UCC Undergraduate courses

Agricultural Science

About This Course

Fact File

  • Title

    Agricultural Science

  • Code


  • College

    Science, Engineering and Food Science

  • Duration

    4 years

  • Teaching Mode


  • Qualifications

    BAgrSc (Hons)

  • Fees

    Student Contribution + Capitation: €3,138 See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Entry Requirements

    1 x H4, 1 x H5, 4 x O6/H7; Maths and a Lab science subject are required. See Requirements for full details.

  • CAO Points

    2022: 487

  • CAO Points Range


Course Outline

UCC has a long-standing reputation of excellence in Dairy and Food Science. Through collaboration with Teagasc and well-established links with the agri-food industry, Agricultural Science at UCC is specially tailored to attract those with a particular passion for dairying, who are ambitious, and committed to advancing their career in dairy farming or the wider dairy/agri-food sector. At UCC we guarantee a comprehensive agricultural education; building from a foundation of fundamental sciences, developing core knowledge, instilling best practice applications using the very latest tools and technologies, and interrogating the business that is dairying. This course has been developed to ensure you as a highly-skilled and motivated graduate, are uniquely positioned to capitalise on the vast employment opportunities that await.

Two formative uniquely tailored Work Placement opportunities (dairy farm and industry) will serve to deepen your knowledge and forge your individual professional development. You will experience and implement best practices and be mentored by the very best.

Practicals, field trips, commercial farm visits, evening seminars and guest lecturers will enhance both your learning and overall experience.


All modules 5 credits unless otherwise stated.

Year 1 Modules

  • AG1001 Introduction to Agriculture (10 credits)
  • BC1001 Introduction to Biochemistry and the Biological Basis of Disease
  • BL1002 Cells, Biomolecules, Genetics and Evolution
  • BL1004 Physiology and Structure of Plants and Animals
  • CM1202 Fundamentals of Modern Chemistry for Agricultural Sciences (10 credits)
  • FE1019 Introduction to Food and Agricultural Economics
  • FE1030 Introduction to International Food Policy
  • FS2005 Principles of Food Science & Technology
  • MA1001 Calculus for Science Part I 
  • PY1109 Physics for Agriculture & Environmental Science

Year 2 Modules

  • BC2001 Biomolecules 
  • BC2002 Principles of Metabolic Pathways
  • ST2001 Introduction to Biostatistics
  • BL2001 Plant and Animal Genetics
  • MB1001 Introduction to Food & Industrial Microbiology
  • PL1012 Fundamentals of Physiology 
  • NT2023 Animal Nutrition 
  • EV1002 The Environment 
  • FE2011 Introduction to Agri-Business Management 
  • PS2002 Ecological Plant Physiology
  • PS2003 Plant Identification 
  • AG2001 Agriculture II (Sustainable Food Production) 

Year 3 Modules

  • GN3003 Population and Evolution Genetics
  • AG3004 Grass and Forage Production (including Breeding) 
  • FS3023 Milk Production and Quality for Processing
  • ST3910 Design of Experiments for Agriculture and Animal Scientists
  • AG3002 Soil Science and Soil/Land Management 
  • AG3003 Growth & Lactation Physiology
  • FE3023 Agri-Production Economics
  • FE3024 Agri-Food Co-operatives and Sustainability
  • AG3001 Internship (Work Placement) (15 credits)
  • AG3006 Farm Safety and On-Farm Risk Assessment

In year 3, students will undertake a total of 30 weeks of Work Placement (AG3001) across two settings ; first an 18-week farm placement with one of Irelands top (in many cases award-winning) dairy farmers, where you will experience all aspects of day to day management of an intensive, highly efficient, profitable and sustainable dairy farming operation. You will access information sources relevant to the critical appraisal and strategic management of a successful modern dairy farm business. Later in the summer, the opportunity to spend 12 weeks amidst one of Ireland’s key industry stakeholders tailored to your individual interest will be arranged. These Work Placements form the basis of a substantial final year project (AG4001), representing assessment based on real-world application, challenging and consolidating your learning from the entire course.

Year 4 Modules

  • AG4007 Bovine Health, Behaviour and Welfare 
  • AG4002 Applied bovine genetics and genomics
  • AG4003 Animal Nutrition II (including feed conservation)
  • AG4004 Grassland Management 
  • AG4005 Farm infrastructure Design and Farm Mechanisation 
  • AG4006 Production Systems, Analysis and Management
  • AG4001 Final Year Research Project (10 credits)
  • AG4008 Business Structures, Career Progression & HR Management on Farms
  • AG4009 Bovine Reproduction & Fertility Management
  • AG4010 Communication, Innovation & Innovation support on Farms 
  • FE4002 Global Food Policy

Course Practicalities

Anchored in the School of Biological Earth and Environmental Sciences (BEES) at UCC, it is here on UCC campus that you will spend the majority of both first and second year. Teagasc’s input at this point will be delivered through a combination of visits (transport provided from UCC) to Teagasc Moorepark (Fermoy) and Teagasc Clonakilty Agricultural College, and a series of complementary field trips. From third year, the Paddy O’Keeffe Innovation Centre at Teagasc Moorepark will increasingly become your base, You will become immersed in and enjoy the unique ‘Moorepark Experience’, gaining insight at first hand into the many flagship research experiments underpinning Teagasc’s latest cutting-edge advice.

