CALS_DairyScience-WeighingCow

Undergraduates in dairy science prepare for a variety of career opportunities that require a strong background in applied animal biology. Careers include: agribusiness, dairy farm management, technical service and consulting, research, and teaching. Students also enroll in the department to prepare for veterinary school, medical school, or graduate school. Coursework in the major includes animal genetics, lactation, reproduction, nutrition and management. The department may be consulted for additional details and for specific career information.

The dairy science major can be earned under the bachelor of science degree program. The dairy science major may be combined with other majors such as agricultural and applied economics, biological systems engineering, genetics, life sciences communication, and agronomy. Multiple out-of-classroom learning opportunities are included in the curriculum and internships on farms or with agribusiness are required to provide the practical training needed for success in any 21st-century careers. Many students gain valuable experience through part-time employment in research labs or in the student-operated dairy cattle instruction and research center.

Discoveries from the research laboratories reach the classroom long before they appear in textbooks. Students benefit from integration of the instructional and research programs of the department. The co-curricular Badger Dairy Club involves students in dairy industry events that provide leadership and networking opportunities in a vibrant industry.

To declare this major, students must be admitted to UW–Madison and the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS). For information about becoming a CALS first-year or transfer student, see Entering the College.

Students who attend Student Orientation, Advising, and Registration (SOAR) with the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences have the option to declare this major at SOAR.  Students may otherwise declare after they have begun their undergraduate studies. For more information, contact the advisor listed under the Advising and Careers tab.

University General Education Requirements

All undergraduate students at the University of Wisconsin–Madison are required to fulfill a minimum set of common university general education requirements to ensure that every graduate acquires the essential core of an undergraduate education. This core establishes a foundation for living a productive life, being a citizen of the world, appreciating aesthetic values, and engaging in lifelong learning in a continually changing world. Various schools and colleges will have requirements in addition to the requirements listed below. Consult your advisor for assistance, as needed. For additional information, see the university Undergraduate General Education Requirements section of the Guide.

General Education
  • Breadth—Humanities/Literature/Arts: 6 credits
  • Breadth—Natural Science: 4 to 6 credits, consisting of one 4- or 5-credit course with a laboratory component; or two courses providing a total of 6 credits
  • Breadth—Social Studies: 3 credits
  • Communication Part A & Part B *
  • Ethnic Studies *
  • Quantitative Reasoning Part A & Part B *

* The mortarboard symbol appears before the title of any course that fulfills one of the Communication Part A or Part B, Ethnic Studies, or Quantitative Reasoning Part A or Part B requirements.

College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Requirements

In addition to the University General Education Requirements, all undergraduate students in CALS must satisfy a set of college and major requirements. Specific requirements for all majors in the college and other information on academic matters can be obtained from the Office of Academic Affairs, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, 116 Agricultural Hall, 1450 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706; 608-262-3003. Academic departments and advisors also have information on requirements. Courses may not double count within university requirements (General Education and Breadth) or within college requirements (First-Year Seminar, International Studies and Science), but courses counted toward university requirements may also be used to satisfy a college and/or a major requirement; similarly, courses counted toward college requirements may also be used to satisfy a university and/or a major requirement.

College Requirements for all CALS B.S. Degree Programs

Quality of Work: Students must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.000 to remain in good standing and be eligible for graduation.
Residency: Students must complete 30 degree credits in residence at UW–Madison after earning 86 credits toward their undergraduate degree.
First Year Seminar1
International Studies3
Physical Science Fundamentals4-5
General Chemistry I
Chemistry in Our World
Advanced General Chemistry
Biological Science5
Additional Science (Biological, Physical, or Natural)3
Science Breadth (Biological, Physical, Natural, or Social)3
CALS Capstone Learning Experience: included in the requirements for each CALS major (see "Major Requirements")

