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Agronomy I 100 Hours Certificate Course
Learn About Agronomy I
Agronomy course online. Agronomy offers many job opportunities. Demand for agronomists is strong; whether as a farmer, farm employers, or providing technical support or marketing services in the agriculture sector.
Learn the principles and practices that underpin commercial broadacre crop production (agronomy) and develop an ability to interpret and apply the information practically, on a farm.
Crop types are: Cereal Crops, Oil Seeds, Fibre Crops, Legumes Crops, and Fodder Crops.
Agronomy I, distance learning course is ideal for those who want to enter the agriculture industry. Employment opportunities in the highly sought-after field of agronomy are plentiful. The modules listed below provide a solid foundation for further studies in this subject area.
Existing farmers will find this course full of practical knowledge that will enable them to understand how best to cultivate field crops. Expand your knowledge and your skills.
Agronomy II (Grains)
Agronomy III (Root Crop Production)
Agronomy IV (Farming Legumes Crops)
Agronomy V (Oil Crops)
Agronomy VI (Fibre Crops)
Agronomy Advanced Certificate – 400 hours
Lesson Structure: Agronomy
- Introduction to Agronomic Practices
- Crop Types
- Plant structure and Function
- Transpiration rate
- Selection Criteria for Plants
- Understanding monoculture
- Row Crops
- Cover Crops
- Crop Operations
- Planter types
- Culture – What influences Crop Growth?
- Problems with soils
- Loss of soil problems
- Soil sodicity
- Soil acidity and alkalinity
- Improving soils
- Cultivation techniques
- Plant nutrition
- Nutrient deficiencies
- Organic fertilisers
- Soil life
- Insect Pests
- Crop Husbandry Practices
- Identifying weeds
- Ways to control weeds
- Chemical crop protection
- Preparing plant pathogens for microscopic observation
- Culturing Pathogens
- Natural pest and disease control
- Physical controls
- Organic sprays and dusts
- Seed and Seed Management
- Seed storage
- Types of seed storage
- Seed vigour testing
- Dormancy factors affecting germination
- Germination treatments
- Types of media
- Media derived from rock or stone
- Media derived from synthetic materials
- Organic media
- Salinty build up
- Arable Cereal Crops
- Cereal crops
- Zadock scale
- Sugar cane
- Hay and Silage
- Quality control
- Storage and handling
- Hydroponic fodder
- Arable Broadleaf Crops
- Characteristics of broadleaf crops
- Oil crops
- Narrow-leafed lupins
- Faba beans
- Cover crops
- Common legumes
- Crop preparation for harvest
- Crop harvest equipment
- Forage harvesting equipment
- Cereal harvesting equipment
- Root crop harvesting equipment
- Grain storage
- Contract harvesting
- Crop Management – Special Report
- Crop management from planting to post harvest handling
Learning Goals: Agronomy BAG306
- Develop your understanding and confidently describe the nature and scope of agronomic practices within your country and others.
- Discuss what is grown, where it is grown and the diversity of practices used to grow a wide range of crops.
- Learn how to identify factors that affect the success of a crop; including soil condition, climate factors and biological influences such as pests and diseases.
- Clearly desribe significant practices used by farmers in the growing of an agronomic crop; including the management of soils, water, cultivations and crop protection.
- Explain how to achieve successful seed germination for different agronomic crops under different conditions in the field.
- Discuss practices used to farm cereals for harvest and sale as cash crops.
- Discuss practices used to farm broadleaf crops for harvest and sale as cash crops.
- Understand the use of different harvesting equipment and techniques including post harvest handling for a range of different crops.
- Demonstrate your knowledge by producing a management plan for a crop from planting to post harvest handling.
Practical (Set Tasks)
- Go to your local department of primary industries (or equivalent), collect cropping guides on crops grown locally in your area. Ensure your information includes broadleaf, legume and grass (cereal crops). Collect fodder crop information also and find out what the main fodder crops are in your area.
- Obtain pictures of the seed and mid season crop and mature crop. Become familiar with agronomic terms and start a glossary, use library, text and internet searches to complete this task.
- Having looked at what crops are grown in your region, now look at the soil types. What type of soil is common to your region. What are the main features to these soils. That is, what colour is the soil, what texture is it, does it have a high sand or clay content, does the soil drain well, or waterlog? How did this soil form? Write these down as a reference.
