Green Cert September 2019

GREEN CERTIFICATE  AGRICULTURE LEVEL 6

 

We are no longer accepting applications for this course. 

If you wish to be notified of places becoming available on future courses please email the college on nightclasses@westportcfe.ie and leave your name, mobile number and email address.

 

The Green Certificate in Agriculture comprises of 2 QQI awards; Agriculture Level 5 (5M20454) and the Special Purpose Award in Farming (6S20487) This course will be delivered over 2019 and 2020 with certification envisaged Spring 2021.

 

The fee for this course is €1990 which is payable in full on application.

 

Course Modules

Agriculture Level 5 – 5M20454

  • Beef Husbandry 5N20388
  • Communications 5N0690
  • Farm Business and Technology 5N20377
  • Farm Safety and Farm Assurance 5N20371
  • Manual Pesticide Application 5N20438
  • Principals of Agriculture 5N20368
  • Safe Use of Pesticide Products 5N20380
  • Sheep Husbandry 5N20385
  • Soils and the Environment 5N20374
  • Work Practice 5N1433

Special Purpose in Farming Level 6 – 6S20487

  • Applied Livestock Breeding 6N3525
  • Farm Performance Measurement 6N3005
  • Farm Management and Business Planning 6N20462
  • Grassland Management 6N20472
  • Sustainable Farming in the Environment 6N20463
  • Work Practice 6N1947

 

Detailed Course Outline

Agriculture Level 5 – 5M20454

 

  • Beef Husbandry 5N20388

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to carry out commercial beef farming under management

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Discuss beef production in the context of importance in Irish agriculture, distribution of production, and market requirements.
    • Discuss factors affecting efficiency in beef production including management and biological efficiency factors
    • Analyse the effectiveness of Irish beef production systems by assessing husbandry practices required to achieve optimal economic and animal performance for different systems of Irish beef production
    • Describe component systems of beef production and their respective key physical and economic efficiency indicators
    • Describe diseases, disorders and parasites of cattle and their control
    • Discuss best practice in cattle husbandry tasks required for beef production
    • Analyse housing for cattle production
    • Assess a range of beef animals for economic characteristics using recognised criteria
    • Control common diseases affecting the health of cattle, by planning and implementing prevention strategies and by correctly identifying and treating their symptoms in accordance with and using recommended good practices
    • Execute husbandry tasks required for the beef production cycle in accordance with human and animal safety animal welfare, traceability requirements and best practice
    • Perform breeding tasks required for efficient beef production
    • Analyse drivers of profit of beef production and explore practices to attain industry recognised targets
    • Practice safety and workplace health in agriculture

 

 

  • Communications 5N0690

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the relevant knowledge, skill and competence to communicate verbally and non-verbally in standard everyday tasks and in work-related tasks, operating independently while under general direction

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Analyse a range of current issues in communications and information technology
    • Summarise in practical terms the elements of legislation that must be observed in a personal and/or work context, to include health, safety and welfare at work and communications-related legislation
    • Use appropriate non-verbal and visual communication in personal- and work-related settings, to include one-to-one, in a group/team, and in formal and informal interaction
    • Demonstrate verbal skills appropriate to working under general direction, to include making a case and presenting a point of view in group discussion, formal meetings, interviews
    • Demonstrate listening skills appropriate to working under general direction, to include making eye contact, receiving and interpreting information, control of personal response
    • Use reading techniques appropriate to a task, to include skimming, obtaining an overview, identifying key points, critical evaluation, in depth analysis
    • Critique information from a range of complex written material, to include technical/vocational, personal, literary, and written and visual media texts
    • Research a relevant vocational topic, to include use of primary and secondary sources, acknowledgement of sources, use of enquiry techniques and methods to establish validity and reliability
    • Use drafting, proofreading and editing skills to write a range of documents that follow the conventions of language usage (spelling, punctuation, syntax), to include creative writing, business proposals, correspondence, reports, memoranda, minutes, applications
    • Demonstrate communications styles and techniques relevant to different situations in work and leisure, to include one-to-one and group contexts in conversation, interview, oral presentation, question and answer session and for the purposes of persuading, advocacy and informing
    • Choose the appropriate communications technology to give and receive requests, instructions, suggestions, discussion and feedback in both work and leisure, to include a rationale for choosing one technology over another in different contexts and for different messages

 

 

