Iowa State's Agricultural Systems Technology Degree Achieves Accreditation Milestone

May 12th, 2009

AMES, Iowa — The Agricultural Systems Technology (AST) degree at Iowa State University includes the first agricultural undergraduate degree option accredited by the National Association of Industrial Technology (NAIT).

"We have one of the best Agricultural Systems Technology programs in the country and are delighted to know that NAIT has given a full accreditation to this program. It is a clear indication of quality and excellence of the degree program," said Ramesh Kanwar, chair of the agricultural and biosystems engineering department.

The AST degree has options in Machine Systems and Agriculture and Biosystems Management that were accredited for six years by the NAIT.

The accreditation ensures that an institution has met a series of standards to provide industry with highly competent employees and assures the graduate of a NAIT-accredited program that they are receiving a marketable degree through relevant curricula. Institutions that earn accreditation from NAIT confirm their commitment to quality and continuous improvement through a rigorous and comprehensive review process.

NAIT accredits 128 baccalaureate degree program options at 57 institutions and 212 associate degree program options at 31 institutions. NAIT was founded in 1967 as the professional association for industrial technologists and has been involved in the accreditation of Industrial Technology programs since 1974.

The association was recognized in January 2002 by the Council of Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) as the specialized accrediting agency for associate and baccalaureate degree programs in Industrial Technology.

Iowa State AST graduates find careers in a variety of agricultural and environmental businesses. Whether it is off-road equipment, agricultural machinery, food and grain processing, water quality, biofuels production, precision agriculture, or livestock production systems, an agricultural system technologist works to see how the individual pieces fit into the "big picture" of sustainability, conservation and profitability.

For more information about the programs offered by agricultural and biosystems engineering department, see its website at:


Ramesh Kanwar, Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, (515) 294-1434,

Ed Adcock, Agriculture and Life Sciences Communication Service, (515) 294-2314,