SLM-10306 Land Degradation and Remediation


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Excursion (multiple days)42
Course coordinator(s)dr. J Maroulis
Lecturer(s)dr. V Geissen
dr. J Maroulis
dr. JEM Baartman
D Stoltenborg, MSc
PD Peters
GWJ van Lynden
Examiner(s)dr. J Maroulis

Language of instruction:


Continuation courses:

SLM-20306 Land and Water Engineering; WRM-21312 Design in Land and Water Management 2.


Introduction to land degradation and remediation (SLM-10306) is an introductory BSc course which gives a general overview on the topic of land degradation processes, its measurement, conservation strategies and sustainable intervention options. The course knows three parts:
A) recognizing and understanding land degradation; B) Conservation and remediation options; C) How does this work in reality?.
Lecture topics within part A are 1) introduction and types of land degradation, 2) physical processes of land degradation, 3) chemical land degradation, 4) field assessment and measuring land degradation and 5) modelling soil erosion. Subsequently, lectures continue in part B: 6) introduction and overview of conservation and remediation, 7) structural SWC measures, 8) Agronomic & vegetative measures, 9) Management and combined measures, 10) farming systems and nutrient cycling and 11) approaches for sustainable land management interventions. Part C knows one lecture: 12) the DESIRE project on desertification, and mainly consists of the projects that will be visited during the excursion to Tunisia / Morocco. Practical's comprise the hands-on handling of survey and assessment techniques and erosion measurements in the field and computer practical with the MONQI program. An excursion to an equipment factory is part of the practical.
Excursion to Tunisia and Morocco: during the 10-days excursion various institutes, erosion control and irrigation projects will be visited where the students will have the opportunity to see the information and examples from the lectures in reality. Non-BIL students may get an alternative essay assignment.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- master basic knowledge of a variety of land degradation processes, in particular water and wind erosion processes;
- master the principles of soil and water conservation and know a variety of conservation and remediation options;
- quantify some forms of erosion with simple measurements in the laboratory and in the field;
- handle simple equipment used in the assessment of erosion processes;
- recognize erosion features in the field (Netherlands and during the international excursion);
- understand conflicting interests in soil and water conservation between various stakeholders.


- lectures;
- intensive practical;
- International excursion (for instance to Greece or Spain); Non-BIL students: Essay assignment on a related course topic of choice. Literature research and writing of essay.


The final mark is split into two parts:
The first four weeks, which include a practical (25%) and the written exam (75%).
The second part, the last two weeks of the course, are either the excursion to Tunisia/Morocco (excursion report and presentations) or the alternative essay. For the final mark of the whole course, the mark of the first part is weighted 75% and the mark for the second part weights for 25%. All partial marks must be > 5.5.


Practical guide: Handed out during preparation meeting.
Excursion guide: Handed out during preparation meeting.

Compulsory for: BILInternational Land and Water ManagementBSc1AF
Compulsory for: WUILWBSc Minor International Land and Water Management1AF