Winter 1989 // Volume 27 // Number 4 // Commentary // 4LET2

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Resistance to Evolving Change?


In the To the Point discussion of "Extension System Change" (Summer 1989), the response by Decker and others states: "Another fundamental precept of CES that needn't change is that educational programming should be based on research of the land-grant universities and USDA."

That statement suggests resistance to an evolving change. While research from those sources will provide major foundations for Extension programs, increasingly forward-looking Extension groups (including those of the authors) have had to turn to colleges outside of those indicated. Thus, marine Extension programs necessarily involve Sea Grant colleges that may not be part of the land-grant system; and few would suggest that Extension should ignore research findings, in biotechnology for example, from non-land-grant universities.

I'd also urge that articles contain sufficient methodological detail to permit readers to better judge a study's validity and generalizability. With the potential biases in generating data from suveys, readers need such information.

Bruce Wilkens
Professor, Natural Resources
New York State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Cornell University
Ithaca, New York