ENVT3338 Land Capability Assessment

6 points
(see Timetable)

If this unit does not have an online alternative, then students who are presently unable to enter Western Australia and whose studies would be delayed by an inability to complete this unit, should contact the unit coordinator (details given on this page) to ascertain, on an individual case-by-case basis, if alternate arrangements can be made to support their study in this unit.

Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face Predominantly face-to-face. On campus attendance required to complete this unit. May have accompanying resources online.
Semester 1AlbanyMulti-mode Multiple modes of delivery. Unit includes a mix of online and on-campus study requirements. On campus attendance for some activities is required to complete this unit.
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 3 core unit in the Environmental Science; Environmental Science and Management major sequences
  • Level 3 elective
Understanding how soils and landscapes have evolved provides the key to managing terrestrial environments effectively and making sound decisions for sustainable land use. This unit covers the processes contributing to soil formation and degradation such chemical transformation, translocation of solids and fluids and wind or water erosion for example. These processes are presented within a geomorphic and hydrological context. Based on this understanding soil classification is introduced, followed by the definition and mapping of soil and land capability classes which form the basis of a land capability assessment. A land capability assessment helps businesses and society in general to make the necessary decision for a sustainable usage of the land such as agriculture, forestry, mining, nature conservation or urbanisation.
Students are able to (1) describe, assess and sample soil profiles in different landscape positions; (2) classify soil properties in the field and use laboratory techniques to determine physical and chemical soil properties such as: texture, water retention, pH and EC, phosphorus retention or cation exchange capacity; and (3) classify and map soils and landforms and relate these to land use and soil degradation such as salinisation, desertification and soil acidification. and finally perform a land capability assessment..
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) mid semester short report; (2) individual final report; and (3) group folder. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Matthias Leopold
Unit rules
ENVT2220 The Climate System or ENVT2236 Soil Science or EART2222 Geomorphology and Soils (formerly EART2222 Earth Surface Processes and Soils) or EART2231 Earth Materials or EART2234 Earth Processes or ENVT2251 Environmental Hydrology or ENVT2221 Global Climate Change and Biodiversity or ENVT2250
EART3323 Land, Soil and Water Systems, EART8823 Land, Soil and Water Systems, EART3338 Land Capability Assessment
Incidental fees
Incidental student fees and charges are costs incurred by students as part of their studies at UWA that are in addition to their tuition fees (further information is available here or contact your Faculty Office).
Participation in this unit will incur the following incidental fee(s):
Field Trip (estimated cost - Up to $50).
Contact hours
lectures: 2 hours per week; laboratory classes: 3 hours practical work per week and a compulsory field trip (1 or 2 days) involving soil mapping and sampling which takes place on the third or fourth weekend of the semester
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.