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Refers to a nationwide continuing education system that is based on the academic programs of the land grant colleges of agriculture (see Cooperative Extension System). The term also is the former name of the USDA agency that distributed federal funds to the states under the Smith-Lever Act of 1914 to carry out Extension programs. The 1994 USDA reorganization merged this agency with the Cooperative State Research Service (CSRS) to form the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service.