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Advanced Permaculture 100 Hours Certificate Course
Learn About Advanced Permaculture
Advanced Permaculture Online Course
For people with prior experience in permaculture, this Advanced Permaculture Online Course is a more in depth and academically advanced study of various aspects of permaculture
Learn to design naturally inspired living systems.
It covers sustainable systems, how to determine planning strategies for a site, seasonal patterns, water management, earthworks, considering different climates, and comprehansive planning including preparing costings. This will give you a sound background in all aspects of developing and running a permaculture system.
Lesson Structure: Advanced Permaculture BHT301
There are 10 lessons:
1 Evaluating Design Strategies
- The need for sustainability
- Low input farming
- Regenerative farming
- Biodynamic systems
- Organic systems
- Conservation farming
- Matching enterprise with land capability
- Integrated management
- Permaculture planning
- Reading patterns
- Mapping overlays
- Design strategies and techniques
- Undulating edge
- Spirals and circles
- Zig zag trellis
- Temporary shelter
- Small scale sun trap
- Small scale sun shading
- Keyhole beds
2 Understanding Patterns
- Understanding patterns
- Know your land: evaluate a site
- Weather patterns, soil pH, EC,temperature, water etc
- Electromagnetic considerations
- Herbicide or pesticide consideration
- Land carrying capacity
- Assessing land capability
- Checklist of sustainability elements
- Indication of sustainability
- Log books
- Water supply
- Water saving measures
- Dam and pond building
- Construction; concrete, brick, stone,
- liners, earth construction
- Collecting rainwater
- Recycling waste water
- Using farm waste water
- Town water supply
- Well drilling
- Pumping subterranean ground water
- Pumping from natural supplies (eg. lakes, rivers)
- Pumps and plumbing supplies
- Water use: power generatyion, deisel generators
- Fish culture: land and water, dams
- Water plant cultureWater plants to know and grow
- Seasonal changes in a pond
- Sweage treatment: reed beds
- Problems with water
- Wating water and conservation
- Swales and keylines
- Keyline design
- Site clearing
- Solving drainage problems
- Surveying techniques: triangulation, direct contouring, grid system etc
- Levelling terms
- Levelling procedure
- Levelling a sloping site
- Loss of soil fertility
- Soil compaction
- Soil acidification
- Build up of dangerous chemicals
- Improving soils
- Using lime, gypsum or acidic materials
5 Humid Tropics
- Climatic systems
- The wet tropics
- Sources of humus
- Soil life in the tropics
- Barrier plants
- Animal barriers
- Permaculture systems for the wet tropics
- Garden beds
- Tropical fruits to grow
6 Dry Climates
- Water storage and conservation
- Dryland gardens
- Dryland orchards
- Planting on hills
- Corridor planting
- Overcoming dry soils
- Drought tolerant plants
7 Temperate to Cold Climates
- Characteristics of a temperate biozone
- Cool temperate garden design
- Useful crops for this zone
- Crop protection
- Soils in a cool temperate area
- Growing berries
- Soil life
8 Planning Work
- Alternative planning procedures
- The planning process
- What goes where
- Equipping the environmentally friendly garden
- Barriers, walls and fencin
- Rubble, brick and concrete walls
- Retaining walls
- Changing an existing farm to be more sustainable
- Monitoring and reviewing
- Contingencies and seasonal variations
- Planning for drought
- Excessive water
- Property costs
- Making cost cutting choices
- Planning for the cost conscious
- Likely costs to establish a garden
- Socio economic considerations in farming
- Production planning
- Economies of scale
- Value adding
10 Sustainable Systems
- Other sustainable systems
- Working with nature rather than against it
- Minimising machinery use
- Only use what is necessary
- Different ways to garden naturally
- Organic gardening
- No Dig techniques
- Biodynamic preparations
- Crop rotation
- Bush gardens
- Succession planting
- Seed saving
- Environmental horticulture
- Sustainable agriculture around the world
- Integrated pest management
- Cultural controls
- Biological controls
- Physical controls
- Chemicals Quarantine
- Controlling weeds without chemicals
- Animals in sustainable systems
Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school’s tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.
Learning Goals: Advanced Permaculture BHT301
- Evaluate appropriate design strategies for a specific development site.
- Explain the relationship between a Permaculture system and natural patterns occurring in your local area.
- Develop strategies for the management of water in a Permaculture design.
- Determine earthworks for the development of a Permaculture system.
- Design a Permaculture system for the humid tropics.
- Design a Permaculture system for a dry climate.
- Design a Permaculture system for a temperate to cold climate.
- Determine planning strategies for the development of a Permaculture system.
