiative of agMOOCs(2019-09) Jirli, Basavaprabhu; Sarma, Birinchi Kumar; Singh, AbhishekAgricultural education in India is offered through a network of 75 State Agricultural Universities, f ive Deemed Universities , four Central Universities with faculty of Agriculture, three Central Agricultural Universities and few privately owned colleges of agriculture affiliated to traditional sta te universities. Each Agricultural University has a number of constituent colleges. However, p aucity of quality faculty has remained an emerging issue. S pecialization of the faculty also matter s while imparting education. Providing q uality inputs to the learners spread over large geographical area demands e - Mediation. One such platform was created by Commonwealth of Learning (COL) and Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur entitled “agMOOCs” in 2015 .The courses offered through the platform h a ve attracted participa nts from eve ry state of India and seven countries. The paper is a partial analysis of the efforts of agMOOC s in penetrating agricultural education system as an alternative platform for students of agriculture and allied sciences . More than tw o lakh learners have accessed courses so far . The feedback of learners is highly encouraging. So far the author s ha ve offered t hree courses in agMOOC s platform during 2017 and 2018 . The highest number of learners registered in a course was 48 84 . There is an increasing trend in number of registrations on the platform, which shows effectiveness of the course s and penetration among agricultural fraternity. Age of majority registered learners was up to 24 years (76 per cent). More than 65 per cent offered courses to enhance their knowledge. Home was the most preferred place of access (65 per cent). About 60 percent learners preferred the agMOOCs app to access course contents. Gender and preference of app are not independent of each other, Gender and age of participants are not independent, there was no association between range of learners and relevancy of quiz. There exists association between range of learners and pace of content delivery. //Paper ID 40
- ItemOpen AccessBlended Learning using agMOOCs as a Tool for Professional Development: A Case of Students of Agriculture in India(2022-09) Jirli, Basavaprabhu; Maji, SaikatPCF10 Sub-theme: Inspiring Innovations // According to University Grants Commission (a body of Government of India) Blended learning is an instructional methodology, a teaching and learning approach that combines face-to-face classroom methods with computer mediated activities to deliver instruction. agMOOCs a learning platform for students of agriculture and allied sciences has developed 22 MOOCs so far on agriculture and allied sciences since 2015. The platform was developed by Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (India) in collaboration with Commonwealth of Learning, Vancouver. Of which the author has offered three courses on agricultural extension. More than two million students have accessed the courses on agMOOCs platform and benefitted in their learning activities. In the last couple of years during the global pandemic period the educational activities were also facing difficulties. An effort was made to adopt the blended learning methodology for masters’ students of agriculture at Institute of Agricultural Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi. The method of participant observation and discussion with learners were used to collect the data. Whole enumeration was the sample size. The data was analysed using descriptive qualitative methods by adopting steps viz., i. quick data, ii. Coding data, iii. Qualitative analysis and Quantitative analysis iv. Interpretation of results. Students were asked to go through the videos, PPTs and transcripts available on the platform before coming to the class. The classes were organised in hybrid mode (online as well as offline). The respective topics scheduled for the day were discussed in the class instead of explaining the contents as in case of regular classes. The results of the study reveal that 1. Enhancement in the grasping ability of students 2. Improvement in analysing the concepts and contents of the course 3. Enhanced interaction with course instructor 4. Surge in academic discussion abilities of learners 5. Augmentation in framing questions to be asked in the classroom. The challenges while using the methodology include maintaining learners interest over a period of time, preparation of contents for circulation before to be brief enough and providing exhaustive resources for the learners. // Paper ID 4289
- ItemOpen AccessCapacity Building in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) for Agricultural Development in Zambia(2008) Chikoye, Mungule D; Siaciwena, RichardIn its efforts to reduce poverty and improve food security, the Government of Zambia has given priority to agriculture. However, this sector faces a lot of challenges such as the need for trained human resource. // In order to address this challenge, agricultural training institutions need to supply adequate trained human resource to the agricultural sector. One of such institutions is the Natural Resources Development College (NRDC), which is the only public institution offering diploma courses in various fields of agriculture. However, due to inadequate resources and limited physical facilities, NRDC cannot meet the human resource needs of this sector from its residential courses. // As a means of increasing its capacity, the College has introduced an ODL programme. Since the college has no experience in ODL, there was a need to develop capacity in this area. Therefore the In-Service Trust of Zambia (ISTT) and the Directorate of Distance Education (DDE) at the University of Zambia (UNZA) developed a capacity development programme in consultation with NRDC. // The first phase of the programme involved conducting training workshops in Instructional Design and Materials Development. This was because an analysis of the characteristics and situational circumstances of prospective learners showed that the print medium would be the most appropriate mode of delivery. Subsequent training activities will concentrate on other aspects of ODL such as management and learner support. // The paper highlights the importance of agriculture in Zambia and the rationale for adopting ODL in developing human resources for the agricultural sector at NRDC. It also describes the nature of the programme, the output from the first phase and the level of commitment by the college management to provide the necessary resources for the programme, a critical success factor. // Paper ID 560