  • Farm Business and Technology 5N20377

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to effectively use technology, recognise and communicate key drivers of farm business profit

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

  • Analyse the agribusiness sector in Ireland including a range of enterprises, and the role of government, non- governmental and co-operative agencies
  • Examine the range of documents and information needed for compiling physical and financial records for a farm including various methods of safely storing and retrieving them
  • Use correct terminology to effectively communicate a farm business
  • Examine on the role of information technology in farm management
  • Discuss key indicators commonly used in the measurement of physical and financial performance and recognise key drivers of profit
  • Discuss different types of farm credit and its associated terms and conditions
  • Discuss current government and other schemes, their benefits, terms and conditions for the main agriculture sectors
  • Examine the business benefits of a strong safety culture to agriculture
  • Use common software packages and externally linked devices taking account of best practice and correct protocol in computer workstation ergonomics
  • Apply a range of agriculture appropriate smart technology apps and IT to solve or answer agriculture industry related queries including recording appropriate agriculture related data
  • Analyse a range of reports produced by a computerised cash flow program with respect to key agriculture performance indicators
  • Use government and commercial agricultural websites to gather and submit physical and financial information
  • Practice the completion of a range of relevant current agriculture scheme documentation
  • Calculate and relate agriculture data to performance
  • Practice safety and workplace health in agriculture

 

 

  • Farm Safety and Farm Assurance 5N20371

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to recognise and control farm hazards and to practice farm assurance

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Discuss the main causes of accidents, injuries and health related issues on Irish farms
    • Examine the duties of farmers and farm workers under current safety, compliance and regulatory requirements and environmental legislation
    • Discuss risk assessment and its implementation
    • Describe safe methods of work in agriculture, farm building and farm yard design considerations in relation to safe farming operations
    • Describe farm related health problems and their prevention
    • Examine on-farm ethics and obligations under current EU and Irish legislation regarding ethical animal welfare principles
    • Analyse the role of farming in the food chain, food assurance and traceability requirements in agriculture
    • Discuss best practice in animal medications, remedies and plant protection products at farm level
    • Discuss behaviour of agricultural vehicles when in use in a range of common situations and current regulations pertaining to agricultural vehicles
    • Safely execute common farm safety and farm assurance operations including operating a tractor / trailer combination and attaching a mounted PTO driven machine
    • Practice the steps in identifying and managing safety risks in the work place

 

 

  • Manual Pesticide Application 5N20438

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to work independently applying pesticides by different methods using hand operated equipment

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Describe the range of handheld and pedestrian propelled equipment for the application of plant protection products
    • Discuss the principles of application technology necessary for the proper application of pesticides in respect of applicator components, calibration, maintenance, field operating procedures, precautions and environmental considerations
    • Describe the working principles of a knapsack sprayer
    • Describe the working principles of a hand operated slug pellet applicator
    • Describe the working principles of a hand operated weedlick
    • Discuss legislative requirements pertaining to pesticide applicators
    • Interpret pesticide label information in respect of pictograms, product name, precautionary statements, class designation, registration number, purpose, precautions, first aid instruction, toxicology information, disposal, notice to user, safety data sheets (SDS) and directions for use
    • Prepare a knapasck sprayer for work, including calibration, in accordance with safe recommended good practice and manufacturer’s instructions
    • Make up a pesticide spray mix in accordance with good practice including the pesticide product label dosage recommendations and the application area
    • Store a knapsack sprayer and personal protective equipment in a safe and efficient manner according to manufacturer’s instructions
    • Apply a pesticide mix with a knapsack sprayer in a safe and efficient manner in accordance with recommended good practice
    • Set up, calibrate and efficiently operate a hand held weed-licker according to the operators manual using recommended good practice
    • Set up, calibrate and efficiently operate a pedestrian propelled full width broadcast or placement pesticide pellet applicator according to the operators manual using recommended good practice
    • Store manual pesticide applicators and personal protective equipment in a safe and efficient manner according to manufacturer’s instructions

 

 

  • Principals of Agriculture 5N20368

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge of the context of agriculture in society and underpinning skills and competence in common agriculture practices.

