Course Topics

The following topics are included in The Resilience Hub PDC via a combination of educational formats (field trips, guest professionals, reading, video, lecture, practicum, individual study, group exercises, etc.).

Important – This course includes hands-on DESIGN practice as well as hands-on SKILLS practice (i.e. implementation techniques) as part of the learning approach.  This course takes the “design” part of “permaculture design course” very seriously and will use a robust and flexible design process as a touchstone theme throughout the curriculum.

Permaculture in General
  • Context, Big Picture
  • History & Origins of permaculture
  • Indigenous, traditional origins
  • Ethics & Principles
  • Pattern Literacy
  • Permaculture toolkits & network resources
Topical Categories
  • Ecological systems in general
  • Climatic factors (sun, wind, etc.)
  • Hydrological cycle and water systems
  • River, Riparian Systems
  • Soils, soil food web, soil-building
  • Tree Ecology / Woodland Ecology
  • Regenerative Agriculture
  • Agroforestry
  • Landform/Topography
  • Earthworks
  • Plant knowledge and functions
  • Polyculture design
  • Green & natural building
  • Energy Systems
  • Waste systems (solid, human, water, etc)
  • Social & Financial Permaculture
  • Animals in Permaculture
  • Humid Tropics / Dryland Applications
Observational / Data Collection Skills
  • Scatter vision, fox walk, directional hearing or similar
  • Sit spot and/or journaling
  • Site Survey Techniques 
  • Reading the Forested Landscape
  • Historical/Cultural context
  • Reading elevation changes and contour lines
  • Finding keypoints and keylines
  • Reading weather pulse events (i.e. rain, snow)
  • Reading flow and movement (wildlife, human desire lines, traffic patterns)
  • Zones of accumulation, use patterns
  • Reading viewsheds & other sector influences
  • Reading current zones of use
  • Client listening / consultation skills
  • Site documentation skills & conventions 
Design Techniques and Skills
  • Permaculture Design Process(es)
  • Design Questionnaire or Interview
  • Goals articulation
  • Reading architectural drawings
  • Zone & Sector Analysis
  • Input / Output Analysis
  • Asset / Challenge Analysis
  • Use Case Analysis
  • Design for resilience, design for change (i.e. climate adaptation)
Design “Products” Creation
  • Basemap creation (different techniques)
  • Scale of Permanence data collection
  • Summary Analysis & Assessment
  • Draft Concept Drawings
  • Drawing to scale
  • Triangulation & offsets
  • Understanding plan, section and axonometric drawings
  • Basic drawing tools
  • Basic drawing conventions, symbology
  • Basic report or design narrative
  • Presentation of ideas
Hands-on Applied Permaculture Exercises

These vary according to season and location.

  • A-frame (and bunyip) levels
  • Marking contour lines
  • Cutting swales
  • Appropriate tool choice and use (i.e. scything)
  • Sheet mulching
  • Hugel construction
  • Planting techniques
  • Finding keypoints & keylines

Some of the above may be substituted with some of the following:  Pruning, mushroom inoculation, compost bins/worm bins, polyculture planting, plant propagation, seed saving, food preservation, cob projects, foraging, pond construction, herb spiral, espalier install, arbor construction, chicken tractor/coop, rain barrel construction, etc.

Find out what makes The Resilience Hub PDC unique.