Training and Education

Spring school 2013: classes and social events

Training and Education

ISRIC’s Training & Education Programme serves the international community with a wide array of courses and lectures on global soils, soil and terrain classification, soil mapping and soil information systems, as well as on the use and importance of soil information for the sustainable management of planet Earth.

ISRIC has a long-standing tradition in teaching about Soils of the World, especially in relation to the World Soil Museum where guided tours are provided on a regular basis.

Courses and lectures

Once a year ISRIC organisises a Spring School for beginning and experienced soil scientists that wish to deepen or refresh their knowledge about diverse soil science related topics, including advances in soil geoinformatics. The 5-days Spring School is organised in Wageningen and includes a visit to the World Soil Museum. Topics may vary year by year and are chosen from the list of training modules. Detailed information about the latest and upcoming Spring School and registration instructions is given here.

ISRIC also provides courses and lectures tailored to specific user groups. In close cooperation with ISRIC staff, interested parties can compose a course from the list of modules. Often these courses are given at the local host, who also takes care of the logistics and recruitment of course participants. ISRIC applies reduced rates to strategic collaborative institutions and participants from ODA-listed countries. For more information, contact Stephan Mantel (soils of the world and soil use and management) or Gerard Heuvelink (soil statistics and soil information systems).


ISRIC offers MSc students the possibility to gain experience in an academic working environment by contributing to an on-going project under the supervision of an ISRIC staff member. Internships typically last between three and six months. More information about the application procedure and a list of topics is given here.

MSc thesis research

Students that wish to do their MSc thesis research with ISRIC, must first find a supervisor from their university that supports this and agrees with the student working on his or her thesis at ISRIC. Next there must also be an ISRIC staff member who is an expert on the chosen topic and takes the role of co-supervisor. In practice, most students that do their MSc thesis with ISRIC are students from Wageningen University because ISRIC is situated on the Wageningen University campus and regular meetings with supervisor and co-supervisor are easy to arrange. However, in principle ISRIC also welcomes students from other universities. Please contact Gerard Heuvelink if you are interested.

PhD thesis research

PhD students that wish to spend part of their research with ISRIC can apply to the guest researcher programme. In such a case, ISRIC has no formal role in the PhD procedure although the ISRIC staff member that hosts the guest researcher might be involved as one of the thesis supervisors. ISRIC also welcomes students that wish to conduct their complete PhD research under the joint guidance and supervision of an ISRIC staff member and a promotor from Wageningen University or another university. For this a formal registration procedure is required,e.g. see here for details about the Wageningen University procedure. Students typically need to arrange their own funding and must satisfy the entrance requirements of Wageningen University or other university or pass a Qualifying Examination at the start of their stay in Wageningen. Contact Gerard Heuvelink for more information.