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International Agriculture (24 credits)

Offered by: Plant Science     Degree: Bachelor of Science (Agricultural and Environmental Sciences)

Program Requirements

Revision, July 2012. Start of revision.

Students enter this specialization to acquire a global and applied understanding of agriculture as a fundamental tool to help rural development, alleviate poverty and reach food security, especially in the developing world. This program provides students with a combination of coursework at McGill together with a hands-on experience in a developing country, meeting locals and attending courses with McGill professors and/or local instructors. The costs of these field experiences may vary. The field experience (semester, short course or internship) includes developing projects in local communities, observing subsistence agriculture in situ and participating in various activities which contribute to sensitize the students to the challenges that developing countries face. Students study water resources, sustainable development, nutrition, planning and development, and a host of other fascinating topics, allowing them to sharpen their skills for future career opportunities.

Specialization Adviser: Professor Humberto Monardes
Academic Adviser: Dr. Julie Major
Macdonald-Stewart Building, Room 2-082
Telephone: 514-398-8380

Required Courses (9 credits)

  • AGEC 442 Economics of International Agricultural Development (3 credits)

    Offered by: Agricultural Economics (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agricultural Economics : The course deals with economic aspects of international development with emphasis on the role of food, agriculture and the resource sector in the economy of developing countries. Topics will include world food analysis, development project analysis and policies for sustainable development. Development case studies will be used.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Anwar Naseem (Winter)

    • Winter
    • 3 lectures
    • Prerequisites: AGEC 200 or AGEC 201 or equivalent
  • AGRI 411 Global Issues on Development, Food and Agriculture (3 credits)

    Offered by: Animal Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agriculture : International development and world food security and challenges in developing countries. Soil and water management, climate change, demographic issues, plant and animal resources conservation, bio-products and biofuels, economic and environmental issues specially in tropical and sub-tropical regions. Globalization, sustainable development, technology transfer and human resources needs for rural development.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Humberto Monardes (Winter)

    • Winter
    • Two 2-hour conferences
  • NUTR 501 Nutrition in Developing Countries (3 credits)

    Offered by: Dietetics & Human Nutrition (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Nutrition and Dietetics : This course will cover the major nutritional problems in developing countries. The focus will be on nutrition and health and emphasize young children and other vulnerable groups. The role of diet and disease for each major nutritional problem will be discussed.

    Terms: This course is not scheduled for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    Instructors: There are no professors associated with this course for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    • Fall
    • 2 lectures and one seminar
    • Prerequisite: For undergraduate students, consent of instructor required

Complementary Courses (15 credits)

15 credits of complementary courses selected from either Option A or Option B.

Option A

3 credits from husbandry/cropping/farming:

  • AGRI 215 Agro-Ecosystems Field Course (3 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agriculture : Through case studies and field trips, students will examine the problems and constraints within the Canadian agro-ecosystem, including the interrelationships among food production, the environment, agricultural policy and social issues. Research in this field of study will also be introduced.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Caroline B Begg, Roger I Cue (Fall)

    • Restriction: Not open to students who have taken PLNT 215.
    • This course carries an additional charge of $50 to cover the cost of transportation (bus rental) for local field trips to agricultural enterprises. The fee is refundable only during the withdrawal with full refund period.
  • PLNT 203 Economic Botany (3 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Plant Science : Study of plants which are useful or harmful to humans, their origins and history, botanical relationships, chemical constituents which make them economically important; their roles in prehistoric and modern cultures and civilization and possible impact in the future.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Alan K Watson (Fall)

  • PLNT 300 Cropping Systems (3 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Plant Science : Application of plant science and soil science to production of agronomic and horticultural crops. Use and sustainability of fertilization, weed control, crop rotation, tillage, drainage and irrigation practices.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Donald L Smith, Philippe Seguin (Fall)

    • 3 lectures and one 3-hour lab
    • Prerequisite: AEBI 210

Plus 3 credits from field experience:

  • AGRI 325 Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security (3 credits)

    Offered by: Animal Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agriculture : Exposure to Cuba's agricultural sector, regulations and policies as a model to investigate sustainable agricultural practices (e.g., use of organic fertilizers, ecological management of pests and weeds, crop rotation, water conservation, etc.) within the context of land use and food security issues.

