Designing for Resilience: The Foundations of Permaculture- self-study online course

This online Foundation in Permaculture course is based on our official Introduction to Permaculture curriculum.

>> Gift this course <<

We've built on the many years experience of the Permaculture Association to bring you something truly exciting- quality permaculture education delivered online.

In the making for over two years, we created all the modules working closely with real learners to fine-tune and improve the course to make it what it is now - and its received some great reviews.

Build Resilience

  • Apply permaculture design in your life
  • Connect with fellow learners globally and feedback on their design work 
  • Includes membership of the Permaculture Association
  • Learn how to connect with people and projects in your community
  • Present your design to your fellow learners

Price £99 non-members / £59.40 members

  • Including membership for 1 year for non Permaculture Association members
  • 40% discount for Permaculture Association members (discount code available in members area).
  • All contributions directly support our charity work


  • Discounts on 6 books from the Permaculture Magazine, chosen to complement this course
  • Free resources, videos, PDF handouts
  • Activities, quizzes and plenty of no screen time included!

About the Permaculture Association

Vision: A healthy and peaceful world, where we care for each other, the earth and future generations, share resources wisely and continue to heal and regenerate communities and ecosystems.

Purpose: To build a network of systems thinkers with the power to create healthy cultures and ecosystems.


Access the course

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Gift this course


  • Excited to be part of a growing movement of people that really have an interest in bettering life, not just for themselves but also for others. I think the free share documents and information makes it really accessible so that anyone who hears about Permaculture can get started without having to spend money on courses or buying information. People care in Permaculture is very important from my point of view, not just for the continuation of the process but also as part of the connection and the understanding that we cannot achieve success individually, it is in communities with varied skill sets where the real strength lies.

    — EP
  • It is a valuable course

    — OC
  • This course is so full of information that I think it is a resource that I will come back to many times over and for me over and above all that I have learned knowing that there is one place where I can I find it all is fantastic. Also, all the downloadable worksheets is a super resource, specially when just starting out. Simple and user friendly layouts.

    — CS
  • Good signposting of resources and showing examples of a very diverse range of people and places where permaculture is being put into practice, and generous discount on books; Highlighting the essence of the ethics and principles at the heart of permaculture.

    — LO

Foundation in Permaculture Modules

The course has 6 modules, based upon the Introduction to Permaculture curriculum.

1. A Nature Based Approach

  • Understand the importance of regenerative design
  • Discuss permaculture and its ethics
  • Discuss the benefits of permaculture design
  • Know where to go for more information

2. Principles of Permaculture

  • Understand that there are different sets of principles in permaculture design
  • Understand the Holmgren principles
  • Know how to apply the principles
  • Understand the Holmgren flower

3. How to Apply Permaculture
  • Discover a few of the wide applications of permaculture design
  • Understand how permaculture can be applied in your community, at home and for your wellbeing.
  • Apply permaculture thinking to various areas of your life

4. Design Frameworks

  • Understand there are different design frameworks
  • Understand the value of using a permaculture design framework
  • Choose a design to apply SADIMET to
  • Understand the similarities between SADIMET and OBREDIMET
  • Understand the Design Web
  • Apply the SADIMET framework to a chosen design

5. Design Methods

  • To understand the importance of observation
  • To understand zones
    To complete an input-output analysis
  • To present your design

6. Your next steps

  • Consolidate learning around 4 principles of permaculture
  • Understand the different areas of the Permaculture Association‘s work
  • Know where to go to find more about our teachers, their courses and how to learn more
  • Know how to connect with other learners and others that are studying and practising permaculture outside of this course
  • Understand some resilient next steps


Start your permaculture journey
Join learners from around the world

Created by the Permaculture Association with contributions from these educators

Our Ethics - Earth Care, People Care, Fair Shares

Key Elements to all Permaculture Association courses:

We are a permaculture charity - in using our platform you will be assured of fair prices, strongly held ethics and key principles. 

All courses will showcase permaculture in practise, providing examples and places to engage, connect you to teacher profiles, events and your peers.

Support to use the ethics on your own purposeful design work.
Principles - helping you to design resiliently and regeneratively.
Purposeful Design - Our clients are both mother nature & future generations! 

Action - your next steps, LAND demonstration centres, our globally recognised certified teachers network, our membership community - permaculture in practise.

More Testimonials

  • I felt excited and as though I’d finally stumbled on something that made all my disparate interests feel like they were more relevant to one another.

    — LO
  • Really positive, excited for the future, empowered

    — RL
  • Very interesting and useful the perspective of applying the principles to several situations, including our own life design, rather than just to land based designs. Also, great practical examples!

    — JV
  • I thought the content was really thorough and the diversity of perspectives felt large. I think the size of each section works well, and the opportunity to engage with one another at the end of each section was useful

    — HP
  • As someone who is relatively new to permaculture, I am very much enthused by all aspects of permaculture. Much of this has to do with the fact that it is an approach that places emphasis on funding solutions to problems therefore I always find myself feeling inspired and hopeful when engaging with permaculture. This course certainly upheld those feelings of hopefulness and enthusiasm.

    — SA
  • I love the overall feel of the course. Welcoming, interesting, varied, feels new and fresh, variety of presentation methods and good information. For me, as I have a fair amount of exposure to Permaculture, I enjoyed starting with the foundations and now feel I have solid ground at the base of my permaculture knowledge.

    — RP
  • Very interesting and useful the perspective of applying the principles to several situations, including our own life design, rather than just to land based designs. Also, great practical examples!

    — JV
  • A huge amount of rich and interesting content to absorb but it all makes perfect sense! I have made a lot of notes and will come back and learn more... It is good to get a thorough grounding in permaculture principles at this stage so we can see how they are applied in practice.

    — JO
  • Inspired - It made me feel good, in a way that gave me a summary and starting point expanding and experiencing permaculture, starting for solid ground.

    — SR

Terms and conditions apply. Please read our Refund and Cancellation policy and Privacy Policy before registering.

If you would prefer to take this course with the support of a teacher in a small group of learners, and gain the Introduction to Permaculture certificate, you can choose to take our Teacher Led : Design for Resilience course.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does the course last?

You can complete it any time, this an open access course. We recommend you take a few hours to complete each module, this could be over several weeks or completed more quickly.

Do I get any qualifications from the course?

No, but it covers the Introduction to permaculture course curriculum, which will give you the perfect grounding in permaculture to go for further study (such as studying the PDC). If you would prefer to get a certificate, you can study in a small interactive group on the teacher led course.

Can anyone participate in the course?

No prior knowledge is required for this course. The course will be in English and there will be a glossary of terms included.

Is this course all online?

Yes this is a completely remote self-study course, though you could chose to start it with a guild of learners, at a LAND centre or at an event. We will recommend places to visit permaculture in practise and ways to connect in person.