- ItemOpen AccessCommunication and capacity building to advance adaptation strategies in agriculture in the context of climate change in India(2015-04) Balaji, Venkataraman; Ganapuram, Sreedhar; Devakumar, CClimate change is perhaps the most serious issue that affects food security of a very large number of human beings and animals. Impacts of climate change will be particularly significant in South Asia where most of food production comes from smallholder farms. Vulnerability in this region is two-fold: production of important food crop varieties may be affected by developments such as rise in temperature; smallholder farmers have low economic resilience when large variations in crop outputs occur. Both adaptive and anticipatory measures based on research in agricultural sciences are being proposed. What is important is also to build the capacity of smallholder farmers to cope with the impact of climate change-induced phenomena. Key guides to large scale action such as the UN Framework Convention for Climate Change propose integrated action for capacity building involving both top-down and bottom-up inputs. In this paper, we provide an overview of accepted impacts of climate change on agriculture and food security in South Asia, and the proposed and ongoing agronomic adaptation strategies in India. Our focus is on capacity building at a micro-level which can augment adaptation efforts. We offer two case studies that provide pointers for integrating novel communication and capacity building processes for smallholder farmers that can considerably improve their ability to engage in action for adaptation.
- ItemOpen AccessContemporary information and knowledge management: impact on farming in India(2011) Kumar, R Ajith; Balaji, Venkataraman; Guntuku, Dileepkumar; Prabhakar, T V; Yaduraju, N TFarming is an important part of Indian economy and it involves a wide range of stakeholders, of whom the small holder farmers are the largest group. Information sharing on new production processes with farmers was prominent in the ‘sixties which was key to the success of the Green Revolution. Agricultural extension, the process of enabling farmers and experts to exchange information with each other, has since been institutionalized to a high degree and is assessed to be not as effective as it had been a generation back. The advent of digital, technology-mediated information and knowledge management was thought to offer significant new opportunities for knowledge exchange in Indian farming as a whole. These hopes led to the launching of a number of initiatives in different parts of India, which has emerged as the host of the largest number of rural development projects where contemporary information and communication technology (ICT) play a pivotal role. While analyzing the outputs of such initiatives, many studies have pointed out that farming is not a priority concern of most of them. On the other hand, we can notice a noncomplimentary strand of ICT in agriculture projects operated by a number of institutions with ICT resources playing a key role in some of them. These efforts, generally speaking, do not promote user participation in information flows quite unlike the contemporary trends. Almost two decades later, the original hope remains unfulfilled. The nation-wide availability of digital content in relation to the farming sector is small when compared to equally important development sectors such as public health. This has considerably limited the opportunities for various stakeholders to build viable online services on production, marketing and meteorology for farmers and other stakeholders. What we now have is a collection of projectized activities that are fragmented in their overall understanding and approaches. What we need is an approach that can bring together the two strands, namely, of ICT in rural development and ICT in agriculture. Such an effort, however, needs a new IT architecture to be developed for aggregation of content and to make services available in multiple modes. Two groups of projects in India, namely, the Agropedia and the KISSANKerala, have built large prototypes and human capacities using unprecedented innovations in web technology areas and in integrated services delivery (including mobile telephony). With their advent, a wider range of solutions to the challenge of developing a novel architecture for information services for farming in India are now feasible and need to be researched upon. Countries that offered extension models for India in in an earlier generation do not require innovations for mass outreach for prosperity through farming and are thus in position to offer models for the present India needs to build solutions, processes and structures of its own so that the advantages accruing from its rapidly advancing ICT and mobile telephony infrastructure and export-oriented IT sector can flow to the benefit of its farmers. Formation of synergies with non-traditional partners such as those in ICT sector will be essential. There is a task to be accomplished, and it is contrary to the prevalent understanding in the leadership of farm education, research and extension sector that all the ICT solutions needed are available.
