What is Agriculture?
Agriculture refers to the science and practice of soil and crop cultivation, the development of efficient farming techniques, livestock, animal rearing and husbandry. Agriculture supervises plant and animal cultivation and channelises natural energy for human use and consumption.
Undergraduate Agriculture Degrees Offered
Candidates aspiring towards a career in agriculture can opt for the following undergraduate degrees-
Bachelor of Science (BSc)- 4 years
Integrated BSc- 6 years
Bachelor of Arts (BA)- 3 years
Bachelor of Technology (B Tech)- 4 years
Bachelor of Engineering (BE)- 4 years
Integrated BE/B Tech- 5 years
Bachelor of Business Management (BBA)- 4 years
Bachelor of Vocational Studies (B Voc)- 3 years
Specialisations in Agriculture
Specialisations offered in agriculture include the following-
Agriculture and Food Business
Agricultural Economics and Farm Management
Agriculture Economics and Farm Management
Genetic Plant Breeding
Soil and Water Management
Eligibility and Requirements for Agriculture
Students can enrol in agriculture colleges and courses after appearing for entrance exams held across the country. The eligibility criteria are as follows-
Candidates enrolling on agriculture programmes and entrances must have passed their 10+2 (or equivalent) examinations from a recognised Indian board with a minimum aggregate of 50% marks.
Some colleges and courses like BSc/B Tech/BE require science subjects (PCM/PCB) as a compulsory requirement for applying to agriculture programs.
Admission Procedure for Agriculture Courses
The admission procedure for enrollment into agriculture colleges and courses is as follows-
Candidates applying for agriculture courses must qualify for the minimum eligibility to appear for the respective entrance exams. Candidates can apply for the entrance examinations by registering in the online portal and submitting the required documents.
After appearing for the entrance exams, candidates will be shortlisted based on scores, ranks, and merit lists in the counselling session for the respective colleges/entrances.
In the case of merit-based admissions, candidates will be shortlisted based on their 10+2 examination scores.
Shortlisted candidates may then finalize their admission at the concerned college by paying the fees and submitting the required documents for verification.
Agriculture Entrance Tests
Some of the important entrance tests offering admission into undergraduate agriculture courses include the following-
The Indian Council of Agricultural Research All India Entrance Examination (ICAR AIEE)- conducted by the National Testing Agency (NTA)
The Maharashtra Council of Agriculture Education and Research central Entrance Test (MCAER CET)- conducted by the Maharashtra Agriculture Universities Examination Board (MAUEB)
Indian Insitute of Technology Joint Admission test for Masters (IIT-JAM)- conducted by IIT Guwahati
Uttar Pradesh Combined Agriculture And Technology Entrance Test (UPCATET)- conducted by Banda University of Agriculture and Technology, Uttar Pradesh
Rajasthan Joint Entrance Test (JET) for Agriculture- conducted by Agriculture University, Jodhpur
Chhattisgarh Pre-Agriculture Test (CG PAT)- conducted by the Indira Gandhi Agricultural University, Raipur
Aptitude for Agriculture
Students with an interest in plant health and cultivation will find agriculture to be the ideal study goal for them. Students may gauge their aptitude for agriculture with the following criteria:
Top Agriculture Specialisations for the Future
The most promising and lucrative agriculture specialisations to opt for are-
Genetic Plant Breeding/Farming
Forestry and Conservation
Agriculture courses comprise subjects and topics such as-
Plant Biotechnology and Biochemistry
Crop Production Technologies
Electrical Machines and Power Utilization
Farm Machinery and Equipment
Soil and Fluid Mechanics
Remote Sensing & GIS Applications
Post-graduate Study/Research Opportunities in Agriculture
After completing undergraduate degrees, candidates can further their agriculture study goal through postgraduate and research degrees.
The eligibility criteria for pursuing postgraduate courses is completing an undergraduate degree in the specialisation/course of choice from a recognised university with a minimum aggregate of 55% marks.
Popular postgraduate degrees in agriculture include-
Master of Science (MSc)- 2 years
Master of Technology (M Tech)- 2 years
Master of Engineering (ME)- 2 years
Master of Arts (MA)- 2 years
Master of Business Administration (MBA)- 1 to 2 years
Master of Philosophy (M Phil)- 2 years
Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD)
Important entrance exams for postgraduate agriculture courses include-
Common Universities Entrance Test (CUET-PG)- conducted by the National Testing Agency (NTA)
Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE)- conducted by the Indian Institutes of Science (IISc) and Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs)
Indian Institutes of Technology Joint Admission test for Masters (IIT-JAM)- conducted by IIT Guwahati
Maharashtra Council of Agriculture Education and Research Common Entrance Test (MCAER PG CET)
Banaras Hindu University Postgraduate Entrance Test (BHU PET)- conducted by National Testing Agency (NTA)
Jawaharlal Nehru University Entrance Examination (JNUEE)- conducted by JNU
Career prospects/Placements in Agriculture
Agriculture is a promising study goal and offers several career avenues and job prospects in both the public and private sectors. Agriculture students receive placement offers from prominent and reputed companies visiting their college during campus placement programmes organised by the training and placement cell.
Popular and coveted career prospects in the agriculture sector include the following-
Soil and Water Surveyor
Besides jobs at public and private companies, agriculture graduates can also appear for government competitive exams such as UPSC and FCI for government jobs in agriculture.
Starting Salaries in Agriculture
Starting salaries in agriculture range between 1 to 3 LPA, and can go as high as 15 LPA for experienced senior officials.