Sustainable Soil Management: Soil for life

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8/10 stars
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edX online courses
Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Berkeley, are just some of the schools that you have at your fingertips with edX. Through massive open online courses (MOOCs) from the world's best universities, you can develop your knowledge in literature, math, history, food and nutrition, and more. These online classes are taught by highly-regarded experts in the field. If you take a class on computer science through Harvard, you may be tau...
Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Berkeley, are just some of the schools that you have at your fingertips with edX. Through massive open online courses (MOOCs) from the world's best universities, you can develop your knowledge in literature, math, history, food and nutrition, and more. These online classes are taught by highly-regarded experts in the field. If you take a class on computer science through Harvard, you may be taught by David J. Malan, a senior lecturer on computer science at Harvard University for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. But there's not just one professor - you have access to the entire teaching staff, allowing you to receive feedback on assignments straight from the experts. Pursue a Verified Certificate to document your achievements and use your coursework for job and school applications, promotions, and more. EdX also works with top universities to conduct research, allowing them to learn more about learning. Using their findings, edX is able to provide students with the best and most effective courses, constantly enhancing the student experience.

Provider Subject Specialization
Sciences & Technology
Business & Management
22042 reviews

Course Description

Soil is the earth’s fragile skin that anchors all life. We depend on soil to build our homes and cities, to grow crops for food and raise livestock, to support transportation and enable recreation. Yet we disregard this crucial and precious resource that lies right under our feet.

This introductory environmental studies course will explore the importance of soil to life on earth, the issues, processes and societal challenges underlying soil degradation – and what can be done to ensure sustainable soil management for the future. The threats to our soil span deforestation, erosion, overgrazing, use of agrochemicals, pollution and climate change. Learn what you can do to make a difference in protecting this vital natural resource.

Reviews 8/10 stars
9 Reviews for Sustainable Soil Management: Soil for life

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Rankings are based on a provider's overall CourseTalk score, which takes into account both average rating and number of ratings. Stars round to the nearest half.

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Jeffrey profile image
Jeffrey profile image

Jeffrey

8/10 starsDropped
1 year, 5 months ago
I think Soil For Life is a great course, unfortunately, due to an economic difficulty I had to abandon the course early on. It is my hope it may be available again when I am able to complete the course. Jeffrey
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Nor Abdi Hassan profile image
Nor Abdi Hassan profile image

Nor Abdi Hassan

10/10 starsTaking Now
2 years, 3 months ago
i think is very very importance in our country and our life because of no one can prevented to use natural resources they including inside our earth like soil and itc the first we studies the value of earth
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Pablo Rodriguez profile image
Pablo Rodriguez profile image

Pablo Rodriguez

8/10 starsTaking Now
2 years, 11 months ago
It's important since a work in that matter. I will teach to the students the most impotant sudjects.
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Yessica Martinez profile image
Yessica Martinez profile image

Yessica Martinez

8/10 starsTaking Now
2 years, 11 months ago
I´m very excited about this course and all the subjects. Specially the water erosion module, actually i´m working in this subject trying to understanding the erosion processes in a mountainus watershed in south america and how this is correlated with climate change. This course will be very helpfull for my research.
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Cary Clark profile image
Cary Clark profile image

Cary Clark

6/10 starsTaking Now
2 years, 11 months ago
I am hoping the course will touch upon the shifting paradigm of tillage farming to no-till farming that seems to be spreading as a one of the options of climate smart agriculture for its benefits of soil health, ecosystems service provision and saving biodiversity below and above the ground.
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Sara Panis profile image
Sara Panis profile image

