The Top Schools for Landscape Architecture and Design

Undergraduate and Graduate Programs in Landscaping

plan view drawing
A landscape architect draws a plan view. Kaloyan Suhorukov/Getty Images

What are the top colleges and universities for studying landscape architecture? Maybe you, your offspring, a friend, or a relative has an interest in landscape architecture, working with plants, or designing hardscape, outdoor structures, and water features for commercial or residential buildings. Perhaps redesigning your yard and assisting in the pool-building process has given you a whole new career focus that you'd like to further your education.

A Growing Field

Landscape architecture is a vital and growing field. A bachelor's degree in landscape architecture can take up to five years or more to complete; while a master's is another two years or more. Our list of the top American schools in landscape architecture has been curated from various sources, including DesignIntelligence and the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). Most graduates will have to pass the L.A.R.E. (Landscape Architect Registration Examination) to become licensed. Schools listed may offer ASLA-accredited programs in undergraduate and graduate studies, along with minor, certificate, or—in a couple of cases—doctoral studies in landscape architecture.

Schools are listed alphabetically.

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University of California, Berkeley

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The University of California at Berkeley. Charlie Nguyen/Flickr/CC 2.0

At the undergraduate level, UC Berkeley offers a Bachelor of Arts degree in landscape architecture. This program offers both a liberal arts oriented and pre-professional education. Several undergraduate minor programs are available to all majors at UC Berkeley, including minors in sustainable design, and the history and theory of landscape architecture and environmental planning.

At the graduate level: a Master of Landscape Architecture (a professional degree requiring two or three years, depending on the student's incoming background), with the option to specialize in Environmental Planning, and a Ph.D. in landscape architecture and environmental planning.

The Department of Landscape Architecture in the College of Environmental Design at the University of California at Berkeley.

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Auburn University

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Auburn University in Alabama. Auburn University

Auburn's School of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture offers a Master of Landscape Architecture and prepares students for careers as creative and adaptive landscape architects.

Auburn University is located in Auburn, Alabama.

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The Ohio State University

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The Ohio State University

The Landscape Architecture program at Ohio State's Knowlton School of Architecture prepares students to participate in the field as both a cultural and ecological practice. A Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture (BSLA) and Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA) are offered.

The Ohio State University is located in Columbus, Ohio.

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Cornell University

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Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Cornell University

Cornell's Department of Landscape Architecture in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences views the art of landscape design as an expression of cultural values reinforced by many related disciplines. The department offers accredited, license-qualifying landscape architecture degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The undergraduate Landscape Architecture degree is the only one of its kind in the Ivy League.

Cornell University is located in Ithaca, New York.

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Pennsylvania State University

penn state university
Old Main at Penn State University. Penn State

The landscape design and horticulture programs were established at the college in 1907. Department of Landscape Architecture, part the Stuckeman School, offers undergraduate degrees and a graduate programs that lead to an MLA or MSLA.

Pennsylvania State University is located in University Park, Pennsylvania.

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State University of New York (SUNY)

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Winter at Suny ESF. DASonnenfeld/Wikimedia Commons

Since 1911, the Landscape Architecture program at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF) has been educating practitioners and teachers, designers and planners, advocates and policy makers. SUNY-ESF and Syracuse University reside on the same campus together.

Both Bachelors and Masters degrees in Landscape Architecture are offered at SUNY-ESF, and students at SUNY-ESF may take courses from Syracuse University at no additional cost. This allows each university to contribute to the programs of the other. As a result, students in landscape architecture not only benefit from the broad range of environmental science programs at SUNY-ESF, but also from the architecture, interior design, visual and performing arts, geography, anthropology, art history, foreign languages, and other programs at Syracuse University.

SUNY-ESF is located in Syracuse, New York.

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Texas A&M University

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Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. Texas A&M

Texas A & M University offers two degrees: a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture and a Master of Landscape Architecure.

The Department of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning (LAUP) is located in the Langford Architecture Center at Texas A & M University, which is in College Station, Texas. It is not far from Houston, Dallas-Ft. Worth, and San Antonio-Austin.

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University of Georgia

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The College of Environment + Design at the University of Georgia. University of Georgia

The University of Georgia offers Bachelors and Masters programs in Landscape Architecture, along with related certificate programs.

The University of Georgia is located in Athens, Georgia.

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University of Pennsylvania

university of pennsylvania
'Love' statue on campus at Locust and Woodland Walks. InSapphoWeTrust/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

The University of Pennsylvania offers two Landscape Architecture programs. The first professional degree program is three years in length and is designed for students with an undergraduate degree in a field other than landscape architecture or architecture. The second professional degree is two years in length and is designed for those who already hold an accredited bachelors degree in either landscape architecture or architecture.

The University of Pennsylvania is located in Philadelphia.

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University of Virginia

university of virginia
The Rotunda, designed by Thomas Jefferson. Phil Roeder/Flickr/CC By 2.0

The Department of Landscape Architecture offers a Masters program with a focus on urban space and dynamic forms.

University of Virginia is located in Charlottesville, Virginia.

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University of Washington

university of washington
The quad in March, when cherry trees are starting to blossom. l.madhavan/flickr/CC by 2.0

The University of Washington's focus is on a particular area of Landscape Architecture called Urban Ecological Design.

The University of Washington is located in Seattle.

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

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Torg Bridge at Virginia Tech University. Paul Kurlak/Flickr/CC by 2.0

Virgiinia Tech's Landscape Architecture Program offers a Bachelors in Landscape Architecture and a minor in Landscape Architecture. Professional and post-professional Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA) degree options are offered at the main campus in Blacksburg, Virginia, and in the National Capital Region (NCR) through Virginia Tech's Washington Alexandria Architecture Center, located in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.

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Your Citation
Taylor, Lisa Hallett. "The Top Schools for Landscape Architecture and Design." ThoughtCo, Aug. 27, 2020, Taylor, Lisa Hallett. (2020, August 27). The Top Schools for Landscape Architecture and Design. Retrieved from Taylor, Lisa Hallett. "The Top Schools for Landscape Architecture and Design." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 5, 2021).