Cannabis Production & Management

Cannabis Production and Management is a fully online, non-credit course that provides advanced knowledge and selected skillsets for mid to upper-level production jobs in commercial growing facilities. Students cover critical aspects of the cannabis industry, cannabis products, workplace requirements, crop management, quality control/quality assurance, harvesting, processing, and waste management. Specific applications to cannabis facilities and workplaces are a major focus of the course.

What will I learn

Upon successful completion of this course you will be able to use the knowledge, skills, and resources gained to improve performance and success in mid to upper-level cannabis production jobs.

Cannabis Production and Management is 100% online.  It is intended to provide you with advanced knowledge of cannabis production and management, and a chance to apply the knowledge in completing selected tasks relevant to the commercial production environment. This will improve your ability to transfer the knowledge and skills to job-specific situations.

Who should take this course

This highly interactive online course is of interest to people who come from a plant science background and are seeking new opportunities in the growing field of commercial cannabis production.

Cannabis Production and Management will provide cannabis-specific training for people looking to be employed in mid- to upper-level production jobs in commercial growing facilities. This course is 100% online with online activitiies and discussions. It does not include a hands-on component. This course will prepare you to start your career and develop your competency in cannabis production.

Cannabis Production and Management will not provide job specific information for entry-level or labour jobs (e.g. bud trimmers); specialized positions such as Quality Assurance technicians or Master Grower positions however, if you already have training or are working in these areas, you will gain additional knowledge and skills to help advance your career.


Cannabis Production and Management is an Adult Learning course with open admission criteria. It is recommended for participants with:

  • previous training in horticulture, plant science, or botany (e.g. certificate, degree, diploma); and/or
  • previous experience in a commercial horticultural enterprise or crop production.

If you don’t have previous training or experience in these areas, you can still enroll in the course, as long as you feel you can complete the requirements. This may require additional background reading etc. on your part. The instructors may be willing to recommend videos, readings etc. to help you; however there will be no time devoted to this in the course. 

Length of course

The next offering of this course will run from September 14th - December 14th, 2020.

Course modules

The course is delivered 100% online, in a series of ten modules:

Module 1: Cannabis Industry Overview
Module 2: Regulations & GPP
Module 3: Indoor Production Facilities
Module 4: Crop Botany
Module 5: Propagation
Module 6: Plant & Canopy Management
Module 7: Media & Nutrient Management
Module 8: Environmental Control
Module 9: Integrated Pest Management
Module 10: Harvest Management

The course will be delivered through Brightspace, Dalhousie University’s Learning Management System, or LMS. All course materials, activities, and assessments will be “housed” in Brightspace and delivered to you electronically. This will ensure a seamless learning experience so you can learn at a time and location that is convenient for you. (Note: Selected activities may require scheduled participation.)


$1549.00 +HST ($232.35) = $1781.35

If you live and work for a small business in Nova Scotia (farm, licensed cannabis producer, etc.), you may qualify for funding from the NS Workplace Innovation and Productivity Skills Incentive. 

Course instructors

Primary Instructor - Alex Buckley

Alex Buckley was born and raised in Saint John, New Brunswick, where he spent many years playing sports and as a result, endured a lot of injuries. When pursuing his BBA at the University of New Brunswick in 2012, his injuries began to catch up with him, preventing him from giving his full attention to his studies. After struggling through for a time, he decided to change his habits and take his health into his own hands. A combination of healthy eating, yoga, meditation, and medicinal cannabis has helped heal his ailments, and he now lives pain free.

Excited about education once more, along with the forthcoming legalization of cannabis in Canada, Alex enrolled in the BSc. (Agr.) program at the Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture with a major in Plant Science. He completed his BSc and his BBA in 2018, and has been working in the cannabis industry since. He has experience as a Lead Integrated Pest Management/Lead Cultivator at an indoor cannabis facility in Halifax, NS, and has played an integral role in developing and instructing the Cannabis Production and Management course. He is currently employed as a Research and Development Technician with Cronos Group out of their Peace Naturals facility in Ontario.

Teaching Assistant - Georgia Lewis

Georgia Lewis is a 2014 graduate of the Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture, where she completed a BSc. (Agr.) in Environmental Sciences. As an agronomist, she has worked across Canada with a number of different crops, and has been working specifically in the cannabis industry since legalization. Georgia currently works at Mernova Medicinal Inc., a 24,000ft cultivation/extraction and production facility in Windsor, NS, with 10 flower rooms. In her position, Georgia is responsible for the vegetative room, the IPM plan, scouting, recordkeeping and lighting, and also assists with harvesting, cloning, and cleaning. Her favourite areas are crop nutrition and soil science, but she is quickly falling in love with lighting.

Georgia is thrilled to be involved with the development and delivery of the Cannabis Production and Management course. From her year of working in the cannabis industry, Georgia has learned that when it comes to growing it is important to ask for help, be open to change and to a multitude of growing methods and research, and that your production team is your strongest asset.

Course expectations

The course will be highly interactive, and require intense, active participation from the student in all modules. The following are examples of activities that will be used to help students meet the learning outcomes:

  • complete assigned readings, videos etc.;
  • conduct internet searches to access, evaluate, and critique information;
  • take part in discussion forums;
  • produce communication tools for lay audiences or workers (e.g. SOPs, job aids, toolbox session handouts, infographics, short videos, etc.);
  • complete peer evaluations;
  • participate in role play activities;
  • complete assignments involving case studies/scenarios and interpretive questions;
  • interpret records;
  • complete self-tests and interactive learning activities.

The course facilitators will monitor discussions, provide feedback on assignments, activities etc., answer questions, and provide additional information/references. They will not “instruct” the course as in a traditional classroom set-up. For this reason, you will need the self-discipline to complete the required assignments, participate in discussions and activities, and incorporate the feedback into your learning.

How will I be assessed

You will be assessed using a variety of methods, which may include:

  • graded online tests;
  • graded discussions;
  • graded assignments:
  • role play exercises;
  • critiques of external resources;
  • calculations;
  • production of communication tools and training resources (SOPs, job aids, toolbox session handouts, infographics, short videos, etc.)
  • case studies/scenarios with interpretative questions.

Graded assessments may include both peer and instructor assessments. Self-assessment tests will also be provided to aid student learning.

Successful completion of the course is based on an overall passing grade of 70%, along with a 70% in each of the ten modules. You must complete each component of all ten modules to receive the Certificate of Completion.

What does online learning involve

Online learning has been used successfully for delivering high quality learning experiences in a variety of subject areas and for a variety of audiences around the world. However, there are some skills sets and learner characteristics that are necessary for a successful online learning experience.

We recommend that you visit this site for an overview of the skills that will lead to success in online learning:

You can take the self-assessment quiz to gauge your readiness for online learning and to identify areas you may need to address before committing to an online course.