Course Description

This comprehensive course on composting meets or exceeds requirements for the educational components of certification and/or licensing for solid waste professionals.

Course Outline

Lesson 1: Science of Composting

  • Understand similarities between composting and farming.
  • Identify primary organisms responsible for organic decomposition and where they thrive.
  • Describe chemical and physical parameters of composting.

Lesson 2: Composting Processes

  • Describe composting processes and explain how they vary.
  • Describe proper preparation of waste or compost feedstock.
  • List physical and chemical adjustments made to feedstock prior to composting.
  • Identify operating parameters associated with rapid decomposition.
  • List high, low and optimum range for each parameter.
  • Identify process and benefits of properly curing compost.
  • Identify processes and benefits of compost refining.
  • List multiple end users for compost.
  • Describe various end uses and different degrees of refining for each.

Lesson 3: Feedstock and Compost Technologies

  • Understand waste source and match to best composting technology.
  • List categories of potential compost feedstock and understand concerns associated with each.
  • List primary categories of composting technologies and their advantages/disadvantages.

Lesson 4: Compost Quality and Classification

  • Explain lack of standards classifications and regulations in the compost industry.
  • Identify compost qualities and the ranges that make for a quality product.
  • Identify methods used to test compost.
  • Explain basic element of a compost quality assurance program.

Lesson 5: Facility Development

  • Explain how design and process complexity of a compost facility relates to the type and quantity of feedstock it handles.
  • Explain why siting a compost facility is a complex, controversial and important part of development.
  • Identify basic components of a complete facility design.
  • Explain state and local requirements compost facilities.
  • Explain basic requirements for operating a composting facility.

Lesson 6: Environmental Concerns and Control

  • Describe primary causes of odor and their controls.
  • Identify areas of concern for water quality and their controls.
  • Identify areas of concern for air quality and their controls.
  • Identify causes and controls for noise pollution.
  • Identify causes and controls for vectors and pests.

Lesson 7: Compost Regulations

  • Understand why no federal standards govern compost unless biosolids are used.
  • Understand that environmental laws may govern certain aspects of composting.
  • Understand that many states have developed compost/composting standards through their solid waste agency.

Lesson 8: State Programs

  • Determine and describe the two types of composting facilities.
  • Determine and explain regulations and operation requirements for all composting facilities.


Participants have 12 months to complete this self-paced online course.

All necessary materials included.


Internet Connectivity Requirements:

  • Cable and DSL internet connections recommended.

Hardware Requirements:

  • Minimum Pentium 400 Mhz CPU or G3 Macintosh. 1 GHz or greater CPU recommended.
  • 256MB RAM minimum. 1 GB RAM recommended.
  • 800x600 video resolution minimum. 1025x768 recommended.
  • Speakers/Headphones to listen to Dialogue streaming audio sessions.
  • A microphone to speak in Dialogue streaming audio sessions.

Operating System Requirements:

  • Windows Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 9, 10
  • Mac OSX 10 or higher.
  • OpenSUSE Linux 9.2 or higher.

Web Browser Requirements:

  • Google Chrome is recommended.
  • Firefox 13.x or greater.
  • Internet Explorer 6.x or greater.
  • Safari 3.2.2 or greater.

Software Requirements:

  • Adobe Flash Player 6 or greater.
  • Oracle Java 7 or greater.
  • Adobe Reader 7 or greater.

Web Browser Settings:

  • Accept cookies
  • Disable pop-up blocker.
Enroll Now - Select a section to enroll in
Section Title
Composting Operations (Online)
Jul 01, 2021 to Jun 30, 2022
Contact Hours
Delivery Options
Course Fee(s)
Course Fee non-credit $245.00