- ItemOpen Accesse-Choupal: The Power of ICT for Farmers’ Empowerment in India(2013-11) Sharma, Kapil DChoupal in Hindi language means a village gathering place. Taking this gathering place to the virtual world, ITC (one of the India’s largest and oldest business conglomerates) introduced the e – Choupal to empower rural India in the year 2000. It places computers with Internet access in rural farming villages and serves as a place of exchange of information and an e – commerce access point. It is a low cost system which focuses on the need of the rural farmers by removing their isolation and providing transparent system in their interest. // e – Choupal provides better supply chain for ITC’s food and agri businesses. It enables reach to the underserved rural markets. For rural farmers it caters new IT enabled services and business opportunities i. e. health, education, entertainment, and e – governance. It increases shareholder’s value through serving the society. The critical success factors of e – Choupal are comprehensive knowledge of rural markets, designing a win – win transaction model, leveraging the logistics channel, selection of Sanchalak (operator), evolving an appropriate user interface and bottom-up model for entrepreneurship. // The e – Choupal model shows that a large corporation can play a major role in recognizing markets and increasing the efficiency of an agricultural system. The case also uncovers the key role of information technology – in this case provided and maintained by a corporation – but utilized by local farmers. This access to information helps farmers in improving the quality of produce and obtaining better prices. Elected from the village itself, a literate farmer acts as the interface between the illiterate farmers and the computer. The model shows that a large corporation can combine a social mission and an ambitious commercial venture, that it can play a major role in rationalizing markets and increasing the efficiency of an agriculture system, and do so in ways that benefit rural communities. // The proposed case study will be covering the background, the impact, key elements of empowerment, issues, lessons, determinants for success and long term assessment of the system’s productivity and efficiency levels. // Paper ID: 80
- ItemOpen AccessEmergence of Traditional Women Goat Rearers to a Corporate Company: The Role of Open and Distance Learning and Life Long Learning Programme(2022-09) Perumal, Thamizoli; Kothandaraman, Balasubramanian; Keppanan, KamarajPCF10 Sub-theme: Fostering Lifelong Learning // Learning needs of the farming community is massive but the opportunities available to address the needs are limited. Farming practices are changing very fast due to multiple reasons like climate crisis, globalization, and demands from the markets, technology advancements etc., hence the farmers learning needs are changing fast. Increasing use of mobile phones, higher penetration rate in rural India and advantages of Mobile Learning made mobile phones an effective learning tool particularly among the women farmers whose mobility and opportunities for learning is restricted due to various socio economic and cultural factors. In the year 2009 around 300 women goat rearers who are members of Self Help Groups received credit from a commercial bank for buying goats, the trust and credibility strengthened the bond and helped the women to receive continuous credit support. For better management of goat rearing and to ensure profit these women showed interest to learn about improved management practices. To meet the demands of the women goat rarers Vidiyal an NGO and Vidivelli a Community Based Organization together introduced mobile based Life long learning for Farmers (L3F) programme with the support of Commonwealth of Learning. The lessons were disseminated through simple button phones as voice messages on daily basis. With the support of the National Bank for Agriculture and Development around 2500 women goat rearers came together in 2014 and registered a Farmers Producer Organization (FPO) called ‘Theni Women Goat rearers Producer Company’. Now the company is managed by a set of women goat rearers, it has provided dividend to its shareholders for the last four years. The company is emerging as a model in the region, other 12 such FPOs in the region are now joined with this and created a consortium of FPOs for mutual learning and to leverage the scale in the business. // The paper will discuss in detail about the characteristics of the learners, learning needs of the farmers, pedagogical approach adopted, learning outcomes, access and experiences of mobile phones for learning, gender constrains etc. It will also discuss about the FPOs management, how the women farmers become corporate literates and managing the company successfully. // Paper ID 5619