- Collect photos of the various planting, cultivating and harvesting equipment used in your country and write brief notes on when and where you would use which machine and for which crop. Do this for a maximum of 5 pieces of equipment.
- Collect samples of your own seed (for 4 different crops), from a local farmer or produce store.
- Perform your own germination test using the cotton wool method.
- Take photos on day 2, and the final day.
- Record the number of seed germinating per day, and then the total number on the final day.
- Develop a management plan for a crop from planting through to post harvest handling.
TYPES OF SEED STORAGE
Seeds are commonly stored in airtight, re-sealable glass or metal containers (not plastic). Paper bags are better then plastic ones although snap-lock plastic bags can be used as long as the seed has been thoroughly air-dried beforehand.
Keep the containers in a cool, dark spot where they are safe from vermin. The best storage is in low humidity using airtight containers. However some seeds such as peas and beans prefer some air so are best stored in bags or envelopes; onions, corn, parsley and parsnip can also be stored this way.
- Seed stored in glass or metal is better than that stored in plastic. Plastic containers give off ethylene gas which is an inhibitor to germination.
- Seed from many of the fleshy fruited species has a short life span, and should be sown as soon as possible or mixed in a one-to-one ratio of moist sand, sphagnum moss, or a peat and perlite mixture, and stored in a cool place. If the root emerges from the seeds during storage, the seedling should be removed and planted immediately.
- At all times seeds, depending on the species, should be placed in envelopes, bags or airtight jars and labelled with the name and date of collection.
- Store seeds in the refrigerator, not the freezer, until you are ready to plant. Longevity is protected by low temperatures, humidity, and darkness. Alternatively store in a cool dark, dry place free from insects if possible. Insect strips may be placed in the paper seed storage bags for further protection.
- Cold storage in a freezer can extend the lifespan of many seeds as low temperatures will slow down the decaying process, however it will also damage some species. Seeds need to be returned to room temperature before they are sown.
Open storage with no controls:
Storage in bins, sacks or paper bags. Fumigation or insecticide/fungicide applications are sometimes necessary. Seeds of many annuals, perennials, vegetables and cereals can be successfully kept this way. Apart from a few exceptions (eg. corn, onion, parsley, parsnip, delphinium, kochia, candytuft), seeds from these groups will normally retain viability for at least a few years.
Cold storage with or without humidity control:
Temperatures below 10oC will improve longevity of virtually any type of seed. Cold storage of tree and shrub seed is recommended if the seed is to be held for more than one year.
Cold moist storage:
Here seed should be stored between 0 and 10oC and in a container which contains some moisture retaining material (eg. Peat or sphagnum moss). Relative humidity should be 80 to 90%.
Examples of species requiring this type of storage are: Acer saccharinum, Carya, Castanea, Corylus, Citrus, Eriobytra (loquat), Fagus, Juglans, Litchi, Persea (Avocado) and Quercus.
Check seed health prior to planting
If seed production crops could be grown in healthy soil, and the plants remained free of disease or infection, the seed harvested from that crop would also be disease-free.
In reality, this is almost impossible to achieve but plants grown in a dry/ arid climate (that is not conducive to the spread of disease) are more likely to have reduced seed-borne disease problems – especially such diseases as blights and viruses.
However, even arid areas will experience wet conditions or wet seasons from time to time which will promote potential insect attacks and disease. Plant diseases will greatly reduce yield. Any pathogens may affect storage quality, germination, market availability, harvest yield, seed appearance, or contain may contain harmful toxins.
In most instances, therefore seed treatments such as fungicides (for disease control) or insecticides (for insect control) are applied to seed before planting.
This helps to prevent the spread of disease, ensures high germination rates and healthy plant growth. Some seed treatment products are also sold as combinations of fungicide and insecticide.
Fungicides are used to:
- Control soil-borne pathogens that cause damping-off, seed decay, blight and root rot
- Control seed-surface borne fungal pathogens such as smut, rust and black-point
- Control internally seed-borne fungal pathogens such as smut fungi
Some systemic fungicidal seed treatments may provide protection against early-season infection by leaf diseases. However most fungal treatment used on seed will not control bacterial pathogens or even all fungal diseases.
Choosing the correct seed or soil treatment is therefore extremely important for the health and longevity of the seed and seedlings. The degree of achievable disease control varies according to:
- the disease organisms present
- the product
- the rate of application
- the environmental conditions
Seed testing is a commercially common practice today for most commercial seed producers. It is used to assess seed quality, purity and viability. The testing procedures for commercial producers in many countries are set by the best practice guidelines under the Rules for Seed Testing of the International Seed Testing Association and the Association of Official Seed Analysts.
