Farmers’ Opinions about Lifelong Learning in Animal Production


Learning is like rowing upstream, not advancing is dropping back. Lifelong learning activities for livestock and poultry farmers play an important role in the industry. This study analyzed animal farmers’ attitudes towards lifelong learning in Taiwan. Data were collected with structured and validated questionnaires from 798 farmers. Data obtained from the questionnaires were analyzed using SAS. Results indicated that respondents were mainly employees on animal farms (38.7%); 29.1% were farm owners and owners’ wives. More than half of the respondents’ work experience was above 6 years (57.4%); the majority were male (85%); nearly one third (32%) were 25-34 years old; two thirds (66.7%) had university or graduate degrees. Respondents (92.4%) thought farmers should also have lifelong learning plan. Most respondents (87.2%) thought the future of animal production was positive. This research revealed that farmers had very high motivation about lifelong learning activities. Unexpectedly, employees expressed a higher understanding about lifelong learning than owners and owners’ wives. The higher the educational level respondents had, the more agreeable they were to lifelong learning. Lifelong learning believers expressed higher motivation in non-formal and informal learning activities than non-believers. Positive learners expressed enhanced competency and confidence, in turn motivating them to learn. Policymakers and practitioners should open up access to knowledge for everyone, encourage and promote relevant advanced conferences, hands-on training programs, and non-formal and informal learning activities for farmers.

Keywords: Farmer, Learning, Motivation, animal production, extension education

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 19-27 (Download PDF)

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