Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School



The typical high school vocational agriculture teacher experiences a lack of time necessary to teach all of the technical abilities and manipulative skills that have become a part of the farm mechanics program. He may spend time teaching outdated abilities when his time could be more profitability used in teaching the abilities that are required in modern mechanized farming. Perhaps some time should also be applied to anticipating and developing those abilities required to do jobs which are now commonly referred to specialists but may be required of the student when he becomes established in farming several years hence. An example of such an ability is the adjustment of power machinery and the replacement of gears and bearings on field machinery. Some jobs like the cleaning and repair of electric motors, which are commonly referred to specialists at the present time, will likely be done on the farms by farmers 10 or 15 years hence. The term ability as used in this research is integrated to mean technical understandings and shop manipulative skills which are, or might soon be, an integral part of the mechanized farming. A bulletin published by the United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare points out that there has been more progress in farm mechanics during the past 25 years than during the previous 5,000. Recent research in the field of farm mechanics in other states has indicated that teaching farm mechanics abilities has lagged about five years. Considering the fact that the student is not usually well established in farming until about five years after graduation from high school, one finds that some of the skills learned in high school will be about ten years out-of-date by the time the student becomes an established farmer. This fallacy of teaching outdated abilities seems even more serious when the importance if such occupational competencies is considered. As farming becomes more mechanized, the need for effective teaching in farm mechanics becomes more obvious. The purpose of this research is to point out the need for bringing the farm mechanics program up-to-date and to suggest revised curriculum content for teaching farm mechanics in South Dakota. Typical questions which must be answered in determining the kind of farm mechanics program to conduct are: What are the reasons for including farm mechanics as a part of the training in farm mechanics is considered necessary by present farmers? Such questions prompted the writer to undertake this research which is aimed toward improving the vocational agriculture curriculum in agricultural mechanics.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Agricultural engineering -- South Dakota --Study and teaching
Agriculture -- South Dakota
Agriculture -- Study and teaching


Includes bibliographical references



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University