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Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What does it mean to have a Permaculture Design Certificate?
A Permaculture Design Certificate signifies that one has completed a 72 hour design course in the principles of Permaculture. It means the holder of the certificate is the holder of a profound toolbox of solutions and visions. Many people think they understand permaculture as a gardening system or only about agriculture. Someone who has attended a training and has received a certificate understands the full scope of what permaculture design has to offer. It also means they have an understanding of the systemic and integrated quality that good "sustainable" or "regenerative" design reflects. It doesn't mean the person has the necessary skills to implement these solutions. They carry what is possible.
Q: How do I become a permaculture designer?
Students who have completed a Permaculture Design Certification course (PDC) can advertise that they are a certified permaculturist and can use the word permaculture in their work. The curriculum is a minimum of 72 hours and should follow the Permaculture Designers Manual. The courses we lead are closer to 100 hours so we can cover other pertinent topics and do hands-on activities.
We recommend that a graduate spends 2 years applying what they learn in the permaculture course before they work professionally, especially if they did not have much prior experience.
Some people have already been doing a lot of this work and feel confident that they can serve the permaculture community by doing quality work, and they can put out the sign as soon as they graduate.
Q: What are the criteria for teaching a permaculture certification course?
The criteria for teaching a Permaculture Design Certification course (PDC) is that you need to have a permaculture design certificate yourself. (see above).
We recommend that you apprentice with an experienced teacher to maintain the consistency of quality that we have been experiencing. There are also a number of Permaculture Teacher Training courses being offered. These are not "required" in order to teach a PDC, but most teachers have done this and thus we have maintained that consistency. We want to support the cultivation of new teachers and also want to keep the consistent quality of the PDC.
These other formats work well, one just has to be committed to the curriculum to call it a PDC in order to give out a certificate.
Q: What is some recommended reading that would help me deepen my understanding of permaculture and regenerative design?
We have put together a bibliography page that lists a host of our favorite books here.
For our permaculture students, we recommend the following books:
- Introduction to Permaculture by Bill Mollison
- Gaia's Garden by Toby Hemenway
- Permaculture: A Designer's Manual by Bill Mollison
- Permaculture by David Holmgren