- Prepare cost estimates for a Permaculture development plan.
- Explain alternative sustainable systems practiced in various places around the world.
Practical (Set Tasks)
- Explain the evolution of a Permaculture system which is at least five years old.
- Compare the suitability of three different planning procedures, for development of a Permaculture system on a specified site.
- Develop a permaculture plan on a specified site, by using flow diagrams.
- Illustrate the progressive development of one view of a Permaculture system, over three years, with a series of four overlay drawings.
- Explain the relevance of patterns which occur in nature, to Permaculture design.
- Explain the importance of observation skills in Permaculture planning.
- Analyse the weather patterns of a site in your locality as a basis for planning a Permaculture system.
- Compare different methods of water provision, including collection and storage for a specified Permaculture system.
- Analyse the adequacy of two different specific Permaculture system designs, in terms of: water requirements, water provision, water storage, and water usage.
- Explain, using labelled illustrations, the use of different survey equipment.
- Survey a site, between one and four thousand square metre in size, that has been selected for a proposed Permaculture system, recording details, including: topography, dimensions, and location of features.
- Prepare a site plan, to scale, of the site surveyed, including contour lines and the location of all existing features.
- Distinguish between, using labelled drawings, different types of earthworks, including: banks, benching, terracing, and mounds.
- Compare different methods for the provision of drainage on a site proposed as, or being developed as a Permaculture system.
- Determine the factors unique to the design of Permaculture systems in humid tropical climates, dry climates, and cold climates.
- Determine fifty plant species suited for inclusion in a Permaculture system in each of the climates above.
- Determine ten animal species suitable for inclusion in a Permaculture system in each of the climates above.
- Prepare a Permaculture design for each of the climates above.
- Calculate the quantities of materials, showing necessary calculations, required in a specified permaculture plan.
- Estimate the work-hours required, showing any necessary calculations, to complete each section of work.
- Estimate the equipment required, showing any necessary calculations, to complete each section of work.
- Determine suppliers for all materials, for a specified Permaculture development, in accordance with specific plans supplied to you.
- Determine the costs of five types of different materials, for a specified Permaculture development, from different suppliers.
- Determine the essential costs for services to establish a specified Permaculture system, such as: labour costs, sub contracting fees, equipment hire, permits and planning applications, technical reports, legal fees.
- Compare the costs of establishing two different Permaculture systems, which you visit and investigate.
- Explain three sustainable agricultural or horticultural systems, other than permaculture.
- Differentiate Permaculture from other sustainable systems, including: Biodynamics, Organic farming.
- Compare specified sustainable agricultural or horticultural practices from different countries.
Your learning experience with ADLwill not only depend on the quality of the course, but also the quality of the person teaching it. This course is taught by Susan Stephenson and Andy Patterson . Your course fee includes unlimited tutorial support throughout from one of these excellent teachers. Here are their credentials: Susan Stephenson BSc in Applied Plant Biology (Botany) Univ. London 1983. City and guilds: Garden Centre Management, Management and Interior Decor (1984) Management qualifications in training with retail store. Diploma in Hort level 2 (RHS General) Distinction.
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
Due to our years of experience and wide range of online courses, here are a list of our FAQs and Answers asked by Students.
Q. Do I need to buy text books?
A. No, you are not required to purchase expensive text books for any of our courses, since each module has been written by highly qualified tutors and writers, and our courses are updated on a regular basis, adding new information, methods and knowledge. You are supplied with all “essential” references. Extra books are always useful though, especially for special projects. Tutors will advise you what to buy if you decide you would like to have extra reading material, but it is not essential. Check out our eBookstore if you’re looking for a starting point.
Q. What sets the Academy apart from other institutions?
A. A unique feature of our courses is that we combine knowledge of the subject matter with practical tasks (set tasks, found at the end of each lesson). So you get to do practical components in each lesson. The benefits of this approach are immense: – your skills and knowledge are developed to a much higher level not normally found at other distance learning institutions.
Q. How do the practical exercises (set tasks) work?
A. The practical component of each lesson can be in the form of : Field Research, Networking and Analysis, Conducting Surveys, Growing, Collecting, Photographing and Processes.
Q. Can I pay by instalments?
A. Yes, you can view all available payment options here.
Q. Are there any hidden costs?
A. There are no hidden extras – the tuition fee covers all course material, unlimited tutor support, assignment marking/feedback and any text books where specified and exams. The only extras are for the public examinations fees for the ICB Bookkeeping course and the RHS (Royal Horticulture Society) exams.
