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Master of Science in Soil Science


Brief Description of the Major Field

Soil Science as a major field focuses on the understanding of the nature and properties of soils and how they relate to improvement on the uses of land particularly in agriculture. Principles in soil science provide in-depth knowledge about the behavior of soils as they are applied to crop and animal production including other uses. These principles are vital to issues related to impacts of climate change on crop and animal production particularly in relation to anticipated changes on soil temperature and moisture regimes.


Prospective Students

BS Agriculture, BS Agricultural Chemistry, BS Chemistry, BS Biology, BS Forestry graduates 



MS graduates in various fields of Soil Science can be effective team leaders in research, extension and agricultural development programs. They can also be good partners in the preparation and implementation of agricultural development plans. They can acquire sufficient level of expertise to serve as university professors. 


Area of Specialization

  • Soil Fertility - Graduates in this field have the capability to assess adverse effects on soil health and soil quality arise from nutrient imbalances in soil, excessive fertilization, consequences of environmental pollution, trace elements and organic amendments. Soil fertility experts have the full understanding in making farms more resilient and resistant to changing climate; can explain responses of soils to specific management practices to determine the capabilities of soils and the effects of alternative practices on soil productivity and sustainability. Current research frontiers in soil fertility are also included. 
  • Soil Conservation and Management - Soil erosion and management experts can provide adequate guidance for the needed approaches using biological and mechanical conservation measures that can help improve soil quality for sustained productivity.  Experts in this field also tackles the use of empirical and physically-based models in estimating soil loss, and non-technical issues in soil erosion and conservation as well as tillage systems effects on soil conditions important to crop production.
  • Soil Chemistry and Mineralogy - This area of specialization equips students with an in-depth  understanding of the soil physicochemical properties and processes that influence the bioavailability, mobility and distribution of plant essential elements and pollutants in the environment. Experts in soil chemistry and mineralogy also have advanced knowledge of the transformation of rocks and minerals into different types of clay minerals and the nature and  properties of the individual clay minerals. Students trained in this field acquire skills to carry out quantitative determinations of plant essential elements and pollutants in various agricultural and environmental samples.  
  • Soil Morphology, Genesis and Classification - This field of specialization prepares students to fully understand the factors of soil formation namely : parent materials, organisms, topography, climate and time, the same set of factors that govern the development of different kinds of soils. In this regards they will have the mastery about the uniqueness in terms of physical and chemical properties of each of the major kinds of soils. As expert in this field of Soil Morphology, Genesis and Classification, he should be able to relate the manner by which soils are classified based on existing classification framework like the USDA Soil Taxonomy. Experts in this field should be able to relate the development and distribution and the resulting properties of major groups of soils to crop production.  
  • Soil Physics - The field of soil physics equips graduates with an in-depth knowledge of the dynamic processes occuring in soils with emphasis on the transient water, solute gas,  and heat. It focuses on the various laboratory technique that can help approximate the flow of  liquid and gas in soil systems under saturated and unsaturated conditions.        
  • Soil Microbiology - Experts in soil microbiology should be able to take advantage of their knowledge of different kinds of soil microorganisms and their role in enhancing the growth of agricultural crops. As experts in the field of soil microbiology they should have in depth knowledge of different microbial processes involved in carbon and plant nutrient transformation. Students trained in soil microbiology should be able to harness soil microorganisms to improve crop production and soil productivity through advanced knowledge of plant-microbe interaction and biotechnology.  
  • Land Use - Land use experts can have adequate knowledge to help formulate land use plans especially towards improvements  of existing agricultural systems under varying environmental conditions. Because of his indepth understanding about the unique features and behavior of land/soil resources and the interaction of climate as well as the prevailing political situation in an area, he can be an effective partner towards the preparation of Comprehensive Land Use Plan which is mandated by law at the municipal level. His expertise can help explore the full potential and/ or optimize the development for both agriculture and non-agricultural uses of existing land/soil  land resources which is the subject of competition among different users of land.


Requirements and Mechanics to Graduate

Students who have been admitted to the graduate programs in Soil Science must register the foundation courses (SOIL 1, SOIL 10, SOIL 110, SOIL 120, SOIL 130, SOIL 141, and SOIL 150.)in which they are deficient during their first year of residence.

The MS SOIL program requires a minimum of 31 units, these are 15 units of major courses, 9 units of minor courses, 1 unit of seminar (SOIL 299) and 6 units of thesis (SOIL 300). The major courses are composed of core courses SOIL 151, SOIL 240, STAT 162 or AGR 112 and other major courses to satisfy the minimum number of

SOIL 1 and SOIL 110 or SOIL 111 are required for students with SOIL as minor/cognate. A student who lacks these foundation courses will not be considered as having taken a minor in Soil Science.

