Cornell University College of Agriculture & Life Sciences

Cornell University College of Agriculture & Life Sciences Extension and Outreach Program

along with the

Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute

offer an online

Permaculture Design Certificate course…


Begins October 2018


Study through Cornell’s distance learning program.

Design your own project at home while earning a Certificate through the Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute.

This course is designed by Steve Gabriel of “Farming the Woods” with Michael Burns of Cayuta Sun Farm. Both are cofounders of the Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute. Michael Burns will be the course instructor.


Gabriel & Burns

Steve Gabriel and Michael Burns


This opportunity, organized by Cornell University’s Department of Horticulture, is based on the permaculture curriculum and activities developed by the Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute over the past decade of teaching people from all walks of life.

This program provides rigorous, evidence-based instruction in the principles and methods of permaculture design based on the internationally recognized curriculum.


Engage in over 72 hours of study that meets Cornell’s standards for instruction in the best practices of permaculture assessment and design. Work on your own, while participating in class discussions with students from around the world using their own homes, farms, and projects to learn.

You will produce a draft design for your chosen site toward your portfolio requirement for a Permaculture Design Certificate issued by the Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute.

Enrollment for the first course
Permaculture: Fundamentals of Ecological Design
is now open

Sign up to be notified when future enrollments begin and learn more at:

The first 6.5 week long course and provides an opportunity for you to build your knowledge about permaculture and ecological design.

Participants will explore the content through videos, readings, and activities and complete portions of a design for a site of their choosing.

Design Example

Learn permaculture while designing your own site.


While the course is online, the format is designed for consistent interaction between instructors and students through forums and review of assignments. Readings and presentations will be directly applied through hands-on activities students will engage with at home.

There are two additional permaculture design courses:

– Permaculture Design: Ecosystem Mimicry: Begins January, 2019

– Permaculture Design: Design Practicum:Begins April, 2019 

*Prerequisite: Fundamentals of Ecological Design or Ecosystem Mimicry

Completion of a single class gives students a certificate of completion from the Cornell Dept. of Horticulture and Continuing Education units. Completion of all three courses gives students the portfolio necessary to apply for an internationally recognized Permaculture Design Certificate though the Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute.

Space is limited to 15 participants.  Fee is $675 for the first course paid via credit card at sign up. See registration link at:<>