The Iowa State University Crop Adviser Institute (CAI) currently has 18 continuing education courses available for Certified Crop Advisers (CCAs) and other ag professionals in Iowa and throughout North America. Crop Adviser Institute courses are developed from the ground up with proven educational principles and practices, resulting in high-quality courses that engage the learner while providing timely, relevant information. CAI courses have received multiple "Educational Excellence" awards from the American Society of Agronomy (ASA) in addition to impressive feedback from course participants.
The 18 courses currently available encompass all major ASA performance areas and include titles such as: Soybean Rust, Pasture Management, and Riparian Management Systems. Additional course modules currently under development include: Soybean Aphids, Crop-Weed Interactions, Nutrient Value of Manure, and many more. New courses are released on a regular basis, please check the website for the current course catalog. Additional features of the CAI Web site include user transcripts, ag news and weather reports, and links to relevant ag websites. Registrations for monthly "free CEU course" drawings can be completed online.
All CAI courses are Iowa CCA board approved for learners in Iowa and count as Iowa credits, and International CCA board approved for CCAs outside Iowa and courses are then counted as self-study credits. Courses vary in length from 1 to 3 CEUs, with the CAI handling all paperwork including automatic submission of credits to ASA for application to each individual CCA transcript. These interactive courses are available via CD-ROM or may be done completely on-line for learners with fast Internet connections.
The Crop Adviser Institute provides these distance education courses as a complement to the excellent on-site courses offered by other Iowa State University programs such as the Agribusiness Education Program, a CAI partner. This distance education approach has proven particularly valuable when the CCA is nearing the end of a certification cycle and requires a few CEUs within a short time frame to fulfill requirements, or would like a detailed course on one specific subject or subject area.
Watch for the CAI display and several live presentations at this year's Integrated Crop Management Conference in Ames, December 3 and 4.
The Crop Adviser Institute is a partnership between departments within the Iowa State University College of Agriculture and Iowa State University Extension. If you would like more information on the CAI, please E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone (515) 294-7546.
This article originally appeared on page 178 of the IC-490(24) -- November 17, 2003 issue.