Agroforestry: Science, Design, and Practice (3) Agroforestry integrates trees in agricultural landscapes, and/or agriculture products into forested areas for multiple benefits.
FOR 418 Agroforestry: Science, Design, and Practice (3)
Agroforestry is the intentional design of land use systems that combine tree crops with plants and/or animals in a manner that seeks to promote ecological and economic benefits within the landscape. Two possible arrangements for such systems are (1) the integration of trees within non-forested settings; and/or (2) the introduction of high value 'crop' species into existing forestlands. The objective of the course is to foster a practical working knowledge of agroforestry as it is experienced both in Pennsylvania and throughout the world, so that students from a variety of backgrounds can integrate agroforestry practices and thinking into their own disciplines, interests, and lives. Although agroforestry is an ancient land use approach, it is new in many places, and improvements and adaptations to traditional practices are needed to meet local circumstances. This course will provide a framework for critical assessment and implementation within this context.
One of the fundamental aspects of agroforestry is that it is a land use system that operates at a landscape or ecosystem scale. For agroforestry to succeed, many factors, including ones external to the agroforestry practice itself must be considered. Therefore the course is interdisciplinary in nature and topics in ecology, economics, sociology, and policy that are related to agroforestry practices will be discussed. In evaluating the students, the primary emphasis is on class discussion. Students will be expected to review and discuss papers and contribute to the ongoing dialogue and debate about agroforestry as a sustainable land use. Students will be required to carry out critical reviews of agroforestry papers and publications as well as design and develop an agroforestry project pertinent to their individual field of interest and expertise. The course will be offered every Spring semester.
Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.