( From BAAT No 1 1983)

Dear Colleagues,

On the 21st of December last year, we were informed of the passing of our patron - Alan Sutherland. He had, until a few weeks prior, been actively working at the University of New England. His demise has left a large gap in the ranks of Agricultural Educationalists in both Australia and the pacific region. Such men as Alan are irreplaceable. He was an educator, artist and author. His publications have been of immense value to all schools and colleges. Alan's activities are so extensive that a special section is devoted to them. All people who were privileged to meet him remember his lively and spectacular presentation of ideas. Those who were seated near him at functions often souvenired his humorous illustrations of some aspect of the proceedings.  

Condolences to Alan's wife, Sheila, son Hamish and daughter Isabel have been expressed on behalf of the Association.  

Regards, N.R. Thomas


Mr. Sutherland made his first contribution to agricultural education in the Pacific in 1967. In that year, he was invited by the South Pacific Commission in Noumea to make a survey of agricultural education in the Pacific and to write a report. This report was published in 1968.

 Subsequently he has been employed several times as consultant by the South Pacific Commission.

 In 1972, he made an important contribution by writing a textbook called Introduction to Tropical Agriculture which is used in schools and colleges throughout the whole pacific region.

 He made his greatest contribution between the years 1973 and 1976 when he was employed by the Australian Development Assistance Bureau (ADAB) of the Department of Foreign Affairs as a consultant in agricultural education to the Ministry of Education in Fiji. The agricultural projects he wrote and illustrated were very successful and attracted a great deal of attention by the other countries of the South Pacific. After his Fiji contract was extended on two occasions, he returned to Australia for family reasons.

However, he was then invited by both the University of New England and ADAB to continue writing agricultural projects for the various Pacific Islands. He has now completed 38 such projects for use in schools of Vanuatu, Solomons, Tonga, Cook Islands, Tuvalu, Kiribati Since all these Countries have included the teaching of agriculture in school curricula, the written project notes have made a major contribution. He has also conducted In-Service courses for teachers in the different islands. Sutherland's work in the Pacific Islands has been described by ADAB as an important contribution to education in the region.


Wagga Wagga High School, Sydney University, and University of New England
DEGREES:  Bachelor Science Agriculture. Bachelor of Arts (Honors Degree) 

1970 - Fellow Australian Institute of Agricultural Science 

1971 - Fellow of Australian College of Education.


Teacher of Agriculture, Kyogle Intermediate High School
1936 Junior Lecturer in Agriculture, Armidale Teachers College
1940-45 War service. RAAF Squadron Leader
1946  Teacher of agriculture, Lismore High School
1947 Lecturer in Agriculture, Armidale Teachers' College
1950 Senior Lecturer in Agriculture and Head of Science Dept., Armidale Teachers College

Member of N.S.W. Agricultural Colleges Advisory Board. Member, Agriculture Syllabus committee, Secondary Schools Board

1963 Member, Agriculture Syllabus Committee, Board of Senior School Studies
1967 Consultant in agricultural education to South Pacific Commission
1969 Acting Vice Principal, Armidale Teachers' College
1970 Leader of Australian delegation to First World Conference on Agricultural Education, Copenhagen. Acting Vice Principal, Armidale Teachers College for 2nd Term.
1972 Acting Vice Principal, Armidale Teachers' College for 3rd Term. Australian Consultant on Agricultural Education to Conference at South Pacific Commission, Noumea.
1973 Australian Consultant in Science Education to U.N.D.P. Conference at University of South Pacific, Suva, Fiji. Appointed by Dept.Foreign Affairs (ADAB) as Adviser in Agricultural education to Ministry of Education Suva, Fiji
1977 Appointed University Fellow, university of New England
1978  Consultant in Agricultural Education at Conference of Teachers' Colleges Lecturers in Agriculture at Lae, PNG, 1-5 May. Consultant in agricultural education at International Training Course in Poultry Husbandry sponsored by ADAB and held at University of New England 20 April 1978.
1981 Consultant in agricultural education to the Vanuatu Department of Education


Introduction to Agriculture, Angus & Robertson 1964 - The Rocks, Wentworth Press, Sydney
1968 Understanding Farm Animals, McGraw-Hill
1971 Introduction to Tropical Agriculture, McGraw- Hill
1974 Rural Life. Angus and Robertson
1976 Vegetable Growing. Ure Smith
1980 Introduction to Agriculture, 6th edition, McGraw - Hill.


Agricultural Education in the South Pacific. South Pacific Commission


 1964              Practical Work in Agricultural Education. Journal of Australian Institute of Agricultural Science, 30. 2.

1965               Agricultural Education in Secondary Schools.

Annual Conference of Australian Institute of Agricultural Science.


1966                Agricultural Education. In N.S.W. Education Gazette, 1st  April,-1966.


Agricultural Education in Secondary Schools. Journal of South Australian Science Teachers Association.


1968                Careers in Agricultural Science. Published by Australian Institute of Agricultural Science.


1970                With J.L. Dillon, co-author of The Situation, Problems and New Trends in Agricultural Education in Australia and New Zealand. Background paper to First World Conference on Agricultural Education and Training. Copenhagen

1971                Training Teachers of Agriculture in Australian Education and Training, - Annual Review of Selected Developments. F.A.0. Rome, 1971.

World Conference on Agricultural Education and Training. Journal of Australian Institute of Agricultural Science, March, 1971.

1974                The Place of Agriculture in the School Curriculum. in "Educational Perspective in Papua New Guinea". Australian College of Education.

1978                Education in Agriculture: The Role of the Teacher in Overseas Agricultural Development, in Proceedings, Conference of Australian Association of Agricultural Faculties, UNE., February 1978.

1979                Utilisation of Resources for Agricultural Education in Agritalk (Journal of Victorian Agricultural Teachers Assoc.) 1980:2.

1971                Present and Future Demand for Agricultural Graduates. Read at Conference of Australian Association of Agricultural Faculties at Sydney University.

1972                General Principles of Agricultural Curriculum Development. Read at Conference at South Pacific Commission, Noumea.

1973                Principles of Curriculum Construction in Science. Read at UNDP Seminar, University South Pacific.

1977                Modern Studies - A New Approach to School Agriculture in Fiji, Resources in Agricultural Development Programs. University of New England.

Changing Patterns-of Secondary Education in the Pacific Islands. Paper read at meeting of N.S.W. Chamber of Australian College of Education, Sydney, 20th October, 1977.

1978                Papers read at International Training Course in Poultry Husbandry, University of New England, April/May 1978:

a. Education for Change

b. Use of local materials for Poultry Housing

Curriculum Development in Papua New Guinea - some Suggested Guidelines. Paper read at Conference of Teachers' College Lecturers in Agriculture, Lae, May 1-5, 1978.

1979                Utilization of Resources for Agricultural Education. Paper read at O.E.C.D. Conference on Rural Education, Perth, Nov.1979.


Review of Agricultural Education in Australia by R.N. Farquhar, A.C.E.R. in Journal of Australian Institute of Agricultural Science.
1977 Review of Organizational Genesis and Development: A Study of Australian Agricultural Colleges by A.W. Black, University of Queensland Press, published in Journal of Educational Administration, XV-1.

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