SLF115 - Urban Agr./Com.Gardens/Food Secure Cities

Outline info
Last revision date 2018-07-04 13:25:22.054
Last review date 2018-07-16 00:15:01.643

Subject Title
Urban Agr./Com.Gardens/Food Secure Cities

Subject Description
This course examines the current practice of urban agriculture in Canada.  How do community gardens, and farms contribute to community building and create food security?  This course examines local laws and policies in your region.

Credit Status
One credit toward the Sustainable Local Food Certificate

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

1. Demonstrate understanding of the roots of urban agriculture in Canada in aboriginal, Canadian pioneer, European, Asian or other traditions that are reflected in urban agriculture projects today.

2. Demonstrate an understanding of the underlying concerns that create the need for urban agriculture, and the policies and regulations (or need for them) with direct relevance to urban agriculture in their location.

3. Analyze the benefits and pitfalls that urban agriculture programs face in Canada, to become better consumers, food activists, urban farmers or even potential lobbyists or legislators.

4.Tap the network of urban agriculture initiatives in their town, city or province by gaining familiarity with the operators, audience and reach of at least one of them, developing relationships and contacts that will enable future research, cross-pollination of ideas, partnerships and job opportunities.

5. Enhance community research skills and methods (surveys, interviews, participant observation) and offer research services needed by urban agriculture initiatives in their local area.

6. Gain a sense of the creative and innovative ways that the online environment can be used for coursework. This will include, but not limited to, powerpoint/slideshows, YouTube, online research and networking, which are great skill sets for future work positions!

Cheating and Plagiarism
Each student should be aware of the College's policy regarding Cheating and Plagiarism. Seneca's Academic Policy will be strictly enforced.

To support academic honesty at Seneca College, all work submitted by students may be reviewed for authenticity and originality, utilizing software tools and third party services. Please visit the Academic Honesty site on for further information regarding cheating and plagiarism policies and procedures.

All students and employees have the right to study and work in an environment that is free from discrimination and/or harassment. Language or activities that defeat this objective violate the College Policy on Discrimination/Harassment and shall not be tolerated. Information and assistance are available from the Student Conduct Office at

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Disabilities Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.


Topic Outline
Module 1 Urban Roots: A heritage of urban agriculture

Module 2 Food to the People: The need for urban agriculture

Module 3 Where the Seed Falls: The dazzling diversity of food sources in our towns and cities

Module 4 How to Deliver it: Ways to approach the market in a big country with a northern climate.

Module 5 Old Macdonald and his root cellar: Urban animals and food storage in cities

Module 6 The future of urban  agriculture: Where next? Land, community and co-operation

Wrap up and research report due

Mode of Instruction
This subject will be delivered via the internet. This involves the use of the online materials and/or text, possible group discussions and consultation with your instructor via email. Students will be responsible for completing all online activities and participating in group discussion and working through textbook questions, as required.
Platform:  Blackboard 

Prescribed Texts
City Farmer: Adventures in Urban Food Growing, Lorraine Johnson, Greystone Publishing 2010, ISBN: 978-1-55365-519-0.

Other readings, including policy documents, articles, book segments, websites and podcasts (audio and video) will be made available directly through links embedded in specific modules.

Reference Material

Required Supplies
Speakers required

Promotion Policy

Grading Policy
A+ 90%  to  100%
A 80%  to  89%
B+ 75%  to  79%
B 70%  to  74%
C+ 65%  to  69%
C 60%  to  64%
D+ 55%  to  59%
D 50%  to  54%
F 0%    to  49% (Not a Pass)
EXC Excellent
SAT Satisfactory
UNSAT Unsatisfactory

For further information, see a copy of the Academic Policy, available online ( or at Seneca's Registrar's Offices.

Modes of Evaluation
All the academic policies of the College at which you registered apply. This includes, but is not limited to policies related to grading, supplemental exams, deferred exams and accommodations.

Grading is based on the following marking scheme:

Discussion Board Participation Ongoing to end  25%
Mid-term Quiz 25%
Research Report Proposal 15%
Research Report  35%

No student will be eligible to graduate with a Seneca College certificate or diploma if, in more than 30% of the subjects required for graduation, the student has received a "D" grade.

  • Assignments are due on the date given by the instructor.
  • A late penalty of 10% per day is assessed for late assignments, including those not handed in at the beginning of class when due.
  • Material will not be accepted after one week following the due date and/or when the marked material is returned to students, whichever comes first.
  • Assignments are to be prepared by computer.

Absenteeism and Exams
  • Students who are absent for an examination due to an emergency (e.g., motor vehicle accident, hospitalization or death in the family) may provide official documentation within five days of the missed exam and be provided a deferred exam at a later date.  Official documentation includes a death notice or an original doctor’s certificate identifying the date, length of time expected absence and the specific reason for the absence.  Examinations missed without official documentation and approval result in a grade of zero.
  • There are no deferred options for missed tests.  

English Proficiency
  • All written work should demonstrate the following characteristics for clarity and conciseness:
-writing is consistent with the rules of English grammar
-spelling and punctuation are correct
-sentences are structured correctly
-main ideas are supported with specific, relevant examples and reasons
-work flows logically through supporting statements/paragraphs
-work is arranged in correct format (e.g., as a report, essay)
-up to 10% of the final grade may be deducted on all work if the above English competencies are not met.


Approved by: Sharon Estok