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.
1. Introduction to soil and soil formation
2. Soil physical characteristics and water movement
3. Soil colloids (clays and humus)
4. Soil description and classification
5. Soil organic matter and biology
6. Nutrient cycles
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.
|On completion of this unit, students should be able to:|
|1||describe the main soil forming processes|
|2||describe the major biological, chemical and physical properties of soils and their influence on water and nutrient cycles|
|3||assess and describe soil structure, texture and consistence and classify soils using different soil classification methods|
|4||discuss the cycling of nutrients through soil and their availability to plants.|
On completion of this unit, students should be able to:
- describe the main soil forming processes
- describe the major biological, chemical and physical properties of soils and their influence on water and nutrient cycles
- assess and describe soil structure, texture and consistence and classify soils using different soil classification methods
- discuss the cycling of nutrients through soil and their availability to plants.
Prescribed Learning Resources
- The following text is available free online at: https://www.publish.csiro.au/ebook/download/pdf/8016: Isbell, R.F. and the National Committee on Soil and Terrain, 2021, The Australian Soil Classification, 3rd, CSIRO, Canberra, ACT. ISBN: 978-1-486-1479-9.
Laboratory coat and safety glasses are required for laboratory sessions.
Teaching and assessment
|Workshop 1 hr (Weekly)|
|Laboratory 3 hrs (Four times)|
|Workshop 1 hr (Weekly)|
|Residential 2 days (Once)|
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