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Discuss agriculture in a national and global context and the consequent responsibility at farm level including the basic human right to food, food security, quality production, sustainability and environmental responsibilities
    • Describe plant and animal cells, their organelles, function and division
    • Describe plant anatomy and its function in monocotyledonous and dicotyledonous plants
    • Describe the anatomy physiology and function of the animal body of common agriculture animals including reproductive systems and various digestive systems
    • Discuss the basic living processes and life cycles of animals and plants
    • Investigate Irish agriculture by sector, enterprise, product and market to include dairying, drystock and tillage production
    • Discuss the production operations for the following agriculture production systems: calf to beef production, spring calving dairy herd, mid-season lamb production and spring barley production
    • Discuss a range of other relevant systems to agriculture, horticulture and land use production such as forestry, pigs, poultry, nursery stock production, fruit, apiculture and others as appropriate
    • Discuss animal behaviour and the principles of safely handling livestock.
    • Discuss animal and crop traceability systems in Ireland
    • Identify a range of plants commonly found on Irish farms to include native weeds, grasses, tillage, feed and forage crops and their categories
    • Practice common agriculture skills and tasks using best practice and in a safe manner
    • Implement best practice in controlling illness and disorders in livestock
    • Practice safety and workplace health in agriculture

 

 

  • Safe Use of Pesticide Products 5N20380

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence in the safe use of pesticides in accordance with requirements of current national and EU legislation and directives

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Outline risks and benefits associated with plant pesticide product use
    • Outline current national and EU legal requirements of the Sustainable Use Directive in regard to the safe use of pesticide products at professional user level
    • Explain tank mixing
    • Discuss the principles of safe storage, transport and handling of pesticides
    • Outline the current principles and implementation of “Good Plant Protection Practice” (GPPP)
    • Maintain records in accordance with current national and EU requirements
    • Demonstrate knowledge required by the professional user for dealing with accidents / incidents involving spillages, contamination and poisoning at a personal, environmental and public level
    • Outline the storage of plant protection products at professional user level including disposal of empty containers, and safe disposal of obsolete plant protection products and its packaging
    • Demonstrate knowledge of routes of contamination and the implementation appropriate procedures for personal hygiene to prevent personal contamination
    • Demonstrate knowledge of current practices to reduce pesticide impact on the environment
    • Outline a system of work at professional user level to comply with current national and EU regulations around the safe use of pesticides from the time the pesticide product is purchased to its final disposal off farm
    • Outline the correct use of Personal protective equipment required in the safe use of pesticide products
    • Outline the continuous professional development training required for the safe use of pesticide products and resources available to ensure best practice
    • Outline the key current legislative compliance, quality assurance, environmental issues and key practical steps relevant to the use of substances hazardous to the environment including biocides at producer level
    • Interpret the information on a pesticide label and SDS sheets
    • Carry out risk assessment and identify appropriate control measures in the safe use of pesticide products to prevent accidents or ill-health

 

 

  • Sheep Husbandry 5N20385

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to carry out commercial sheep farming under management

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Describe the principles and role of flock production including importance in Irish agriculture, lamb production systems, and flock performance
    • Review management and biological factors affecting efficiency in sheep production in terms of health and feed and feed mixes
    • Describe a range of lamb production systems including breeding calendar and physical and economic performance
    • Investigate a system of lamb production, appropriate to a specific farm situation
    • Investigate diseases, disorders and parasites of ewes and lambs including bio-security measures, causal agents, symptoms, prevention and control measures
    • Analyse housing for sheep production to include human and animal health, welfare, safety and efficiency and cost of construction
    • Perform peri-natal tasks with ewes and lambs using recognised techniques and performance standards
    • Assess a range of ewes and lambs for economic characteristics, by applying recognised criteria
    • Prevent and control common diseases and disorders affecting the health of ewes and lambs using recognised techniques and performance standards
    • Perform sheep breeding tasks using recognised techniques and performance standards
    • Perform sheep husbandry skills taking into account human and animal safety animal welfare, traceability requirements and best practice
    • Investigate drivers of profit of sheep production and explore practices to attain industry recognised targets
    • Practice safety and workplace health in agriculture

 

 

  • Soils and the Environment 5N20374

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to implement best practice in soil nutrition under management

