Graduate Curriculum

MLA Curriculum

To prepare students with comprehensive knowledge, advanced skills and rich practical experience to solve ecological, environmental and social issues of the 21st century through landscape design and planning, the MLA program is currently employing a curriculum that covers a wide variety of learning subjects pertinent to landscape architecture. The curriculum is a three-year sequence consisting of a 4-quarter preparatory year (required for students with non-design backgrounds) and two years of professional study of Landscape Architecture with an emphasis on human ecosystematic design and planning. A breakdown of the program curriculum by different subject categories is available in the following table. While some courses fall into only one subject category, e.g., LA 555 Seminar on Human Behavior in Landscape in the History, theory and criticism group, some other courses are categorized into different subject groups for their wider range of subject coverage, such as LA 604 Environmental Analysis in the Natural and cultural system group and Public Policy and Regulation group.

In the curriculum, the highest percentages of courses fall within two major categories, "natural and cultural systems including principles of sustainability" and "design, planning and management at various scales and application". Such arrangement in the curriculum echoes the program's strong focus on sustainable human ecosystematic design and planning at various scales. To provide necessary supplements to these cores categories, the curriculum has good coverage of courses on landscape history, theory, policy, design implementation, plant and ecosystem, computer application and advanced technologies, and research methods and activities. These courses provide important knowledge, skills and techniques for students to conduct advanced landscape design and planning. Additionally, the curriculum also offers limited but valuable courses on professional ethics, values, and practice to help students build solid connections between their graduate and future professional experience. There is one course for visual communication, i.e., LA 511/L Graphic Design.

In California State Polytechnic University, courses are taught on a quarter-based system. Quarters are ten weeks in length with a one week final period. Students receive one unit for each hour of lecture contact per week and one unit of credit for every three hours of studio contact per week. Credits that student obtained during the preparatory year are not counted as degree requirements. In order to graduate, MLA students need to complete 72 units of credits at minimum during their second and third year of study. The following is the typical program of study for each year of students in the program.

The department supports a number of minor programs within the university. Minors are generally not easily attained while completing required core course work but a number of minor courses can be utilized as directed electives and upper division synthesis courses. Students are currently pursuing minors in horticulture, landscape irrigation, languages and regenerative studies.

The department has a broad list of directed electives that support entry into the profession and diversified expertise in the graduating class.

 

History, Theory and Criticism:


LA 322 Regional Landscape History

LA 423 The Urban Landscape

LA 424 World Garden

LA 521/L Landscape Awareness

LA 552 Seminar on Theory and Literature

LA 555 Seminar on Human Behavior in Landscape

 

Natural and cultural systems including principles of sustainability:


LA 302/L Intermediate Landscape Design

LA 303/L Intermediate Landscape Design

LA 512/L Methods and Applications of Landscape Architecture

LA 555 Seminar on Human Behavior in Landscape

LA 556 Human Behavior and Landscape Design

LA 576 Seminar on Landscape Planning

LA 602/L Landscape Design Natural Processes Service Learning

LA 602S/L Landscape Design Natural Processes

LA 604/L Environmental Analysis

LA 606/L Ecosystematic Landscape Design

LA 606S/L Ecosystematic Landscape Design Service Learning

 

Public policy and regulation:


LA 576 Seminar on Landscape Planning

LA 604/L Environmental Analysis

LA 606/L Ecosystematic Landscape Design

LA 606S/L Ecosystematic Landscape Design Service Learning

 

Design, planning and management at various scales and applications :


LA 302/L Intermediate Landscape Design

LA 303/L Intermediate Landscape Design

LA 509/L Foundations of Landscape Architecture Design

LA 510/L Foundations of Landscape Architecture Design

LA 512/L Methods and Applications of Landscape Architecture

LA 602/L Landscape Design Natural Processes

LA 602S/L Landscape Design Natural Processes Service Learning

LA 604/L Environmental Analysis

LA 606/L Ecosystematic Landscape Design

LA 606S/L Ecosystematic Landscape Design Service Learning

 

Site design and implementation: materials, methods, technologies and applications :


LA 531/L Landscape Construction and Design

LA 532/L Landscape Construction and Design

LA 541/L Landscape Planting

LA 632/L Landscape Technology

LA 606/L Ecosystematic Landscape Design

 

Written, verbal and visual communications:


LA 511/L Design Graphics

 

Professional practices:


LA553 Seminar on Professional Directions

LA 652 Graduate Seminar

 

Professional values and ethics:


LA 551 Seminar on the Profession

LA 652 Graduate Seminar

 

Plants and ecosystems:


LA 540/L Plant Ecology and Design

LA 540S/L Plant Ecology and Design Service Learning

LA 541/L Landscape Planting

Computer application and other advanced technologies:


LA 499/L Special Topics for Upper Division Students

LA 505/L Introduction to Information Technology in Landscape Architecture

LA 565/L Advanced Information Technology in Landscape Architecture

Research Methodologies, Projects, Theses and Degree:


LA 601 Design Research

LA 652 Graduate Seminar

LA 692 Independent Study

LA 694 Thesis/Project Research

LA 695 Master¡¯s Degree Project

LA 696 Master¡¯s Degree Thesis

LA 699 Master¡¯s Degree Continuation

MLA Preapproved Electives:

MLA Preapproved Electives (PDF)