University of Southern California
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Undergraduate Degrees

Bachelor of Landscape Architecture

By pursuing degrees in landscape architecture, students develop their ability to critically examine and creatively respond to the wide array of environmental problems. The development of young professionals who can take on the challenge of working in interdisciplinary fields, mediating between the goals and desires of diverse groups while soliciting their participation and pressing for creative solutions, requires certain fundamental skills. The program will encourage and develop the following skills and abilities in students so that they can flourish in a professional setting:

  • Knowledge of the physical world and the interrelationships between humans and the biological systems of which they are part.

  • The ability to delineate the critical issues affecting a site through an inventory and analysis of physical, social and cultural factors; and recognition of the hidden trade-offs inherent in such an evaluation.

  • The ability to use their knowledge and experience to creatively respond to the problems that confront them and to have the determination to make their ideas a reality.

  • The ability to effectively communicate with peoples of diverse backgrounds through both words and images.

  • The ability to deal with individuals, community groups, public agencies or large corporations, and to work in concert and manage conflict through development.

  • Familiarity with new technologies, their impacts and their potential for the profession of landscape architecture and land planning.

  • Awareness of the constant evolution of knowledge and a commitment to continually reexamine assumptions.

    The Bachelor of Landscape Architecture is a four-year program of lectures, seminars and studio courses. Through academic research, personal participation and group endeavor, the program will introduce students to historic and contemporary issues in landscape architecture. Projects will concentrate on the design of spaces in the urban landscape. This emphasis derives from our location in Southern California, at the very heart of an exuberant and dynamic metropolitan area.

    Each semester, the design studio will be paired with courses that develop technical skills, expand the students' working knowledge of plant materials and natural systems, and explore the history and theory of design. A component of each studio project will be performed collaboratively to develop the students' ability to work collectively.


    First Year, First SemesterUnits
    ARCH 102aLArchitectural Design I4
    ARCH 105LFundamentals of Design Communication2
    ARCH 114Architecture: Culture and Community2
    General Education*Social Issues4
    WRIT 140*Writing and Critical Reasoning4
    *Taken concurrently

    First Year, Second SemesterUnits
    ARCH 102bLArchitectural Design I4
    ARCH 211Materials and Methods of Building Construction3
    General Education8

    Second Year, First SemesterUnits
    ARCH 202aLArchitectural Design II6
    ARCH 304xIntensive Survey: Pre-History to the Present4
    ARCH 361LEcological Factors in Design3
    General Education4

    Second Year, Second SemesterUnits
    ARCH 260LLandscape Architecture Design I6
    ARCH 362Landscape Architecture Construction3
    ARCH 363Plant Material Identification: Horticulture4
    ARCH 365History of Landscape Architecture4

    Third Year, First SemesterUnits
    ARCH 360aLLandscape Architecture Design II6
    ARCH 364Materials and Methods of Landscape Architecture3
    GEOG 345Conservation of Natural Resources, or
    GEOG 477Water Resources4
    WRIT 340Advanced Writing4

    Third Year, Second SemesterUnits
    ARCH 207aComputer Applications in Architecture2
    ARCH 360bLLandscape Architecture Design II6
    ARCH 463Plant Material Identification: California Plant Communities4
    General Education4

    Fourth Year, First SemesterUnits
    ARCH 366Nature Landscapes and Gardens in Non-Western Cultures4
    ARCH 460LLandscape Planning Studio6
    PPD 100Los Angeles, The Enduring Pueblo4
    General Education4

    Fourth Year, Second SemesterUnits
    ARCH 461LLandscape Architecture Comprehensive Project6
    ARCH 522Professional Practice: Project and Office Administration2
    ARCH 523Professional Practice: Project Documentation2
    Total units required:130