Availabilities:

2021 unit offering information will be available in September 2020

Unit description

Examines the main soil forming processes and the role of both organic matter and clay minerals in soil processes and properties is explored. Field soil assessment and classification skills are developed and methods for the examination of soil invertebrates introduced. The main concepts and methods used to assess soil physical and chemical properties are introduced, as is the use of soil moisture characteristics for the prediction of water movement. The behaviour of soil nutrients is examined.

Unit content

The unit will cover the following topics (not necessarily in the order presented) which will be dealt with in the topic notes, readings, laboratory notes and in the field:

  • soil and its constituents
  • soil physical properties: texture, structure
  • soil water
  • soil organic matter
  • soil and clay mineralogy
  • soil and plant nutrition: nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, sulphur and trace elements
  • soil formation
  • soil classification
  • soil biology.

Learning outcomes

Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.

GA1: Intellectual rigour, GA2: Creativity, GA3: Ethical practice, GA4: Knowledge of a discipline, GA5: Lifelong learning, GA6: Communication and social skills, GA7: Cultural competence
On completion of this unit, students should be able to:GA1GA2GA3GA4GA5GA6GA7
1describe the main soil forming processesIntellectual rigourKnowledge of a disciplineCommunication and social skills
2describe the role of organic matter and clay minerals in soil processes and propertiesIntellectual rigourKnowledge of a disciplineCommunication and social skills
3discuss the role of the major soil nutrients in plant nutrition and outline the main plant nutrient cyclesIntellectual rigourKnowledge of a disciplineCommunication and social skills
4assess soil structure, texture and consistence in the field sufficient to enable soil classificationIntellectual rigourKnowledge of a disciplineCommunication and social skills
5demonstrate soil surveying techniqueIntellectual rigourKnowledge of a discipline
6discuss the use of soil classification systems in general and understand the features of a range of soil classification systems as well as classify soils according to two major Australian soil classification systemsIntellectual rigourKnowledge of a disciplineCommunication and social skills
7describe some important soil chemical and physical processes and properties.Intellectual rigourKnowledge of a disciplineCommunication and social skills

On completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. describe the main soil forming processes
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
    • GA6: Communication and social skills
  2. describe the role of organic matter and clay minerals in soil processes and properties
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
    • GA6: Communication and social skills
  3. discuss the role of the major soil nutrients in plant nutrition and outline the main plant nutrient cycles
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
    • GA6: Communication and social skills
  4. assess soil structure, texture and consistence in the field sufficient to enable soil classification
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
    • GA6: Communication and social skills
  5. demonstrate soil surveying technique
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
  6. discuss the use of soil classification systems in general and understand the features of a range of soil classification systems as well as classify soils according to two major Australian soil classification systems
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
    • GA6: Communication and social skills
  7. describe some important soil chemical and physical processes and properties.
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
    • GA6: Communication and social skills

Teaching and assessment

Notice

Intensive offerings may or may not be scheduled in every session. Please refer to the timetable for further details.

Southern Cross University employs different teaching methods within units to provide students with the flexibility to choose the mode of learning that best suits them. SCU academics strive to use the latest approaches and, as a result, the learning modes and materials may change. The most current information regarding a unit will be provided to enrolled students at the beginning of the study session.

Fee information

Domestic

Commonwealth Supported courses
For information regarding Student Contribution Amounts please visit the Student Contribution Amounts.
Commencing 2021 Commonwealth Supported only. Student contribution band: 2

Fee paying courses
For POSTGRADUATE or UNDERGRADUATE full fee paying courses please check Domestic Postgraduate Fees OR Domestic Undergraduate Fees

International

Please check the international course and fee list to determine the relevant fees.

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