Texas Tech University

Small Farming Certificate Program

Small Farming TTU

Current Course:

Small Farm Practicum

-     Instructor-guided individualized learning format 

-     February 14th to May 27th, 2022    

-      Flexible Tuesday through Friday schedule, 9:00 am to 12:00 pm

-      TTU-Fredericksburg Teaching Farm

Aspiring small farmers have the unique opportunity to learn from the ground up by joining us as we build and develop the new TTU Teaching Farm in Fredericksburg. This practicum course will provide students with unique and invaluable opportunities for hands-on and practical learning as they establish essential infrastructure, plant the first crops, and begin managing the farm with the guidance of the instructor. Students will also regularly visit other local operations to learn from experienced producers in the area, see fully operational examples of successful small farms, and gain experience with a broad range of tools, equipment, and methodologies. 

Individualized, experiential learning is the central focus of this course. The instructor will aim to ensure that every student has access to opportunities to gain crucial skills and broad practical experience applicable to their farming interests and goals. By the end of this practicum, students will have gained not only essential experience, but also a foundational understanding of sustainable fruit and vegetable farming and insight into what operating a successful commercial farm business requires. Students will have the option to individually manage a portion of the farm to grow their own crops and are welcome to harvest a share of any produce that is not being distributed by the TTU Small Farm Program. The instructor and cohort will work together to develop a regular weekly schedule, and a Blackboard course site will be used for scheduling, discussion, and sharing relevant resources.

To receive credit in the form of 8 Continuing Education Units, students must attend a minimum of 80 instructional hours and turn in regular journal entries and/or a final reflection. To accomplish this, students should plan to attend class at least twice weekly. Continuing Education Credits for this learning activity will be awarded by Texas Tech University, Office of the Provost. There are no prerequisites, but a basic familiarity with fruit and vegetable growing and a strong personal interest in commercial production is recommended. Please contact the instructor for more information and with any questions you may have. We look forward to working together with students to create a useful and beautiful demonstration of small-scale, sustainable production in the Texas Hill Country! Tuition: $1,600.

For questions or registration information, please contact the instructor directly.

Future Courses:

If you may be interested in taking a course, please consider helping us design future offerings by filling out this short survey:

Program Survey

Small Farming Certificate Program – In Development

In addition to hands-on practicum courses, other future course offerings will support aspiring or beginning small farmers with crucial education in business, agronomy, and horticulture in addition to facilitating community connections and providing other beneficial resources. These courses will culminate with a Professional Certificate in Small Farming.  Please join our email list to stay informed, contact us with any questions, and fill out the survey to help us shape the program.


Matthew Shannon, Teacher



Small Scale Farming