Sara Panis

10/10 starsTaking Now
2 years, 11 months ago
Additional information by the course staff: Module 1 is about soil formation, functions and threats. It will be the introduction to the MOOC, introducing you to why soils are so important and the major issues/threats related to soil. After this module you’ll be able to name key soil functions and the roles that soils play as well as some of the leading soil degradation issues around the world. You will learn how soils are formed and about some key soil characteristics. This is the first obligatory module to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll identify soil functions in a landscape, and learn how to determine the basic texture and structure of soil in your own environment. You’ll also be able to practice retrieving soil data from the ISRIC SoilGrids. Module 2 is about soil water processes. It will explain the importance of soil water processes for soil functions and services. It will teach you about fundamental ... Additional information by the course staff: Module 1 is about soil formation, functions and threats. It will be the introduction to the MOOC, introducing you to why soils are so important and the major issues/threats related to soil. After this module you’ll be able to name key soil functions and the roles that soils play as well as some of the leading soil degradation issues around the world. You will learn how soils are formed and about some key soil characteristics. This is the first obligatory module to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll identify soil functions in a landscape, and learn how to determine the basic texture and structure of soil in your own environment. You’ll also be able to practice retrieving soil data from the ISRIC SoilGrids. Module 2 is about soil water processes. It will explain the importance of soil water processes for soil functions and services. It will teach you about fundamental soil water processes and factors involved. We will show you the causes, consequences, and concerns of reduced soil wettability, compaction and soil sealing, and the potential for avoiding and correcting them. This is an obligatory module to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll put theory into practice by at home demonstrations to see the key topics, and by looking for evidence of the key topics in your own surroundings. Module 3 is about the dynamics of soil fertility and importance of soil organic matter. This module will teach you what determines soil fertility, which nutrients are needed for the growth of plants, and summarize the processes that cause a loss of soil fertility and the effects of that. It will show you what nutrient surpluses and nutrient deficits are. You will learn about the role of soil organic matter in nutrient dynamics, soil water holding capacity and climate change mitigation, as well as the threats to soil organic matter. This module will give you examples of environmental consequences and how to reduce phosphorus losses from agricultural soils. This is an obligatory module to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll start your own pot experiment and observe the effect of soil nutrients on plant growth. Module 4 is about loss of soil biodiversity. We will show you the main groups of soil organisms and how they interact. This module will explain the relation between soil biodiversity and soil functions, and summarize the processes that cause a loss of soil biodiversity and their effects. You will also hear about measures and strategies to prevent and resolve the loss of soil biodiversity. This is an obligatory module to be able to earn a certificate. In this module you’ll get into the field and discover the rich life under our feet by executing simple tests. Module 5 is about water erosion. This module will explain the processes involved in water erosion, the causes of water erosion and its effects on soil functions. We will share with you the measures and strategies to prevent and resolve water erosion. This is an elective module, you need to elect at least two to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll investigate the types and causes of water erosion present in your environment. Module 6 is about wind erosion. It will explain the processes involved in wind erosion, the causes of wind erosion and its effects on soil functions. We will share with you the measures and strategies to prevent and resolve wind erosion. This is an elective module, you need to elect at least two to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll build your own mini wind tunnel to put theory into practice and test how erodible different types of soil are and the effectiveness of some counter measures. Module 7 is about soil pollution. In this module we’ll make a distinction between point pollution and diffuse pollution. We will explain the main sources of soil pollution, how different pollutants behave in the soil and why it’s important to know about the natural background levels of heavy metals in soils. This module will share with you how soil properties affect pollutants, and also explain the concept and importance of bioavailability of heavy metals in soil. Finally this module will introduce you to dose-response relationships and how they can be used. In the end we provide an overview of some soil remediation techniques and explain the concept of phytoremediation. This module is an elective module, you need to elect at least two to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll be asked to visit your local farm store to discover what chemicals are used in your environment. Module 8 is about soil salinization. We’ll explain the process of salinization, the causes of salinization and the effects on soil functions. This module will show you the value of the Leaching Requirement equation for managing soil salinization. Finally we will share with you measures and strategies to prevent and resolve salinization. This module is an elective module, you need to elect at least two to be able to earn a certificate. During this module you’ll follow the experiment of Dr. Ritzema and discover the influence of salt on soils and plants. Module 9 is about achieving sustainable soil management. We will introduce you to the factors that influence farmers’ decisions about farming practices. This module will teach you how to execute a cost benefit analysis (CBA) and a multi criteria analysis (MCA). We will discuss how to achieve sustainable soil management at farm and landscape level, and also the role scenario analysis and the concept of scaling-up. Finally this module will cover the role of public policies in sustainable soil management. This is an obligatory module to be able to earn a certificate. In this module you’ll play the African Highland Farmer Game and learn how challenging it can be to sustainably manage your plot of land. You’ll also discover sustainable land management in your own country. Module 10 contains the final exam and concludes this MOOC. While studying the previous modules you have learned a lot about the issues, processes and societal challenges underlying soil health, soil degradation and sustainable soil management. One of the main goals of this course was to introduce you to information and tools that will motivate you to contribute to ensuring sustainable soil management for the future. You’ll be asked to synthetize the information acquired in the MOOC in a case study and present a plan of action that inspires the target audience. You’ll critically evaluate the contributions of peers and give constructive feedback. The main topic is soil degradation in your environment and how to effectively reduce and reverse that through more sustainable soil management.
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Abdallah Farah profile image
Abdallah Farah profile image

Abdallah Farah

10/10 starsTaking Now
2 years, 11 months ago
As i love farm & planing to have it in future its good to have a soil management course. thanks a lot giving this opportunity.
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joss umuganwa profile image
joss umuganwa profile image

joss umuganwa

8/10 starsCompleted
2 years, 11 months ago
I would like to learn about soil as I want to help farmers in Africa to in quality soil I have a bit of experince
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Jesse Linton profile image
Jesse Linton profile image

Jesse Linton

8/10 starsCompleted
3 years ago
Can i get more details regarding the course out line. As i would want to do a course in soil nutrition and assessment.
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Rankings are based on a provider's overall CourseTalk score, which takes into account both average rating and number of ratings. Stars round to the nearest half.