Maria Navarro Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor Agricultural Leadership, Education & Communication
Portrait of Maria Navarro
Contact Information 706-542-8913

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Portrait of Maria Navarro

Curriculum Vitae (PDF)



  • Ph.D. - Agricultural Education, Texas A&M University (2004)
  • BS/MS equivalent - Agricultural Engineering, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Lleida, Spain (1992)



Dr. Maria Navarro, a professor of interdisciplinary education, has worked in international development and agricultural education in the U.S., Europe, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Western Asia. She completed an undergraduate degree in agricultural engineering in 1992 and then worked in the International Center for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM – IAMZ) until she moved to the US to complete her Ph.D. Since 2005 she has been on the faculty of the University of Georgia. From 2017 to 2021, she was the associate director/dean of the UGA Honors College and the Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities (CURO).


Teaching Activities

Currently, Dr. Navarro teaches the following courses:

  • ALDR/AFST/LACS 3820 and 3820H Reflections on Fighting Hunger
  • AESC 3910 and 6910 International Agriculture Internship
  • ALDR 4610/6610 Morocco Study Abroad: Comparative Analysis of Agriculture, Community, and Organizational Development
  • ALDR 4710/6710 International Agricultural Development
  • ALDR 8030 Diffusion of Innovations
  • ALDR 8890 Leading Change Capstone
  • In addition, she teaches a First Year Odyssey seminar, a graduate seminar in the scholarship of teaching and learning, and offers undergraduate students additional experiential learning opportunities through undergraduate research and special topics courses.


Research Interests

Dr. Navarro is focused on High-Impact Practices (HIPs) and Interdisciplinary Education Research in higher education. Some current research projects include the following:

  • Assess impact of HIPs on student academic, personal development, and professional gains. Special focus on FYOs, undergraduate research, study abroad, service-learning, and writing-intensive courses;
  • Explore how different interventions, including transformation of formal and operation aspects of the curriculum and faculty development affect elements of HIPs, student access and equity, and impact on students;
  • Integrate STEM and social sciences: Transform higher education for a more global, socially conscious, and effective curriculum.


Representative samples of competitive grants with other co-PIs

  • Interdisciplinary graduate research and education in sustainable food systems (USDA-NIFA-HEP, $246,000);
  • Enhancing the learning experience of national needs fellows in food and nutrition for health. USDA-NIFA-HEP. $238,500.
  • Teaching locally, engaging globally: Enhancing the undergraduate curriculum (USDA, $459,770);
  • Empowering faculty to deliver graduate distance education courses (USDA, $138,099);
  • Integrating humanistic studies into engineering education (USDA, $98,500).


Recent Awards

  • 2018 Fellow, Association for International Agricultural and Extension Education;
  • 2017 D.W. Brooks Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching;
  • 2017 Lothar Tresp Outstanding Honors Professor;
  • 2016 Outstanding Graduate Faculty Mentor Award. Agricultural Leadership, Education, and Communication (UGA);
  • 2014 UGA Richard B. Russell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching;
  • 2012 United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National New Teacher Award;
  • 2011 J. Hatten Howard III Award, UGA Honors Program.


Recent Publications

Holdridge, G.A., Sarmiento, F.O., Pilaar, S.E. , Boley, B., Reap, J.K., Mcdonald, E.A., Navarro, M., Hitchner, S.L. and Shelhas, J.W. (2020). Feeding Futures Framed: Rediscovering Biocultural Diversity in Sustainable Foodscapes. Pp. 235-251. In: Sarmiento, F.O. and Larry M. Frolich (eds). The Elgar Companion to Geography, Transdisciplinarity and Sustainability. Edward Elgar Publishing. Massachusetts, USA. 428pp.

Urban, E. R., Navarro, M., Borron, A. (2018). TPACK to GPACK? The examination of the technological pedagogical content knowledge framework as a model for global integration into college of agriculture classrooms. Teaching and Teacher Education, 73, 81-89. Doi: /
Urban, E., Navarro, M., & Borron, A. (2017). Long-term impacts of a faculty development program for the internationalization of curriculum in higher education. Journal of Agricultural Education, 58(3), 219-238.

