Natural Resources Technology

Land a great career in the great outdoors.

Are you interested in the environmental challenges facing society today? Are you worried about the loss of natural habitats? Are you interested in post-secondary education that spends less time in the classroom and more time in the field? If you think the outdoors are truly great and you have an interest in making sure they stay that way, then the Natural Resources Technology program may be the one for you. Check out our Natural Resources Technology Booklet for more information.

Watch a video of our students taken during the 24-hour Winter Survival field training!

 
Career Potential:
Graduates will find employment with governmental agencies and private industries in the oil and gas and forestry sectors. Duties range from pre-site assessments, dealing with environmental issues during disturbance, reclamation activities, vegetation reestablishment and facility monitoring.  Job opportunities for graduates can include:  Bird and Wildlife Services Technician, Environmental Field Technician, Field Plant Surveyor, Field Technician-Ambient Air Quality, Fisheries Technician, Forester, GIS/GPS Technologist, Intermediate Field Biologist/Technician, Intermediate/Junior Water Resources Engineer, Junior Air Quality Scientist, Junior Aquatics Environmental Technician, Weed Inspector or Invasive Weed Monitoring.

Credential:
Diploma

Diploma graduates are eligible to apply for the Agrology Technologist in Training (ATT) designation through the Alberta Institute of Agrologists. This will lead students to a Registered Technologist in Agrology (RTAg) designation which is mandatory in order to work within the agrology profession in Alberta. Also upon graduation, students are automatically certified by the North American Wildlife Technology Association (NAWTA) in wildlife techniques.

Admission Requirements*
Alberta high school diploma with at least one course from each of the following:

  • ELA 30-1*, English 30, or 60% in ELA 30-2 or English 33
  • Biology 30*(recommended), Chemistry 30*(recommended), Science 30, Biology 20 (60%), or Chemisty 20 (60%)
  • Math 30-1*, Math 30-2, Pure Math 30, Math 30, Applied Math 30 (60%) or Math 33 (60%)

Trasnferability

  • Diploma students will be accepted into the third year of the Bachelor of Applied Science: Environmental Management degree at Lakeland College. Students must complete Organic and Inorganic Chemistry in addition to the NRT diploma
  • Diploma students with a GPA of 3.2 or higher qualify for acceptance to University of Prince Edward Island Wildlife program

Practicum Dates
May 1, 2017 - June 23, 2017

Industry Certifications

  • Standard First Aid
  • Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG)
  • Workplace Hazardous Information System (WHIMS)
  • Bear Awareness
  • Petroleum Safety Training
  • Wilderness Skills
  • Pesticide Applicator's License
  • All-Terrain Vehicle Operator
  • Chainsaw (WTA)
  • Ground Disturbance
  • Trailering and Load Securment

*These certifications are valued at over $2800        

          

Natural Resources Technology

  • COMMUNICATIONS

    Course ID: NRES105

    Name: COMMUNICATIONS

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course introduces the student to the communications model and the complexity of the communication process. Effective work place writing strategies and techniques in memos, e-mails, letters, and lab reports will be covered. Graphics including creating tables, building, labeling and embedding graphs, tables and pictures into reports will be practiced.  Students will develop skills that will assist in seeking employment, including resume writing, fundamental presentation skills, and the use of key features in Microsoft Office Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

  • INTRODUCTION TO SOILS

    Course ID: NRES106

    Name: INTRODUCTION TO SOILS

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    Various parent geological material, deposition modes, and soil horizons will be identified. Soil forming processes and factors will also be covered. Field studies will include the orders of the Canadian Soil Classification System, geomorphology, parent material deposits, soil textures, and their relation to vegetation expression. Groundwater recharge, movement and discharge areas will be discussed. Using industry standard sampling equipment, soil samples will be collected. Ground water gradients will be determined through sampling piezometers, and the process of piezometer installation will be demonstrated.  Soil mapping, field report writing, electronic data collection and handling will be performed.  In all field collections, Chain of Custody Procedures will be implemented.

