In 1918, Dickson began working with the USDA and received a joint appointment at the University of Wisconsin in 1919. He worked primarily on cereal and forage crops, studying a wide variety of pathogens and diseases. He taught a field crop diseases course, for which he wrote the popular Diseases of Field Crops, first printed in 1947. He helped to develop soil temperature tanks at Wisconsin, worked on Fusarium head scab, and studied the role of soil temperature on seedling blight of wheat and corn. In the 1930s, Dickson made a trip to Europe and the USSR to collect germplasm for breeding programs in the United States.
(Submitted for publication in July 2008.)