- ItemOpen AccessEmpowerment of Agricultural Skills through Distance Education at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University(2010-11) Santhy, P; Jothi, G; Valluvaparidasan, VThe Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU), Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India, a century old renowned institution committed for the development of agricultural education and research in the state of Tamil Nadu has ventured an innovative approach of commissioning open and distance learning programmes since 2005 for the benefit of various segments of the farming community viz., farm women, rural youths, school dropouts, students and self help groups through its certificate courses which are skill oriented. // Certificate programmes of 21 numbers in the regional language of Tamil are offered. Some of the important courses are: • Mushroom Cultivation • Waste recycling and vermicomposting • Preservation of Fruits and Vegetables • Preparation of Bakery and Confectionary Products • Propagation of Nursery Techniques Bee keeping // These courses are designed to upgrade the technical skill of farmers and to disseminate latest technologies related to the field of Agriculture. These courses are uniquely designed to create self-confidence, self employment and to enhance the income generated by the individual. // Moreover a set of certificate programmes (5), are also designed and offered, catering to the needs of those who live in urban areas viz., • Landscaping and Ornamental Gardening • Commercial Horticulture • Soil Fertility Management • Mushroom Cultivation • Coconut cultivation // Undergoing these programme not only bring them income but also make their life in more productive environment and beneficial to the society. The learners are exposed to practical situation and environment to gain knowledge and skill to be on par with regular students, which is a unique approach in the ODL mode at TNAU.
- ItemOpen AccessEvaluation of RADA Text Messages on Agricultural Disaster Risk Management (ADRM)(2012-12) K’nIfe, K’adamaweThe Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) is implementing a project in L3F funded by COL. One activity of the project is the use of text messages to advise farmers across Jamaica on steps to avoid or minimize the negative impact of natural disasters on their well-being. Having disseminated the messages, an evaluation is required to assess the achieved impact on message recipients and guide further use of this medium by RADA.
- ItemOpen AccessFarmer education and training (FARM-ED): enhancing access to agricultural education in Africa(2013-11) Chancellor, T C B; Hanlin, R E; Long, L-A; Dhlamini, N; Yaye, AThe vast majority of farmers in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA)are smallholders, many of whom are women, who have limited access to inputs and markets and face a growing number of production challenges. Few young people are being attracted into agriculture because they see better opportunities elsewhere. New knowledge can help farmers to significantly enhance their productivity and income and stimulate the creation of rural businesses, but such knowledge is not available in many rural communities. An innovative Pan-African initiative on farmer education and training in SSA (FARM-ED) aims to address these issues by exploiting the use of Open Educational Resources (OER) and emerging information and communication technologies. // FARM-ED draws on the lessons from successful large-scale OER programmes in the education and health sectors, run by the UK Open University (OU) in collaboration with local partners in Africa and South Asia. These programmes have demonstrated how high quality learning materials can reach substantial numbers of people within a short period of time. A key feature of the approach is to establish partnerships which bring in relevant expertise and facilitate local ownership. FARM-ED is led by a consortium of knowledge institutions including the OU, the Natural Resources Institute of the University of Greenwich and the regional university networks in Africa, RUFORUM and ANAFE. But the partnership extends much more widely and includes civil society organizations, the private sector and government agencies. The emphasis is on strengthening the capacity of intermediaries to respond more effectively to the demand from farmers for knowledge on how to improve their farming systems. // An initial scoping study carried out in East Africa in 2012 revealed that there is considerable interest among different types of organization to participate in the development of OERs and to receive training in their effective use. Another clear message was the importance of addressing the needs of women and young