Diploma of Education Requirements

The Diploma of Permaculture Education is granted to honor achievement and excellence in teaching.

After acceptance into the diploma program, you must complete all of the following requirements with the guidance and support of a field advisor and mentors.

  • Action Learning Plan
  • Permaculture Design Work
  • Advanced Coursework
  • Teaching Experience
  • Portfolio

Action Learning Plan

Developed with the guidance of the field advisor, the plan may entail mentoring, internships, paid work, self-directed projects, and direct instruction.

Permaculture Design Work

Completion of 5 comprehensive permaculture client-based designs and/or community project designs are required, including one design for an invisible structure that has been presented to a group, such as designing a permaculture guild for the community.

Team-based design work is encouraged. Demonstration of skills is required that connect design to the real world, including problem solving ability, budgeting, generating estimates and scheduling.

Advanced Coursework

Participation in a PINA-recognized Advanced Permaculture Design Course (PDC) and/or Permaculture Teacher Training Course is highly recommended, and may be required by the field advisor.

Advanced courses may be applied towards the requirement for teaching experience.

Teaching Experience

Accrued under the guidance of the field advisor, you must teach at least 10 PDCs.

You must co-teach at least 4 PDCs with a PINA diplomate in education, or other instructor approved by your field advisor as sufficiently experienced to provide mentorship, being present throughout the entire course and sharing in organizing, instruction and classroom management responsibilities. (For candidates with extensive previous experience, one or two of these courses may be waived at the discretion of the field advisor.)

After co-teaching 4 PDCs, you must co-teach and co-organize an additional 6 PDCs. Teaching an online course can count towards this requirement, as determined by PINA on a case-by-case basis.

Certification from an advanced course will be considered equivalent to co-teaching one PDC. With both advanced courses, you must co-teach only 4 additional PDCs.

PINA will supply PDC certificates for graduates of these courses. The field advisor, in consultation with senior teachers who co-taught with the candidate, will ascertain if you are ready to sign certificates on behalf of PINA, or if a senior teacher needs to be included in the course.


Your portfolio must include several documents:

  • Documentation of how you implement permaculture in your personal life, including the design and status of your home site and livelihood. This item illustrates permaculture ethics in action.
  • Graphic and text documentation for 5 permaculture designs.
  • Evidence of the ability to present design work in an organized, timely, articulate manner.
  • Documentation of PDC teaching experience including course evaluations from 10 participants.
  • Documentation of the ability to teach all modules of the PINA-recognized PDC curriculum. This may include a written description of the curriculum as taught, documented lesson plans for units within the curriculum, and/or documentation through oral presentation and inquiry.
  • Two written references from PINA-recognized lead instructors with whom the candidate has co-taught.
  • Two written references from your co-workers and/or employers.

Additional documentation if applicable:

  • Bibliography of publications.
  • Roster of public outreach activities.
  • Professional awards.
  • Additional supporting evidence, such as field reports or photos.