The required courses need not be included in the program of study of the student if she/he has previously taken these courses at UPLB. Students who have taken equivalent courses in other institutions must take placement examinations, except SOIL 1 during the first year of residence.


Graduate Courses

SOIL 210. Morphology, Genesis, and Geography of Soils (3). Properties, development, and distribution of major soil groups and their relation to agriculture. 3 hrs (class). PR. SOIL 110. (1)

SOIL 221. Advanced Soil Microbiology (3). Soil microorganisms; microbiological processes involving organic matter and nitrogen transformation; nature of the soil organic fraction. 3 hrs (class). PR. SOIL 120 or COI. (2)

SOIL 224/MBB 224. Biotechnology of Soil-Microbe-Plant Interactions (3). Biotechnological approaches in the study of beneficial soil microbe-plant interactions and related principles, processes and applications. 5 hrs (2 class, 3 lab). PR. SOIL 120 or MCB 150 and BIO 101 or COI. (2)

SOIL 230. Advanced Soil Physics (3). Dynamic processes occurring in soils with emphasis on the transient water, solute gas, and heat. 3 hrs (class). PR. SOIL 130 and MATH 28 or COI.

SOIL 240. Advanced Soil Chemistry (3). Important chemical phenomena in soils; physicochemical study of soils; certain fundamental properties of clays. 3 hrs (class). PR. SOIL 140. (1) 

SOIL 250. Advanced Soil Fertility (3). Soil conditions in relation to plant growth, including soil transformation processes of both organic and inorganic constituents; concepts of nutrient availability. 3 hrs (class). PR. SOIL 150 or COI. (1,2) 

SOIL 260. Environment and Land Use (3). Analysis of environmental factors in land-use investigations; recognition of competitive uses and land-use optimization on regional and local levels. 5 hrs (2 class, 3 lab). PR. COI. (2) 

SOIL 290. Special Problems (1-3). May be taken twice provided that the total number of units to be credited to the student’s program will not exceed 4 units. PR. COI. (1,2,S)

SOIL 291. Special Topics (1-3). May be taken twice provided that the total number of units to be credited to the student’s program will not exceed 4 units. PR. COI. (1) 

SOIL 299. Graduate Seminar (1). May be repeated once for a maximum of 2 units. PR. COI. (1,2)

SOIL 300. Master’s Thesis (6). (1,2,S)

SOIL 400. Doctoral Dissertation (12). (1,2,S)


Faculty Information


Highest Educational Attainment




Dr. Rodrigo B. Badayos




Soil Survey and Classification

Bato, Victorino A.



Assistant Professor

Soil Physics/Geography

Comia, Reynaldo A.



Associate Professor


Soil Conservation

Espiritu, Bayani M.



Associate Professor


Soil Microbiology & Biotechnology

Medina, Simplicio M.


Associate Professor

Bio-regulation Studies/Soil Conservation


Monsalud, Florentino C.


Assistant Professor

Soil Conservation


Pangga, Gina V.


Assistant Professor

Soil Fertility & Plant Nutrition


Paningbatan, Eduardo P. Jr.



Soil Physics


Paterno, Erlinda S.


Professor Emeritus

Soil Microbiology & Biotechnology


Sanchez,  Pearl B.


Associate Professor

Soil Chemistry and Plant Nutrition


Contact Information

Key Persons to contact: Dr. Enrico P. Supangco  

Contact numbers: (+63-049)536-3229;  

Tel./Fax  (+63-049) 536-5282

Email Address: [email protected]



 Source: UPLB website

The UPLB Graduate School marked milestones with the launching of two new masters-level degree programs and the celebration of its 42nd founding anniversary on December 1.

At the Thanksgiving Dinner-Fellowship held at the Graduate School multi-purpose hall, UPLB Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr. led the launching of the Master of Science in Entomology, an off-campus program implemented in partnership with ANFLO Management and Investment Corporation (ANFLOCOR) in Panabo City, Davao del Norte. He also relaunched the Professional Masters in Tropical Marine Ecosystem Management (PM-TMEM), a joint program with the UP Marine Science Institute (MSI) of UP Diliman and UP Visayas.

read more

Article by Mark Jayson E. Gloria, UPLB website

UP President Alfredo E. Pascual enjoined the UPLB graduate education faculty to intensify the internationalization of graduate programs during the Graduate Faculty Conference on Feb. 15 at the Tagaytay International Convention Center. Pascual, who gave the keynote speech during the Conference, said that UP’s mandate as a research, graduate, and regional/global university are intertwined and interrelated. He also commended UPLB’s tradition of excellence as a graduate and research university, especially in agriculture, forestry, veterinary medicine, and biotechnology.

