Instructional Unit Links
Unit 1 - The
American Enterprise System
Unit 2 -
Cooperative Business Principles
Unit 3 - The Structure
Unit 4 -
Finance and Taxation of Cooperatives
Unit 5 - The
Cooperative Business Team: Members and Directors - Policy & Control
Unit 6 - The
Cooperative Business Team: Manager and Employees - Coordination &
Unit 7 - Mini
Cooperative Business Experience
List (Reports & PowerPoint Presentations)
each unit, the instructor follows the discussion guide, using corresponding
PowerPoint slides, handouts (exercises in some cases), and references. The
Instructor may administer a quiz to complete the unit where applicable and
- Entire Package (All 7 Units)
This instructor's guide, Understanding Cooperatives, is designed for use by secondary and adult
teachers of agricultural education courses. It is also readily adaptable
for use by post-secondary instructors, as well as for other cooperative
educators. The units are designed to be generic in content, and should be
supplemented with local, State, or company examples and situations.
All informational and reference materials
are included in electronic format for this program. However, teacher and
student references in the Cooperative Information Report (CIR) series are
available in hard copies at no charge upon request from USDA Rural
Development's Cooperative Programs.
All PowerPoint slides corresponding to the
lesson guides may be used as is, or readapted as the instructor wishes, to
fit into any cooperative education program.
For each Unit, all the applicable teaching
documents (i.e., the unit's introduction and directions, discussion guide,
index, handouts, case study exercises, and quizzes) are included in .pdf
format for easy printing by the instructor. The .pdf file is included on
the main page of the Unit. The entire teaching package (all 7 units,
excluding PowerPoint slides and references) is printable from this Index
Unit 1 -
The American Business Enterprise
System. Teaches the student how
businesses are organized in the United States, identifies the
characteristics of each form of business, and discusses how the members
and/or owners benefit from each.
Unit 2 -
Cooperative Business Principles. Identifies
the basic concepts that separate a cooperative business from other business
forms and explores cooperative principles.
Unit 3 -
The Structure of Cooperatives.
Teaches the traditional areas that classify cooperatives by financial,
geographical, control, and functional structures. The unit also explores a
variety of other structural arrangements modern cooperatives are using in
today's changing economic environment.
Unit 4 -
Finance and Taxation of Cooperatives.
Teaches about cooperative financing and how cooperatives are taxed. Special
emphasis is places on the different methods used by members to finance
their cooperative business.
Unit 5 -
The Cooperative Business Team: Members and Directors - Policy & Control. Teaches the rights and responsibilities of cooperative
members as they participate in the cooperative either in their role as a
member/patron, or as an elected director of the cooperative.
Unit 6 -
The Cooperative Business Team: Manager and Employees - Coordination &
Operations. Teaches the responsibilities
of cooperative managers and employees. Instruction centers on the
separation of function between management and employees.
Unit 7 -
Mini Cooperative Business Experience.
Applying knowledge from the previous units, students work within the framework
of a select service or marketing project. Beginning with the
pre-organization activities and ending with the distribution of earned
income, the instruction becomes more than just classroom exercises.