Animal Science Major: Dairy Management Option (B.S.)

Animal Science Major: Dairy Management Option (B.S.)

cows at the organic dairy farm

Find out more about the dairy science degree program that is ranked #8 in the country by

What is dairy management?

In dairy management, students learn all the fundamentals of running a dairy farm, from caring for the animals to managing the business end of the operation. In addition to core courses in animal science, including biology, animal health, nutrition, genetics and reproduction, students in the dairy program learn about areas such as agribusiness finance, personnel management and public relations.

Why study dairy management at UNH?

Our students have exceptional access to hands-on learning opportunities through UNH’s modern dairy facilities, the Fairchild Dairy Teaching and Research Center and the Burley-DeMerritt Organic Dairy Research Farm. UNH also is one of only three universities in the country to offer a student-run dairy through the Cooperative Real Education in Agricultural Management program, better known as CREAM. Students in the year-long program run an actual dairy cooperative, managing every aspect of the herd.

Potential Careers

  • Agribusiness
  • Business management
  • Community development
  • Extension Specialist
  • Farm management
  • Farm ownership
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Product sales
  • Research institutions
  • Research technician


Peter Erickson

Extension Dairy Specialist
Phone: (603) 862-1909
Office: Agriculture, Nutrition, & Food Systems, Keener Dairy Research Building, Durham, NH 03824
Department of Agriculture, Nutrition, and Food Systems
University of New Hampshire
Kendall Hall
129 Main Street
Durham, NH 03824
(603) 862-2130
  • Dairy science students attend the 2019 American Dairy Science Association Annual Meeting
    Four UNH dairy science students and Prof. Pete Erickson recently attended the 2019 American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) annual meeting in Cincinnati, Ohio.
    Dairy science students attend the 2019 American Dairy Science Association Annual Meeting
    Four UNH dairy science students and Prof. Pete Erickson recently attended the 2019 American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) annual meeting in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Curriculum & Requirements

The ANSC: dairy management option is designed to provide students with solid training in areas important to the successful management of a dairy enterprise, for employment in related agribusinesses (e.g., pharmaceutical and feed industries), or for those wishing to pursue additional training leading to the M.S. or Ph.D. degree in dairy science or its related disciplines. Dairy management students receive training in areas such as nutrition, reproduction, diseases, genetics, lactation physiology, forages, agribusiness finance, personnel management, computer science, and public relations. The Fairchild Dairy Teaching and Research Center and the Burley-DeMerritt Organic Dairy Research Farm are modern dairy facilities. The Fairchild Dairy houses 100 lactating Holstein cows plus a similar number of non-lactating animals. The Burley-DeMerritt Farm houses 50 lactating Jersey cows plus a small number of non-lactating animals. For additional information and answers to questions regarding the option in dairy management, email Dr. Peter Erickson.

Sample Student Schedule by Semester: Dairy Management

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
AAS 425 Introduction to Dairy Herd Management 4
BIOL 411 Introductory Biology: Molecular and Cellular 4
CHEM 403 General Chemistry I 4
EREC 411
or ENGL 401
Environmental and Resource Economics Perspectives (SS DISC, ANSC elective)
or First-Year Writing
AAS 423 Dairy Selection (Little Royal) 2
BIOL 412 Introductory Biology: Evolution, Biodiversity and Ecology 4
CHEM 404 General Chemistry II 4
Discovery Course 4
Elective 4
Second Year
AAS 432 Introduction to Forage and Grassland Management 3
ANSC 511 Anatomy and Physiology 4
BMS 503 General Microbiology 3
BIOL 528 Applied Biostatistics I 4
Discovery Course 4
AAS 439 Fundamentals of Animal Health 2
ANSC 406 Careers in Animal Science 1
ANSC 512 Anatomy and Physiology 4
BMCB 501 Biological Chemistry 4
Discovery Course 4
Third Year
ANSC 543 Technical Writing in Animal Sciences 1 2
ANSC 609 Principles of Animal Nutrition 4
ANSC 612 Genetics of Animals 4
ANSC 698 Cooperative for Real Education in Agricultural Management (CREAM) 4
ANSC 602 Animal Rights and Societal Issues 4
ANSC 698 Cooperative for Real Education in Agricultural Management (CREAM) 4
ANSC 710 Dairy Nutrition 4
Discovery Course 4
Elective 2
Fourth Year
ANSC 727 Advanced Dairy Management I 4
ANSC Recommended Elective 4
ANSC Reproductive Course 4
Discovery Course 4
ANSC 650 Dairy Industry Travel Course (repreated) 1
ANSC 627 Animal Health Applications 4
ANSC 728 Advanced Dairy Management II (WI) 4
Discovery Course 4
 Total Credits128

ENGL 419, ENGL 501, ENGL 502 and ENGL 503 may be substituted.

