Courses

World class instructors teaching real world subjects

There are a number of core courses that focus specifically on organic agriculture and an ever-growing number that cover organic topics within a larger scope. As always, it’s a good idea to check in with your advisor about course selection, and if you have any questions about any of the classes listed below, reach out to Katie Peterman at peterman2@wisc.edu. See you in class!

For more information about any of the courses below, please check out The Guide.

Course Name
Agroecology: An Introductioni to the Ecology of Food and Agriculture (Cross listed 103)
Description
Agroecology has blossomed across the world in recent decades as not only a science, but also a practice, and a movement. Employ the multiple disciplines and perspectives that Agroecology affords to analyze our agricultural and food systems wihin a broader context of dynamic social and ecological relationships.
Course Name
Food, Culture, and Society (C&E Soc/Soc 222)
Description
Social and cultural dimensions of food production and consumption. Uses historical and cross-cultural analytical frameworks. Treats a wide variety of topics including indigenous, racial, and ethnic foodways, industrialized food systems, sustainable agriculture, movements for food justice.
Course Name
Cropping Systems (Agron 300)
Description
Agronomic cropping systems of the Midwest: environmental impacts, productivity, and profitability. Cropping system diversification and sustainable agriculture. An agroecological approach, the application of ecological concepts and principles for the improvement of cropping systems is emphasized.
Course Name
Farming Systems Management (Ag and Applied Econ 320)
Description
Methods of economic analysis, planning and management applied to conventional and alternative farming systems
Course Name
Cooperatives and Alternative Forms of Enterprise Ownership (AAE 323)
Description
Cooperatives, credit unions, and other alternative forms of enterprise are unique businesses in which users (rather than investors) are the owners. Topics will include why these models emerge, who they serve, how they differ from other forms of enterprise, and the ways in which they can be used to address social, economic, and environmental challenges.
Course Name
Issues in Food Systems (C&E Soc/AAE/Soc 340)
Description
With primary emphasis on the U.S., the course covers social, economic and biological dimensions of food systems. Using classroom and community experience, the course combines academic approaches with practitioner knowledge. A community project is required.
Course Name
Introduction to Organic Agriculture: Production, Markets, and Policy (Plant Path/Hort 367)
Description
Students will get an in-depth understanding of the history of organic agriculture, its production, processing, marketing, and social dimensions, and its impact on environmental, community, and human health. It will foster new leadership and deepen mentoring and networking prospects within the UW Organic Collaborative and will offer students a valuable gateway to other CALS courses and future research, outreach, and employment activities in the organic sector.
Course Name
Colloquium in Organic Agiculture (Hort 372)
Description
Colloquium in which faculty, regional professionals, local organic farmers and students will present and discuss topics relevant to history, marketing, economics, production and social context of organic and sustainable agriculture.
Course Name
Organic Vegetable Production (Hort 375)
Description
Special topics on issues relevant to horticulture
Course Name
Food Production Systems and Sustainability (Agron/DySci/Inter-Ag 471)
Description
Delves into aspects of natural sciences (biology and agricultural sciences) and social sciences underpinning the assessment of food production systems as related to a variety of outcomes including but not restricted to human and environmental health, air and water quality, greenhouse gases emission, land use, economic opportunity, social justice, as well as mitigation and adaptation to climate change, locally, regionally, domestically, across continents, and globally.
Course Name
Organic Agriculture Independent Study (Plant Path 499)
Description
Independent study in organic agricultural topics
Course Name
Principles in Plant Breeding (Hort/Agron 501)
Description
Principles involved in breeding and maintaining economic crops; factors affecting the choice of breeding methods; alternative approaches through hybridization and selection.
Course Name
The Farm as Socio-Environmental Endeavor (Agroecol 701)
Description
Farms may be analyzed as intentional entities shaped by the contexts in which they must operate. This course explores how these biophysical and social contexts both exert constraints and provide opportunities, leading to the diversity of farms observed.
Course Name
The Multifunctionality of Agriculture (Agroecol 702)
Description
Agroecology systems provide a variety of social, economic, and ecological functions to society, each with a different network of stakeholders. This course explores methods of evaluating these diverse functions and perspectives, with a special focus on participatory approaches.
Course Name
Agroecology Field Study (Agroecol 720)
Description
Field study of farms, processing, marketing, distribution, and policy-making in the food system. Courses will be several days of visits, discussions with the operators, and student-faculty discussion sections.
Course Name
Agroecosystems and Global Change (Agroecol/ Agron/Envir St 724)
Description
Impacts of global change drivers (climate change, atmospheric chemistry, bioenergy, urbanization, policy) on agroecosystems and their associated goods and services; environmental impacts of agricultural land use and feedbacks to climate; modeling approaches; critical review of current scientific literature.

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peterman2@wisc.edu

 

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