Skip to main content

We research and teach about soil, water, and environmental sciences in urban, agricultural, and natural ecosystems. As a university of Florida department within the institute of food and agricultural sciences and the college of agricultural and life sciences, we offer degree, certificate, and extension programs on campus and online. Since our origins, more than 100 years ago, we have made significant contributions to improving the productivity of Florida’s agriculture, helping protect the state's unique ecosystems, and contributing to soil and water science at national and international levels.



SWS Online Designed To Fit Your Schedule, Your Location, Your Life.


Sizing up organic soil material: new research evaluates methods of laser diffraction 

A century ago, the Swedish scientist Lennart von Post devised a simple and practical way of determining the degree of decomposition of organic soil material. Known as the Von Post Scale, you take a handful of saturated soil and squeeze the water from it. Then you would examine both the water’s color and the remaining soil material, ranking it on a scale of one to ten.  Pedologists have devised several other methods for identifying the

Montverde Academy Students Explore Soil, Water, and Ecosystem Sciences Labs 

Montverde Academy students took part in a hands-on exploration of the world beneath their feet during a recent visit to the UF/IFAS Department of Soil, Water, and Ecosystem Sciences (SWES). The students are part of the school’s Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Study Area Concentration (STEM SAC). During their visit, the high school students spent the day gaining valuable insights from SWES

“Where’s My Water!” Wins UF AI Days Hackathon

With a mix of coding, artificial intelligence, and soil, water, and ecosystem sciences, the all-female team behind "Where's My Water!" secured the top spot in the University of Florida AI Days Hackathon competition. The team’s winning project addresses groundwater depletion but also marks a significant step towards breaking barriers in fields where women are often underrepresented.   “By showcasing our skills in computing, artificial