Landscape Architecture Bachelors Degree Programs
Landscape architects design outdoor spaces that are esthetically pleasing, functional and environmentally friendly. Landscape architecture encompasses several fields, including architecture, design, construction and engineering. The two types of landscape architecture bachelor's degrees are the Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture and Bachelor of Landscape Architecture.
Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture
The Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture is a 4-year program that combines courses in the major with studies in the biological and physical sciences and liberal arts. Students learn to design public and private outdoor spaces accompanying homes, parks, buildings, gardens, playgrounds, golf courses, shopping centers and college campuses. Through internships, seminars and field work, students learn to coordinate landscape architecture projects with contractors, vendors, surveyors and engineers.
Some landscape architecture schools have limited enrollment and admission is selective. Students in both landscape architecture bachelor's programs are required to maintain a certain grade point average and complete prerequisite courses before participating in professional training through field work.
Classes in landscape architecture bachelor's degree programs cover disciplines from soil science to computer-aided design. Courses in the field include the following:
- Plant selection and design
- Landscape design
- Landscaping history
- Graphic design
- Landscaping plans
- Construction Landscapes
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Employer demand for landscape architectures is expected to grow 16% by 2016, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Employment opportunities will increase as the nation requires more landscape architects to design spaces associated with new construction to meet the needs of a growing population. Landscape architects earn a median annual salary of $55,140, according to the BLS.
Continuing Education Information
Graduates of landscape architecture bachelor's degree programs may pursue a Master of Landscape Architecture. Other continuing education options include graduate degrees in related fields, including urban planning and design. Some states require that landscape architects periodically complete some type of continuing education program that may include seminars, classes, self-study and workshops.
Bachelor of Landscape Architecture
Schools usually require five years to complete the Bachelor of Landscape Architecture program. It requires more hands-on experience than the Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture. Typically, students in this program must participate in design studios, create a work portfolio, serve internships and complete a senior project. Candidates learn to create landscape projects by working with architects, urban planners, engineers, ecologists and other professionals.
Forty-nine states require graduates of landscape architecture bachelor's degree programs to take the Landscape Architect Registration Exam (LARE) sponsored by the Council of Landscape Architectural Registration Boards (CLARB). Most states also mandate one to four years of work experience supervised by a licensed landscape architect. Fifteen states also require their own certification exams.
Coursework for the Bachelor of Landscape Architecture is similar but not identical to that required by the Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture. Typical courses include the following:
- Site construction and engineering
- Plant materials
- Landscape preservation
- Park planning
- Landscape architecture history
- Open space and park design
- Housing landscape design
- Urban design
Popular Career Options
Landscape architects work for real estate development and construction companies, government agencies and architectural firms. Students who earn a landscape architecture bachelor's degree may pursue entry-level jobs in the field and eventually advance to management. Common career options include those below:
- Landscape designer
- Landscape project manager
- Landscape consultant
- Landscape architect supervisor
- Senior landscape architect
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