The Department of Crop Science is considered as a centre of excellence in Sri Lanka for teaching and research related to Crop Sciences and Biostatistics with a reputation for maintaining high academic standards and a strong research culture. The Department offers a comprehensive set of courses in all four years of the B.Sc. Agricultural Technology and Management degree program including production and management of field, horticultural, export agricultural and plantation crops; micro propagation and tissue culture; controlled environment agriculture; crop physiology; agroforestry and forestry. The Department also offers basic courses in Crop Sciences to the other degree programs on Food Science and Technology and Animal Science and Fisheries offered by the Faculty. The Department is primarily responsible for the semester-long intensive residential field practical program at Mahailluppallama, which provides on-farm experience, knowledge and skills of dry zone agriculture. The Department also plays a unique role by offering courses on biostatistics for all students of the faculty. For students opting to specializing in Crop Sciences, the Department offers two advanced modules titled, “Advanced Crop Production Technology” and “Plantation Management and Forestry” in the 6th, 7th and 8th semesters. These attract a significant number of students annually.
The Department has 27 academic staff members specialized in various disciplines and 20 academic support staff. The staff with their qualifications and experience provides the students an opportunity to gather relevant knowledge and enhance their practical and quantitative skills. Teaching and research in the Department is amply supported by its infrastructure with modern lecture theatres and well equipped laboratories. The Department also manages the University Experimental Station at Dodangolla covering 80 ha, which has a seed laboratory, nurseries, greenhouses, mushroom unit, forest plantations, a tissue culture laboratory and residential facility for over 80 people. The experimental station also provides facilities for field research programs of students and staff in the intermediate zone of Sri Lanka.
The members of the department are actively involved in teaching, research and academic administration through Boards of Study in Crop Science and Biostatistics at the Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture (PGIA). A wide range of courses are offered under the two Boards of Study and the staff of the Department serves as course instructors and research supervisors of the postgraduate programmes of the PGIA leading to M.Sc., M.Phil. and Ph.D. degrees. In addition, majority of the academic staff also serve in national and international scientific and policy making bodies.