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Describe soils in terms of classification, type, distribution in Ireland, formation and properties of productive and non-productive soils
    • Describe the physical and chemical composition and features of soils and their relevance for modern farming practices
    • Describe agriculture practices affecting soil structure their implications for soils and key soil improvement practices
    • Describe the biological fraction of soil
    • Discuss soil nutrition and related environmental legislation, sources and roles of nutrients, maximising nutrient value of fertilisers and farm bi-products, storage and practical implications at farm level
    • Investigate the practical implications for agriculture of current Irish and European Union environmental protection legislation and schemes
    • Take a soil sample and investigate the soil texture
    • Interpret a soil analysis report
    • Recommend a fertiliser plan for the economic production of a given crop using best practice
    • Analyse an environmental audit at farm level
    • Interpret codes of good agricultural practice for the application of fertilisers and organic manures
    • Interpret safety and workplace health requirements when handling and storing fertiliser and lime products

 

 

  • Work Practice 5N1433

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to work in an organisation or specific vocational context, carrying out vocationally related tasks over a period of time, independently while under general

supervision

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

    • Summarise the distinguishing features of the organisation, institution or workplace to include its status (public, private, voluntary, other), size, organisational structure, main aims and its overall work, staff client engagement and management practices
    • Comment on current issues, challenges and trends affecting the organisation, institution or workplace, to include as appropriate, local, national, global, economic and social and or ethical issues
    • Summarise the main legislation and regulations relevant to the place of work; to include health, safety and welfare at work, employment, equality and matters related to the specific vocational context
    • Explain the organisation’s internal and external policies and procedures pertinent to own role and role of others
    • Conclude a minimum 2 month work practice placement undertaking a range vocationally specific tasks and activities
    • Select information required for a range of workbased tasks, to include analysis of information and application of knowledge to new situations
    • Work independently carrying out a range of vocationally specific activities and tasks in the organisation, institution or workplace, seeking advice and general direction as appropriate
    • Contribute positively as a member of an organisation or team; maintaining time-keeping, personal presentation, meeting deadlines and adherence to health, safety and other relevant regulations and practice
    • Execute work practice tasks and responsibilities in a professional and safe manner
    • Reflect on personal work practices, to include feedback from supervisor(s) or mentors on personal performance, achievements and challenges
    • Review personal and professional learning to include identifying strengths and weaknesses, learning and career opportunities within the vocational field and within the organisation, institution or workplace

Special Purpose in Farming Level 6 – 6S20487

·         Grassland Management 6N20472

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to implement best practice in grass management

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

  • ·         Describe the growth habit, annual production pattern and factors influencing grass sward growth and quality
  • ·         Outline the principles and benefits of grass measurement and budgeting
  • ·         Outline reseeding and establishment requirements for grass
  • ·         List actions required when grass covers are either higher or lower than target
  • ·         Calculate dry matter yield (cover) in a paddock (field) using a quadrant and grass cutter
  • ·         Determine the daily grass requirement for a given herd
  • ·         Establish grass covers and targets for optimum grass utilization on a given dairy, cattle or sheep farm to include livestock details, paddock details, paddock covers, target covers, average cover and grass demand per hectare per day
  • ·         Complete a grass budget for a given farm situation to include spring rotation planner, summer wedge and autumn budget

 

·         Applied Livestock Breeding 6N3525

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to apply best practices in livestock breeding management.

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

  • ·         Explain current breeding indices used to evaluate animals for a livestock enterprise
  • ·         Devise a livestock breeding policy, programme and calendar for a farm enterprise
  • ·         Establish current performance measurement and benchmark data for a livestock enterprise in regard to economic breeding indices
  • ·         Set targets and criteria for improving breeding indices for a livestock enterprise
  • ·         Record animal events data for use in a livestock breeding programme to include a range of the following: artificial insemination, natural service, pregnancy diagnosis, drying-off, health events, animal weights and body condition scores
  • ·         Produce animal and herd reports relating to livestock breeding, parturition and slaughter using a database system
  • ·         Interpret animal and herd reports generated from a database
  • ·         Use sire advice reports to aid in the selection of sires for a livestock enterprise

·         Work Practice 6N1947

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to work in a range of organisations or vocational contexts and to engage in vocationally-related tasks independently and or in a supervisory capacity.

