Agroecology: Working with the complexity of farming systems
Information from the course leader
Welcome to the online Agroecology course 2023!
This online course is based on a real farm case of the Global North. You will learn about and practice methods for describing and analysing a case and its goals, and will train in analysing and suggesting improvements.
This is a 7.5 credits course running on 100% speed. As the course has very strict delivery deadlines it will require your full-time engagement. If you are planning to take this course together with other courses, vacations or work, we advise you not to take the course! All communication will be conducted through the web platform in Canvas.
In this course, you will learn an approach to work systemically with complex situations in farming systems. You will not only learn how to systemically analyse a case study, but also practice methods for describing and analysing the case and its goals, aswell as train in analysing and suggesting improvements. Using the case, you will have the opportunity to explore the complexity of farming systems using concepts such as systems, multi-functionality and ecosystem services.
The course will include group assignments as well as individual work. Key readings will be given in all modules to helpsupport the learning activities with theoretical information. All readings will be available in Canvas before the course start.
This course is based on the long-term collaboration of Nordic universities (SLU, NMBU, KU and HU) in the framework of Agroasis (Nordic Agroecology Network).
All literature will be available in Canvas by course start
- Armson, R. 201 Growing Wings on the Way: Systems Thinking for Messy Situations. Triarchy Press Limited, 2011. Chapters 3, 4 and pages 149-153.
- Gliessman, S. R. 2015. Agroecology. The ecology of food systems. Third edition. CRC Press. 371 pp. Chapters 1, 2, 24, 25, 26.
- Holland, J. 2007. Tools for institutional, political, and social analysis of policy reform: a sourcebook for development practitioners.
- Geir Lieblein, Edvin Østergaard & Charles Francis. 200 Becoming an Agroecologist through Action Education. International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability, 2:3, 147-153, https://doi.org/10.1080/14735903.2009684574
- Wells, S. 2006. Force Field Analysis. Mini-Tutorial Quality Management. 4 p.
- Wilson, J. 1992. Changing Agriculture. Kangaroo Press, Kenthurst, pp.80 (pages in the course: 7-15, 24-26, 36-38 and 40-54).
- Berry, W. 1990. The Pleasure of Eating. In: Robert Clark (Ed) Our Sustainable Table, North Point Press, 1990.
- Kloppenburg et al., (1996). Coming in to the Foodshed. Agriculture and Human Values. 13, 33-4
- IPES-Food. 2016. From uniformity to diversity: a paradigm shift from industrial agriculture to diversified agroecological systems. International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food systems. www.ipes-food.org
The course evaluation is now closed
LB0121-30110 - Course evaluation report
Once the evaluation is closed, the course coordinator and student representative have 1 month to draft their comments. The comments will be published in the evaluation report.
Additional course evaluations for LB0121
Academic year 2021/2022
Agroecology: Working with the complexity of farming systems (LB0121-30219)
2022-01-17 - 2022-02-17
Syllabus and other information
LB0121 Agroecology: Working with the complexity of farming systems, 7.5 CreditsAgroekologi: Att arbeta med komplexitet i lantbruksystem
Education cycleMaster’s level
Advanced study in the main fieldSecond cycle, has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirementsMaster’s level (A1N)
Prior knowledgeKnowledge equivalent to 120 credits and English 6.
ObjectivesThe aim of this course is to provide students interested in global development with an introduction to the analysis of complex farming systems.
After completion of the course, the student will be able to:
- apply a systemic agroecological approach to a complex farming system;
- recognize the steps needed to understand and improve a complex farming system;
- identify and use suitable methods at the different steps of a systemic approach;
- engage in a constructive peer feedback process;
- reflect on their own learning and on group dynamics based on the course experiences.
ContentIn this course students learn an approach to work systemically with complex farming situations.
The course is based on real farm cases in different parts of the Global South and North. The students learn about and practice methods for describing and analysing a case and its goals, and will train in analysing and suggesting improvements.
Formats and requirements for examinationPassed written assignments, project work and contributions to group discussions over the Internet. If a student fails a test, the examiner may give the student a supplementary assignment, provided this is possible and there is reason to do so.
If a student has been granted targeted study support because of a disability, the examiner has the right to offer the student an adapted test, or provide an alternative form of assessment.
If this course is discontinued, SLU will decide on transitional provisions for the examination of students admitted under this syllabus who have not yet been awarded a Pass grade.
For the assessment an independent project (degree project), the examiner may also allow a student to add supplemental information after the deadline for submission. For more information, please refer to the Education Planning and Administration Handbook.
- If the student fails a test, the examiner may give the student a supplementary assignment, provided this is possible and there is reason to do so.
- If the student has been granted special educational support because of a disability, the examiner has the right to offer the student an adapted test, or provide an alternative assessment.
- If changes are made to this course syllabus, or if the course is closed, SLU shall decide on transitional rules for examination of students admitted under this syllabus but who have not yet passed the course.
- For the examination of a degree project (independent project), the examiner may also allow the student to add supplemental information after the deadline. For more information on this, please refer to the regulations for education at Bachelor's and Master's level.
Other informationThe right to take part in teaching and/or supervision only applies to the course instance which the student has been admitted to and registered on.
If there are special reasons, the student may take part in course components that require compulsory attendance at a later date. For more information, please refer to the Education Planning and Administration Handbook.
Additional informationThe course is given fully online.
Department of Urban and Rural Development