people, and to help them overcome barriers to success. A particular challenge for FARM-ED is to reflect the wide diversity of agricultural systems and socio-cultural practices within and between countries in SSA. Generic learning materials are being developed for use with different media (including print and mobile) and will be freely available online. Although generic, there will be a strong emphasis on adaptation of the learning materials for the local context and, through working with communities of practice, improving them in line with feedback from users. // FARM-ED also aims to help to create a more favourable enabling environment for the implementation of best practice in priority areas such as adaptation to climate change, nutrition and rural entrepreneurship. It will do this through the development of special courses for policy makers and by engagement with national policy processes. // Paper ID: 184
- ItemOpen AccessFostering Community Preparedness to Cope with Drought: new initiatives and results from a study involving ODL and ICT from South Central India(2010-11) Kiran, Neelam L; Naresh, Kumar V R; Sreedhar, Ganapuram; Sylvester, Asil G; Balaji, VenkataramanDrought has emerged as a key concern in the context of climate variability induced by Climate Change processes and over a billion people are vulnerable, according to UN estimates. Drought preparedness is recognized as the preferred way to cope over relief, and information is the key. Improved access to contemporary ICT in the form of mobile phones and the Internet can help address the challenge of information deficiency in this matter. We have tried to develop an integrated approach for improving the capacity of rural communities by bringing together agricultural information with methods of ODL and effective exchange or delivery using videoconferencing. This has also enabled skill building among vulnerable rural communities in the use of color-coded maps derived from satellite imagery and GIS platforms. ICRISAT in partnership with a community based all- women micro-credit organization, the Adarsha Mahila Samaikhya (AMS), in South Central India has developed this blend of techniques to help the AMS and rural communities to anticipate how vulnerable their villages would be to drought in a season. This is an ongoing partnership, and we report here on joint studies carried out during March 2008-September 2009.
- ItemOpen AccessGlobal Agricultural Knowledge Initiative: Strengthening the Global Competence of Students, Faculty and Extension Agents(2010-11) Holz-Clause, Mary; Dileepkumar, GuntukuEducation and Training traditionally involve learning from teachers and other pedagogical standards. The role of the teacher is to impart knowledge to those who do not possess them. Teachers talk in front of the class, and the pupils have to listen and write down what the “knowing” teacher says. This top-down method is not only used in the formal education system, also training staff uses this method to train the people. Even though this way of teaching and learning is part of our culture, the changing scenarios and expectation of today’s learners demand that teachers adapt new ways to update their skills and knowledge for making information and knowledge available to farmers. // Advent of Internet and advances in Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), and specifically in Multimedia, Networking, and Software Engineering have promoted the enormous amount of learning resources and Learning Management Systems (LMSs). During the last years, thousands of electronic texts, images, movies, or Java applet based learning resources have been developed for learning purposes in Internet environments. To take advantage of this situation, new services were developed for creating synchronous (Chat, Flash meetings, Breeze meeting, Teleconferencing and Video Conferencing to name a few) and asynchronous (Internet education portals, web based learning management systems, Forums, and wiki’s to name a few) learning environments. With the help of these contemporary Information and Communication Technology based services, the search, classification, organization, and peer-to-peer exchange of learning resources by learners, instructors, and course developers are becoming commonplace. However most of these technologies and virtual knowledge networks are part of corporate knowledge management. Academia has yet to recognize and fully explore the significance of systematic network development tools for agricultural education purposes. A dynamic computer-based model of knowledge management can now be applied to agricultural research done at any university anywhere on the globe and this research can be exchanged in a matter of seconds among faculty scientists, private industry, and students.
