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Agricultural Science

Cengage vs. iCEV: Which is the Best High School Agriculture Curriculum?

June 5th, 2023 | 9 min. read

Joshua Witherspoon

Joshua Witherspoon

After serving as a Texas FFA state officer in 2018, Josh Witherspoon joined the iCEV team as a part-time employee for 3 years before taking on the role of content development specialist in 2022. Witherspoon holds a bachelor's degree in agricultural communications from Texas Tech University, in which his experience and proficiency in writing, marketing and CTE allow him to effectively communicate the successes of CTE educators and students and the value iCEV has to offer.

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Regardless of whether you’re new to teaching high school agriculture science or have plenty of experience under your belt, implementing the best curriculum for your students is key to their success in and out of your classroom. But with so many options out there, it can be hard to know where to find the right resources. 

As a dedicated provider of agriculture science curriculum, educators often ask us how Cengage compares to iCEV’s agriculture science curriculum. While both providers offer high-quality curriculum resources, one may offer your students more value than the other, depending on your course and students’ unique needs.

So how do Cengage and iCEV line up? What courses do each offer, and which would be the ideal fit for your classroom?   

In this article, you’ll explore some of the most common questions teachers ask when comparing Cengage and iCEV for high school agriculture curriculum: 

  • What Agriculture Science Courses Do Cengage and iCEV Offer?
  • What is the Instructional Format of Cengage and iCEV Agriculture Science Courses?
  • Who is the Intended Audience of Cengage and iCEV?
  • How Much Do Cengage and iCEV Cost?

By the end of this article, you’ll better understand what each provider offers to decide which curriculum would work best for your students.

What Agriculture Science Courses Do Cengage and iCEV Offer?

Cengage and iCEV both offer multiple agricultural science courses. But it’s important to choose a curriculum that covers the courses you teach. In this section, you’ll explore more about what each provider offers and what implementing their curriculum might look like for your program.  

Courses Offered By Cengage

Cengage is a well-known producer of educational materials and technology for a wide variety of subject areas including agriculture science

When looking at Cengage’s curriculum resources, educators will notice they offer hardcover books and eTextbooks, as well as a digital platform that houses instructional materials and student coursework.   

Cengage provides high school agriculture curriculum for nine areas including: 

  • General Agriculture 
  • Animal Science 
  • General Agriscience 
  • Agricultural Mechanics  
  • Veterinary Technology  
  • Veterinary Technician 
  • General Horticulture 
  • Environmental Science 
  • Landscape Design 

They offer a wide variety of textbook options within each of the nine agricultural science areas. What this means is you’ll have multiple textbook options to choose from regardless of which of the nine areas you’re seeking curriculum for. For example, if you’re an educator looking for an animal science textbook, Cengage has 11 options from which to choose. 

MindTap, Cengage’s separately-available online platform, allows students to hone skill sets and interact with concepts learned through video, activities, and assessments in a blended learning environment. 

Courses Offered By iCEV

iCEV is a prominent producer of Career and Technical Education (CTE) curriculum for students in grades K-12. 

iCEV offers 22 standards-aligned agriculture science courses for high school including: 

  • Agricultural Equipment Design & Fabrication
  • Animal Science
  • Agricultural Mechanics & Metal Technologies 
  • Agricultural Power Systems
  • Agricultural Structure Systems 
  • Energy & Natural Resources Technology
  • Equine Science 
  • Floral Design 
  • Food Processing 
  • Food Science & Technology
  • Food Technology & Safety
  • Forestry & Woodland Ecosystems
  • Horticulture Science
  • Introduction to Agribusiness 
  • Introduction to Agriscience 
  • Landscape Design, Construction & Maintenance 
  • Plant & Soil Science 
  • Professional Communications  
  • Professional Standards in Agribusiness    
  • Small Animal Care & Management  
  • Veterinary Medical Applications  
  • Wildlife, Fisheries & Ecology Management

The iCEV platform also allows for seamless integration with your chosen Learning Management System (LMS) including integrations with Google Classroom, Schoology, BlackBoard, Clever and Classlink. 

In addition, iCEV hosts 14 industry certifications on its testing platform related to agricultural science, as well as optional preparation materials to equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to be successful on the certification exam.

What is the Instructional Format of Cengage and iCEV Agricultural Science Courses? 

An important factor you must consider when searching for the best high school agriculture curriculum is instructional formatting. Instructional formatting refers to the organization, elements, resources, and tools associated with a curriculum provider. Understanding the instructional format of a curriculum option will allow you to better judge whether the curriculum is a good fit for your students' needs and your instructional goals. 

Instructional Format of Cengage Courses

Housed on the MindTap platform, Cengage’ coursework breaks each chapter of the corresponding textbook into units. Within these units, teachers will find a wide variety of materials to support students as they learn. 