    Terms: Summer 2013

    Instructors: Arif Mustafa, Julie Major, Philippe Seguin (Summer)

    • Prerequisite: AGEC 200 or equivalent or permission of instructor
    • Lectures and visits will be jointly delivered by local Cuban experts and McGill Staff. Lectures (25%) and field visits (75%). Final year students should note that graduation may be delayed.
    • This course has a fee of $2400, a portion of which is tax receiptable on the T2202A, and includes airfare to and from Cuba, internal travel (by coach), accommodation and most of the meals for the 14 days, as well as instructor costs.
  • AGRI 499 Agricultural Development Internship (3 credits)

    Offered by: Agricultural & Env.Sc.-Dean (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agriculture : Supervised internship to provide practical experience working on agricultural issues related to international development. The internship can take many forms, including work in a developing country, for an agency that focuses on international development, or on a research project that aims at solving problems faced by developing populations.

    Terms: Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Summer 2013

    Instructors: Humberto Monardes (Fall) Julie Major (Winter) Julie Major (Summer)

    • Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
    • Students should take this course after having completed four semesters in their undergraduate program. It is the student's responsibility to find an appropriate internship, which must be approved by the instructor before registration is authorized.

Plus 3 credits from policy and economics:

  • AGEC 333 Resource Economics (3 credits)

    Offered by: Agricultural Economics (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agricultural Economics : The role of resources in the environment, use of resources, and management of economic resources within the firm or organization. Problem-solving, case studies involving private and public decision-making in organizations are utilized.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Paul Thomassin (Fall)

    • Fall
    • Prerequisites: AGEC 200 or equivalent
  • AGEC 430 Agriculture, Food and Resource Policy (3 credits)

    Offered by: Agricultural Economics (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agricultural Economics : Examination of North American and international agriculture, food and resource policies, policy instruments, programs and their implications. Economic analysis applied to the principles, procedures and objectives of various policy actions affecting agriculture, and the environment.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: John C Henning (Winter)

    • Winter
    • 3 lectures
    • Prerequisites: AGEC 200 or equivalent

Plus 6 credits from resource/environment:

  • BREE 510 Watershed Systems Management (3 credits)

    Offered by: Bioresource Engineering (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Bioresource Engineering : A holistic examination of methods in watershed management with a focus on integrated water resources management (IWRM). Topics include: integration, participatory management, water resources assessment, modeling, planning, adaptive management, transboundary management, and transition management.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Jan Adamowski (Fall)

    • (3-2-4)
    • Restrictions: U3 students or above.
    • Note: Case studies and a project.
  • PARA 410 Environment and Infection (3 credits)

    Offered by: Parasitology (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Parasitology : Infectious pathogens of humans and animals and their impact on the global environment are considered. The central tenet is that infectious pathogens are environmental risk factors. The course considers their impact on the human condition and juxtaposes the impact of control and treatment measures and environmental change.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Marilyn Scott (Winter)

    • 2 lectures per week
    • Prerequisite: BIOL 111 or AEBI 120 or equivalent
  • PARA 515 Water, Health and Sanitation (3 credits)

    Offered by: Parasitology (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Parasitology : The origin and types of water contaminants including live organisms, infectious agents and chemicals of agricultural and industrial origins. Conventional and new technological developments to eliminate water pollutants. Comparisons of water, health and sanitation between industrialized and developing countries.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Timothy Geary, Gaetan Mario Faubert (Winter)

Option B

15 credits from any of the McGill Field Study Semesters listed below:

African Field Study Semester (Winter)

15 credits selected as follows:

9 credits of courses chosen from the complementary course set offered in the year of participation in the Field Study Semester.

6 credits of required courses as listed below:

  • GEOG 416 Africa South of the Sahara (3 credits)

    Offered by: Geography (Faculty of Science)

    Overview

    Geography : A synthetic overview of physical and cultural geography examining particularly the relation of African peoples to their landscapes, the causes and consequences of environmental changes, and the idea of sustainable development as it applies to African landscapes, resource systems and economies.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Leigh Brownhill (Winter)

    • Winter
    • Offered in Kenya as part of the African Field Studies semester.
  • NRSC 405 Natural History of East Africa (3 credits)

    Offered by: Natural Resource Sciences (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Natural Resource Sciences : Integrated study of African landforms, geologic history, climate, environments, biota, water resources and human influences, fostering a thorough understanding of the East African landscape and its inhabitants. Lectures, discussions on selected topics, use of museum resources and field studies will develop powers of observation, identification and enquiry.

    Terms: This course is not scheduled for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    Instructors: There are no professors associated with this course for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    • Corequisite(s): ANTH/GEOG 451, NRSC/BIOL 452
    • Restriction(s): Not open to students who have taken NRSC 300 or GEOG 300. Not open to students taking REDM 405.

