This course will focus on a fundamental understanding of the science of soil systems and how decisions in land management affect the soil functions related to food production.

Food security, environmental protection and mitigation of climate change impacts depend upon effective management of soil, plant and water interactions in the environment.

At a glance

What you will learn

On successful completion of this course you will be able to:

  • Describe the role of soil systems in the context of soil functions, ecosystem services and soil health,
  • Explain the principal responses of plants to the climatic environment,
  • Quantify key soil physical, chemical and biological properties,
  • Evaluate the impact of soil management and agricultural innovation in agricultural production.

Core content

  • Soil functions, ecosystem goods and services and concepts of soil health,
  • Plant responses to solar radiation, temperature, drought and aeration stress,
  • Soil texture, bulk density, porosity and structure,
  • Soil-water interactions,
  • Soil chemistry: Nutrients, pH, CEC, salinity and the carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycles,
  • Soil organisms: diversity and functional importance,
  • Land capability for agricultural production, inputs and yields,
  • Innovations for agricultural production.


This course is provided via the Agrifood Training Partnership (AFTP).


20% discount for Cranfield alumni, 10% discount for colleagues of alumni
£1,340 - Professional/trade association discount
£1,280 - Multiple bookings*
* Minimum of 5 delegates

Accommodation options and prices

This is a non-residential course. If you would like to book accommodation on campus, please contact Mitchell Hall or Cranfield Management Development Centre directly. Further information regarding our accommodation on campus can be found here.

Alternatively you may wish to make your own arrangements at a nearby hotel.

Location and travel

Cranfield University is situated in Bedfordshire close to the border with Buckinghamshire. The University is located almost midway between the towns of Bedford and Milton Keynes and is conveniently situated between junctions 13 and 14 of the M1.

London Luton, Stansted and Heathrow airports are 30, 90 and 90 minutes respectively by car, offering superb connections to and from just about anywhere in the world.

For further location and travel details

Location address

Cranfield University
College Road 
MK43 0AL

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.