Preliminary work placement programme – MSc in Life Sciences in Agricultural Science

You’re passionate about agriculture, but don’t have the required practical experience to start your master’s degree at BFH-HAFL? No worries! You can do a six-month work placement on a farm.

An important experience full of practical learnings

Do you dream of a career that connects hands-on experience with up-to-date scientific knowledge and enables you to develop sustainable solutions for agriculture? At BFH-HAFL, you can embark on that journey: Our preliminary work placement programme prepares you for the MSc in Life Sciences with specialisation in Agricultural Science (MSLS-AS) and gets you started on a ‘doubly green’ career in sustainable agriculture.

Preliminary work placement master Enlarge image

What does the pre-MSLS-AS work placement programme involve?

During your placement on a Swiss farm, you will gain an in-depth insight into the everyday reality of farming by working in and learning about all sectors of the farm, from animal husbandry to arable farming. You will also take an accompanying blended-learning ‘Agriculture in Switzerland’ course to support you in understanding the complexity of agriculture in its political, economic and societal contexts. This combination of practice and theory is the ideal preparation for your studies and professional life and gives you the best chance for success.

Who has to do the pre-MSLS-AS work placement programme?

If you have a bachelor’s degree in a discipline other than those which allow direct entry to the master’s degree programme and if you cannot provide evidence of sufficient practical experience, our six-month pre-MSLS-AS work placement programme must be completed.

Entry requirements MSc in Life Sciences in Agricultural Science

Entry requirements MSc in Life Sciences in Agricultural Science Enlarge image

How does it work?

Throughout the work placement, we will support you with a structured and well-designed programme that allows you to gain the necessary theoretical foundations.

Some important milestones at a glance:

  • Find a suitable farm from our list and send us the signed ‘Registration form’ by December.
  • Kick-off day at BFH-HAFL, February. 
  • Start your placement, March.
  • Kick-off blended learning course, May.
  • From June to September, five training days at BFH-HAFL in addition to the structured self-study material.

How to get started? BFH-HAFL maintains a list of recommended and experienced farms from all over Switzerland. The BFH-HAFL team supervising pre-MSLS-AS work placements can assist you in your search to find the farm that suits you best. 

To ensure that you are optimally prepared for your studies, it is crucial that you complete your placement on a mixed farm. It should cover the areas of dairy and/or livestock production as well as at least four different arable crops (eg cereals, oil and root crops).

Use our guide to find a suitable work placement: 

The ‘Agriculture in Switzerland’ course helps you deepen your knowledge in the five following areas: 

  • Natural basis of Swiss agriculture 
  • Crop production in Switzerland 
  • Animal production in Switzerland 
  • Social basis of Swiss agriculture
  • Swiss agricultural policy and markets and farm economics 

In addition to the self-study material, the knowledge gained on farm and through your reading is complemented during five guided field visits taking place from June to September.

Finally, you apply the experience and knowledge acquired to write an in-depth placement report. The report, together with the satisfactory completion of your placement, are part of the admission conditions to enter the master programme. 

Detailed instructions on how to write the report are provided during the ‘Agriculture in Switzerland’ course.

Individual support and supervision