Navarro, M., Foutz, T. L., Patrick Singer, K., & Thompson, S. (2016). Development of a pedagogical model to help engineering faculty design interdisciplinary curricula. International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 28(2), 372-384.

Kincy, N. Fuhrman, N. E., Navarro, M., & Knauft, D. (2016). Predicting teacher likelihood to use school gardens: A case study. Applied Environmental Education & Communication, 15(2), 138-149. doi: 10.1080/1533015X.2016.1164096

Romagosa, I., Navarro, M., Heath, S., & López-Francos, A. (eds.) (2015). Agricultural Higher Education in the 21st century. A global challenge in knowledge transfer to meet world demands for food security and sustainability. Zaragoza: CIHEAM. 229 pp. Options Méditerranéenes, Series A,113. ISSN: 1016-121-X – ISBN: 2-85352-551-1

Foutz, T., Patrick Singer K., Navarro, M., & Thompson, S (2015). Investigating the extent that an integrative learning module broadens the perception of first year students about the engineering profession. American Journal of Engineering Education, 6(2), 99-112. doi:

Navarro M., Heath S. B., Lopez-Francos, A., & Romagosa, I. (2015). Report and conclusions: Agricultural Higher Education in the 21st Century. OPTIONS Méditerranéennes, Séries A(113), 5-11.

Shinn, G., Navarro M., & Briers, G. 2015). Role of quality assurance and program accreditation in supporting development of innovative agricultural curricula. OPTIONS Méditerranéennes, Séries A(113), 153-170.

Daniel, J. B., Duncan, D., Navarro, M., & Fuhrman, N. (2014). Experiential learning for Extension professionals: A cross- cultural immersion program. Journal of Extension, 52(3), 3FEA4, 16 pages [online], Available at

Paterson, A., Cox, S., Kong, W., & Navarro, M. (2013). Chapter 8: Viewpoint: Multiple-harvest sorghums toward improved food security. In C. Batello, S. Cox, L. Wade, N. Pogna, A. Bozzini, & J. Choptiany (Eds.): Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services in agricultural production: Perennial crops for food security. pp. 57-67. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome.

Self, C., Morgan, A. C., Fuhrman, N. E., & Navarro, M. (2013). An evaluation of the Health Rocks program: Implications for program improvement. Journal of Drug Education, 43(1), 49-63. doi:10.2190/DE.43.1.d

Tippens, A., Ricketts, J. C., Morgan, A. C., Navarro, M., & Flanders, F. B. (2013). Retention and attrition among teachers of agriculture in Georgia. Journal of Agricultural Education, 54(4), 58-72. doi:10.5032/jae.2013.04058

Herndon, M. C., Behnke, A. O., Navarro, M., Daniel, J. B., & Storm, J. (2013, February). Needs and perceptions of Cooperative Extension educators serving Latino populations in the South. Journal of Extension, 51(1)(1FEA7), 8 pages [online]. Available at

Harder, A., Lamm, A., Roberts, T. G., Navarro, M., & Ricketts, J. (2012). Using a preflective activity to identify faculty beliefs prior to an international professional development experience. Journal of Agricultural Education, 53(4), 17-28. doi:10.5032/JAE.2012.04017

Navarro, M. (2011, 2013). The Millennium Development Goals and agriculture in rural Sub-Saharan Africa. In I. S. Aderibigbe & A. Ojo (Eds.), Continental Complexities: A Multidisciplinary Introduction to Africa (1st and Revised Edition). Cognella Academic Publishing. San Diego, CA.

Foutz, T. L., Navarro, M., Hill, R. B., Thompson, S. A., Miller, K., & Riddleberger, D. (2011). Using the discipline of agricultural engineering to integrate math and science. Journal of STEM Education: Innovations and Research, 12(1 & 2), 24-32. Available at[]=1577

Dooley, K. E., Roberts, G., Navarro, M., Harder, A., Murphrey, T., Ricketts, J., & Lindner, J. (2011). Teaching locally, engaging globally to enhance the undergraduate curriculum: A social science research and evaluation perspective. Journal of Agricultural Science and Technology, 5(5), 24-32.