Soils are a vital part of our planet’s functioning, but all too often we take soils for granted. In this free online course, we introduce you to soils and explore the world beneath our feet. Get an introduction to soil science Soils are a fantastically complex environment, teeming with life and supporting our most fundamental environmental processes. However, they are increasingly under threat and our soil resource is a finite one. Starting from what soil is and how soils form we will take a journey through the soil, not just learning about the basics of soil science but also about life in the soil. Then we will look at why soil is so important and investigate the topic of soil security - a topic relevant to the past and present. Finally we will learn about how and why soils are under threat both at a local and global scale. Throughout this course we will ask questions such as: What is soil made of? Why are soil microbes so important? How does the rise and fall of civilisations depend on soils? How is climate change impacting on soils? You will also get the chance to get your hands dirty with a series of activities aiming to give you practical experience of assessing soil properties and conditions. Understand soil from a physical, chemical and biological perspective By the end of this course, you will have a basic understanding of soil science from a physical, chemical and biological perspective. You will have met researchers, who will tell you about cutting-edge soil science research at Lancaster University and elsewhere, and had an insight into how some of the threats to soils could be addressed in the future. Soils are really important - in fact, 2015 is the International Year of Soils. How much do you know about the world beneath our feet? Take this just-for-fun quiz and find out…
FutureLearn est une plate-forme d'apprentissage proposant des formations en ligne ouvertes à tous (MOOC)
Fondée en Décembre 2012, la société est entièrement détenue par l'Open University à Milton Keynes, en Angleterre.
Elle est la 1ère plateforme offrant des MOOC au Royaume-Uni, avec à son actif plus d'une cinquantaine d'universités partenaires provenant du Royaume Uni mais aussi du reste du monde.
FutureLearn se différencie également par des partenariats avec des entités non-universitaires comme le British Museum, le British Council, la British Library et la national Film and Television School.