- Created: Monday, 20 February 2017 08:47
- Written by Helene Kristensen
At the end of the course, participants will be able to develop their own critical thinking, will become familiar with the emerging threats of Organic Arable Farming and the main issues of debate including: soil fertility, nutrient management, pest and disease control, weed management and crop specific issues. Furthermore, trainees will populate community of practice by sharing questions and information about the new trends in organic arable farming at European level.
Taking into consideration the profile of the course participants, the “Peer learning” approach is adopted in order to set up a “Community of practice” sharing common interests and stimulating participants to interact in a constructive and open-minded discussion.
The interaction will come up within a discussion forum, on the project e-learning platform, where significant contributions can enrich the course contents (collaborative method).
The learning process:
At the beginning of each module, participants will find, in the Learning Path area on the platform, the study material. Participants will have to read and digest the content, then will be invited by the tutor to participate to the discussion session in the Forum area of the platform where they can express their opinions, comments and can address possible questions, as a part of the discussion among themselves and/or with the tutor. Moreover, they can provide additional information that could enrich the module in favour of the “community” itself as well as the project partners.
The tutor (assigned by MAIB) will manage the discussion forum and chat interactions participating in each session, answer questions and address them to the external experts whenever needed. The system will facilitate the access of any external expert to the discussion forum.
Besides the “Learning path” and “Forum”, the adopted LMS (Claroline)/E-learning platform offers many other tools: Agenda, documents, links, announcements, chat, course description etc.
Moreover, three Webinars on selected topics will be delivered during the course.
Content and Structure
This course is structured into six modules. Each Module is articulated in a 2-week course that includes a PPT supported by related tools (practice abstracts, leaflets, guidelines, calculation, videos, books, reports, web pages etc.).
1st module: Soil quality and fertility
- Strategies to enhance soil fertility and assessment of soil fertility and quality
2nd module: Nutrient management
- Fertilization strategies to enhance nutrient availability in organic arable crops
3rd module: Pest and disease control
- Monitoring, preventive and curative measures for pests and diseases management
4th module: Weed management
- Technical tools, strategies and machineries to tackle weeds in organic arable farming
5th module: Crop specific issues
- Crops specific problems and potential solutions in cereals, legumes, fruits and vegetables
6th module: Recovery and final synthesis
The course is addressed to 30 trainees having at least a Bachelor or an undergraduate degree in agriculture or related sciences with at least a basic experience in organic agriculture, interested in a deep and broad understanding of the main updates governing the organic sector in the last years. The course welcomes also students specializing in organic agriculture as well as former MAIB alumni, providing an update to their knowledge acquired in the Master course at CIHEAM Bari. It is also open to institutions of the OK-Net Arable project.
Candidates’ prerequisites - the minimum knowledge required for an effective learning process includes:
- Fluency in English;
- At least four years of university studies
- Basic knowledge in organic agriculture
- Easy access to a computer connected to the Internet (e-mail and the Web);
- The commitment to devote about four hours weekly to the course activities and to fulfil all course tasks.
All teaching materials shall be provided in English.
A certificate of completion will be issued by MAIB and IFOAM EU, in the framework of the ok-Net-Arable project, to all participants who complete successfully the course-related assignments and assessments.
Deadline for receiving applications is March 15, 2017.
MAIB E-learning Staff
MAIB Scientific Staff, Organic Department
Lina Al Bitar