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

  • ·         Evaluate the characteristics of the organisation or workplace, to include its status whether public, private, voluntary or other, size, organisational structure, mission and values, the workplace culture and management practices
  • ·         Assess internal and external issues, challenges and trends affecting the workplace, to include as appropriate, local, national, global, team-based and cultural issues, and a personal response to the issues or challenges identified
  • ·         Research the specific legislation and regulations relevant to the place of work and vocational context; including rights and responsibilities in relation to, health, safety and welfare at work, equality, employment and specific work and or vocational practices
  • ·         Evaluate the organisations internal and external policies and procedures ensuring appropriateness to current legislation and regulations
  • ·         Execute a range of vocationally specific tasks and activities during a minimum 2 month work practice placement
  • ·         Apply effective communication skills in communicating with colleagues, staff and external individuals or groups as required working autonomously or in a supervisory capacity
  • ·         Allocate resources to analyse and solve routine and non-routine problems arising in the workplace
  • ·         Show judgement and initiative while working autonomously and or in a supervisory capacity, taking responsibility for own work and the work of others and allocating resources as required
  • ·         Contribute positively to the achievement of objectives and or targets in the workplace working autonomously and or with responsibility for the work of others
  • ·         Execute work practice duties and responsibilities in a professional manner ensuring respect and safety of colleagues and staff
  • ·         Reflect on personal and professional work practices, to include feedback from senior staff or mentors and colleagues or team workers on individual performance, achievements, strengths and challenges

·         Farm Performance Measurement 6N3005

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to adopt and apply benchmarking techniques to a range of farm performance indicators.

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

  • ·         Describe the principles of farm performance measurement and benchmarking techniques
  • ·         Assess the role and application of comparative performance measurement and benchmarking in current farming practice
  • ·         Analyse a set of comparative farm performance data in regard to the key variations arising and their implications for a given farm situation
  • ·         Evaluate the role of farm discussion groups in assisting comparative farm performance measurement
  • ·         Evaluate the role and application of information technology systems and databases in farm performance measurement for a given situation
  • ·         Identify the latest research findings, extension / industry programmes and technology developments supporting farm performance measurement and benchmarking for a given agricultural sector
  • ·         Conduct a farm benchmarking exercise for five of the following areas:
  • ·         Herd and Animal Performance Targets
  • ·         Grassland Management Practice
  • ·         Winter Feed and Housing Facilities
  • ·         Animal Breeding and Selection Indices
  • ·         Flock Performance Targets
  • ·         Crop Varietal Selection and Yield
  • ·         Crop Weed and Disease Control Plan
  • ·         Nutrient Planning5
  • ·         Farm Assurance Scheme
  • ·         Regulatory Compliance Measures

·         Farm Management and Business Planning 6N20462

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to effectively evaluate internal and external factors affecting the farm business

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

  • ·         Explain liability and risk relating to agriculture activity
  • ·         Assess the effect of EU and National legislation on the running of a given farm situation
  • ·         Outline supports available to farmers from government, state agencies and other nongovernmental organisations
  • ·         Appraise the taxation system in relation to agriculture
  • ·         Assess financial services and credit requirements available to farmers
  • ·         Appraise stakeholders and external supports associated with the agriculture business
  • ·         Assess efficiency, output and business performance of a given farm situation
  • ·         Develop and evaluate realistic options to improve a given agriculture situation, taking account of EU and National environmental legislation
  • ·         Predict benefits and implications of implementing a change to an agriculture situation including using cost benefit analysis and calculating loan repayments
  • ·         Cost a realistic development for a given agricultural business situation
  • ·         Investigate succession, inheritance, ownership, title and business arrangements pertinent to agriculture
  • ·         Calculate costs of transferring ownership of farm property
  • ·         Investigate an alternative enterprise appropriate to the land based sector
  • ·         Appraise health, safety and welfare management for a given agricultural business situation

·         Sustainable Farming in the Environment 6N20463

 

The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to use environmentally-friendly and sustainable farming methods in compliance with relevant EU and national legislation.

Learning Outcomes Learners will be able to:

  • ·         Outline the effects of farming on the environment
  • ·         Describe wildlife habitats of Irish agriculture
  • ·         Describe measures to protect and enhance wildlife and biodiversity
  • ·         Outline hedgerow management and its role sustainability
  • ·         Evaluate the suitability and impact of environmental protection schemes for a given farm situation
  • ·         Outline requirements for compliance in respect of EU legislation relation to the environment
  • ·         Describe key considerations and methods in agriculture sustainable development
  • ·         Outline policies and strategies for reducing the greenhouse impact of agriculture
  • ·         Carry out an environmental resource audit for a given farm situation
  • ·         Evaluate energy usage and efficiency and energy conservation principles of a given agricultural situation
  • ·         Draw up a manure management programme for a given agricultural situation
  • ·         Devise an integrated pest management plan for a given agricultural situation

Application to the course is based on first come, first served basis