Soil Classification and Mapping

Intro­duc­tion to clas­si­fi­ca­tion and map­ping of soils with empha­sis on soil-form­ing process­es; prin­ci­ples of the Cana­di­an sys­tem of soil clas­si­fi­ca­tion; soil pro­files, diag­nos­tic fea­tures, soil-form­ing fac­tors and process­es; kinds and dis­tri­b­u­tion of soils in Cana­da; soil sur­vey pro­ce­dures, and uti­liza­tion of exist­ing spa­tial infor­ma­tion to sup­port soil map­ping at a detailed scale. This course includes a manda­to­ry field trip to col­lect data for map­ping exer­cis­es. Pri­or knowl­edge of soil sci­ence is recommended.

Course at a glance
What you will learn

By the end of this course, you should be able to:

  • Identify common landforms and parent materials associated with soils in Alberta.
  • Describe soil profiles, including hand texturing and classification of soil structure.
  • Recognize soils of 10 soil orders using the Canadian System of Soil Classification.
  • Relate soil forming factors, soil forming processes and functions, and their roles in the genesis of these soils.
  • Describe soil drainage classes and soil moisture regimes.
  • Understand soil survey procedures through: interpretation of various types of imagery; pre-field soil mapping; soil survey exercise in the field; and finalizing soil map and the legend.
This course has no prerequisites

Students from all educational backgrounds welcome. You can register for this course without applying and enrolling in a program.

Take note:

  • Pre-course materials are available on eClass prior to the course start date. Prior to the first day of class, students must review a series of videos and complete a pre-course assignment provided on eClass; advanced registration is advised.
  • While there are no prerequisites for this course, prior knowledge of soil science is recommended for student success.
  • This course includes in-class, computer-based activities. 
  • Course assessment includes post-course work, as well as assignments outside of class times; in-class final exam will also be included.
  • Mandatory fieldwork: students are required to bring their own Personal Protective Equipment. Long pants and good grip boots with good ankle support are essential; rubber boots are useful but not necessary. Wear weather-appropriate clothing, sun block, work gloves, and high-visibility clothing (safety vest, reflective stripes, or blaze orange/yellow outer layer). Students are responsible for their transportation to the fieldwork sites.
Currently counts towards:

Applicants intending to enrol in a program are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to lock in their course requirements since they are prone to change.

*If you are already enroled in this program, please refer to your specific program requirements as outlined at the time of your admission: Bear Tracks > Academic Advisement.

When will
this course be offered?

New course schedules are released each June and November.

Course not yet scheduled

This course is not currently scheduled, but may be offered in an upcoming term.

New course schedules are announced each June and November.

Sign up for updates

Interested in future offerings of this course? We can let you know when this course becomes available.