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Soil Science

You can begin this program at an
off-campus site through a satellite campus or regional partner.

Discover how plants can clean up pollution. Investigate a boreal forest. Travel to developing nations. Explore the world beneath your feet. Experiment in the field and in the lab.

Program Options

Bachelor of Science in Agriculture - Soil Science

  • B.S.A.

Admission Requirements and Deadlines

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What is Soil Science?

Soil forms an essential part of the environment—affecting or controlling most living things. Soil science studies the soil system to find the best ways of producing food, fuel, and fibre while still preserving soil for use by future generations.

Soil science draws from biology, ecology, geography, geology and a variety of other natural and life sciences. The soil science program at the University of Saskatchewan provides students with an in-depth understanding of the physical, biological and chemical processes that occur in soil and the role soil plays in plant production and environmental management.

Soil Science: Is it for you?

In the Department of Soil Science students learn from leading experts in their field.  Professors from the department are leading teams of scientists in projects to investigate the role of afforestation of farmland for diversification of farm income, carbon sequestriation, fibre for the forest industry, and plants to remove undesireable chemicals from soil.

Students have numerous opportunities to transfer theory beyond the classroom.  Most courses include hands-on components such as field trips and class projects that tackle real-world issues.  Students also have the option of completing a minor in another specialization such as toxicology, field crop production, applied plant ecology, or agribusiness.  Minors are a great way to broaden a student's career options.

AgBio offers a setting that combines the advantages of a full-scale university with the benefits of a small, specialized program.  The small class sizes in third and fourth year and supportive atmosphere allows students to get to know their instructors and fellow students and to build a network of personal and business contacts.

As well, the College's strong ties with industry and reputation for producing well-rounded, quality graduates means that many businesses turn here first when recruiting employees.

Graduates are eligible to receive P.Ag. status for practise in the profession of agrology.

Sample Classes

Agricultural Soil Science

Students are introduced to the major physical, chemical and biological properties of soil and the influence of those properties on soil productivity. The relationship of soil to its environment will be investigated as it relates to soil genesis, soil classification and cropping systems. The principles of soil fertility and fertilizer management will be explored with emphasis on cropping systems of Western Canada.

Soil Fertility and Fertilizers

The forms, flows, and transformations of plant nutrients in soils are examined, with emphasis on Western Canadian agricultural systems. The fate of applied nutrients as commercial fertilizers and manure is stressed, especially as to how agronomic practices affect the utilization of soil and fertilizer nutrients by plants. Techniques for soil fertility evaluation and the development of suitable fertilizer recommendations and nutrient management plans are covered.

Soils and Boreal Landscapes

A four day field course with a follow-up tutorial to study boreal soils and landscapes the week prior to the fall term. Focus will be on the examination, description and classification of northern soils within various landscapes. This course also provides an introduction to basic air photo interpretation, ecological classification and forest measurements, as well as an artistic interpretation of landscapes.

Career Opportunities

A growing demand for scientists and professionals equipped to deal with agricultural and environmental issues means a wide variety of career choices for graduates specializing in environmental science or soil science.  Graduates pursue careers as

  • environmental consultants
  • land reclamation specialists
  • surveyors, foresters
  • agricultural producers
  • land appraisers
  • hazardous and non-hazardous waste specialists
  • ecologists
  • laboratory technicians and managers
  • laboratory or field researchers and educators.

Opportunities abound in the private and public sectors, in Canada and abroad. Many graduates also find fulfilling careers in international development work.

A Stepping Stone

A BSA degree is also a highly useful and marketable background for studies in other areas such as business, communications, marketing, politics, education, journalism or law.

Graduates from this highly-regarded BSA program also have excellent prospects as Masters students at the U of S and at universities across North America and internationally.

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