Module: Crop Production Technology

Module details

  • Module code

  • Module leader

    Xianmin Chang
  • Module Level

  • Module credits

  • Min study time

    200 hours
  • Contact hrs

    40 hours
  • Teaching Period

    October – March

Module content

  • The challenges of food safety, future options and possible strategies for crop production in the UK and world agriculture.
  • The application of the latest biotechnology options for crop improvement and production, including plant products for non-food uses, toxicology of natural pharmacologically active constituents and the use of transgenic plant technology for medical purposes.
  • GM crops and the regulatory framework for GM 
  • Introduction to bioinformatics. 
  • Introduction to the characteristics and management of the major soil groups and how cropping is affected by soil type.
  • Integrated Crop Management System (crop rotations, nutrition and crop protection etc)
  • The development and application of new technologies of crop protection, biological agents and biopesticides
  • Two off-site visits: Rothamsted Research and Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Module outcomes

To achieve credit for this module, students should be able to:

  1. Address and reflect the challenges of food safety in the UK and worldwide
  2. Critically analyse how the latest biotechnologies may contribute to agricultural production systems, safe food supply and environment
  3. Demonstrate a thorough knowledge of Integrated Crop Management Systems
  4. Evaluate and articulate current issues in crop production, such as, the shortage of water and arable land, the impact of pesticides and GM crops


Assessment Description Weighting
Coursework 1 x research paper 50%
Examination 1 x 3 hour exam 50%

Key texts

Students should be familiar with the content of at least one of the following:

  • Bhullar, G. S. and Bhullar, N. K. (eds.) (2013) Agricultural Sustainability: Progress and Prospects in Crop Research. DOI:; Academic.  
  • Fleury, D. and Whitford, R. (eds) (2014) Crop Breeding, Method and protocols. Humana Press
  • Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and Steduto, P. (2012) Crop yield response to water. FAO.
  • Franklin, J. (2011) Soil and crop nutrition. Nuffield Farming Scholarships Trust
  • George E. F., Hall, M. A. and Klerk, G. de (2008) Plant Propagation by Tissue Culture (3rd ed) Springer
  • Mittal, V. (2012) Crop stress management & global climate change. SBS Publishers
  • Oliver, R. P and Hewitt, H. G (2014) Fungicides in crop protection (2nd ed). CABI Publishing
  • Ricroch, A., Chopra, S. and Fleischer, S. (eds.) (2014) Plant Biotechnology: Experience and Future Prospects. Springer
  • Sadras, V. and Calderini, D. (2009) Crop physiology: applications for genetic improvement and agronomy. Elsevier
  • Stafford, J. V. (2015) Precision Agriculture ’15. Wageningen Academic Publishers
  • Zollitsch, W. (ed.) (2007) Sustainable food production and ethics. Wageningen Academic Publishers