Materials you’ll find within Cengage’s courses include: 

  • Five to eight customizable activities per unit designed to be used as study tools 
  • PowerPoint presentations and videos developed by subject matter experts  
  • Test banks to create and administer customized exams to fit classroom needs 
  • Printable worksheets 

In addition, MindTap allows for seamless access to the eTextbook associated with your course curriculum. 

Instructional Format of iCEV Courses

As a comprehensive curriculum solution, iCEV’s courses provide both structure and flexibility for teachers and students during the learning process. 

In every iCEV course, you’ll find up-to-date information and resources aligned to state and national standards. These resources are delivered in a way that keeps students engaged and teachers well-equipped to meet students' needs. 

  • Materials you’ll find within an iCEV course include: 
  • Lesson plans providing step-by-step guidance for instructors
  • Media-rich presentations and videos featuring industry leaders and professionals  
  • Projects and activities designed to increase information retention
  • Formative Assessments to assess student understanding throughout a unit
  • Summative assessments to understand student understanding at the end of a unit 

As a comprehensive curriculum solution, iCEV’s courses also provide both structure and flexibility in any learning environment including in-person, virtual, and hybrid classrooms. 

Who is the Intended Audience of Cengage and iCEV?

Every curriculum option out there is unique in design and intended audience. As you search for the best curriculum solution for your students, it’s important to keep in mind who the curriculum is designed for. Knowing this will help you better meet your students' needs as well as your own instructional goals.

Intended Audience of Cengage 

Cengage’s agriculture science textbooks are a solid option for teachers looking for a comprehensive resource to center their courses on. They offer a wide variety of textbook options for each of their nine agriculture science areas allowing teachers more options to choose from.  

Cengage’s digital curriculum platform, MindTap, is a good choice for teachers looking for supplemental student coursework to implement alongside other more robust assignments, activities, and projects. 

It should be noted that Cengage doesn’t offer MindTap curriculum for every agriculture science textbook available meaning the course you may teach might not have a digital curriculum to support what students learn in the textbook.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a more engaging and cost-effective curriculum resource, Cengage’s textbook options may not be the best choice. While textbooks serve as a great source of information, they often lack the interactive components that bring learning to life. This may leave you struggling to keep students engaged.

 Printed textbooks also become outdated, leaving you scrambling to keep up with constantly changing industry standards, practices, and expectations. This can lead to teachers spending more money to buy new textbooks every few years. 

Intended Audience of iCEV 

iCEV offers single-subscription access to all its comprehensive, standards-aligned high school agriculture curriculum.  This means with one subscription you gain access to the whole agriculture science curriculum library to create the most impactful and unique learning experience possible for your students.

For teachers looking for a curriculum solution that offers pre-built lesson plans, engaging multimedia-based lessons, customizable activities, hands-on projects, and assessments, iCEV’s agriculture science curriculum could be a solid choice for your students. 

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a supplemental resource and you don't see yourself utilizing the added features that come with iCEV, this might not be the best choice for you. After all, you don't want to pay for something you aren't sure you'll use. 

How Much Do Cengage and iCEV Cost?

Cost is a substantial factor you must weigh into your decision-making when choosing the best curriculum solution for your agriculture science classroom. In this section, you’ll explore the different pricing options for both curriculum providers and what factors influence their costs.

Cost of Cengage

Cengage offers a wide variety of pricing options for each of its products as well as bundling options and campus-wide access.  

Cengage’s hardcover and eTextbooks range from $25- $120 per book or access code. For digital curriculum, MindTap access ranges from $90-$400 per subscription based on the chosen course.

Cengage also offers a variety of bundle options that include an eTextbook and digital curriculum through MindTap. Bundles vary from 4-month student access for $69.99 to 24-month student access for $249.99.

Finally, Cengage provides campus-wide access with flexible pricing options based on campus and classroom size and needs.   

Cost of iCEV

The cost of an iCEV subscription depends on a few factors including which subject area you teach and the number of students who will need access. 

For example, if you purchase an iCEV agriculture science curriculum subscription, the cost starts at $1,500. With your single subscription you gain access to over 20 comprehensive high school agriculture courses and a wide range of curriculum resources. 

Which is the Best High School Agriculture Curriculum Curriculum for Your Students? 

As an agriculture science instructor, finding the best curriculum for your students can be challenging. There are a lot of factors to consider, from making sure the materials are well-formatted and engaging to ensuring your students are the intended audience. 

If you’re an educator looking for a comprehensive textbook resource with a supplemental digital curriculum to implement alongside other more robust resources, Cengage’s agriculture science curriculum might be a good choice for your course. 

On the other hand, if you’re looking for single-subscription access to over 24 comprehensive digital courses including multimedia-based lessons, customizable activities and assessments, iCEV’s high school agriculture curriculum could be a solid choice for your students.  

Does iCEV sound like it will be a good fit for your classroom goals? Start your free trial and gain access to hundreds of hours of engaging, easily implemented materials! Start Your Trial