Major Requirements

Mathematics and Statistics
Select one of the following (or may be satisfied by placement exam):3-5
Algebra
Algebra and Trigonometry
Calculus with Algebra and Trigonometry I
Select one of the following:3
Introduction to Statistical Methods
Introductory Applied Statistics for the Life Sciences
Chemistry
Select one of the following:4-5
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry II
Advanced General Chemistry
Biology
Select one of the following options:9-10
Option 1:
Animal Biology
Animal Biology Laboratory
Principles and Practices in Crop Production
Option 2:
Animal Biology
Animal Biology Laboratory
General Botany
Option 3:
Introductory Biology
Introductory Biology
Select one of the following:3
Principles of Genetics
Elementary Organic Chemistry
General Microbiology
Biology of Microorganisms
Immunology
Biochemistry
Select one of the following:3-6
Introduction to Biochemistry
General Biochemistry I
and General Biochemistry II
Introduction to Human Biochemistry (offered during summer session only)
Economics
Select one of the following:3-4
Introduction to Agricultural and Applied Economics
Principles of Microeconomics
DAIRY SCIENCE
Core
AN SCI/DY SCI 101 Introduction to Animal Sciences4
DY SCI 233 Dairy Herd Management I3
DY SCI 234 Dairy Herd Management II3
DY SCI 305 Lactation Physiology3
AN SCI/DY SCI/NUTR SCI 311 Comparative Animal Nutrition3
AN SCI/DY SCI 313 Animal Feeds and Diet Formulation1
AN SCI/DY SCI 361 Introduction to Animal and Veterinary Genetics2
AN SCI/DY SCI 362 Veterinary Genetics2
or AN SCI/DY SCI 363 Principles of Animal Breeding
AN SCI/DY SCI 373 Animal Physiology3
AN SCI/DY SCI 414 Ruminant Nutrition2
AN SCI/DY SCI 434 Reproductive Physiology3
Capstone
DY SCI 399 Coordinative Internship/Cooperative Education1-8
DY SCI 535 Dairy Farm Management Practicum3
Dairy Science Electives
Select at least 3 credits from:3
Dairy Cattle Selection
Pre-Capstone Seminar
Honors Independent Study 1
Independent Study 1
Livestock Production and Health in Agricultural Development
Managed Grazing Field Study
Special Topics 1
Animal Agriculture and Global Sustainable Development
International Field Study in Animal Agriculture and Sustainable Development
Reproductive Management of Dairy Cattle
Senior Honors Thesis 1
Senior Honors Thesis 1
Special Problems 1
Total Credits64-79
1

Consult with your advisor for details.

University Degree Requirements 

Total Degree To receive a bachelor's degree from UW–Madison, students must earn a minimum of 120 degree credits. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 degree credits. Students should consult with their college or department advisor for information on specific credit requirements.
Residency Degree candidates are required to earn a minimum of 30 credits in residence at UW–Madison. "In residence" means on the UW–Madison campus with an undergraduate degree classification. “In residence” credit also includes UW–Madison courses offered in distance or online formats and credits earned in UW–Madison Study Abroad/Study Away programs.
Quality of Work Undergraduate students must maintain the minimum grade point average specified by the school, college, or academic program to remain in good academic standing. Students whose academic performance drops below these minimum thresholds will be placed on academic probation.

LEARNING OUTCOMES

  1. To gain knowledge of current and emerging research­ based information in animal biology and management sciences to support dairy production.
    The first learning outcome relates to the biological structure and function of the (ruminant) dairy cow and its particular aspects compared with other food-­producing animals. Students are expected to become proficient in the fundamental and applied aspects of reproduction, genetic selection, milk secretion, and nutrition, as well as management practices that enhance the health and welfare of dairy cattle. In addition, students are expected to gain an understanding of the farm-­level economic, environmental and social challenges facing dairy producers. Finally, students are expected to appreciate the place that dairy production and animal agriculture hold in state, regional, national and global food production and its contribution to nutritional needs and health of a growing population.
  2. To gain intellectual, practical and attitudinal skills needed to identify and solve problems and challenges facing dairy producers and allied industries.
    The second learning outcome relates to students’ gain in intellectual and practical skills as well as personal attitude. We expect our students to practice and refine their soft skills. Soft skills are personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively with other people including but not limited to strong work ethic, positive attitude, good communication skills, time management abilities, problem-­solving skills, acting as a team player, self confidence, ability to accept and learn from criticism, flexibility/adaptability, and working well under pressure.
  3. To gain in life-­long learning skills to enable graduates to adapt to changing technological, economic and social circumstances throughout their professional career.
    The third learning outcome relates to enabling students’ leadership skills, continued growth and success in their professional career in a way that contribute also to the success of the dairy industry in Wisconsin, the nation and globally.