Barbados Field Study Semester (Fall)

15 credits selected as follows:

  • AGRI 452 Water Resources in Barbados (3 credits)

    Offered by: Bioresource Engineering (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agriculture : Physical environment challenges, centered on water, being faced by an island nation. Guest speakers, field study tours and laboratory tests. Private, government and NGO institutional context of conservation strategies, and water quantity and quality analyses for water management specific to Barbados.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Ronald Gehr, Angela Keane (Fall)

    • Restrictions: Enrolment in full "Barbados Field Study Semester". Not open to students who have taken CIVE 452.
  • AGRI 519 Sustainable Development Plans (6 credits)

    Offered by: Bioresource Engineering (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agriculture : Geared for solving real-world environmental problems related to water at the local, regional and international scale in Barbados. Projects to be designed by instructors in consultation with university, government and NGO partners and to be conducted by teams of 2 to 4 students in collaboration with them.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Inteaz Alli (Fall)

    • Restrictions: Enrolment in full "Barbados Field Study Semester". Not open to students who have taken CIVE 519 or URBP 519.
  • URBP 507 Planning and Infrastructure (3 credits)

    Offered by: Urban Planning (Faculty of Engineering)

    Overview

    Urban Planning : An exploration of the interrelationship between land-use planning and infrastructure provision, especially water and sewerage. An examination of their policy and regulatory frameworks and other methodology of plan making and evaluation.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Lisa Bornstein, Heather Braiden (Fall)

    • (8-.5-.5)
    • Restriction: Must be enrolled in the Barbados Field study Semester.
  • URBP 520 Globalization: Planning and Change (3 credits)

    Offered by: Urban Planning (Faculty of Engineering)

    Overview

    Urban Planning : Economic and social issues related to planning for sustainable development, with a focus on water. Political and environmental determinants of resource use. Impact of global, regional and local institutions, programs and plans in Barbados and in the field locale in general.

    Terms: Fall 2012

    Instructors: Leroy E Phillip, Inteaz Alli (Fall)

    • (3-3-3)
    • Restriction: Must be enrolled in the Barbados Field Study Semester.

Barbados Interdisciplinary Tropical Studies Field Semester (Summer)

15 credits selected as follows:

  • AEBI 421 Tropical Horticultural Ecology (3 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Biology (Agric & Envir Sc) : A comprehensive survey of the major fruit, vegetable, turf, and ornamental crops grown in Barbados. Effect of cultural practices, environment, pests and pathogens, social and touristic activities, and importation of horticultural produce on local horticulture.

    Terms: Summer 2013

    Instructors: Caroline B Begg (Summer)

    • Corequisite(s): AEBI 423, AEBI 425, AEBI 427
    • Restriction: Restricted to students that are participating in the Barbados Interdisciplinary Tropical Studies Field Semester
  • AEBI 423 Sustainable Land Use (3 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Biology (Agric & Envir Sc) : Management, preservation, and utilization of forage crops in sustainable tropical environments; examination of their value as livestock feed in terms of nutritional composition and impact on animal performance; land use issues as it pertains to forage and animal production in insular environments.

    Terms: Summer 2013

    Instructors: Philippe Seguin, Arif Mustafa (Summer)

    • Corequisite(s): AEBI 421, AEBI 425, AEBI 427
    • Restriction: Restricted to students that are participating in the Barbados Interdisciplinary Tropical Studies Field Semester
  • AEBI 425 Tropical Energy and Food (3 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Biology (Agric & Envir Sc) : Tropical biofuel crops, conversion processes and final products, particularly energy and greenhouse gas balances and bionutraceuticals. Topics include effects of process extraction during refining on biofuel economics, the food versus fuel debate and impact of biofuels and bioproducts on tropical agricultural economics.

    Terms: Summer 2013

    Instructors: Donald L Smith, Stan Kubow, Mark Lefsrud (Summer)

    • Corequisite(s): AEBI 421, AEBI 423 and AEBI 427.
    • Restriction: Restricted to students that are participating in the Barbados Interdisciplinary Tropical Studies Field Semester
  • AEBI 427 Barbados Interdisciplinary Project (6 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Biology (Agric & Envir Sc) : The planning of projects and research activities related to tropical food, nutrition, or energy at the local, regional, or national scale in Barbados. Projects and activities designed in consultation with university instructors, government, NGO, or private partners, and prepared by teams of 2-3 students working cooperatively with these mentors.

