Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Agricultural Extension

Major Professor

Robert S. Dotson

Committee Members

Cecil E. Carter Jr, James O'Neil


The purpose of this study was to compare Extension survey data from 1,879 randomly selected swine producers in Tennessee counties where more Extension contacts were reported in 1979 with those where fewer contacts had occurred. It was proposed to see whether or not significant differences existed between the two groups regarding practice use. Also, characteristics of swine producers were reviewed. Major findings regarding producer characteristics included the following: (1) Most (47%) producers farrowed an average of 17.9 sows twice in the previous 12-month period; (2) the mean number of pigs raised to weaning was 275; (3) about one-half each of the producers were full-time and part-time farmers; (4) most farmers (62%) had attended one or more Extension meetings for an average of 1.7; (5) most farmers (78%) made one or more visits to county Extension offices for a mean of 2.9; (6) most producers (75%) made one or more telephone calls to the Extension office for a mean of 3.7; (7) most producers (76%) received one or more visits from the county agent for a mean of 2.8; (8) most (947„) had one or more total contacts with Extension for a mean of 11.1 contacts; and (9) 9 of 14 research-verified swine practices studied were used by more than 50%. Major findings from analyses comparing swine producers who had used one or more of 14 recommended practices from Higher Extension contact and Lower contact counties disclosed that more or significantly more of the former for all methods and totals had on the average: (1) Attended more Extension meetings; (2) made more Extension office visits; (3) made more Extension telephone calls; (4) received more farm visits; and (5) had more total Extension contacts. Also, the higher the number of practices used, the greater the number of Extension contacts swine producers had reported. Implications and recommendations also were included.

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