By Dr. Jennifer Bousselot, Iowa State University
College students are always looking for emerging technologies related to their field of study. Green roofs are especially alluring to those who want to help solve environmental issues, bring nature back into the cities, or simply yearn for green space instead of concrete. Continued interest from these types of students has prompted the development of a one credit, online course called HORT 193F Green Roof Design, Installation, and Management available fall of 2013, September 3rd through October 29th, through Iowa State University.
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You do not have to be an Iowa State University student to take the eight week course – anyone with access to an internet connection can sign up as a noncredit participant for $150.
This option is ideal for anyone who wants to understand the science behind green roofs: workers just entering the green roof industry, employees at municipalities, public gardens, Master Gardeners, or anyone who wants to build a small-scale backyard green roof.
The course will be divided into four modules: 1) the environmental benefits of green roofs, 2) the components required to build a sustainable green roof, 3) the timeline and preparation for installation, and 4) the common pitfalls associated with maintenance. During each module a series of brief recorded lectures, including several guest speakers, will be available for viewing.
Reading assignments will accompany each module from the required book for the course, The Green Roof Manual: A Professional Guide to Design, Installation, and Maintenance by Edmund Snodgrass and Linda McIntyre, as well as supplemental reading material provided. One of the most exciting elements of the course is the online discussions with fellow participants spread across North America. Each week a new green roof case study will be posted for discussion. Most of the case studies will be from the Midwest or Rocky Mountain Regions.
The course is delivered via an online learning platform called Blackboard Learn. More information about signing up for the course is available online at: http://agonline.iastate.edu/courses/f2013hort-193fxw. Any additional questions regarding the course can be directed to [email protected].
Jennifer Bousselot, instructor for HORT 193F, has spent 10 years studying green roofs. During her Ph.D. in Horticulture from Colorado State University, Jennifer researched species evaluations, substrate components, and water use in a green roof system on the 20,000 square foot green roof on the EPA Region 8 Headquarters. Since then she has participated in several green roof installations, including on the campuses of both Colorado State University and then Iowa State University where she became a Lecturer starting in 2010.
Iowa State University of Science and Technology was established in 1858 and became the first land grant university in the United States. It now has over 30,000 enrolled students in over 100 majors in six colleges. The Iowa State University online course HORT 193F Green Roof Design, Installation, and Management is delivered by the Department of Horticulture in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences; additional information can be found at http://agonline.iastate.edu/.