Hebron University - Soil & Irrigation Department

Course Description

55211   Principles of Soil Science                                                   

Soil and its components, physical and chemical soil properties, soil water, organic matter, soil organisms, soil nutrients. 

55217   Principals of Soil Science  Lab                                            

Laboratory exercises: Soil sampling, moisture determinations, texture, structure, densities and porosity, salinity, pH, soil color, organic matter content, carbonate content.

55212   Soil Fertility & Fertilizers                                                   

Plant growth factors,  nutrients,  N,  P,  K,  Mg, Ca, S and micronutrients functions and sources,  fertilizer application.

55218   Soil Fertility & Fertilizers Lab                                            

Laboratory exercises: recognizing fertilizers,  calculations of fertilizer rate,  concentrations of active ingredients in fertilizers,  preparation solutions for firtigation, determination of N content in soils, determination of  water-soluble, and acid soluble P content in soils, determination of K content in soils, visual deficiency observations.

55214   Geology and Soil Mineralogy                                             

Chemical and mineralogical composition of earth’s crust.  Minerals, and rocks, Mineralogical composition of rocks. Weathering and soil mineralogical composition.  Weathering processes. Weathering rate and crystal structure. Mineralogical composition versus soil age. Soil clay minerals, mica and vermiculite, smectites, kaolinite, Allophane and Halloysite, oxidic clays.

The course includes field trips. To recognize different rock types and geological structure.

55221   Principales Irrigation & Drainage                                      

In this course, the students will be introduced to irrigation definition, sources of irrigation water, soil-water relationship: field capacity, wilting point, leaching and drainage, required applied depth, water requirements for plants, irrigation scheduling.

In addition, water delivery systems for irrigation systems: pipes, open channels, pumping will be presented.  Also irrigation systems: types, advantages and disadvantages, surface irrigation, sprinkler irrigation, drip and trickle irrigation will be discussed.  Water quality and irrigation and water conveyance systems will be introduced. 

55222   Hydraulics                                                                           

Fundamentals of hydraulics applicable to the irrigation of agricultural lands, including fluid properties, hydrostatics, hydrodynamics, and irrigation flow characteristics, open channel and pipeline applications, and measurement of flowing water.  The course also covers the continuity equation and energy equation and the momentum equation; and how these equations can be applied to irrigation engineering.

55223   Meteorology                                                                        

In this course the importance of agricultural meteorology will be presented.  Weather and weather patterns will be discussed.  In addition, meteorological elements and their measurements will be introduced: precipitation, temperature, evaporation, atmospheric pressure etc…. Also, studying storms phenomena and why they happen in terms of wind, types of storms, rain, snow, pattern, and distribution.  This course covers the meteorology of Palestine in particular and currents especially the ones occur in the Mediterranean that affect Palestine.

This course includes field trips to meteorological stations in Hebron District.

55231   Introduction to Ecology                                                       

Climate, soil, biological and chemical cycles in nature, biodiversity, structure of biological communities, ecosystems, desertification and its causes. Natural resources, pollution of air, water and soil. Environment in Palestine.

55311   Soil Physics                                                                         

Characteristic of the primary particles, soil texture and structure, soil water and aeration, soil temperature, solute transport in soils. In filtration.  Laboratory exercises: Soil texture, structure (dry and wet), densities and porosity, specific surface area, soil water determinations, field capacity, saturation percentage, soil color, soil temperature observations.

55313   Soil Chemistry                                                                     

Course studies the soil chemical composition, soil colloids, saline, alkaline, and acid soil properties, ion exchange, and soil organic matter.

Laboratory exercises: Determination of soil carbonates, organic matter content,  extraction,  fractionation,  and characterization ,  exchangeable Ca, Mg,  K,  Na, and ESP determination,  specific anion reactions, soil pH measurement,  electrical conductivity measurement,  exchangeable NO32- and NH4+ determination.

55315   Soil Microbiology for Agricultural  Students                        

Soil ecology, important soil microorganisms, their distribution, and influence on soil processes, carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, sulfur, and iron cycles.

55316   Soil, Plant & Water Relationship                                        

Soil characters, soil water, soil salinity and its effect on plant growth, cycles of N, P, K, S, Ca, and Mg Nutrient cycling. Hysteresis,   capillary rise and soil water.  Water movement in different types of soils. Field capacity, the continuous chain for relation-ship between soil, water, plant and atmosphere.  Soil colloids; their nature and practical significance plant growth regulators. Soil stabilizers micronutrient elements and plant growth, movement of water in soil. Plant water consumption and wilting point.

55317   Soil Conservation & Management                                      

Soil types and their properties,  and its relation-ships with soil conservation  & management,  soil forming factors, soil deterioration,  water and wind erosion,  predicting soil  loss,  USLE, conservation structures,  conservation tillage,  soil pollution.

55321   Irrigation Systems                                                              

In this course the two irrigation systems are studied in details: Surface Irrigation systems and Pressurized irrigation systems. Pressurized irrigations systems are classified as: Sprinkler Irrigation and Drip Irrigation.  The design of the different Irrigation Systems will be given based on performance and economics.

The course will discuss amounts and timing of applied water, Infiltration, Efficiency measures, Distribution of Water, System capacity, Flow in closed conduits, Flow in open channels, Pumps and pump characteristic curves.

In Surface Irrigation Systems the course will discuss the theory, Basic design procedure, Borders, Basins, Furrows, and Surge irrigation.

In pressurized irrigation systems the course will cover Sprinkler Irrigation Systems, Center pivot systems, Traveling gun systems, Trickle Irrigation Systems. Including Basic Design procedure, Emitter Characteristic and System hydraulics

55322   Irrigation Systems Lab.                                                      

Soil moisture measurements and measurements of soil characteristics: infiltration, water holding capacity, field capacity, wilting point etc… In addition, performing border/basin, sprinkler and drip irrigations in the field and measuring uniformity based on different application rates.  This lab will include measuring performance of the different irrigation systems in the field.  Also, the student will do flow rate measurements of water and pump performance.

