Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Agricultural Education and Studies


Agricultural Education

First Advisor

Scott Smalley


The purpose of this thesis was to explore perceptions beginning teachers held when becoming Curriculum for Agriculture and Science Education (CASE) certified within the Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources (AFNR) content area. The objectives of this thesis were to: (1) describe perceptions of benefits and challenges beginning teachers have to becoming certified in the CASE AFNR Institute; (2) identify factors that contribute to the benefits and challenges beginning teachers have when implementing the CASE AFNR curriculum into their classrooms; and (3) describe the perceptions beginning teachers have of the CASE AFNR curriculum material.

Six beginning agricultural educators (within two years of beginning teaching), who had become CASE AFNR certified served as participants in this study. The educators were certified during a pre-professional teacher’s workshop hosted by Iowa State University. The study was of qualitative nature, comprised of one-on-one interviews with participants to gain insight into personal perceptions of participants.

Beginning teachers found that active learning had a major impact on their CASE AFNR Institute experiences, as well as for their students when implementing the CASE AFNR curriculum into their classrooms. Beginning agricultural educators enjoyed the cohesiveness of the CASE AFNR curriculum, which provides a thorough introduction into each of the agricultural career content pathways. Having pre-planned lessons and activities helped the beginning teachers gain confidence teaching all content areas, and allowed for extra time to be devoted towards other courses. Beginning teachers found the time commitment and large amount of information to be learned in the CASE AFNR Institute as demanding, and which impacted their personal lives. Teachers identified that funding to attend the CASE AFNR curriculum was a challenge to attain, as well as being able to implement the curriculum in classrooms. Some CASE AFNR activities are not completed because resources were not available

It is recommended that future CASE AFNR Institutes continue the usage of active participation, utilizing the lead teachers to their fullest extent. Fast track opportunities and external funding resources could be beneficial to beginning teachers to be able to secure availability to participate in CASE Institutes. Finally, it is recommended future studies be conducted utilizing various CASE AFNR Institutes, as well as CASE Institutes outside of the AFNR curriculum area.

Copyright Owner

Katelyn Marie Anderson



File Format


File Size

41 pages