County Extension Agent Career

Job Description: Set up or maintain laboratory equipment and collect samples from crops or animals. Prepare specimens or record data to assist scientists in biology or related life science experiments.

*A job as a County Extension Agent falls under the broader career category of Agricultural Technicians. The information on this page will generally apply to all careers in this category. We are still seeking more specific information about this career from experts in this field. If you can provide us with more information, .

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County Extension Agent Career

What County Extension Agents do:

  • Plant seeds in specified areas, and count the resulting plants to determine the percentage of seeds that germinated.
  • Set up laboratory or field equipment, and prepare sites for testing.
  • Measure or weigh ingredients used in testing or for purposes such as animal feed.
  • Prepare data summaries, reports, or analyses that include results, charts, or graphs to document research findings and results.
  • Collect samples from crops or animals so testing can be performed.
  • Record data pertaining to experimentation, research, or animal care.
  • Receive and prepare laboratory samples for analysis, following proper protocols to ensure that they will be stored, prepared, and disposed of efficiently and effectively.
  • Supervise or train agricultural technicians or farm laborers.
  • Measure and mark plot areas, and plow, disc, level, and otherwise prepare land for cultivated crops, orchards and vineyards.
  • Operate farm machinery, including tractors, plows, mowers, combines, balers, sprayers, earthmoving equipment, or trucks.
  • Operate laboratory equipment such as spectrometers, nitrogen determination apparatus, air samplers, centrifuges, and potential hydrogen (pH) meters to perform tests.
  • Perform crop production duties, such as tilling, hoeing, pruning, weeding, or harvesting crops.
  • Maintain or repair agricultural facilities, equipment, or tools to ensure operational readiness, safety, and cleanliness.
  • Perform general nursery duties, such as propagating standard varieties of plant materials, collecting and germinating seeds, maintaining cuttings of plants, or controlling environmental conditions.
  • Adjust testing equipment, and prepare culture media, following standard procedures.
  • Supervise pest or weed control operations including locating and identifying pests or weeds, selecting chemicals and application methods, scheduling application, and training operators.
  • Respond to inquiries and requests from the public that do not require specialized scientific knowledge or expertise.
  • Conduct insect or plant disease surveys.
  • Examine animals and specimens to determine the presence of diseases or other problems.
  • Prepare or present agricultural demonstrations.
  • Devise cultural methods or environmental controls for plants for which guidelines are sketchy or nonexistent.
  • Transplant trees, vegetables, or horticultural plants.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Controlling Machines and Processes - Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment - Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates - Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.

Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment - Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.

Holland Code Chart for a County Extension Agent

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