Q. Are your courses up-to date?
A. Our courses are continually updated. The course content is rapidly updated and improved without the red tape and bureaucracy experienced at other educational institutions.
Q. Do you have a Cancellation policy?
A. We have a cancellation policy that is fair and equitable. For further details please click here.
Q. What Recognition do you have?
A. The Academy for Distance Learning has various forms of recognition:
These include TQUK (Training Qualifications UK) – an Ofqual Awarding Organisation – ADL is an approved TQUK Centre.
IARC – International Approval Registration Centre, approved member. Accredited Training Provider for ICB (Institute of Certified Bookkeepers) and Approved Distance Learning Provider for the RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) and many more. Our graduates come from many parts of the world and have used our qualifications for successful employment and progression onto higher education. To view our full list of recognition and memberships 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. Why should I enrol with the Academy for Distance Learning?
A. Here at the Academy our students are our priority – we treat every student as a unique individual. This philosophy allows us to nurture those who are “slow and steady” learners rather than letting them fall through the cracks, while catering for those who are in a hurry to complete.
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. Completing the course- how long will it take?
A. Completion of modules varies from student to student. Many factors come into play such as work commitments and family life- there are always distractions. Some students work quicker than others. For a 100 hour module many students will take up to 3- 6 months, others take less time and some are even longer. It’s all up to you. There is no pressure to complete or deadline to finish. Naturally, longer courses will take more time.
Q. What learning formats are there?
A. Your enrollment comes with the Online Classroom study option by default. For a small additional cost you also have the options of USB or Correspondence.
USB: Your course is sent to you on a USB stick, so that you can carry it in your pocket. Ideal for those with unreliable internet connections. This option is an additional £5/module
Correspondence: You download the course content and then print your own copy to your requirements. You can then bind the lessons to suit your needs.
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, or you can visit us in Canterbury, England to sit the exam if want to. Exam fees are included in the tuition fee you paid. You can read more about the examination process here. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment. You submit it to the academy who then submits it to the tutor for marking, comments and feedback. Our policy is to have a grade for you within 5 to 7 days.
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. The number of lessons per module varies from module to module. See the course content from our website for further details.
Q. When do I have to hand in my first assignment?
A. There is no deadline for handing in the first assignment. Submit when you are ready. There are some students who hand in assignments within the first couple of weeks of enrolment – while there are others who submit their work 6 months later. It’s all at your own convenience to suit you. Everyone has different work and home commitments and we cater to these needs.
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; however, there may be an additional expense. We can appoint an appropriately qualified person anywhere to work through curriculum documentation supplied by us, to satisfy the requirements set down in a course.
Q. What qualification will I receive?
A. For individual modules, you would receive a Certificate (providing you complete all assignments and the exam). If you just want to complete the assignments only, then a Letter of Achievement would be awarded. For more details on qualifications awarded please click here.
Q. Is there a next level to progress to?
A. Yes – you can progress from one module to a combination of many modules and to higher qualifications i.e. Advanced Certificates, Diplomas and Higher Advanced Diplomas. Read more about course levels 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. It’s a very popular option and widely used by many students. You quite simply choose the appropriate number of related modules needed to complete the qualification and submit them to us for approval as a custom diploma.
Q. What do I get when I complete the course? Will I receive a transcript?
A. At the completion of a 100-hour Certificate course and providing all assignments and exam have been completed, you will receive a Certificate and Transcript. The Transcript will list your GPA. Each 100-hour module is worth 3 credit hours.
Q. Do I have to sit for an exam?
A. Exams are optional but need to be undertaken in order to receive the Certificate or higher qualification. Exams are one and a half hours long. You appoint an adjudicator (subject to our approval) to supervise the exam. You sit for the exam in your own location. Its that simple.
Q. I don’t cope well with exams – what can I do?
A. If you feel you don’t cope well with exams you may elect to undertake a Project (set by the tutor) instead of sitting the exam. Many students prefer this option as they find researching the material for the project sharpens their research skills.
Q. If I don’t sit for the Exam do I still get a qualification?
A. If you don’t sit for the exam but complete the project alternative, you will still receive your endorsed qualification. If you don’t sit for an exam or complete a final project, providing you have completed all the assignments you will be awarded a Certificate of Achievement.
Q. Do I have to sit for the exam at the Academy?
A. No – whilst you are more than welcome to come to our location in Canterbury, U.K. and sit the exam in our classroom; the more popular option is to sit for the exam in your own location. You appoint an adjudicator to supervise the exam. Click here for more information on that process.
Q. Our tutors – who are they?
A. We only employ tutors who have are currently active in their industry with at least 5 years of real-world experience. Not only are they highly qualified but also experienced, knowledgeable, and professional- experts in their chosen fields from all parts of the world.
