SOIL SCIENCE AND LAND MANAGEMENT COURSE SYNOPSIS

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SOS 211: PRINCIPLES OF SOIL SCIENCE (2 Units)

Definition of soil; soil genesis and formation. History of Soil Science. Basic principles of soil survey and classification. Soil survey information and land-use planning. Soil colloids and soil reaction; Soil nutrients and mineral nutrition of plants.  Soil organic matter; types and activities of soil organisms.  Organic and Inorganic fertilizers; nutrient management. Soil texture and soil structure. Soil management; tillage practices; soil water management; irrigation; drainage and soil erosion control

 

Practical: Identification of different rocks and minerals; Soil profile description and classification using monoliths; Identification  of basic soil fertilizer. Textural classification by feel.

SOS 312: SOIL CHEMISTRY AND MICROBIOLOGY (3 Units)

Introduction to soil chemistry; chemical composition of soils. Soil colloids; silicate clay chemistry.  Soil chemical processes: solubility, adsorption/desorption, ion exchange, oxidation/reduction, acidity, alkalinity. Active acidity; Buffering capacity and liming. Environmental effects of fertilizer use

 

Structure of soil organic matter; its importance in tropical soils. Soil organisms; classification; distribution and growth requirements. Macro- and micro-fauna; macro- and microflora. Relationships between the rhizosphere and soil organisms; nitrogen fixation. Composting.  Biodegradation of pollutants and pesticides

 

Practical: Particle size analysis; pH determination; cation exchange capacity; organic carbon. Identifying nutrient deficiency symptoms in plants;

SOS 314:  INTRODUCTION TO PEDOLOGY AND SOIL PHYSICS   (3 Units)

Factors and processes of soil formation; rock weathering and common minerals in soil; soil morphological characteristics and profile descriptions; characterization of soils using diagnostic properties soil survey, mapping and classification

 

Soil texture and surface area of particles. Volume-mass relationships in soil; bulk density; porosity. Soil water; hydrologic cycle; water balance; water content and water retention; field capacity and permanent wilting point; water flow in soils. Energy balance. Soil erosion and its control; conservation tillage

 

Practical: Field: Soil profile description: morphology, texture by feel, color; horizon designations. Sampling soil  profile for water content and bulk density determinations. Comparing soil texture by feel with texture by particle size distribution. Soil temperature measurements in the field.

SOS 511: SOIL FERTILITY AND PLANT NUTRITION (2 Units)

General concept of soil fertility. History of Plant Nutrition.   Fertility of tropical soils.  Soil organic matter.  Its properties and maintenance, liming and its soil-plant relationships.  Factors affecting the ability of the soil to supply nutrients in available forms.

 

Essential nutrients:  source of supply, physiological roles, relative quantitative requirements, availability categories, forms and amounts in soil and plant.  Fertilizer and fertilizer management, their manufacture, sources, application, methods, rates and timing, handling and storage. Crop growth and responses to soil nutrients:  nutrient absorption, maintenance and loss in soil fertility in extensive and intensive agriculture.  Manures and organic wastes.  Composition, general properties, use of manure, and management; use of sewage sludge and waste water.

SOS 513: SOIL PHYSICS (3 Units)

Soil physics as a basic and an applied science. Soil phases: sold, liquid and air; volume-mass relationship. Soil solid: texture; colloids and surface area of soil particles; bulk density and porosity; soil consistency; soil strength; stress-strain relationships. Soil compaction, hardsetting and surface crusts. Soil water; water content; soil water potential; principles of saturated and unsaturated water flow.  Available soil water; Soil hydrology, solute

 

transport and water quality; Soil heat ; energy balance of the earth’s surface; soil temperature; modification of soil temperature; Soil air; soil atmosphere composition; gaseous exchange in soils; soil air and plant growth. Relevance of soil physics to soil management: tillage; soil productivity; soil erosion control; irrigation; drainage

 

Practical: Soil core sampling for bulk density and water content determinations; Penetrometer resistance measurement; Water retention determination at various potentials;  Measurement of saturated hydraulic conductivity, soil temperature  etc.

 

SOS 514: LAND-USE MANAGEMENT (2 Units)

Components of land; soil, vegetation, water, air and animals. Global context of land use and role of soil science. Land use for food production. Other land uses; roads, buildings, forestry and recreation. Soils and planning agricultural land use and management. Spatial distribution of lands. Soils and planning rural land use and management. Urban waste management. Landscape definition. Land-use issues in different Nigerian communities. Morphology, chemistry and hydrology of acid lands, wetlands, drylands, salt and alkali soils with reference to Nigeria. Evaluation and management of problem sites; environmental impact assessment; GIS, remote sensing and geostatistics.

