Home » Onboarding
Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener Program Onboarding
Second in a series of courses for people becoming Wisconsin Extension Master Gardeners
This course is for you if:
- You are enthusiastic about gardening.
- You have a willingness to learn more.
- You want to give back to your community through volunteer service.
Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener Onboarding is an online course for individuals wishing to become a Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener. Joining the program requires you to take a series of two courses. Course #1 is participating in an approved learning opportunity from the Wisconsin Extension Horticulture Program. Course #2 is registering and completing Onboarding (this course).
Course dates: February 19 – March 31, 2024. Course is online, self-study and highly flexible.
Course fee & registration dates:
- Early Bird: $100, December 11, 2023 – January 19, 2024
- Regular: $125, January 20 – February 2, 2024
Eligibility: You must complete the prerequisite of an approved learning opportunity from the Wisconsin Extension Horticulture Program before you can register for the Onboarding course.
What will I learn?
This course introduces you to the Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener program. You will explore the history of the program, what it means to be a Master Gardener, requirements and guidelines for participation, and resources available to you. This course prepares you to start your journey in helping communities across the state.
In this course, you’ll learn:
- The role of a Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener.
- Tools, techniques, and resources to help you as a Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener.
- Program policies and guidelines for your activities.
- Activities that count as volunteer service and continuing education.
In addition, you will test your basic knowledge of horticulture through the entrance exam.
What: An online course where you move at your own pace. Includes modules, activities, quizzes, and a horticulture exam. You will also have the opportunity to hear directly from program coordinators through two live webinars. The webinars will be recorded. The course includes an electronic (PDF) copy of the Foundations in Gardening manual, available when the course begins.
When: The course runs February 19-March 31, 2024.
Participants must complete course material and horticulture exam by March 31, 2024. (see FAQ “Do I need to complete the course by March 31, 2024?”) We provide a suggested calendar to help you complete the course on time.
Who: The course is open to individuals who are 18 years or older, want to become a Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener, and have successfully completed an approved learning opportunity. Transfers from another state and returning individuals need to contact the Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener Program at email@example.com for requirements.
How: This is an online course that uses Canvas and Zoom.
Answers below to frequently asked questions.
Course Times & Flexibility
The only fixed events are the live webinars with program coordinators, but don’t worry if you can’t make it; we understand that busy adults need flexibility. All webinars are recorded and made available for viewing throughout the course.
You can learn at your own pace to suit your schedule best. We offer a suggested weekly calendar to help you complete all aspects of the course within the designated timeframe.
Yes, quizzes and the horticulture exam are graded. You must achieve the required grades to become a Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener. Without this you will need to retake the next available Onboarding course and pay the fee to become a participant in the program.
Most students find this very doable! If you need assistance, we are here to support your learning. The practice activities are not graded.
No, Onboarding is only offered once a year.
How is the course taught?
Onboarding uses an online learning platform called Canvas. Canvas is where enrolled students access and interact with the course content such as readings, quizzes, practice exercises, horticulture exam and more. In Canvas, you can work on your own and at your own pace.
You’ll read, take quizzes, view webinars, practice the material through activities, and take the horticulture exam.
Yes, a course moderator is available during the course to answer questions and help you. You will be able to contact the course moderator through our Canvas course and email once the course begins. We are here to support your learning!
Yes, quizzes and the horticulture exam are graded. You must achieve the required grades to become a Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener. Most students find this very doable! If you need assistance, we are here to support your learning. The practice activities are not graded.
Registration and Fees
The following count for approved learning opportunities, must be taken and completed in the last 5 years:
- Growing and Caring for Plants in Wisconsin: Foundations in Gardening
- Foundations in Horticulture (offered in 2020 and 2021)
- County-based courses taught by the Wisconsin Extension Horticulture Program
Early Bird: $100, includes an electronic version of the Foundations in Gardening Manual (PDF)
Regular: $125, includes an electronic version of the Foundations in Gardening Manual (PDF)
Registration is a two step process. The first step cannot be done over the phone, but the second step can. When registration opens, you must first fill out the Google Form for us to verify you have completed an approved learning opportunity. Once verified you will receive a registration link and more information on how to register for the course over the phone if needed.
Course cancellations prior to the course start date of February 19, 2024 will receive a refund less $30 for processing. No refunds will be issued on or after February 19, 2024.