Q. Can I contact my tutor at any time?
A. Yes- you have unlimited access to tutors. We strongly encourage students to develop a dialogue with their Tutor. This is why we encourage students to submit their first assignment fairly quickly at the beginning of the course.
Every Academy student is assigned a tutor who supports you throughout your course and beyond. Your tutor is there to guide and facilitate your learning and provides as much or as little individual contact as you would like. When you submit your coursework the tutor will give you feedback that helps you develop your ideas and provides motivation. For those who do like to have interaction with other students, the ADL discussion forum connects you to students from all over the world.
Q. How do I contact my tutor?
A. You have direct contact with your tutor by email through the Online Classroom. Alternatively, you can write, fax, email, or phone the academy. Leave a message if your tutor isn’t available and they will phone, write or fax back; whatever suits you.
Q. If I don’t understand a question or a lesson may I contact the tutor?
A. You may contact a tutor as often as you like. There is no additional charge or restriction on this service. Contact can be made via the Student Zone, email, or by phone.
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.
Excerpt from the Course
SOLVING DRAINAGE PROBLEMS
There are six ways to solve drainage problems:
1. Reshape the surface of the land so water flows somewhere else
Warning: don’t divert water to create a concentrated flow onto your neighbours’ property. You are legally responsible for problems you cause on your neighbours’ property.
2. Improve the soil structure so it will drain more freely
Soil is made up of a mixture of organic matter (eg. compost or mulch) mixed with clay, loam and sand. If there is a high proportion of clay, drainage is likely to be a problem. Mixing organic matter, sand or loam will begin a slow but effective process of soil improvement. As micro-organisms move deeper into the soil, drainage and fertility will gradually improve.
3. Add soil ameliorants (e.g. lime)
Soil ameliorants are chemicals which cause clay particles to repel each other, thus opening up the soil and letting water in. They normally take months to show any effect, and they only work if the soil is kept wet. Lime and gypsum are other alternatives, but these can have side effects (both increase calcium levels and lime changes soil pH).
4. Install drainage pits in low areas
A drainage pit is a large hole filled with sand or rubble. Water collects in the pit and gradually seeps away into the lower layers of the soil. The hole is best to be long and deep, not square or circular if possible, and at least 12cu. metres.
5. Install surface drains
Commonly called spoon drains, these are normally half pipes (or concreted depressions set along at the bottom of a slope, or at the edge of a paved area). Water runs into the spoon drain and is carried to a collection point (an underground pipe in the stormwater system or a drainage pit).
6. Install sub surface drains
These are pipes below the surface, which carry water to a collection point (e.g. agricultural drainage pipes buried below the surface and covered with a freely draining soil).
The first step in preparing a plan is measuring the site.
A simple, yet accurate, way to map is by triangulation, described below:
- First, establish an initial base line. It might be the distance between two survey pegs marking one of the boundaries, or between two trees. The only requirements are that the base line be long, and marked at the ends by permanent fixtures.
- To fix the position of a feature near the base line (such as a tree) measure from two points on the base line to the tree. The two dimension lines to the tree should meet an approximate right angle (excessively acute or obtuse intersections mean loss of accuracy. Besides accurately fixing the position of the tree, you now have a new base line from which to plot other features.
- Finally, to plot the positions of the features on the base plan, use a sharp pencil compass to draw arcs from the two ends of the base lines, with radii corresponding to the measured distances. For small sites, a scale of 10 mm to 1 m is appropriate.
Before you design your garden in detail, you should know the various levels and slopes with which you are dealing. The most useful way of showing levels on a plan is by contours. A contour is a line comparable with the edge of a pond, because it follows a truly horizontal course. If you picture your land with successive tidemarks each 30 cm higher than the last, you have a contour map with a vertical interval of 30 cm between contours.
Direct contouring is accomplished by sighting through a hand level (which will give an accurate, horizontal lineofsight) and moving a boning rod about the site to find places (at various distances from the hand level) where the top of the boning rod corresponds with the line of sight. These positions are pegged. A line joining the pegs is then a truly level line a contour. The operation requires two people, one sighting through the hand level and the other holding the boning rod in various positions.
The Grid System
In the grid system, the ground is pegged out at regular intervals. No two points marked are necessarily level but this does not matter. A calibrated rod is used instead of a boning rod, and the distance from the horizontal sight line to the top of each peg is recorded. These distances are then used to calculate the relative level of each peg. When the peg heights are marked on a plan, contour lines can be inferred from them and drawn in on a grid.
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.,