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12 October 2016 Profiling undergraduate soil science education in Canada: Status and projected trends
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Abstract

Global declines in postsecondary enrollment in soil science programs over the last several decades have been mainly attributed to an overemphasis on the connection with agronomy and production agriculture but recent enrollment increases in the USA suggest change is afoot. To determine if similar trends are occurring in Canada, we inventoried undergraduate soil science course offerings at postsecondary institutions and conducted a survey to assess the status and projected trends in soil science education. We found that 64% of universities and 37% of colleges offer undergraduate soil science courses as part of degrees or diplomas in which knowledge of soil science is important (e.g., agriculture and resource management). In Canada, there are 149 undergraduate soil science courses taught in universities and 58 at colleges. On average, there are 3.2 courses taught at each university and 1.9 at each college that offer soil science courses. Soil science programs at the University of British Columbia, University of Saskatchewan, and University of Manitoba offer between eight and nine soil science courses and represent 17.4% of the national total. Enrollments in all courses across the country are projected to be steady with some anticipated growth, trends that are consistent with those reported in the USA and the Netherlands.

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Amanda Diochon, Nathan Basiliko, Maja Krzic, Thomas T. Yates, Edith Olson, Jacynthe Masse, Brian Amiro, and Darshani Kumaragamage "Profiling undergraduate soil science education in Canada: Status and projected trends," Canadian Journal of Soil Science 97(2), 122-132, (12 October 2016). https://doi.org/10.1139/cjss-2016-0058
Received: 1 June 2016; Accepted: 1 September 2016; Published: 12 October 2016
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