  • FISHERIES

    Course ID: NRES115

    Name: FISHERIES

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course provides unique practical field experience and academic skills required for exciting and challenging careers in fish and invertebrate culture, fish habitat and stock assessment; fisheries enhancement, conservation, management and research. Students will experience training in fish habitat measurement, assessment and monitoring. Researching and collecting fisheries and habitat field data in completing scientific reports will also be a vital part of this course.

  • WATER AND WETLANDS

    Course ID: NRES107

    Name: WATER AND WETLANDS

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course covers the important characteristics of aquatic habitats, wetlands, and riparian areas, including their values, functions, classification, and legislative requirements. Students learn the proper techniques for water quality testing. Several wetland classification systems will be examined, as well as water Act assessments, assessing wetland and riparian area health, and basic management strategies.

  • FIELD BOTANY

    Course ID: NRES108

    Name: FIELD BOTANY

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course will cover the common native trees, shrubs, forbs, graminoid species, mosses, and lichens of the boreal forest of Alberta with an emphasis on learning plant family characteristics. The basics of plant structure, function, and terminology will also be studied.

  • MAPPING AND NAVIGATION

    Course ID: NRES109

    Name: MAPPING AND NAVIGATION

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course reviews math calculations and conversions important for the field of Environmental Sciences. A working practice with forestry maps and their applications will also be implemented. The use of topographical and multipurpose resource maps and their applications are studied in depth. Interpretation of land locations using the Global Grid System, Universal Transverse Mercator System, and the Alberta Township System will be covered.  Hands-on experience with measurement equipment used for forest navigation purposes will be provided. Field proficiency in compassing and traversing to an industry standard are required for this course.

  • WEEDS AND WEED CONTROL

    Course ID: NRES110

    Name: WEEDS AND WEED CONTROL

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course focuses on the identification and control of weeds. Weed species covered include the common, noxious, and prohibited noxious weeds of Alberta. Grow common and noxious species in a greenhouse setting and observe them throughout their life cycles. Various methods of weed prevention and control are presented. Issues with weeds, such as the problems caused by them, legislative requirements, and herbicide resistance will be discussed. This course includes certification in Industrial Pesticide Application, the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), and Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG). 

  • INTRODUCTORY FISH AND WILDLIFE

    Course ID: NRES112

    Name: INTRODUCTORY FISH AND WILDLIFE

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course covers the basic biology, ecology, and identification characteristics of boreal Alberta's common birds, fish, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians. Identification by sight, as well as by calls for anurans and birds, will be emphasized. Activities include techniques for fish sampling, identification of wildlife signs, surveying for bird presence, and nesting site surveys.  Students also review the primary pieces of legislation that concern wildlife in Alberta, and organizations important to wildlife conservation. 

  • LAND MANAGEMENT

    Course ID: NRES113

    Name: LAND MANAGEMENT

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course will explore forest protection objectives in Alberta, with emphasis on current insect and disease problems and forest fire suppression. Topics include: forest inventories, road building, harvesting, timber salvage, quota holders right to manage the forest and the challenges with management of oil and gas dispositions of exploration and mining of subsurface minerals in ecological and sustainable manner. A brief introduction to the history of the First Nations and Metis communities in the forest region, before and after the arrival of the Europeans, and their views and role in maintaining the forest ecology is viewed.

  • INDUSTRY CERTIFICATIONS

    Course ID: NRES114

    Name: INDUSTRY CERTIFICATIONS

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    Training in various industry certifications are provided within the course. Students become certified upon successful completion. Natural Resources Safety Certifications include: All Terrain Vehicle Operator; Standard First Aid; Bear Awareness; Petroleum Safety Training; Wilderness Skills; Trailering and Load Securement. 