read more

Posted on March 4, 2015 by upweb_wordpress in In the News, Article by Jo. Florendo B. Lontoc, photos by Abraham Arboleda

Responding to the mandates officially spelled out in Republic Act 9500 or the new UP System Charter of 2008, which elects UP to be a research and graduate university, among other roles, the UP Los Baños Graduate School convened a faculty conference to plot the path of the school to the future. The conference titled “Responding to the Challenges of a Research and Graduate University” was held on February 15 and 16, 2015 at the Tagaytay International Convention Center. It was attended by around 260 participants consisting of junior and senior graduate faculty members, committee chairs of degree-granting units, college deans, institute directors, department chairs, and heads of UP campuses.

read more

What was once a silent and unoccupied area at the back of the Graduate School (GS) Building will soon become the site of a modern hub for graduate and international students of UPLB.

It will be called the Graduate School International Student and Cultural Center Building, as officially announced during the groundbreaking ceremony on Dec. 2.

UP System, UPLB, and Nagoya University bigwigs were present during the occasion, which served as one of the highlights of the School’s 43rd founding anniversary.

               UP President Alfredo E. Pascual and Vice-President for Legal Affairs Hector Danny D. Uy joined UPLB Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr., Graduate School Dean Jose V. Camacho, Jr., and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Portia G. Lapitan in the traditional groundbreaking ceremonies. read more

UP and Nagoya University (NU), through President Alfredo E. Pascual and UPLB Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr. and NU President Seiichi Matsuo, respectively, have inked an agreement for UPLB to host the Nagoya University Asian Satellite Campus (NUASC) through the UPLB Graduate School.

This agreement makes the Philippines the eighth country to host the NUASC through which the Transnational Doctoral Programs for Leading Professionals in Asian Countries will be implemented. This will enable Filipino doctoral candidates to enroll in NU doctoral programs without having to be physically present in Nagoya for the whole duration of the course.

The agreement was formalized at the Executive Conference Room in BM Gonzalez Hall, UPLB on Dec. 2. Dr. Jose V. Camacho, Jr., dean, Graduate School and Dr. Fumio Isoda, director, Nagoya University Asian Satellite Campuses Institute, served as witnesses of the signing of the memorandum of agreement (MOA). read more

UPLB and Nagoya University (NU) formally opened the NU satellite campus in the Philippines and held the International Symposium on the Internationalization of Graduate Education at Acacia Hotel in Alabang, Muntinlupa City on March 8.

UPLB Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr.  said in his message during the opening program that to be a globally competitive research and graduate university, UPLB must pursue joint programs and collaborative activities with international academic and research institutions. He cited as an example the Philippines Transnational Ph.D. Program for Leading Professionals in Asian Countries being implemented by UPLB and NU.  

UP President Alfredo E. Pascual added that the program takes the University to a higher level and a step closer to being a globalized institution in terms of research and graduate education.  It will also allow experts to build lifelong partnerships with NU without leaving the country. He issued a challenge for UPLB to become a leader in global intellectual conversations of tomorrow. read more

The Graduate School (GS) and the College of Public Affairs and Development (CPAf), together with UP Mindanao, launched the Mindanao Development Studies Seminars (MDSS) on May 13-14 at UP Mindanao, Davao City. 

The MDSS aims to stimulate critical discussion about contemporary issues and challenges affecting the development of Mindanao. 

Dr. Portia G. Lapitan, vice chancellor for academic affairs who delivered a speech on behalf of Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr. reiterated the importance of Mindanao in the development of the country. She expressed her hopes that through the MDSS, participants would gain a more thorough insight of the issues affecting Mindanao.

“It is also my hope that this seminar would pave the way for scholars to engage in further discourse about Mindanao’s key concerns and strive to influence national policies that would benefit the people of Mindanao,” she added. read more


The Graduate School will hold its Hooding and Recognition Ceremony on June 24 at the DL Umali Freedom Park. During this occasion, the students who will have finished their doctoral program will be conferred their degrees through a ceremony in which their academic regalia (hoods) would be put on them by their advisers and University officials led by Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr and Dr. Jose V. Camacho, Jr., dean of the Graduate School.

The guest of honor and keynote speaker for this year’s ceremonies is Dr. Chamnian Yosraj, president of Maejo University in Thailand. Dr. Yosraj is a UPLB alumnus, having earned both his MS and Ph.D. degrees in Animal Science in 1983 and 1990, respectively. read more

The UPLB Graduate School (GS) held its 2016 Hooding and Recognition Ceremonies on June 24 at the DL Umali Freedom Park. Of the 279 graduates, 229 obtained master’s degrees and 50 earned doctorate degrees.

