How to Enroll

Course Description:  Agricultural Chemistry is an introductory chemistry course. Students will receive an in-depth look at chemical and biochemical properties and processes, which are integral to soils, agriculture and the environment. Topics include typical introductory chemistry topics such as matter and energy, chemical bonding and reactions, moles, gaseous and aqueous chemistry and more. However, topics will be engaged with agricultural effects and practices in mind.

Instructor:  Kathryn Pattern: Online (asynchronous)

Text:  Chemistry for Changing Times, 15th Edition.  John W. Hill, Terry W. McCreary, Marilyn D. Duerst, Rill A. Reuter.  ISBN-13:  9780134878102.   You can use any format you want of the text.  If you already have the 14th edition, that will be fine.

General Outline of Topics

Unit 1: Introduction to Agricultural Chemistry

  • Review of Matter, Atoms, Elements

Unit 2: Molecules, Ions and Bonding

  • Electrons and Bonding

Unit 3: Chemical Reactions

  • Reactions, Soil CEC and Common Soil Reactions

Unit 4: Solubility, pH

  • Reactions, Soil CEC and Common Soil Reactions

Unit 5:  Intro to Organic Chem

  • Organic compounds and Organic matter
  • Soil ReDox Reactions

Unit 6: Special Topics

  • Contaminants in Soil, Water and Air
  • Sustainable Practices

Grading:  Grading is based on homework, weekly quizzes, and a final exam.

Technology: According to UMass Online, in order to take this course you must:

  • have access to a personal computer (Mac or Windows)
  • be familiar with basic computer skills
  • be connected to the internet
  • have an e-mail program and account
  • have at least a 56 kbps modem
  • have a Java capable browser (Netscape or Internet Explorer)

NOTE: If you have any problems with technology, please contact the UMass Online Tech Support office for help.


This class is part of the Sustainable Food and Farming Online Certificate Program and will count toward the Associate of Science degree as well as the Online B.S. degree.  Online classes cost $482/credit.

To begin planning for the future, see….

Annual Class Schedule

NOTE: The UMass Sustainable Food and Farming Certificate has been declared eligible for Veterans Educational Benefits. For instructions see: Veterans Benefits.

If you are not interested in earning college credit, there are many non-credited workshops and short courses you can take outside of the university.  For a list see: non-university workshops and courses.

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