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ExtensionBot to answer ag, Extension questions

Oklahoma State University is developing an ExtensionBot, an artificial intelligence chatbot to answer questions from cooperative Extension systems across the country.

Gail Ellis, Editorial Communications Coordinator

May 9, 2024

2 Min Read
The ExtensionBot tool provides information on community health, family and consumer sciences, 4-H youth development, and agricultural and natural resources from Extension systems nationwide.Mitchell Alcala

A new online tool to help people quickly find factual, proven information on agriculture and Extension topics is in its final phase of development. Oklahoma State University Agriculture and the Extension Foundation are preparing the official launch of ExtensionBot, an artificial intelligence chatbot that provides expertise from Cooperative Extension systems across the country.

ExtensionBot will give Extension educators, volunteers and the public unlimited access to information in all Extension areas. Its narrative interface combined with AI technology will also improve accessibility and use of Extension content that currently exists online. OSU Extension is a public resource for practical information on community health, family and consumer sciences, 4-H youth development, and agricultural and natural resources.

The tool will continue to modernize the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service and build a more robust list of resources to serve Oklahomans. ExtensionBot amplifies the reach of scientific and applied research conducted by Extension personnel to connect with residents, enrich their lives, address trending topics, and recommend methods and strategies that support a vibrant Oklahoma economy and workforce landscape.

Human expertise plus AI

Related:Oklahoma cautiously optimistic for cotton

“Our goal is to deliver trustworthy, research-based knowledge coupled with the longstanding principles and expertise of OSU Extension and other peer Extension systems,” said Jayson Lusk, vice president and dean of OSU Agriculture. “ExtensionBot will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of public inquiries into Extension topics. It combines the best of our human expertise and research with AI technology to inform a national audience.”

The project’s developers in OSU Agriculture and other partner universities are focused on respecting the privacy of users while connecting them to local Extension systems. ExtensionBot preserves the ownership and attribution of Extension specialists and experts nationwide.

“ExtensionBot is more accurate than similar tools because the source data is curated and is much more precise than content resourced by ChatGPT and other AI services,” said Damona Doye, OSU Extension associate vice president. “We use content from reliable Extension system partners. The more data we receive from Extension services, the more relevant, up-to-date and locally branded answers we can provide.”

Sourced information

More than 20 Extension services currently source information for ExtensionBot in its pilot phase. The nationwide public launch is expected later in 2024. Anyone can explore the digital tool by clicking on the cowboy hat icon at the bottom right of

Related:Drought prompts shift from row crops to cattle

In partnership with land-grant universities, ExtensionBot is managed by the Extension Foundation and funded with grant money from the New Technologies for Ag Extension program, available through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

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About the Author(s)

Gail Ellis

Editorial Communications Coordinator, Oklahoma State University

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