Four-year plan

Sample Dairy Science Four-Year Plan

Freshman
FallCreditsSpringCredits
AGRONOMY 1004A A E 2153
DY SCI/​AN SCI  1014CHEM 1034
MATH 1123DY SCI 2052
First Year Seminar1ZOOLOGY/​BIOLOGY  1013
COMM A Course3ZOOLOGY/​BIOLOGY  1022
 DY SCI 2721
 15 15
Total Credits 30
Sophomore
FallCreditsSpringCredits
CHEM 1045DY SCI 2343
DY SCI 2333DY SCI/​AN SCI  3203
GENETICS 4663DY SCI/​AN SCI  3612
STAT 3713DY SCI/​AN SCI  3632
 DY SCI/​AN SCI/​FOOD SCI/​SOIL SCI  4721
 Humanities / Literature / Arts Course3
 14 14
Total Credits 28
Sophomore
SummerCredits
DY SCI/​AN SCI/​FOOD SCI/​SOIL SCI  4732
 2
Total Credits 2
Junior
FallCreditsSpringCredits
BIOCHEM 5013DY SCI/​AN SCI/​NUTR SCI  3113
DY SCI 3053DY SCI/​AN SCI  3131
DY SCI/​AN SCI  3703DY SCI/​AN SCI  3733
Ethnic Studies Course3COMM B Course3
Free Elective Course3Humanities / Literature / Arts Course3
 Free Elective Course3
 15 16
Total Credits 31
Junior
SummerCredits
DY SCI 3991
 1
Total Credits 1
Senior
FallCreditsSpringCredits
DY SCI/​AN SCI  4142DY SCI/​AN SCI/​ENVIR ST/​SOIL SCI  4682
DY SCI/​AN SCI  4343DY SCI 5353
DY SCI 6901DY SCI 37513
Free Elective Courses9Free Elective Courses6
 15 14
Total Credits 29
1

Reproductive Management of Dairy Cattle

Sample  Dairy Science Four-Year Plan—Pre-Veterinary

Freshman
FallCreditsSpringCredits
CHEM 1034BIOLOGY/​BOTANY/​ZOOLOGY  1515
DY SCI/​AN SCI  1014A A E 2153
MATH 2215CHEM 1045
COMM A Course3DY SCI 2052
 First Year Seminar1
 DY SCI 2721
 16 17
Total Credits 33
Sophomore
FallCreditsSpringCredits
BIOLOGY/​BOTANY/​ZOOLOGY  1515CHEM 3433
DY SCI 2333DY SCI 2343
GENETICS 4663DY SCI/​AN SCI  3203
STAT 3713DY SCI/​AN SCI  3612
 DY SCI/​AN SCI  3632
 DY SCI/​AN SCI/​FOOD SCI/​SOIL SCI  4721
 14 14
Total Credits 28
Sophomore
SummerCredits
DY SCI/​AN SCI/​FOOD SCI/​SOIL SCI  4732
 2
Total Credits 2
Junior
FallCreditsSpringCredits
BIOCHEM 5013DY SCI 29911
DY SCI 3053DY SCI/​AN SCI/​NUTR SCI  3113
DY SCI/​AN SCI  3703DY SCI/​AN SCI  3131
PHYSICS 1034DY SCI/​AN SCI  3733
Free Elective Course3PHYSICS 1044
 Humanities / Literature / Arts Course3
 16 15
Total Credits 31
Junior
SummerCredits
DY SCI 3991
 1
Total Credits 1
Senior
FallCreditsSpringCredits
DY SCI/​AN SCI  4142DY SCI/​AN SCI/​ENVIR ST/​SOIL SCI  4682
DY SCI/​AN SCI  4343DY SCI 5353
DY SCI 6901DY SCI 37523
Humanities / Literature / Arts Course3COMM B Course3
Ethnic Studies Course3Free Elective Course3
Free Elective Course3 
 15 14
Total Credits 29
1

Undergraduate Research

2

Reproductive Management of Dairy Cattle

Students are assigned a faculty advisor once they declare the major. Prospective students are welcome to contact Ted Halbach (tjhalbach@wisc.edu, 608-219-5289) for more information.

Undergraduates in dairy science prepare for a variety of career opportunities that require a strong background in applied animal biology. Careers include: agribusiness, dairy farm management, technical service and consulting, research, and teaching. Students also enroll in the department to prepare for veterinary school, medical school, or graduate school. Coursework in the major includes animal genetics, lactation, reproduction, nutrition and management. The department may be consulted for additional details and for specific career information.

Professors

Combs, Fricke, Gianola, Jones, Ruegg, Shaver, Wattiaux, Weigel (chair), Wiltbank

Associate Professors

Cabrera, Hernandez

Assistant Professor

White

Faculty Associate

Halbach