In his opening remarks, Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr. expressed confidence that the graduates will exceed expectations around them. “UPLB has prepared you to become leaders who have the intellectual capacity and the heart to contribute to your respective communities,” he said.  He also encouraged the graduates to use the knowledge they gained from the University not only in pursuing academic and intellectual endeavors, but also in addressing social concerns. read more

“How do you thank your benefactors? How do you thank the Filipino taxpayers? How do you thank the Filipino people as a whole?” asked UP President Alfredo E. Pascual to the 2,245-strong UPLB Class of 2016 on June 25 at the DL Umali Freedom Park.

President Pascual was the keynote speaker during the 44th Commencement Exercises of UPLB that started at six o’clock in the morning, a deviation from the usual afternoon-to-evening ceremonies in the University. He was introduced by Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr. read more

UPLB and Kobe University (KU) in Japan have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to jointly develop academic programs and projects that will benefit both in their instruction, research and training programs.

The MOU, which covers a 5-year period, was signed by KU President Hiroshi Takeda on March 23 in KU while UPLB chancellor, Dr. Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr. signed it on April 21 at the BM Gonzalez Hall in UPLB. read more

UPLB, through the Graduate School (GS) and the College of Economics and Management (CEM) has launched the off-campus Master of Management program for employees of the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM) at the DBM headquarters in Paco, Manila on Nov. 26.

PS-DBM has provided partial scholarships to its deserving employees who will be on the MMgt program that is being implemented by UPLB for continuing organizational development in the former. According to Atty. Tomas C. Syquia, executive director of PS-DBM, “to be the best, we must be taught by the best,” referring to the choice of UPLB as the partner institution. read me

In celebration of its 37th anniversary, the International Students Association (ISA), in cooperation with the International Student Services of the Office of Student Affairs (OSA), staged its annual cultural night at the DL Umali Hall on Oct. 14.

According to Dr. Nina Cadiz, OSA director, the event was “meant to promote the welfare and cooperation of foreign students in UPLB and to promote the benefits of internationalization in a University” such as UPLB.

With the theme “Unifying Force for Global Community,” the event featured song and dance performances of students from the Philippines, Indonesia, Timor Leste, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Bangladesh, and Nigeria. read more

In order to modernize pedagogy and equip faculty members with technology-mediated teaching strategies, the Interactive Learning Center (ILC) and Graduate School (GS) co-sponsored the workshop on Graduate Program Innovations: Hands-On Training on Blended Learning for faculty members on July 27-28, at the ILC Computer Laboratory, CAS Annex I Bldg.   

Dr. Jose V. Camacho, Jr., GS dean, lauded the participants for attending the workshop despite the fact that they were on teacher’s leave. He said that since faculty members are in the forefront of the internalization efforts of the University and UPLB-GS has already embarked on off-campus offering, there is a need to conduct training programs on technology-mediated approaches that would help enhance the graduate programs of the University. read more

The UPLB Graduate School (GS) conducted its 2015 Hooding and Recognition Ceremonies on July 3 at the DL Umali Hall, conferring degrees on 48 Ph.D. and 212 masters candidates. It also gave recognition to its top five Ph.D. and masters candidates, and two recipients of special awards.

In his opening remarks, Chancellor Fernando C. Sanchez, Jr. advised the graduate students to actively participate in collaborative research activities that promote knowledge building and policy making, to publish their work, and serve the people. He further explained that as the ASEAN integration promotes mobility among faculty and students, it also presents UPLB an opportunity to pursue research and development policies in the region. read more

The Graduate School welcomes new staff officials to improve and strengthen its graduate services. On 15 November 2017, Dr. Mark Dondi M. Arboleda, former School Secretary since 2015, was officially appointed as Associate Dean; Dr. Aimee Lynn A. Barrion-Dupo as School Secretary; and Ms. Nanette A. Aquino as Assistant Secretary. Read more

Dr. Aimee Lynn Barrion-Dupo, Graduate School Secretary, was one of the 68 awardees of the UP Scientific Productivity System for CY 2017. 

The UP Scientific Productivity System (SPS) aims to support the development of science and technology; and encourage and reward scientific productivity. 

The nominees are evaluated according to the following: Scientific Productivity as measured by scientific publications, significant technological output and discoveries; Scientific Standing; and professional Standing

Visit http://ovpaa.up.edu.ph/up-scientific-productivity-system-2/ for more details on the UP Scientific Productivity System.



Dr. Mark Dondi M. Arboleda takes-over as secretary of UPLB Graduate School effective March 4, 2015.

He succeeds Dr. Willie P. Abasolo who was appointed by the UP Board of Regents as the new dean of the College of Forestry and Natural Resources on March 3, 2015.

Read More


The 43rd Commencement Exercises of UPLB will be held on Saturday, July 4, 2015 at the D.L. Umali Freedom Park in front of the D.L. Umali HAll (UPLB Auditorium).

Click here to download the instructions





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