 

Practical: Site evaluation; use of maps and aerial photographs. Spatial variability of landscape and sampling. Interpretation of remote sensing imageries and report writing

SOS 515: SOIL AND PLANT ANALYSIS (3 Units)

Collection and preparation of soil and plant samples. The principles of soil testing.  Dissolution for total elemental analysis.  Testing for available nutrients in soils.  Testing soil for pH and lime requirement.  Interpretation of analytical results.  Principles and practices in plant analysis.  Sampling and analyzing tissue samples.  Plant analysis as an aid in fertilizing crops.  Operation and management of a soil testing and plant analysis laboratory.

 

Practical:  Sampling techniques.  Handling of soil and plant samples.  Analysis of soil and plant samples for total elements and for available nutrients.

 

 

SOS 516: SOIL POLLUTION MANAGEMENT (2 Units)

Major components of the environment; atmosphere, pedosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere. Soil as an integral part of the environment. Soil quality and functions of soils. Impact of soil quality on ecosystem sustainability. Soil and pollution: chemical, physical and biological soil degradation; mechanisms of pollutant transport through soils. Types and sources of soil chemical pollutants; inorganic, organic and radionuclide contaminants. Major consequences of chemically degraded soils. Greenhouse gas emissions and mitigation. Environmental effects of organic and inorganic amendments including agrochemicals. Waste disposal; evaluation and management of contaminated sites. Soil remediation; physical, chemical and biological remediation including phyto-remediation.

 

Practical: Analyses of soils from industrial, agricultural and forest sites. Water analyses. Solute movement in soils. Analyses of soil gaseous phase.

SOS 517: ANALYTICAL TECHNIQUES IN SOIL SCIENCE (3 Units)

Classical methods of soil analysis.  Titrimetric and gravimetric techniques.  Separation and extraction techniques.  Spectrophotometric techniques.  Electro-analytical techniques.  Isotope ratio analysis and radio isotopes in soil plant system.  Cultural technique for soil micro organisms.  Techniques in mineral analysis. Soil physical techniques

 

Practical:  Instrument handling, operation, installation and sample maintenance operations.  Basic instrumentation.

SOS 518: SOIL SURVEY AND LAND-USE PLANNING (2 Units)

Basic principles of soil classification. Soil morphological characteristics and classification. Soil forming minerals and rocks. Soil survey methodology. Assemblage of maps; use of aerial photographs and topographic maps for soil survey and classification. Type of soil survey, field mapping and soil sampling. Routine laboratory determinations and correlation of soil data. Soil survey report writing and interpretations. Concepts, principles and justification of land-use planning. Historical and present trends in land use. Management problems relating to tropical soils; land-use and soil degradation. Soil and land capability classification

 

Practical: Soil map reading and aerial photograph interpretation. Field demonstration of soil survey methodology. Routine laboratory analyses and correlation of soil data

 

SOS 519: SOIL BIOLOGY AND ECOLOGY (2 Units)

Soil microorganisms and macroorganisms; Microorganisms and soil enzymes. Microorganisms and plants. Root-nodule bacteria; Mycorrhizal relationships; Plant regulators and phytotoxins. Soil macrofauna. Agricultural systems and microorganisms; rhizosphere; root exudates and microorganisms; plant residue quality, organic farming; composting. Biological transformations; N, P and S. Soil biotechnology: biofertilization by rhizobial and mycorrhizal fungal inoculation; genetically modified plants and microbes and their ecological effects. Biodegradation of pesticides.

 

Practical: Culturing microorganisms; Root samples and preparation for mychorrizal studies; Root nodules; identification and analysis of N. Microarthropods in soil and litter; extraction methods, classification and population dynamics. Earthworm; extraction methods, classification and population

SOS 520: CONSERVATION AND  MANAGEMENT (3 Units)

Concept of soil conservation and management; soil degradation and rehabilitation. Accelerated soil erosion by water and wind; processes and factors of soil erosion; Measurements:  quantitative evaluation of soil erosion using factor and process based models, e.g., Revised Universal Equation (RUSLE) , Wind Erosion Equation (WEQ), Water Prediction Erosion Project (WEPP) et.c.; field measurements. Cultivation and tillage; conservation tillage; crop residue management; cover crops and agroforestry. Irrigation and drainage; Soil salinity and alkalinity management. Nutrient management; macronutrients and micronutrients. Pollution and waste management

AGS 597: SEMINAR I (1 Units)

Literature review and pre-project data seminar

AGS 598: SEMINAR II (1 Units)

Post-data seminar: Project reports

AGP 599: PROJECT (4 Units)

Special project submitted to the Department in partial fulfillment of the requirements for B. Agric.

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