  • GPS/GIS AND AERIAL PHOTO INTERPRETATION

    Course ID: NRES111

    Name: GPS/GIS AND AERIAL PHOTO INTERPRETATION

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    The process and application of Global Positioning Systems (GPS) are covered in this course including navigation, data collection, and data transfer using GPS software. In addition, Geographic Information System (GIS) software will be used to perform a range of GIS tasks including data management, data editing, map query, and map production.  Aerial photo maps will be interpreted for navigation and field vegetation and terrain classification purposes. The use of aerial photos for planning purposes and field procedures are also covered in this course.

  • WORK EXPERIENCE

    Course ID: NRES120

    Name: WORK EXPERIENCE

    Hours: 120

    Credits: 3

    Apply what you learn in the classroom to a work environment. Work placements will be completed with natural resource industry partners where students will assist in day-to-day field operations and learn valuable hands-on skills needed to be a successful employee.

  • WILDLIFE TECHNIQUES

    Course ID: NRES203

    Name: WILDLIFE TECHNIQUES

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    Many wildlife species, including animals and organisms, are under the threat of extinction. This course focuses on the importance of biodiversity, and the various threats that species, populations, and ecosystems face, with an emphasis on Alberta species. The approved protocol for Species at Risk Wildlife Surveys in Alberta will be practiced. A large component of the course will include learning and practicing some common conservation techniques, and which types of species and ecosystems are priorities for conservation. Field experience include: recording clear and accurate field notes, techniques for surveying wildlife populations (fish sampling techniques, wildlife sign identifiers, remote tracking, trail cameras, radio-telemetry, bird sound recording, hair collection for DNA, mist netting and bird banding) and problem wildlife management. Basic biology and anatomy of Alberta's major vertebrate species, with an emphasis on sport fish and mammals will be investigated.

  • ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING

    Course ID: NRES202

    Name: ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    NRES 202 will provide information required on the process to complete an application for a new development or project. Environmental Assessments will be reviewed taking into consideration all aspects of the environment; including water, vegetation, wildlife, and historic resources. Pre-disturbance assessment and conservation, as well as the application process for land disposition in Alberta will be reviewed. This course covers Integrated Land Management (ILM) planning on Public Lands within Alberta. Instruction focuses on the history of land management in Alberta, strategic planning and cooperation of resourced based industries, reduction of human-caused footprint on public land, the Alberta Land-Use Framework, and provincial and local examples of ILM. In particular, an emphasis will be on standard forest management practices for sustainable forestry, integrated resource management, and ecosystem management. The Forest Act Regulations, forest ethics, and forest practice codes will be discussed.

  • PETROLEUM LAND MANAGEMENT

    Course ID: NRES205

    Name: PETROLEUM LAND MANAGEMENT

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course is an introduction to petroleum land management in Alberta.  Brief introductions will be made in petroleum history and geology as well as roles of various government agencies, submission and reporting procedures, and acts and regulations that govern the petroleum industry in Alberta.  Drilling waste management and resulting disposal methods of liquid and solids hazardous waste will be discussed.  Secondary containment of industrial facilities, and accidental release and containment procedures will be practiced.

  • RECLAMATION

    Course ID: NRES210

    Name: RECLAMATION

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course focuses on the exploration and reclamation of sand and gravel pits, oil leases and access roads within the boreal forest. Application for mineral and surface rights, reclamation business plans will be covered. Online tools, 'Reclamation Criteria for well sites and Associated Facilities for Forested Lands' and 'Reclamation Criteria for well sites and Associated Facilities for Cultivated Lands' will be used to evaluate reclamation projects. There will be an emphasis on ecological reclamation processes and equipment cost calculators.

  • ENVIRONMENTAL LAW

    Course ID: NRES207

    Name: ENVIRONMENTAL LAW

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course will provide the Natural Resources student with an introduction to legal concepts and how they apply to environmental practitioners. Private, public, and international law, including both federal and provincial acts that govern the environmental aspects of industry operations and development will be examined. Commercial real estate transaction must include an Environmental Site Assessment (ESA). Aspects for completing Phase I ESA such as collecting and compiling data, performing an interview and completing the physical site inspections will be practiced. Skills on how to plan and supervise a Phase II ESA, including common contaminants and their migration patterns, sampling methodologies, and interpretation of laboratory results will be performed. Introductory aspects of Phase III ESA's will also be discussed.