Irrelevant of where the seed is produced or by whom (other than for home garden collectors), the guidelines and testing methods set by these associations should be followed.
Seed treatment however, will usually only improve the germination of seed if the poor quality is because of seed-borne disease.
There are several tests designed to evaluate the various qualities of the seed including:
- direct germination
- warm (standard) germination
- cold germination
- excised embryo
- accelerated aging
- tetrazolium testing
The test that is most appropriate for a particular seed depends on its species, the conditions under which it is tested and what the seed is going to be used for.
Assessment is based on a combination of completing all assignments and sitting for a final short one and a half hour exam, in your own location.
If you don’t cope well with exams then you may elect to undertake a project instead. This is a popular option.
In addition, most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson placed before the assignment. This is an opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge and skills and practical experience. This ADL feature is an added bonus not found at most online schools. Set Tasks are not required for assessment.
Some courses also have optional Self-Tests which are available on our online learning platform. These are not available by correspondence or by USB, and do not form part of your overall grade.
How our courses work
- Choose Your Learning Method
You choose how you would like to receive your course material, i.e., Online, USB or Correspondence. The choice is yours. You may also work on online or offline.
- Tutor Allocation
Every student is assigned their own dedicated tutor who is an expert in their subject area. They provide as much or as little individual contact as you require. You can contact your tutor whenever you need – your hours are not limited.
- Feedback and Assignments
Tutor Feedback is an essential component in helping you understand the subject matter. Tutor feedback is given in the form of notes written on the assignment. We encourage you to contact your Tutor where help with clarification and understanding of course material may be required.
Your assignments are located at the end of each lesson. You submit them for marking whenever you are ready. There is no time limit.
- Set Tasks and Self-Tests
Most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson before for the assignment. This is where you get the opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge, skills and practical experience. Many modules also have short Self-Tests.
Once all assignments have been completed you may then elect to sit for a one and half hour exam in your own location. If you prefer not to take the exam you do have the option to undertake a project instead.
Once the exam or project part of the course is completed, your Certificate is then processed. Please allow approximately 4 weeks for this.
- Design Your Own Qualification
ADL offers students the flexibility to self-design their own qualification – bundling together a combination of 100-hour modules into a qualification higher than a certificate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Here is a list of the most often asked FAQ’s.
Q. Why should I enrol with the Academy for Distance Learning?
A. Here at ADL, our students are our priority – we treat everyone as a unique individual.
Q. Do I need to buy text books?
A. No, as each module has been written by highly qualified industry professionals. The content of the material is presented in such a way that text books are not required. However, if you require additional reading your tutor will be able to supply a list.
Q. What happens if I have to stop studying for a while? (eg. become sick, go on holidays, have a baby, move house, etc)
A. It’s OK to take a break and start up your study at a later point in time. Just let us know.
Q. Is there an age limit?
A. There is no maximum age limit. We do however, have a minimum age limit of 18 years. Below that age parental consent would be required.
Q. Are your courses up-to date?
A. Our courses are revised and updated on a rotation system.
Q. Do you have a Cancellation policy?
A. Yes. We have a cancellation policy that is fair and equitable. For further details please click here.
Q. Will I have any opportunity to engage with other students?
A. We have a Student Community group based on facebook! If you don’t have a facebook account already, you could make one just for talking with fellow students on the group.
Q. When can I enrol/start?
A. You may enrol and start at any time of the year – it’s all self- paced.
Q. Can I study from anywhere in the world?
A. Our courses are available to anyone, anywhere in the world from the comfort of your own home. The course content is relevant to any country, culture or economy.
Q. How long do I have to complete the course?
A. You complete the course at any time that is convenient for you.
Q. Completing a 100 hour module – how long will it take?
A. For some students a 100 hour module will take approximately to 3- 6 months to complete. Others take less time and some even longer.
Q. Assessment – how does it work?
A. For each 100 hour module you are assessed by assignments (at the end of each lesson) and a final one and a half hour exam (or you may elect to complete a Project, instead of sitting the exam) – the choice is yours – you sit for the exam in your own location.
Q. I don’t cope well with exams – what can I do?
A. You may elect to undertake a Project (set by your tutor) instead of sitting the exam. Projects are completed from your home and can usually take a couple of weeks to complete.
