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Course details

Improving soil biology for better yields
Designed for
Farmers and others within agriculture who want a better understanding of soil biology, its importance in agriculture for maintaining healthy and sustainable soils and the effects of current farming practises on the diversity of organisms and population sizes in the soil.
Entry requirement
Accomplished practitioner
Dates and locations
Register interest
£245 + VAT
A one day classroom-based course
CPD points
12 BASIS points and 1 NRoSO point
Elizabeth Stockdale, NIAB TAG


  • Classroom module 1 (half day) –

    • What is soil biology – its various components and the soil food web?
      • Components of soil biology – microorganisms; insects; worms; plants; etc.
      • The soil food web
      • Biofilms
    • The importance of Soil Organic Matter (SOM) to soil biology and how we can improve it
      • What is SOM and how we measure it.
      • SOM and soil structure.
      • Building SOM - gains and losses of SOM via management
      • Critical levels of SOM and its economic value
      • The ‘4 per mil’ initiative

    Classroom module 2 (half day) –

    • The role and importance of soil biology
      • Key functions of SOM – control of pests and diseases; human health
      • The economic value of soil biology.
      • Factors affecting soil biology; threats to soil biology and biodiversity.
      • Tillage and soil biology
      • New opportunities to use soil biology in farming.
    • Measuring and increasing soil biological diversity on farm.
      • Research approaches; sampling methods; practical on-farm approaches.
      • Managing and increasing soil biological diversity
    • Take-home messages and further reading.

Trainers are accredited by ARTIS


Participants receive an ARTIS Accredited Certficate