  • SOIL CONSERVATION

    Course ID: NRES206

    Name: SOIL CONSERVATION

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course focuses on soil properties that make them vulnerable to erosion. Processes from siltation to mass movement will be studied. Mitigating factors to help prevent erosion will be discussed and implemented in the field.

  • GLOBAL ISSUES

    Course ID: NRES208

    Name: GLOBAL ISSUES

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    There are many ways in which humans are impacting the environment in today's world. These range from local- to global-scale impacts. This course will provide an overview of some of the major environmental issues that are recognized today, such as global warming, ozone depletion, air and water pollution, deforestation, overfishing, urbanization, overuse of natural resources, exotic species introduction, genetic engineering, and overpopulation.

    Renewable and nonrenewable sources of energy are major concerns when discussing the environment. Instruction focuses on alternative sources of energy used in Alberta. The advantages and disadvantages of the various conventional and alternative energy sources will be discussed.

    Air quality and the examination of NOx, SOx, CO, O3 Pb and Particulate Matter (PM) and their effects on human health and the environment.  Evolution of air quality standards as it relates to ambient and work place air will be emphasized. Virtual tours and local facility tours will assist the students in evaluating the collection and monitoring equipment in stack emission and ambient air.

  • INTRODUCTION TO EARTH SCIENCES: GEOLOGY & GEOMORPHOLOGY

    Course ID: EASC101

    Name: INTRODUCTION TO EARTH SCIENCES: GEOLOGY & GEOMORPHOLOGY

    Hours: 84

    Credits: 3

    EASC101 introduces students to basic concepts of physical geology. Following an introduction to minerals as the basic building blocks of earth materials, igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks are examined. This is followed by a detailed look at earth's internal structure and processes that occur within it. Students are acquainted with the theory of plate tectonics as a unifying concept in geology after which crustal tectonics and resulting deformation structures are explored. Earth surface processes are also examined including weathering, mass movement, surface water movement, glaciations, wind action and desert processes. The final part of the course introduces students to the application of remote sensing and GIS in the earth sciences.

  • GPS SITE ASSESSMENT

    Course ID: NRES204

    Name: GPS SITE ASSESSMENT

    Hours: 80

    Credits: 3

    This course will apply GPS/GIS software to perform a range of GPS/GIS tasks including data management, data editing, map query, map production, and geographic analysis to perform site assessments for Alberta's Natural Regions and Sub Regions. This course will combine knowledge from soils, vegetation, wetland, wildlife, remote sensing, and other first-year courses to properly perform eco site assessments and range plant community type assessments. Detection and identification of rare plant communities will also be discussed.

  • STATISTICS AND DATA MANAGEMENT

    Course ID: NRES233

    Name: STATISTICS AND DATA MANAGEMENT

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course is an introduction to basic statistical concepts used for natural resource management including graphical and numerical analysis. It will cover data collection, presentation, descriptive statistics, parametric and non-parametric tests. Topics covered include uses and misuses of statistics, methods of sampling, probability theory and distributions, data collection, measures of average and variation, sampling distributions of means and proportions, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, analysis of variance, correlations, and regression.

  • PRINCIPLES OF ECOLOGY

    Course ID: BIOL208

    Name: PRINCIPLES OF ECOLOGY

    Hours: 84

    Credits: 3

    Ecology is the scientific study of the interactions between organisms and their environment.  This course provides an overview of the limiting factors that influence the living (biotic) components of our ecosystems.  Interactions between these biotic components (i.e. competition and predation), population growth, life strategies, and the behaviours of individual organisms are also considered.  This course provides general concepts that can stand alone or serve as preparation for advanced ecology courses.  Labs complement lecture concepts and include the gathering, analysis, and interpretation of data from ecological experiments and field studies. Prerequisite - BIOL 102

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