Q. If my assignment is not up to standard is there an opportunity to resubmit my work?
A. Yes –
Q. How many assignments do I need to complete for each module?
A. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment – so if a course has say, 10 lessons, there would be 10 assignments.
Q. I am having difficulty attending workshops/industry meetings, what can be done?
A. If your course requires attendance at workshops, conferences, or industry meetings; alternative arrangements can be made in your country.
Q. What qualification will I receive?
A. For individual modules, you would be awarded a Certificate endorsed by TQUK (Training Qualifications, UK), providing you complete all assignments and the exam. If you just want to complete only the assignments and not sit for the exam or finish a Project, then a Letter of Achievement would be awarded. For more details on qualifications available please click here.
Q. Can I customize my diploma/higher qualification?
A. Not all educational institution’s certificates /diplomas meet everyone’s needs. The opportunity to Design Your Own Diploma at the Academy (subject to our approval) is an added bonus, not found at other colleges. You choose modules that you think will help you in achieving your goal.
Q. What do I get when I complete the course? Will I receive a transcript?
A. At the completion of all courses and providing all assignments and exam requirements have been met, you will receive your Award and a Transcript.
Q. Our tutors – who are they?
A. We appoint Tutors and require that they must be currently active in their industry, with at least 5 years’ experience in their chosen profession.
Q. Can I contact my tutor at any time?
A. Yes – you have unlimited access to your tutor via email through our Online Classroom. You can always leave a message with ADL requesting your tutor to contact you. You decide on how much or how little contact you wish to have.
Q. Practical work – How is this done?
A. To find out more about this part of the course please visit the section on How Our Courses Work here.
What your tuition fees include
- All Course Material via Online, USB or Correspondence
- Assignments Marked
- Professional Tutor Feedback
- Set Tasks - Practical Exercises to help you develop skills
- Self-Tests – multiple choice questions at the end of lessons in most modules
- Unlimited Personal Tutor Support – via our student classroom
- Committed and Friendly Admin Support – vital to your success
- All ADL Exam or Project fees (exception RHS exams)
- Qualification Certificate
- Official Transcript with assignment grades
- Student Manual
- Academic Writing course (optional - 10 hours only)
- Critical Thinking course (optional - 10 hours only)
- Job Seekers Careers Guide
- Study Tips on How To Study Better
- Career Counselling by ADL Staff
- CV Writing Help, Tips and Advice
There are no hidden extras
FAQ - RHS Theory Qualifications
If you require further details about any of the RHS industry recognised qualifications please, call one of our friendly RHS Course Advisors on +44 (0)1227 789 649 or email: [email protected]
Q: When can I Enrol/Start My RHS Course With ADL?
A: Anytime, Anywhere. There are no enrolment deadlines.
Q: I live Overseas. Can I Study From Overseas?
A: You can study any of the RHS theory qualifications overseas. All courses are offered in English. You will need to email RHS Qualifications direct to arrange sitting for your examination overseas.
Q: Is There a Time Limit for Completing an RHS Qualification?
A: At present there are no time limits. However, RHS is contemplating in the future, the introduction of course time-lines.
Q: Are There Any Entry Requirements (Pre-Requisites)?
A: The RHS Theory courses do not require prerequisites, previous experience or any knowledge of horticulture. You just need passion for all things horticulture.
Q: What Course Should I Start With First? I Am New To RHS Qualifications.
A: We highly recommend that you start with Level 2 – Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance.
Q: What Does ADL Course Material Include?
A: Includes Power Point Presentations, Videos and written course lessons.
Q: When Do Exams Take Place?
A: Exams are held on fixed dates in February and June of each year. You should register as a candidate at least 3 months before these dates, so please do not leave exam registration to the last minute
Q: Where Do I Take My Exams?
A: UK: You take the exams at the RHS Wisley Centre, located between Cobham and Ripley in Surrey or at other authorised RHS centres around the UK.
Overseas: please email RHS qualifications direct for centre information.
Q: Exam Pass Marks?
A: Module – pass 50%. Commendation 70%.
Qualification: 50% pass for all modules.
Commendation awarded for all modules.
Each question carries a value of 10 marks.
Q: I’m Not Happy With My Exam Results?
A: You have the opportunity to re-sit your exam at the next opportunity.
There are no restrictions on the number of re-sits you can take. The highest mark you achieve will remain.,