Educational Opportunities

Michigan Conservation Stewards Program

Become part of the Michigan Conservation Stewards Program, and learn about the history of conservation activities in Michigan, ecological principles, ecoregional classifications, and how to make choices to manage our natural resources. In addition to this foundation, participants learn about terrestrial ecosystems (forestlands and grasslands) and aquatic ecosystems (wetlands, lakes and streams) through classroom and in-field instruction. If you are interested in becoming part of the fall 2016 trainings offered in Oakland, Washtenaw and Kalamazoo counties, visit the Conservation Stewards Program website.

Online Integrated Pest Management Academy

The following prerecorded webinars are available for viewing at any time. Simply click on the webinar titles of your choice. One (1) Master Gardener education credit will be granted for each hour of webinar training.

Pesticide recertification credits for Michigan applicators are available for completing these webinars.

Directions for claiming pesticide recertification credits

Viewers may earn one Michigan pesticide recertification credit for every two webinars viewed. In order to receive credits, users must click on the webinar title below, click through the introductory survey, view the webinar and complete the survey following the webinar. You must click through the survey to view the webinar, but participation in answering is voluntary.

To request MDARD pesticide recertification credits, you must provide the following information to Carol Blake at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  1. Full name
  2. Phone number
  3. Applicator number
  4. Type of credit requested (private or commercial core)
  5. Titles of webinars viewed including date and time completed for each

You may only claim credits once, so do not request credits until you have completed all the webinars you intend to seek credits for.

Click on the titles below to view the described webinar:

Introduction to Integrated Pest Management

Learn about the history of pest management, the evolution of integrated pest management (IPM) and the tenants that define implementation in the field.

Integrated Pest Management Resources

Learn about the integrated pest management resources Michigan State University and Extension have to offer agricultural producers.

Entomology 101

In this compact primer on insects, learn the vocabulary to help you properly identify insects and better understand the role of insects in the world.

Plant Pathology 101

This introductory webinar covers the basics of plant pathogens and introduces viewers to the some popular control methods.

Soil Science 101

This webinar highlights the importance of soil characteristics and their potential impacts on agricultural producers. Due to some technical difficulties, you must follow this link after viewing the webinar to complete a post-webinar survey. Remember, you must at least click through the survey to request pesticide recertification credits. Thank you for your cooperation.

Plant Science 101

Learn the basics of plant anatomy and physiology—particularly handy for those who struggle with weed identification. Due to some technical difficulties, you must follow this link after viewing the webinar to complete a post-webinar survey. Remember you must at least click through the survey to request pesticide recertification credits. Thank you for your cooperation.

Pesticides 101

An introduction to mode of action, pesticide resistance and factors that impact whether pesticides are effective.

Insect Scouting in Fruit Crops

This primer offers a fruit-specific module on how insect scouting occurs in the real world.

Online Training for Backyard and Community Gardeners

To view the program, you need to have a high speed internet connection.

Online Classes:

  • Fruit Update 1:
    Program evaluation: Fruit Update Evaluation 
    Topics include a review of diseases and insects, update on new pests, Sweet Tango vs. Honeycrisps, pest management strategies for 2012 and using dormant oils.
  • Fruit Update 2
    Program evaluation: Fruit Update 2 Fruit Update Evaluation 
    Topics include goals and expectations, spraying equipment, personal protective equipment products, monitoring, mixing and loading, application and timing, most common pests, animal protection and resources.
  • Garden Weed Control:
    Program evaluation: Garden Weed Control Evaluation
    This class discusses how to reduce gardneing time by managing weeds. Topics include: solarization, mulches, cultivation, chemical weed control, weed life cycles, seed sources and longevity, weed growth and cultural practices.
  • Organic Pesticides in the Garden
    Program evaluation: Organic Pesticides in the Garden Evaluation
    Why organic pesticides? Review of organic fungicides and insecticides and resources. 
  • The Science of Composting:  
    Program evaluation: The Science of Composting
    Many people have compost piles, but few know how they work, the nutrient value of compost and its effects on the soil and plants. This class covers the factors that affect decomposition, the role of carbon & nitrogen, composting methods, containers, compost pile organism, materials, pile problems, when compost is readly, benefits of compost and using compost. 

Master Gardeners will receive 1 continuing education credit for every one hour of presentation viewed. 
Note: Viewers will have to endure commercials when viewing programs on ustream until we come up with a way to finance the premium service.

Introduction to Diagnostics - Online, self-paced training

“Introduction to Diagnostics” was created specifically for Master Gardener Volunteers, to help in understanding the steps involved in plant pest diagnosis. Consisting of narrated PowerPoint presentations, handouts, fact sheets and other resources, “Introduction to Diagnostics” will help new and experienced volunteers gain confidence in the diagnostic process. Access this on-line course at your convenience anywhere you have internet access. Upon completion, participants will earn a certificate for 3 hours of continuing education credits.

The course has several course components:

  • Narrated PowerPoint presentations
  • Handouts Fact Sheet
  • Certificate worth 3 continuing education credits, upon completion

Enroll at:

There is a $10 fee that can be paid with a credit card or PayPal account.