- ItemMetadata onlyGood Agricultural Practices (GAP): An Introductory Course for The Bahamas(2020-06) Pierre, GinaThe Bahamas Agricultural Health and Food Safety Authority (BAHFSA) and The Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources (MAMR) in collaboration with Commonwealth of Learning (COL) have partnered to provide farmers with an online course on Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs). // This self-study course addresses fruit and vegetable production and is designed to inform farmers on the basic environmental and operational conditions necessary for the production of safe and wholesome produce. Fruits and vegetables are an important component of our diet. Nutritionists and health professionals have clearly shown that diets low in fat and high in fiber, with at least five servings a day of fruits and vegetables, protect us against many types of cancers and lessen the risk of heart disease. Now, more than ever, consumers listen to these messages and have altered their food choices. // In recent years, there has been an increase in food recalls due to biological, chemical and physical risks, particularly with leafy greens such as lettuce. This six-week course will help to mitigate against these risks and serve as a guide in the implementation of best management practices at all stages of the crop production and processing systems. Participants are required to commit 30 - 60 mins per week on completing the weekly presentations and assignments to successfully achieve the learning goals of this course.
- ItemOpen AccessImparting skill development training to the Lakadong turmeric farmers of the Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya(2010-11) Roy, Debjani; Kurup, JayashreeThe present paper is the report on the Lakadong variety of turmeric which has the highest curcumin content in the world (7.4%) is native to the Lakadong area of the Jaintia Hills district of Meghalaya ( Lat 25° 10' 60N ; Long 92° 16' 60E; Alt 610 m).
- ItemOpen AccessImplementing L3 Pilot Project in Mauritius M-Powered (Mauritius-Process Oriented Women Entrepreneurship Development)(2008) Sukurdeep, NarenThe Commonwealth of Learning (COL) has confirmed its agreement with the National Productivity & Competitiveness Council(NPCC) to develop a successful pilot project on Mauritius Process Oriented Women Entrepreneurship Development(M-POWERED) with strong integration of L3 for employment of women in the agricultural sector. An agreement was signed between the two institutions following visits of Dr Krishna Alluri, Educational Specialist, Food Security & Environment and Team Leader: Learning for Livelihoods (firstname.lastname@example.org), COL and Dr. K. Balasubramanian, COL Consultant for L3 farmers.
- ItemOpen AccessImproving Access to Postgraduate Training in Crop Protection for Agricultural Practitioners Through Distance Learning at the University of Nairobi, Kenya(2016-11) Muthomi, J W; Mwang’ombe, A W; Olubayo, F MThe Department of Plant Science and Crop Protection of the University of Nairobi launched the first postgraduate training by distance learning in 2010. Development of the Open and Distance Learning (ODL) mode of delivery was based on client-driven demand for a flexible mode of learning by agriculture graduates who had specialized in Crop Protection at final year at undergraduate and holding management positions in horticulture industry. This demand was necessitated by the requirement by public and private sector employers that professionals at management positions should have advanced training and skills in order to satisfy the increasingly competitive job market. However, the employers are unable to grant study leave for workers to pursue postgraduate training. Therefore, the ODL mode of delivery was developed to open up opportunities in postgraduate training in Master of Science in Crop Protection. The ODL programme was initiated in 2008, starting with review of curriculum to accommodate open and distance learning mode. Academic and technical staff were sensitized on the need for ODeL mode of postgraduate training. Many feared that it would not be possible to deliver a science-based programme by distance learning due to the practical component involved. The new training approach focused on distance learning based on provision of hard copy manuals because many of the potential students worked in the agriculture sector and most stations were located in rural areas without stable cell phone and internet connectivity. The first ODL intake was launched in October 2010 with a class of 13 students. Every year the programme admits over 15 students and at the beginning of each academic year, the new students are inducted in to the ODL mode of training. The main medium of instruction is the print in the form of self-instructional modules. These serve in the place of the teachers as they contain the subject content and instructional devices to guide learners. To support the printed modules, academic support services are provided by face to face tuition sessions held during the semester. The face to face on campus sessions are dedicated practicals, tutorial sessions, continuous assessments, presentation of term papers and consultation with supervisors on thesis research. Through the ODL mode of delivery class sizes have increased from five to about 20 students per intake every year. The approach has maximized the use of limited physical and human resources and significantly reduced the unit cost of postgraduate training. The new frontier is to convert the programmes to full e-delivery since internet connectivity has improved in many parts of the country. // Paper ID 405