About the Department

Welcome to the college’s home for applied social sciences.

We are a small, welcoming community of scholars and friends united by our passion for preparing the next generation of teachers and improving our ability to reach out to communities. The scholarship in the Department of Agricultural Economics, Sociology, and Education is related to people, society, and economic systems grounded in theory and methods from the social, behavioral, and economic sciences. Faculty and students develop and employ rigorous approaches to discover fundamental and applied principles that advance science in their core disciplines. The department strives to improve the health, prosperity, and welfare of people in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and beyond. Our core disciplines for teaching and research are:

  • Agricultural and Food Systems — focuses on the interconnections between producers, distributors, regulators, and consumers in a variety of issues related to food choices, markets, pollution, and health
  • Community Development and Engagement — focuses on community resilience through civic engagement, leadership, and entrepreneurship to support sustainable communities and regional economies
  • Environment and Natural Resources — addresses the human impact on fundamental natural assets, such as land, water, and air, and tackling the challenges that growing populations create for economic efficiency, social equity, and environmental sustainability
  • Population Processes in Global Perspective —enhancing scholarship on migration and immigration, health, and material well-being of individuals and households across the world

The department offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate degrees, with three thematic areas to guide our scholarship. These three themes utilize the respective strengths of each of the three core disciplines while providing an overall collaborative framework for research, scholarship, teaching, and outreach.

The Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology programs and the departmental main office are located in Armsby Building. The faculty of the Agricultural Extension Education program is in Ferguson Building. Come meet our faculty, staff, and students and discover for yourself why we are happy to call the department our home.

Latest News

January 12, 2021

Report suggests Pa.'s agricultural diversity is key to understanding its impact

Pennsylvania's largest farms claimed the lion's share of agricultural product sales and net farm income between 2012 and 2017, but the state's many small farms made significant contributions beyond their economic impact, according to researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

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December 22, 2020

Course grows professional skills, networks for College of Ag Sciences students

A new pilot course, “Agricultural and Extension Education 597: Innovation and Critical Thinking Practicum,” offered by Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, provides the opportunity for students to gain real-world experience and to cultivate relationships with professionals in their desired career field.

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December 3, 2020

College of Agricultural Sciences announces 2020 Staff Laureate Award winners

Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences announced recipients of its 2020 Staff Laureate Awards during a recent virtual collegewide staff meeting.

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November 18, 2020

COVID-related unemployment hits people of color, women and older workers hardest

Job losses resulting from the coronavirus pandemic have affected wide swaths of the population, but workers in some demographic groups and industry sectors have been hit harder than others, according to "COVID-19 and Pennsylvania’s Economy," a series of reports compiled by researchers in Penn State's Center for Economic and Community Development.

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Department of Agricultural Economics, Sociology, and Education

Address

Armsby Building
University Park, PA 16802
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