Sustainable Land Management - 2017

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Postgraduate
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Web Dependent
  • Prerequisites: No
  • Duration: 14 weeks
  • Government loans available: FEE-HELP
  • Availability for 2016: Sess 1
  • Availability for 2017: Sess 1
  • Assessment: Assignment 1 - Essay (40%) , Assignment 2 - Video (35%) - Learn more

Unit provided by

2017 Fees
Domestic 3,243.00
International 3,493.00

In order to enrol in this unit, you must be accepted into the course Graduate Diploma in Rural Science.

Sustainable land management enhances the biophysical environment, maintains economic profitability and promotes social wellbeing. This unit reviews sustainable development and resilience-based adaptive management in a changing world, investigates major land uses (i.e. agriculture, forestry, protected areas, cities) in Australia and globally, and analyses key ecosystem stewardship issues from the perspective of the householder, land manager or small business, catchment or bioregion, and nationally and globally. Concepts and tools for analysis of social-ecological systems include ecosystem services, ecological footprint analysis, green accounting, environmental management systems and audits, environmental codes and environmental monitoring.

Upon completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. compare and contrast the major biophysical, economic and social sustainability issues facing individuals, businesses, communities and countries for some of the major resource uses and biomes;
  2. discuss and justify different tools and methods for sustainability and resilience analysis, and the leading practices in the sustainability performance of industries and individual land managers;
  3. explain options (regulatory, economic, social, technological, biophysical) for governments, land management agencies and land managers for improving sustainability outcomes;
  4. demonstrate measurement skills for sustainability monitoring, and analytical skills for interpreting the data; and
  5. synthesize current technical information about particular aspects of sustainable land management, and formulate sound recommendations to growers, farmer groups, regional authorities, urban residents and land management agencies.
  • Assignment 1 — Essay (40%)
  • Assignment 2 — Video (35%)
  • Assignment 3 — Activity Journal (20%)
  • Quiz — Multiple Choice (5%)

There are no prerequisites for this unit.

  • Broadband access

This unit addresses the following topics.

1Introduction to sustainability
2Introduction to ecology
3Economic sustainability
4Social sustainability in agriculture
5Sustainability in context
6Soil sustainability
7Water sustainability
8Plant sustainability
9Remnant vegetation
10Animal sustainability
11Sustainable biophysical systems
12Natural resource policy
13Catchment management
14Property planning
16Measuring, monitoring and benchmarking for sustainability
17Triple bottom line analyses of grazing systems
18Managing grazing systems sustainably
19Case study A: northern tablelands of New South Wales
20Case study B: southern Western Australia
21Case study C: northern wheat/sheep belt
22Case study D: southern wheat/sheep belt
23Case study E: rangelands
24Case study F: agroforestry and farm forestry
25Case study G: urban sustainability
26Contemporary global issues and future directions for Australian agriculture
27RSNR403/503 overview

Each unit offered through OUA provides students with unit information that includes assessment topics and due dates, policy information and contact numbers for university support and academic staff. Study materials will also clearly outline each week's topic, readings, student activities and the format of all assessment.

This unit is not currently a requirement for any courses, but may be eligible for credit.

  1. Many undergraduate courses on offer through OUA include 'open elective' where any OUA unit can be credited to the course. You need to check the Award Requirements on the course page for the number of allowed open electives and any level limitations.
  2. In other cases, the content of this unit might be relevant to a course on offer through OUA or elsewhere. In order to receive credit for this unit in the course you will need to supply the provider institution with a copy of the Unit Profile in the approved format, which you can download here. Note that the Unit Profile is set at the start of the year, and if textbooks change this may not match the Co-Op textbook list.

Textbook information for this unit is currently being updated and will be available soon. Please check back regularly for updates. Alternatively, visit the The Co-op website and enter the unit details to search for available textbooks.

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