Major Requirements

Foundation Courses
BIOL 411Introductory Biology: Molecular and Cellular4
BIOL 412Introductory Biology: Evolution, Biodiversity and Ecology4
CHEM 403General Chemistry I4
CHEM 404General Chemistry II4
BIOL 528Applied Biostatistics I4
BMS 503
BMS 504
General Microbiology
and General Microbiology Laboratory
Select from the following:
BMCB 501Biological Chemistry4-5
or BMCB 658
BMCB 659
General Biochemistry
and General Biochemistry Lab
Requirements for All Animal Science/Dairy Management Option Majors
AAS 425Introduction to Dairy Herd Management4
AAS 439Fundamentals of Animal Health2
ANSC 406Careers in Animal Science1
ANSC 511Anatomy and Physiology4
ANSC 512Anatomy and Physiology4
ANSC 543Technical Writing in Animal Sciences (or equivalent) 12
ANSC 609Principles of Animal Nutrition4
ANSC 612Genetics of Animals4
Total Credits54-55

ENGL 501 Introduction to Creative Nonfiction, ENGL 502 Professional and Technical Writing, ENGL 503 Persuasive Writing or ENGL 419 How to Read Anything (WI)

Students are responsible for the completion of the animal science foundation courses and the requirements for all animal science majors (both lists of courses above).

Students interested in graduate school should take two semesters of Organic Chemistry and one semester of  Biochemistry.

Animal Science: Dairy Management Option B.S. students must also complete:

AAS 423Dairy Selection2
AAS 432Introduction to Forage and Grassland Management3
ANSC 602Animal Rights and Societal Issues4
ANSC 627Animal Health Applications4
ANSC 650Dairy Industry Travel Course1
ANSC 698Cooperative for Real Education in Agricultural Management (CREAM) (two-semester course)4
ANSC 710Dairy Nutrition4
ANSC 715Physiology of Lactation4
or ANSC 724 Reproductive Management and Artificial Insemination
ANSC 727Advanced Dairy Management I4
ANSC 728Advanced Dairy Management II (will also fulfill the Capstone requirement)4
EREC 411Environmental and Resource Economics Perspectives4
Total Credits38

GPA Requirements for All Students in Animal Science

Students will be required to earn a C- or better in the foundation courses and all required courses for the animal science major to receive credit toward graduation. Students failing to do this will need to retake the course in order to receive credit.

Students will gain a fundamental knowledge of the animal science related disciplines of:

Anatomy & physiology

  • Students will be able to recognize the complimentary relationship of anatomic structure and function and accurately describe the basic physiologic processes of mammalian organ systems.


  • Students will be able to identify, compare, contrast, and link different concepts regarding animal feeding and metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids, and protein in major livestock species and equine. - Genetics o Students will understand basic principles and applications of inheritance, the difference between qualitative and quantitative genetics, and be able to discuss the various disciplines within genetics.


  • Students will understand the modes of transmission of infectious diseases, recognize signs of illness associated with notable diseases in livestock species, and be able to appropriately apply general concepts of disease prevention and biosecurity to a variety of management situations.


  • Students will comprehend the mechanisms and endocrine control of gametogenesis, fertilization, pregnancy, and lactation and understand the variety of factors that can influence reproductive success.

Animal Ethics

  • Students will recognize the numerous ways that humans use, benefit from, and conflict with non-human animals and have an awareness of the variety of motivations and influences that drive these relationships.
  • Students will be able to develop critical questions that facilitate their independent investigation of topics related to animal science and demonstrate an integration of discipline specific knowledge through engaging in experiential education opportunities.
  • Students will be able to conduct literature searches using relevant databases to critically evaluate both academic and popular press resources pertinent to the animal sciences.
  • Students will be able to construct well-supported, effectively organized written arguments to express informed perspectives on animal science related topics. These writings will demonstrate professional style, appropriate mechanics (grammar, punctuation, and spelling), and the correct use of citations.

Explore Program Details

CREAM is a student-run cooperative in which 25 UNH students operate and manage a small business consisting of a registered Holstein dairy herd. CREAM is a yearlong course that gives students the opportunity to gain hands on experience in working with the dairy cows. Each fall, the herd is passed on to a new group of students with the help of a transition team of student advisors, as well as dairy center personnel, and faculty advisors. CREAM has been operating at UNH since 1997 and has progressed as a program each year due to the dedication and commitment of the students, faculty, and dairy center staff.


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Undergraduate Student


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