    Terms: Summer 2013

    Instructors: Danielle J Donnelly (Summer)

    • Corequisite(s): AEBI 421, AEBI 423 and AEBI 425
    • Restriction(s): Restricted to students that are participating in the Barbados Interdisciplinary Tropical Studies Field Semester

Panama Field Study Semester (Winter)

15 credits selected as follows:

9 credits of required courses

  • BIOL 553 Neotropical Environments (3 credits)

    Offered by: Biology (Faculty of Science)

    Overview

    Biology (Sci) : Ecology revisited in view of tropical conditions. Exploring species richness. Sampling and measuring biodiversity. Conservation status of ecosystems, communities and species. Indigenous knowledge.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Catherine Potvin (Winter)

    • Winter
    • 24 hours lecture and 36 hours field work over a 4-week period
    • Prerequisites: HISP 218, MATH 203, and BIOL 215
    • Corequisites: ENVR 451; GEOG 404 and HIST 510 alternating with GEOG 498 and AGRI 550
    • Restriction: location in Panama. Students must register for a full semester of studies in Panama
  • ENVR 451 Research in Panama (6 credits)

    Offered by: McGill School of Environment (School of Environment)

    Administered by: Faculty of Science

    Overview

    Environment : Research projects will be developed by instructors in consultation with Panamanian universities, government agencies and non-governmental organizations. Project groups will consist of four to six students working with a Panamanian institution. Topics will be relevant to Panama: e.g., protection of the Canal watershed, economical alternatives to deforestation, etc.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Catherine Potvin (Winter)

    • Winter
    • Restriction: students in the Panama Field Semester program. Offered in Panama only

6 credits of complementary courses

Choose one of the following sets:

  • AGRI 550 Sustained Tropical Agriculture (3 credits)

    Offered by: Plant Science (Agricultural & Environmental Sciences)

    Overview

    Agriculture : Contrast theory and practice in defining agricultural environmental "challenges" in the Neotropics. Indigenous and appropriate technological means of mitigation. Soil management and erosion, water scarcity, water over-abundance, and water quality. Explore agro-ecosystem protection via field trips and project designs. Institutional context of conservation strategies, NGO links, and public participation.

    Terms: This course is not scheduled for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    Instructors: There are no professors associated with this course for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    • Prerequisites: HISP 218 or equivalent; MATH 203 or AEMA 310 or equivalent
    • Restriction: Restricted Enrolment. Location in Panama. Student must be registered for a full semester of studies in Panama
  • HIST 510 Environmental History of Latin America (Field) (3 credits)

    Offered by: History and Classical Studies (Faculty of Arts)

    Overview

    History : Human-nature interactions over different scales of time in Latin America (with an emphasis on neo-tropical environments) and the application of the historical perspective to contemporary environmental issues, including historiography and methodology; cultures of environmental knowledge.

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Daviken Studnicki-Gizbert (Winter)

    • This course will be offered in Panama as part of the Panama Field Studies Semester. Language of instruction is in English but fluency in Spanish is required for the fieldwork component of the class.
    • Prerequisites: HISP 218 or HISP 210 or equivalent proficiency

OR

  • GEOG 404 Environmental Management 2 (3 credits)

    Offered by: Geography (Faculty of Science)

    Overview

    Geography : Practical application of environmental planning, analysis and management techniques with reference to the needs and problems of developing areas. Special challenges posed by cultural differences and traditional resource systems are discussed. This course involves practical field work in a developing area (Kenya or Panama).

    Terms: Winter 2013

    Instructors: Thomas C Meredith (Winter)

    • Winter
    • 3 hours
    • Prerequisite: GEOG 302 or permission of instructor
  • GEOG 498 Humans in Tropical Environments (3 credits)

    Offered by: Geography (Faculty of Science)

    Overview

    Geography : Focus on understanding of inter-relations between humans and neotropical environments represented in Panama. Study of contemporary rural landscapes, their origins, development and change. Impacts of economic growth and inequality, social organization, and politics on natural resource use and environmental degradation. Site visits and field exercises in peasant/colonist, Amerindian, and plantation communities.

    Terms: This course is not scheduled for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    Instructors: There are no professors associated with this course for the 2012-2013 academic year.

    • Winter
    • 6 hours lecture for 4 weeks, 3 hours seminar, 2 hours laboratory, 8 hours conference
    • Restriction: Location in Panama. Student must register for a full semester of studies in Panama
    • Prerequisites: HISP 218, MATH 203 or equivalents
Revision, July 2012. End of revision.
Faculty of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences—2012-2013 (last updated Dec. 20, 2012) (disclaimer)