Beef Cattle Production


beef cattle in field

The Beef Cattle Production specialization works synergistically with the Masters of Applied Science (MAS) program to offer students with an interest in beef cattle production, the opportunity to become more familiar with nutrition, meat science, genetics, and growth topics in an online program.

The Beef Cattle Production Specialization in the MAS is a flexible and personalized practitioner degree program that provides students with opportunities to:

  • Become lifelong learners utilizing the University’s Beef Cattle resources after they complete their degree.
  • Develop an understanding of beef production as a system and be exposed to alternative production practices that may enhance profitability and stewardship.
  • Gain an understanding of statistics to better evaluate research data.
  • Understand how biochemical underpinnings of agricultural production affect cattle growth and nutrient metabolism.
  • Critically evaluate research literature, effectively synthesize data, and communicate results.

Career Outlook

There is a growing demand for beef, which in turn increases job development related to beef production. Beef and beef cattle related jobs are vital to Nebraska and the U.S. Beef production accounts for approximately 41% of the total economic impact in the U.S. from all livestock and poultry.

Why choose the MAS program?

The program offers:

  • A professional degree in agricultural science, community development and natural resources at the master’s level
  • Flexibility that allows you to design an area of study that addresses your educational goals
  • Online courses allowing you to earn the degree remotely

As a college-wide degree program, there is flexibility in the selection of course work to create a personalized program built around the specialization. You will work with an advisor and examining committee to customize a program of study best fitting your educational objective(s). The degree project is intended for you to gain immediate value to apply to your workplace or for career advancement.

Degree requirements include 30 credit hours of course work.


Option B
  • Minimum 30 credit hours
  • No thesis required.
  • 15 credit hours must be in the major (area of concentration)
  • 15 credit hours must be graduate-only courses
  • May include a minor of at least 9 credit hours


Core Courses
ASCI 806: Animal Science Graduate Seminar (1 credit) Orientation in the animal science graduate program involving introduction to departmental research program, philosophy, and policies. Discussion of elements of an effective seminar; experience and critique in oral presentation of research data.
ASCI 820*: Feedlot Management and Nutrition (3 credits) Offered odd-numbered calendar years. Nutritional requirements of and complete ration formulation for feedlot cattle. Management practices needed for successful feedlot operation. Prerequisites: CHEM 831
ASCI 821*: Advanced Animal Nutrition (3 credits) An advanced course dealing with the nutrition of domestic animals. In-depth coverage of nutrients, nutrient metabolism and nutrient requirements. Biochemical and physiological functions of nutrients in life processes.
ASCI 822: Advanced Feeding and Feed Formulation (3 credits) Feeding practices for domestic animals. Applied animal nutrition and feed formulation.
ASCI 824*: Forage Quality (3 credits) The chemical characteristics of forage components. The interactions with ruminant physiology and digestion that influence forage feeding value. The laboratory procedures used to evaluate forages for grazing livestock.
ASCI 905: Animal Industry Seminar (1 credit) Current problems in the field of animal industry.
AGRO 897: Research Project (4 credits) Design, develop and complete a project that requires synthesis of the course topics covered in the primary area of emphasis.
A course in Statistical Methods (3 credits) Statistical concepts and methodology useful in biological experiments. Practical application of statistics.
BIOC 801: Elements of Biochemistry (3credits) Structure and function of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and nucleic acids; enzymes; principal metabolic pathways; and biochemical expression of genetic information.
Total (24 credits)

*courses comprise the Beef Cattle Nutrition minor

Elective Courses

6 credit hours of science courses to support your program objectives, including but not limited to:

  • ASCI Animal Science
  • AECN Agricultural Economics
  • AGRO Agronomy
  • ALEC Agricultural Leadership
  • ENTO Entomology
  • FDST Food Science and Technology
  • NRES Natural Resources
  • TEAC Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

Tuition and Fees How to Apply Contact Us

Clicking "How to Apply" takes you to the Graduate Studies website for additional program and application information.

Graduates may find careers in a multitude of areas, including:

  • Agricultural and Food Science Technicians
  • Technical Support for Livestock Feed and Pharmaceutical Companies
  • Federal, State and Local Government Agencies
  • Beef Cattle Producers
  • Extension Professionals
  • Ag Advisors
  • I appreciated how the MAS program allowed me the ability to customize my graduate degree to focus on classes that I felt would benefit me the most. It has provided me the ability to qualify for advancement in my current career, as well as, enriching my skillset for potential future careers.

    Melinda Vlieger, Extension Assistant, Hall County, Nebraska
  • Through the MAS program at UNL I am furthering my knowledge and technical skills within the animal nutrition discipline. The program perfectly fit my needs since I work full-time and needed something flexible. I wont lie, I was skeptical of online learning at first, I didn’t know how I would take to it. But, it has exceeded all of my expectations, and I am very grateful to have the opportunity to utilize it!

    AJ Lea, MAS student in the Beef Cattle Production specialization, Missouri
  • The program provided me plenty of valuable and updated information applied to my main activity as a beef cattle production consultant. Also gave me the possibility to interact with different type of participants of the beef cattle business (Researchers, Consultants, Farmers, Mangers, Suppliers, Operators, etc.) which represented a great opportunity to share experiences.

    Bernardo Mendiola, MAS student in Beef Cattle Production, Uruguay
  • It is a great opportunity for people interested in increasing their knowledge and experience in Beef Cattle nutrition at an outstanding institution in this area.

    Bernardo Mendiola, MAS student in Beef Cattle Production, Uruguay
  • It provides high quality academic information. The Staff involved has plenty of experience in beef cattle production business. The distance mode offers the possibility to take the program for people who are working.

    Bernardo Mendiola, MAS student in Beef Cattle Production, Uruguay

Service you expect from a leading University

  • Access the same student services available to on-campus students
  • An academic adviser will guide you along your journey
  • Career services are available when you are ready to take your next step


  • Combine a number of disciplines to create a unique degree
  • Choose more than 50% of the courses you take as electives
  • Complete coursework during the time of day that works best for you within a select timeframe

Quality learning experience

  • The University of Nebraska has offered distance education courses for more than 100 years
  • Interact with faculty and students through e-mail, discussion forums and chat groups
  • Direct access to world-class faculty – researchers who are experts in their fields or practitioners with real-world experience

To be accepted to this program

  1. 3.00 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale
  2. Taken the TOEFL or IELTS
    (Only required if English is not your native language)
  3. A written personal statement
    Please describe how obtaining this degree will help your personal, career, and/or professional goals. Describe your level of commitment to successful completion of this degree.
  4. 3 letters of recommendation
  5. Official/Unofficial transcripts from all previous schools
NOTE: This program is authorized, exempt, or not subject to state regulatory compliance and may enroll students from all 50 states

Application Deadlines

Rolling admissions. Application review will begin upon receipt of all required application materials.

Questions? Please Contact

Matthew Douglass

Assistant Professor of Practice / Chair, Master of Applied Science Graduate Committee

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