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How good is Geoff's online PDC?

 
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I really wanted to do it last year but the timing wasn't good. This year 2020 it seems like it might be the year.  It looks to be the best online delivery out there but for close to $2000 Canadian it seems to be something to weigh out before I consider it?  I know last year it was updated I believe.  Is it worth the price tag? Is there other online PDCs that are in the same ballpark?

Thank you,

Aaron
 
pollinator
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My experience is very dated; I took it in summer 2014.

I was deeply underwhelmed.. I expected much more immersive content, and the meat of the product was video of geoff in front of a whiteboard, teaching an in-person PDC. Nothing like the snazzy promo content...

I am sure it has been upgraded since... as I recall, the number of participants times the cost was a couple million dollars for that session alone. One would sure hope for some of that to be channeled back in to the product...


In person is the way to go IMO, though this is obviously challenging right now...
 
Aaron McKinley
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trees chicken bee
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Do you think he offered anymore content than other courses?
 
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Aaron, where did you see the price of the course, and do know if it has been released yet?
 
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The stuff he offers for free is excellent, and I wanted to take the online PDC, but it's too expensive for me. Hasn't been released yet, but I asked what the price would be.
 
D Nikolls
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Aaron McKinley wrote:Do you think he offered anymore content than other courses?



I haven't looked at other online options. I have no intention of taking another online PDC or similar course.

Compared to an in person PDC, this will vary enormously. I haven't done a full PDC in person, but a couple of weekend workshops with great instructors were night and day compared to the online experience..
 
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That's pretty steep. Personally I'd rather spend $2k on improving my land and get my knowledge from free online sources and cheap used books and consider some working internships for hands-on experience. Alternatively, I'd drop a bit more cash and pay someone for a professional permaculture consultation on my property. I have a hard time imagining I'd learn a magical life-changing method or piece of information that isn't already available to me elsewhere that would correspond to $2k in value. Of course that's me. We all value money and information differently.
 
Aaron McKinley
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It's going to be released soon for 2020 and prices are similar to last they said.  I agree with all the info is out there and I could spend my money elsewhere but I think grouping all that info together in an organized way would be very interesting.

The main reason I want a PDC course under my belt is that I can teach this stuff that I am living and breathing.  As a high school teacher I want to start moving to teaching people about this stuff.  With all this Corona crap going on a lot of people are waking up to more basic needs like growing food.  My wife and I have a little plant sale every year with garden veggie starts-heirloom tomatoes, herbs, medicinal perennial herbs, etc and it's amazing how many first time gardeners are out there this year asking a billion questions.  My wife and I see the potential of doing tours on the property.  "What to do with and 1.5 farm" We have been on the property for seven years and another year or two and it will be showcase ready for tours, workshops etc.  I want to have the PDC so I can tie it all together professionally.
 
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I'm taking the Verge Permaculture online PDC (it's under $1000 CAD). It's a brand new course - a response to the current climate. There are lots of elements of the course I am really enjoying, but I will likely want to take some in-person courses in the future. There has been an opportunity to ask questions - but with a large online delivery, there isn't an opportunity for back and forth discussion (which is how I learn best).  I am also missing lots of the hands-on application elements. If your intention is to really get the theory down, it's a great option. I will need to add on some hands-on in the field learning to round out the experience ( which I always suspected would be the case).  
 
Aaron McKinley
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Yeah those two guys seem to have it going on. Is the course quality?  All the theory is there? Good delivery?
 
Aaron McKinley
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I am over here in Ontario and Verge seems to stepping up on the Canadian scene.  Will look into them and the next online PDC
 
Callandra Caufield
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Aaron McKinley wrote:Yeah those two guys seem to have it going on. Is the course quality?  All the theory is there? Good delivery?



It's my first PDC, but yes, I believe all of the theory is there.  They've brought in a variety of teachers to address different topics - we've heard from different practitioners on Permaculture gardening, rainwater harvesting/water management, soil - we're about halfway through now. The back-end course management system is really easy to navigate, and there are lots and lots of extra materials to draw from if you want to dig further into a topic.
 
Aaron McKinley
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So worth the investment so far?  Good to hear.  They are the more reasonable and economical choice next to Lawton's one, for me at least.
 
Callandra Caufield
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Aaron McKinley wrote:So worth the investment so far?  Good to hear.  They are the more reasonable and economical choice next to Lawton's one, for me at least.


Yes, absolutely. I would not want to pay $2k for an online course - but at $700, the value is really there. Plus if you are Canadian - the time zones might work out a bit better.
 
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Hi,  I have been looking at Morag Gambles Permaculture Education Institute course.  She offers a PDC and Permaculture Educators Certificate.  The price is around $1700 US, I think.  I would like to find anyone who has done this or could compare witht he G Lawton course.
 
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I attended the first online version of Geoff Lawton's course, and at the Spirko discount, found it well worth the money (around $700-800). It included an Earthworks course, and the hard copy DVD's afterwards. If you kept up, your Q&A's were answered in video followup.
Graduates had access to the 2nd season, which I noticed even more Q&A's added to the course.
My friend joined the 3rd season and I was able to see that -some- video updates were added (the animation everyone likes) and even more Q&A videos.

Then some more seasons (2.0?) that I did not have access to and have not comment.

