Date of Award

January 2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Foundations & Research

First Advisor

Joshua Hunter


This dissertation brings forth the idea that our attachment to place and the meanings behind those attachments could be well suited for implementation within formal agricultural education. The focus of this dissertation brings to light multi-generational family farmer’s attachment to the places they grew up and work on, as well as prepare their children and grandchildren to take on the role of ‘curator of place’. Throughout this dissertation, I lay the groundwork for inclusion of sense of place within formalized agricultural education by highlight just what sense of place is and the missing areas within current agricultural education. For this project, I interviewed four multi-generational family farmers in North Dakota. My goal was to understand their particular views on their own connections to the places that are/were important to them (their sense of place) and understand how sense of place could be implemented within formal and informal agricultural education. The findings of this research showed that each of these individuals had a strong sense of place and that sense of place could be construed as important to the family farmer as a means to keep them “going” and would be a worthy inclusion within agricultural education. Finally, some recommendations of how sense of place could be brought into agricultural education were made. These recommendations include bringing personalized education into the classroom by having students focus on their places as well as potentially bringing in others to tell the stories of their places.