Higher Certificate in Environment & Agriculture
Course Code: LC431
The aim of the programme is to provide students with the opportunity to begin exploring the linkage between the science and the management of environmental systems, with a focus on application in the agriculture and food sector.
Agri-food and Fisheries is Ireland’s largest indigenous industry. It collectively employs some 150,000 people with an annual output of over €24 billion. The agriculture and agribusiness sector is growing strongly, and there are further plans for expansion under the Food Harvest 2020 report. A key challenge for agriculture will be to increase production in a sustainable manner which does not negatively impact on the natural environment.
This programme will provide a strong foundation in science and environmental management, combined with specialist agriculture modules. It is run in co-operation with Gurteen College (near Birr) where a ten credit module will take place in first year titled “Farm Enterprises – Theory & Practice”. Some modules are shared with the existing LIT programme in Environmental and Natural Resource Management.
What are the entry requirements?
Applicants must have 5 O6/H7 grades or higher at Ordinary Level in 5 Leaving Certificate subjects. Two of these subjects must include Mathematics and a Language (English or Irish).
Applicants presenting QQI FET/FETAC qualifications must hold a Full Level 5 Award totalling 120 Credits.
Applicants presenting qualifications other than those mentioned above will be assessed on an individual basis.
Mature Applicants (i.e. over 23) are exempt from the normal entry requirements.
What modules will I study?
Introduction to Environmental Science, Applied Environmental Science, Environmental Maths and Computing, Rural Land Use and the Environment, Farm Enterprises – Theory & Practice, Introduction to Sustainable Development, Personal Effectiveness.
Earth Science & Ecology, Field Study Skills & GIS, Conservation and Biodiversity Management, Environmental Management Systems, Agriculture & the Agri-Business Sector, Environment and Sustainable Development.
Are there opportunities for further study?
Students who successfully complete the two-year Level 6 Higher Certificate in Agriculture and Environment are eligible to progress into the third year of the Level 7 B.Sc. in Environmental Management in Agriculture in LIT Thurles (course code LC428). Graduates of the B.Sc. can then progress to the fourth year of the current Level 8 B.Sc. (Hons) in Environmental & Natural Resource Management (course code LC408) or to a 4th year add-on honours degree in Environmental Management and Agriculture which is currently being developed by LIT.
What are the career prospects?
Skills attained from the Higher Certificate would be appropriate for employment in technician‐type roles in a range of environmental management sectors, but particularly within agriculture and food. Particular skills valued by employers include basic laboratory and field skills, competencies in numeracy and computer packages, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS). These skills may particularly complement the prior life and work experience of mature students.
This programme will suit people with an interest in agriculture and the environment. School subjects such as geography, agricultural science, biology and chemistry will be particularly relevant. The programme will also be suitable for mature students with relevant work experience.