For this year's course, I did hear an interview "recently"  from Geoff Lawton (not sure which podcast I heard it from) but according to Geoff, they have apparently overhauled ALL the videos. Animations galore, drone footage, etc. He said they wanted every concept visually & clearly described.  The Q&A videos number in the 100's now. (To editorialize, it sounds like they finally got it to the vision he has for it.)  

Is it worth the cost? That's really up to each person, and not really the point. Buy Bill Mollison's book for $90 and study each page for a couple years, and apply & observe these principles in projects around the world for 10 years and be awesome. Or speed up the process and pay someone who took the time and effort to create a learning scenario.

One thing I would point out from previous comments, though, is that there is a difference between going to a hands-on course vs. going for a certificate.  The first will probably be catered to your climate and you can apply to your property right away. And the latter is going to cover more abstract concepts that seem pointless at first but in the end will make you more adaptable to any possibility that might come up because you actually studied design science.
I don't know the exact cost of this new 3.0? version of Geoff's is. $2k?  It seems to be professional & exhaustive enough now that it is catered to those that want to take that certificate and make it their business. A business that makes money.  And that's why it's priced that way. No different than the theory behind paying tuition at college (the idea is that the degree will make your future income higher) or why sales conferences can cost $10k , 50k, or even more (if it raises you yearly sales by > $1 mil then it's worth it)

I highly suggest whatever you choose is in-person & costs money. You are going to be more alert, pay attention, finish everything, and of course meet great people.
Free stuff or online courses are rife with quitting. The number of people that never finish their designs online is staggering (and sad)

 
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I recently earned my PDC through GLO in July.
I thoroughly enjoyed it. There is tons of information and plenty of assistance when needed. Videos, professional diagrams and lectures. There is also Q and A after each lesson where everyone’s question is answered.  He also gave a few extensions to finish and an opportunity to correct mistakes in the final design exercise. I was able to finish mine on time.
The only areas of improvement is grading the finals at a faster pace and there is not a place to share with peers as a group after the term is over except on FB. The team said they are working to resolve it
I joined permies.com for a permaculture community (I started an in person community in the neighborhood I moved to but people kind of fell off during covid. There is only one member who is active besides me now.
 
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hello everyone!
Nice discussion!
Just started my GLOPDC 2.0

and yes, they did a complete overhaul and everything seems pretty rigourous.
it's running pretty smoothly till now.  Alhamdulillah!
will be glad to be of help.
 
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I recently finished my first PDC with "glo". I was in the 2021 Cohort. I've gotten a lot of valuable data in an out and I could gain access through the installed "people care" options and early bird rates. The course itself is technically on a stringent quality level content and design wise. Highly complex but functionally organized. Self paced up to a degree through "catch up weeks". All in all with all the extensions and an extra year time for the fde I spent about 2.5 years on this "Lawton -Verse".
It is definitely not cheap at all and you have to buy yourself in on some aftercourse features like lifetime access or the one year fde-extension, which was a bit off-putting to be frank.
BUT it was also well worth the money. With that investment one is also less likely to drop out for whatever reasons and I have to say the student-care team are really supportive in many ways and doing their best to make it a worthwhile and feasible experience.
In that light I think it's incomparable with a lot of recordings of life pdc's that are out there as "online pdc" who have their own right of existence, and are absolutely necessary as a level of permaculture education. I took the udemy course which is powered by tagari and is a recording of an in person PDC with Bill Mollison and a much younger Geoff Lawton at a very reasonable rate and discounted purchase of the Manual. This course doesn't include a fde process and could be seen more like a really good netflix series one should have seen at least once in a lifetime.
Another in depth online course at a more affordable rate is Matt Powers "Permaculture student online". Here you are focused on a more scientific approach, going deep into soil science. Also Matt is a teacher by education and nature and wonderfully crazy, personally approachable beautiful person, who makes appetite for "living the life of permaculture"
I'm involved in all of it since I started actively studying PC. Permaculture pressure tanking. 💚
 
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I did Geoff Lawton's PDC the first year he offered it.  It was really fun and helped me open my mind to new ways of thinking and seeing the word.  

This summer I got to attend parts of Alan Booker's profesional PDC at Wheaton Labs in Montana.

 That was an entirely different animal!  


here is the link to this year's course
https://wheaton-labs.com/permaculture-design-course/


I think it depends on what you want to get out of the experience and what you are willing to put into it.


When I did the online PDC with Geoff I was a soon to be single mom with a baby at my breast.  I was not in a condition to show up fully for any classes, so the online format was perfect.  Geoff's videos were like my medicine to bring me back to reality.  
 
Samantha Lewis
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I think it really depends on what you are looking for.  
do you want to be a permaculture designer?
Are you wanting to get your head wrapped around "what is permaculture?"

If it is the hard skills you want I would probably start here:

https://permies.com/wiki/207163/permaculture-projects/Permaculture-Technology-Jamboree-July-Wheaton#1728916

or if you don't want to travel,  the online version is on sale in the form of a kickstarter!
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/paulwheaton/low-tech?ref=6yjyr7


If you are looking to get it all for a lot less coin, check out the 177 hours of permaculture design course   it is such a deal !  $65
https://permies.com/wiki/65386/hours-video-Permaculture-Design-Technology#556654


Thomas Elpel teaching at Wheaton Labs
 
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Is Tagari-usa.com a reputable site?  I am wanting to order some books online, but there is limited ways to reach the company.  Has anyone ordered from them recently?  Thank you!
 
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