It is recommended that students be in possession of a valid full driving licence prior to commencing their Work Placements in year 3.

Why Choose This Course

Based in the heartland of Irish dairying, this course is offered by University College Cork in partnership with Teagasc; Teagasc Moorepark is both nationally and internationally recognised as a centre of excellence in pasture-based dairy research and innovation. Clonakilty Agricultural College has been a renowned flagship of practical agricultural training for over 100 years. This degree is truly research-led, constantly rebooted by the latest advances in agricultural research. Thus, ensuring students are exposed to the latest advances as well as enjoying a truly applied experience steeped in the legacy that is Teagasc’s low-cost pasture-based system’s ideology.

Placement or Study Abroad Information

Work Placement forms a significant component of this Agricultural Science degree programme. Placement abroad opportunities are currently not possible for the on-farm component. However, we do encourage and facilitate study abroad for Industry Placement where these placements are deemed high quality and consistent with the objectives and quality learning outcomes of the degree.

Skills and Careers Information

Students will be highly employable in the agri-food sector on completion of this programme. Postgraduate opportunities are also possible for those wishing to pursue further studies.


Leaving Certificate entry requirements: 

At Least six subjects must be presented. Minimum grade H4 in one subject, minimum grade H5 in one subject and minimum grade O6/H7 in four other subjects. English and Irish are requirements for all programmes unless the applicant is exempt from Irish

The following are considered Lab Science subjects: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Physics with Chemistry and Agricultural Science.

Applicants will need to meet the following minimum entry requirements:

EnglishIrishMathsLab ScienceNote
O6/H7 O6/H7 O6/H7 or H4* O6/H7 or H4* H4 in either a Lab Science subject, Maths or Applied Maths or Computer Science

If the H4 is in Maths, Applied Maths or Computer Science an 06/H7 in a Lab Science subject is also required.

Mature students:
  Applicants should apply directly to the CAO, include a statement of interest and may be called for interview. Applicants must have studied a Laboratory Science subject at second-level or QQI/FETAC level or demonstrate involvement in Science related areas. Approximately two places are available on this course for mature students.

Other qualifications: EU/EFTA/UK students presenting an alternative school-leaving qualification (e.g. A-levels or International Baccalaureate) or QQI/FE course should visit our  pages for further information. 

International Students should visit the International Education website.

It is recommended that students hold a valid full driving licence prior to commencing their Work Placement in year 3.

Non-EU Candidates

Non-EU candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to the Irish Leaving Certificate. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language.

To verify if you meet the minimum academic and language requirements visit our qualification comparison page.

Refer to our International Office page for more information on how to apply to UCC.

Fees and Costs

Course fees include a tuition fee, student contribution fee and capitation fee. The state will pay the tuition fees for EU students who are eligible under the Free Fees Scheme. The annual student Contribution and Capitation Fees are payable by the student. In 2022/23 the Student Contribution Fee will be €3,000 and the Capitation Fee will be €138.

Please see Fees Office for more information.

The cost of travelling between UCC and Teagasc centres as well as field trips and site visits during years 1 and 2 will be covered.  However, third-year students will be required to contribute towards the cost of travel for journeys to and from Moorepark and other field trips associated with the course.  Also, students are responsible for any costs associated with work placement in year 3 of the programme.

For International Fees see our Fees Schedule page.

How Do I Apply

EU Applicants: Application to Year 1 of the degree programme is made directly through the Central Applications Office (CAO). Applicants should apply online at www.cao.ie. The normal closing date for receipt of completed applications is 1st February of the year of entry.

Non-EU Applicants

Mature Applicants:  Application is made through the CAO and the closing date for receipt of completed applications is 1st February of the year of proposed entry. Find out about the mature entry requirements here.

EU Applicants: The Central Applications Office (CAO) processes applications for undergraduate courses in Irish Higher Education Institutions. Refer to the CAO page for further information.

Mature Applicants (age 23 or over): See the CAO Mature Applicants page and the Mature Students Admissions Pathway (MSAP) page for essential information on the application process for mature students.

QQI FET: See our QQI FET Applicants page.

Non-EU Applicants: Non-EU applicants apply online via the UCC Apply portal. See our International Office page.

All Applicants: Please note that the modules listed are indicative of the current set of modules for this course and are subject to change from year to year. Please check the College Calendar for the full academic content of any given course for the current year. 

  • In UCC, we use the terms programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments. 

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact