[permaculture] diploma in permaculture design

Wesley Trotman trrotmanw at bigpond.com
Wed Jul 31 07:57:59 EDT 2002

Hi Mark,
There are many people who have had the experience and study which would give
them more than enough knowledge to easily pass a PDC course.
*But do you have any knowledge gaps?
*The word <Permaculture> is copyrighted and can only be used (presumably in
a CV or business promotion) by a person who has a Permaculture Design
*The costs you mention are high by Oz standards, here they are typically
US$400 to $600 plus accommodation costs. Some teachers make some allowances
for low income sand also provide free camping. But I understand different
countries have different basic costs.
* I received my PDC through a correspondence course, very reasonable costs.
I got a lot out of it but I did miss out on the group dynamic. It was
Permaculture Visions who also cater for overseas students, for more info do
a web search for this Oz site.

Good luck

----- Original Message -----
From: Mark <mpludwig at facstaff.wisc.edu>
To: <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Tuesday, July 30, 2002 7:09 AM
Subject: Re: [permaculture] diploma in permaculture design

> Once again, sorry for my tone.  This is an ongoing sore point with
> me.  While I think it's swell for folk with the time and money to take
> these courses to do it,  I have neither of these in abundance.  What I do
> have is both the academic background and 7 years of hanging around with
> practicing PC folks and plenty of sweat put into actual projects.  I would
> be mighty pleased to take the official PC skills test or whatever to prove
> I merit the term designer, or at least to get me past the $2500 (1 K fees
> and 1.5 on opportunity cost) hit I would take vegetating in the basic
> course to get to a teaching or advanced course.  What I have found in the
> real world is that no one really cares if you have a "diploma" unless they
> sprung for a course or teach them.  If you do well in the field or speak
> well at a workshop they won't even ask.  The same could probably be said
> for a number of professionals who took the time to read the design manual;
> such as conservation biologist, landscape architect or organic farmer.  In
> fact these people and others who  have actually done earthworks in the
> world are in a far better position to know what is advisable in their
> region than many of the fresh faced "designers" I run into.  This is not
> dismiss these newbies, just to point out that two weeks intensive training
> does not make instant competence, especially with the tools like farm
> machines needed for large site implementation.   PC design is best taken
> IMO by those who have broad knowledge and experience and/or good contacts
> with professionals or agencies that can help fit all the elements of
> together without making blunders such as mixing incompatible species or
> failing to account for local climate issues.  The best designers I know
> came to PC late, all the design concepts did for them was to stitch
> together their existing knowledge in a new way.  Enough said.
> At 02:26 PM 7/27/02 +1000, you wrote:
> >Mark has an interesting point below, but I suspect that few people have
> >his breadth of knowledge, so a design or similar course might still be
> >worthwhile for most people.
> >
> >I am not making assumptions about Mark's knowledge or abilities, however
> >the people I have met who considered themselves capable permaculture
> >designers and who have not completed a course lacked some of the core
> >understandings of the design system, such as concepts of integration of
> >elements.
> >
> >I do not know the situation in north America, but in Australia there have
> >been a (too few) number of paid employment opportunities which asked for
> >design course certificate. A further benefit of the design course has
> >its ability to 'empower' course participants and enthuse them to take
> >action in their own lives and homes or in the community.
> >
> >Here, Permaculture International has taken the initiative to start
> >development of a module-based design course to be accredited as
> >training with the nation's training authority. The course will be
> >considerably longer and far more detailed and rigorous then the existing
> >range of design courses on offer, but will not replace existing courses
> >which will continue to be offered as community education-level
> >training.
> >
> >This is seen as a natural evolution of permaculture education in
> >for which there has been some demand for some years.
> >
> >I find Mark's advice that a design course is unnecessary to validate the
> >opinion of some in this country that there are substantial deficiencies
> >the present structure of design courses, deficiencies that some trainers
> >have moved to remedy in their own course structure. The proposed
> >accredited course will also remedy this for people requiring a vocational
> >certificate in permaculture design.
> >
> >Marks' comment that a design course is valuable to 'neophytes' is true.
> >The course, even the very conventional course structure stipulated by the
> >Permaculture Institute but largely ignored, provides newcomers with a
> >broad but not particularly deep comprehension of the design system and
> >leaves plenty of 'information holes' for them to fill in with further
> >
> >
> >Russ Grayson
> >Sydney, Australia
> >
> Mark P. Ludwig
> Poultry Research Lab
> University of Wisconsin -Madison
> 608-262-1730 WK
> 608-846-7125 HM
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