A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The goal of this course is to provide students with the basic knowledge to describe and understand the functioning of the soil and to characterize the soil properties, both for geopedological and interdisciplinary studies.
Expected learning outcomes
Knowledge of the soil description methods, of the main pedogenetic processes and of soil evolution factors. Comprehension of different soil classification criteria.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
The lessons will be delivered using the Microsoft Teams platform, synchronous with recording.
The exam will be held remotely in oral form using the Microsoft Teams platform.
Course syllabus
1 - Soil as interface between biosphere, atmosphere and lithosphere: soil definitions; soil constituents.
2 - Pedologic profile and soli horizons: characteristics and nomenclature of different types of soil horizons; field soil profile description.
3 - Processes and factors of the pedogenesis: general soil evolution processes; fundamental pedogenetic processes; soil evolution factors and the Jenny's equation; time factor and paleosols.
4 - Soil classification: genetic classifications and Duchaufour's French ecological classification; hierarchic classifications and Soil Taxonomy; referential classifications, FAO-Unesco, IRB, WRB.
5 - Soils and environmental context: soils ans geomorphology; soil - landscape relationship; soil survey and soil mapping; land evaluation, land capability and land suitability.
Prerequisites for admission
To follow this course profitably, knowledge of the basic concepts of Earth sciences is recommended.
Teaching methods
Lectures - traditional dispensing.
Teaching Resources
- DAZZI C. (2013). Fondamenti di pedologia. Le Penseur, Brienza (PZ).
- GIORDANO A. (1999). Pedologia. UTET, Torino.
- CASALICCHIO G. (2006). Geopedologia con elementi di geoarcheologia. Pitagora Editrice, Bologna.
- CREMASCHI M. & RODOLFI G. (1991). Il Suolo. La Nuova Italia Scientifica, Roma.
- SANESI G. (2000). Elementi di Pedologia. Calderini Edagricole, Bologna.
- DUCHAUFOUR P. (1995). Pédologie: Sol, Végétation, Environnement. Abregés (IV Édition). Masson, Paris.
- LEGROS J.P. (2007). Les Grands Sols du Monde. Presses Polytechniques et Universitaires Romandes, Lausanne.
- SCHAETZL R. & ANDERSON S. (2005). Soils: Genesis and Geomorphology. Cambridge University Press.
- BRADY N.C. & WEIL R.R. (1999). The Nature and Properties of Soils (XII Edition). Prentice Hall, New Jersey.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists of an oral discussion that encompasses topics covered in the course, with questions relating to the topics of the lectures, at the end of which a mark expressed out of thirty will be recorded. Honors will be given when the level of preparation is more than excellent. The final evaluation will consider the acquired knowledge (60%) and the ability to organize and illustrate the arguments (30%) and the expository skills (10%).
Lessons: 48 hours
Professor: Trombino Luca
On appointment
Mangiagalli 34, 2nd floor, room 77