55323    Agricultural Drainage                                                        

Origin and nature of drainage problems in arid and semi-arid lands;  drainage theories,  investigations and design of subsurface drainage systems using the principles of water movement through soils,  Also the course covers designing of surface drainage systems.  A computer model for evaluation and design of drainage systems in used.  An integral part of this course is a field trip.

55324   Water and  its Uses                                                            

The water cycle,  water quality,  infiltration,  springs,  groundwater aquifer and groundwater flow,  surface and ground water quality and its uses in different aspects of life,  in drinking,  irrigation and industries. Water resources (rainfall, of rivers, groundwater and wastewater.

Practical Part:

The study of water quality and its uses for different aspects through physical and chemical water analysis.

55325   Water in Palestine                                                              

Introduction and background for development and sustainability.  Freshwater resources in Palestine.  Population, landscapes, climate, hydrology, and water use, factors that affect water use.  Water demand and water resources in Palestine.  Water quality, water quantity and ecosystem.  The effect of topography and geology on water in Palestine.  The study of the major ground water aquifers in Palestine, and the movement of ground water.  Springs of Palestine study of Jordan river. The course includes scientific trips to major springs and ground water wells in Palestine.

55331   Ecological Data Management                                             

This course will cover data management principles:  implementation and administration.  It will also cover management information’s systems, databases and electronic libraries, data quality assurance, metadata and archiving of ecological data and information.  There will be a laboratory for this course in the computer lab.

55332    Solid Waste Management                                                  

This course will cover solid waste characteristics, collection methods, landfills and processing.  Recycling of solid waste and composting will also be covered.

55413   Soil Reclamation                                                                  

Sources of salts in soil, saline, soil, alkali soil, leaching factor, water balance and salt balance relationship between soil salinity and EC.  The factors controlling the reclamation of salt leaching from soils.  Salinity stress. Reclamation of saline and Alkali soils.  Field capacity effect of salts on soil structure and crop productivity effects of boron on soil, SAR, Na%, ESR, ESP, water quality criteria.  Threshold concentration, chemical amendments practical part: Field trips to regions with saline problems Analysis of water and soil paste (Ca+2, Mg+2, Na+, K+, SO4-2, Cl-, HCO3-, pH, EC. TDS).

55421   Wastewater Treatment and its Uses                                  

Water quality and water pollution.  Wastewater treatment processes.  Wastewater effluent disposal, reuse in irrigation and in recharging ground water. There will be field trips for waste water projects and source.

55422                Watershed Management                                        

What is a rainfall catchments basin, its characters, methods of measuring climatic elements, e.g. Rainfall, temp. and evaporation.  Design, construction, testing, and operation of water management systems.  Study of water run off, ground water and springs. Water harvest in different ways, study of small dam’s structures. Study of water movement in open channels and the study of groundwater movement in confined and unconfined aquifers. Well drilling, constructing and maintenance, pumping test analysis.  The course consist a practical part for measuring and calculation of climate elements, water run off river hydrograph and radius effect of wells.

55431   Uses of Recycled Water                                                      

This course will concentrate on the uses of different processed effluents on irrigated crops and soils.  Also it will cover the influence of using the treated water on the environment what include the soil, the plant, the other natural resources, and the consumers of those crops.

55511   Plant Nutrition                                                                     

Nutrient functions, influence of nutrient on plant quality and chemical composition, crops fertilization, fertigation methods and system.


Soil sampling determination of exchangeable nitrate and ammonium,, phosphorus,  and potassium. Express method of nitrate determination, determination of NPK in plants, calculation nutrient requirements of plants.

55514   Land Classification and Land Survey                                  

Definition and importance of soil survey and classification,  land classification systems,  types of soil maps,  making survey and maps,  FAO and USDA classifications,  soils of Palestine.

Laboratory exercises:  Site description, profile digging and description, augerings, soil sampling and field analyses of soils, using of maps and map preparation.

55515   Organic Agriculture                                                             

Definition,  importance,  and objective of organic culture,  hazards of pesticides and fertilizer for microorganisms and health,  organic properties of soils, principles of organic culture,  compost and composting,  natural and biological methods of composting,  organic crops,  cover crops in organic culture,  quality of organic products and its benefits.

Laboratory exercises: Compost preparation, sampling composts before and after composting, land preparation for organic culture, observations of plants and microorganisms, comparison of soil treated with organic and chemical materials.

55516   Soil-less Culture                                                                  

Importance of Soil-less culture,  classification systems of soil-less cultures,  hydroponics,  sand and mineral cultures,  chemical properties of materials,  soil solutions in soil less culture,  resources of materials,  examples.

Laboratory exercises:  types of solutions, stock solutions and their preparation, chemical properties of solutions, EC and pH, organic culture experiments, irrigation water quality, quality of crops produced by soil less culture.

55541   Field Practices in Soil and Irrigation                                  

In this course the students will be trained, at the university farms, on the different cultural practices that related to soil and irrigation.  Which include soil preparation, fertilization (methods of fertilization, types of fertilizer, quantity and time of fertilization, and maturing responses of plants to fertilization, setting the design for the irrigation system, construct the irrigation system in the field, and collect the necessary data for farther analysis and study.

55543   Seminar                                                                               

This  course include an individual study in the books and scientific journals about the subject of specialization,  where a term paper is prepared,  presented,  and group discussion by the students.

55544   Special Topics                                                                      

This course covers selected subjects in the fields of soil and irrigation.  The subjects and the study plan are determined by the instructor.

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