ANSC30370 Professional Work Experience

Academic Year 2022/2023

Students will undertake a 3-week period of training in ‘Technical Management of a Dairy Farm’ in Teagasc Kildalton, Piltown, Co. Kilkenny. Here, students are expected to gain appropriate experience in key areas in the day to day management of a dairy farm including milking and associated hygiene procedures, herd health and welfare, cow replacement and sire evaluation, grass utilisation and key performance indicators. Both the practical content and the health and safety components of this module will act as preparation for their period of farm placement. (WILL NOT TAKE PLACE in 2020 PWE)

Following completion of the training period in Teagasc Kildalton, students are expected to gain appropriate experience on approved dairy farms in Ireland or abroad. Placements in New Zealand are strongly recommended but not compulsory. If students wish to do their placement elsewhere, this placement must be agreed with the module coordinator. Work placement is a minimum of 20 weeks and students must spend a minimum of 16 weeks on one farm but can spend the full 20 weeks if they wish. Where a student decides to undertake another placement for the remaining 4 weeks, this must be agreed with the module coordinator. Students must familiarise themselves with, and abide by the regulations for PWE as set out by the Agricultural Sciences Programme Board. For each placement, a host contract must be completed, signed by the host and received by UCD, before the placement will be deemed to have commenced by UCD. Furthermore, placements (and parts thereof) which have been completed in the absence of an appropriately completed host contract will not be accepted. Only in the most exceptional circumstances will any deviation from this requirement be permitted and this must have the agreement, in writing, of the PWE co-ordinator. The Health, Safety & Welfare module RDEV20140 is a pre-requisite for this module.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module each student should be able to:

Appraise safety in the work place, Appraise milking and dairy hygiene operations, Perform routine skills associated with dairy herd health, Evaluate cows, replacement heifers, and sires for breeding, Manage grass utilisation through grass budgeting, Evaluate key performance indicators for a dairy farm, Collect, analyse and report the important information on a dairy farm, Describe the business organization and the responsibilities of key operatives in the enterprise on which they were located.

Students will have opportunities to develop important teamwork, interpersonal and self-management transferable skills such as: Work independently in unfamiliar situations; Manage their time effectively; Work effectively as a team member and respect the views of others in the team; Accept and respond to constructive criticism; Account for their actions and decisions; Critically reflect on their experiences; Based on their contacts and experiences, be able to critically identify and develop potential sources of appropriate employment for their future career.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Small Group


Autonomous Student Learning


Placement/Work Experience




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
The key teaching and learning approach in this module is professional or experiential learning, advancing students’ assimilation and application of knowledge gained to date. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
RDEV20140 - Health, Welfare & Safety

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Assignment: Submit final report on completion of work placement Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No


Oral Examination: Oral examination in January Unspecified n/a Graded No


Assignment: Kildalton Throughout the Trimester n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: Submit monthly reports to Module Co-Ordinator Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Summer No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Feedback on monthly reports will be provided to inform students if the detail included is sufficient and therefore useful for the final assignment.