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 Course Title:   Agroecology: An Ecological Approach to Agriculture

 Title Abbreviation:   AGROECOLOGY: ECOL APP/AG

 Department:    ENVAG

 Course #:    101

 Credits:    5

 Variable:     No

 IUs:    5.5

 CIP:    n/a

 EPC:    n/a

 REV:    2014

 Course Description  

Survey of sustainable agriculture particularly in the Pacific Northwest. Explore crop biodiversity, weed and pest management, livestock production and organic crop propagation. Includes water use and pollution, natural resource conservation and energy use on sustainable farms.



Additional Course Details

Contact Hours (based on 11 week quarter)

Lecture: 44

Lab: 22

Other: 0

Systems: 0

Clinical: 0

Intent: Distribution Requirement(s) Status:  

Vocational Preparatory Required for certificate  

Equivalencies At Other Institutions

Other Institution Equivalencies Table
Institution Course # Remarks

Learning Outcomes

After completing this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Compare the practices and sustainability of various models of ecological and industrialized agriculture.
  2. Analyze soil characteristics and suitability for plant growth.
  3. Understand the biological, chemical and physical conditions required for plant growth and reproduction, and how these are manipulated to enhance food production.
  4. Identify common crop plants, weeds and pests in Western Washington.
  5. Communicate sustainable agricultural principles and practices.
  6. Evaluate the effect of agricultural practices on the environment, human health and the economy.
  7. Discuss energy alternatives and applications for large and small scale agricultural applications.
  8. Recognize the key components of the Pacific Northwest’s food system, and the complexities of the interactions between them.

General Education Learning Values & Outcomes

Revised August 2008 and affects outlines for 2008 year 1 and later.

0. Application and Integration

Definition: Applying information from one or more disciplines and/or field experiences in new contexts (Outcome 0.1); developing integrated approaches or responses to personal, academic, professional, and social issues (Outcomes 0.2-0.5).

Outcomes: Students will be able to . . .
0.1 Apply theories and concepts studied in the classroom to field, clinical, shop, research, or laboratory settings.

4. Community & Cultural Diversity

Definition: Recognizing the value of human communities and cultures from multiple perspectives through a critical understanding of their similarities and differences.

Outcomes: Students will be able to . . .
4.5 Adapt to and function effectively in communities and cultures different from one's own.

5. Global & Local Awareness & Responsibility

Definition: Understanding the complexity and interdependence of, and stewardship responsibilities to, local and global communities and environments.

Outcomes: Students will be able to . . .
5.4 Understand the concept of local/global stewardship, and its ethical components, to communities and environments.
5.5 Demonstrate ethical practices as part of stewardship to local/global communities and environments.

6. Individual Awareness & Responsibility

Definition: Understanding, managing, and taking responsibility for one’s learning and behavior in varied and changing environments.

Outcomes: Students will be able to . . .
6.1 Identify ethical and healthy choices and apply these personally, socially, academically, and professionally.

Course Contents

  1. Conventional agriculture; agroecological origins and history.
  2. Agroecosystem concepts and principles.
  3. Plant/crop-environment interactions with soil, water, humidity, rainfall, sunlight, temperature, organisms, wind, and fire.
  4. Ozone depletion, global warming, and acid precipitation impacts on plants/crops.
  5. Environmental and agroecosystem heterogeneity.
  6. Plant/crop dispersal, establishment, and niche (population ecology, etc.)
  7. Agroecosystem genetic resources; plant/crop species interactions (community ecology, etc.)
  8. Agroecosystem diversity, disturbance, succession, resiliency, and management.
  9. Agroecosystem energetics.
  10. Animals in agroecosystems.
  11. Converting to ecologically-based agriculture; sustainability in agriculture indicators.
  12. Landscape-level natural ecosystem and agroecosystem interactions.
  13. Culture, community, and sustainability in agriculture.
  14. Sustainable agroecosystems and food systems.