AERS Accelerated Bachelor’s & Master’s Program (ABM)
The accelerated bachelor’s/master’s degree program is designed to provide an opportunity for highly motivated students to gain an in-depth understanding of Agricultural Business and Economics beyond that of typical bachelor’s level graduates and make them more competitive for industry positions or for graduate studies. Furthermore, students in the ABM program have the opportunity to earn both the bachelor’s and the master’s degrees in less time and at less cost than usual.
The program allows students to take three 6000-level courses (9 credit hours) that will count for both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees. The accelerated degree program can be applied towards the non-thesis or thesis options of AGEC M.S. degrees. In addition, the ABM program provides an opportunity for students involved in undergraduate research to build on that research and develop it into an M.S. thesis.
The accelerated program therefore allows students to obtain a master’s degree in Agricultural Economics between 12 to 15 months after earning a Bachelor of Agricultural Business & Economics degree.
The following are the guidelines and requirements for the ABM program.
Accelerated Degree in Ag Business & Economics Guidelines & Requirements
- Students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.4 to apply to the ABM program and must have a grade of at least a B in the following courses (or departmentally approved equivalent courses):
a. MATH 1680 – Calculus with Business Applications I or MATH 1610 – Calculus I
b. AGEC 3100 – Computer Applications in Agricultural Economics
c. AGEC 3200 – Quantitative Methods in Agricultural Economics
- 2nd and 3rd-year undergraduate students should begin considering an area of research they would like to pursue and seek out AGEC faculty who could mentor them. The academic advisor, the department chair, and the GPO for the master’s program will be available to explain the program and start the process of connecting students with faculty advisors. The student will be responsible for contacting potential faculty advisors and securing an agreement for mentorship. The student will then apply for the program before April 1 of their junior year. Students are highly encouraged to apply for the AU Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program prior to Feb. of their junior year so that they have time to establish a formal relationship with a faculty mentor and get experience doing research prior to graduate school.
- Students can only apply to the ABM program via the Auburn University Graduate School ABM form in the spring semester of their Junior year. Applications will initially be considered by the Agricultural Economics & Rural Sociology graduate committee. If favorable, the application will be approved by the Graduate Program Officer, the Associate Dean for Instruction in the College of Agriculture, and forwarded to the Graduate School. The Graduate School will add the students to the selected 6000-level courses upon receiving and approving the signed application. Students cannot register and enroll in 6000-level courses until their ABM application is approved by the Graduate School.
- Once admitted, the student will continue to be advised by the undergraduate academic advisor with respect to all undergraduate degree/course requirements. However, these students will also have at least one advising-related appointment each semester before week 10 with a masters-level faculty advisor. During the fifth year (once the student has begun the M.S.), advising will be conducted by the masters-level faculty advisor, as they would with any graduate student.
- Students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.4 to remain in the program and must make a grade of at least a B in the graduate courses that are required for the ABM program.
- Note that acceptance into the ABM program does not constitute admission into the Master of Science program in Agricultural Economics. Admission and acceptance into the Master of Science program will be contingent upon completion of the Bachelor’s degree.
- Students must take the GRE and apply for admission to the Graduate School, ideally before February of their senior year. All other requirements for admission into the Masters of Science program in Agricultural Economics can be found in the Auburn University Bulletin and on the Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology departmental website.
- Undergraduates may voluntarily withdraw from the ABM program at any time by notifying in writing their faculty advisor, the academic advisor, and the Graduate Program Officer. A copy of the request to withdraw should be sent to the Dean of the Graduate School. Students who withdraw from the program voluntarily or because they do not meet program requirements will not be awarded graduate credit for double-counted courses.
- The ABM program allows students to count up to 9 hours toward both the bachelor’s and the master’s degrees. Students take 3 of the following 4 undergrad “piggyback” courses at the 6000 level instead of the 5000 level as required by the major.
- AGEC 6010: Farm Management
- AGEC 6030: Agricultural Prices
- AGEC 6090: Environment & Resource Economics
- AGEC 6100: Agricultural Business Management
- AGEC 5010 (3 credit hr)
- AGEC 5030 (3 credit hr)
- AGEC 5090 (3 credit hr)
- AGEC 5100 (3 credit hr)