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Studios + Seminars


LAR 501, Introduction Design Studio

This studio is an introduction to landscape architectural design thinking processes and applications that include: site analysis, post-occupancy user studies, programming, site planning, elementary site grading, graphic representation (drawing, model making, digital graphics), verbal communication, and criticism and reflection.

LAR 502, Introduction Design Studio

Students learn strategies, principles, and methods for designing and evaluating resilient ways and means to fit an intensive development program on challenging, regionally specific sites. This design studio is integrally linked with LAR 527- Landform, Grading and Site Systems.

LAR 503, Design Development Studio

In this studio, students are immersed in site planning design refinement from conceptual schematic design through to the preparation of technical landscape architectural construction plans and details.

LAR 506, Design Build Studio

Design and construction implementation of sustainable construction practices for a low-impact landscape system installation that responds to degraded environmental conditions.

LAR 507, Advanced Topics Studio

This is a joint studio with architecture with advanced engagement, emphasizing research, development and application of experimental and best practices, on current and emerging landscape architectural topics. Some topics in the past have included Coastal Dynamics, City Design, and Urban Food Systems.


LAR 543, Performance + Metrics

Evidence-based design and landscape performance assessments are increasingly necessary to promote high-quality and sustainable design in landscape architecture projects.  The purpose of this course is to expose students to landscape performance; including environmental, economic/ life cycle costs, operations and management, social, and aesthetic considerations.

Emphasis is placed on the practical application of landscape performance with clients to meet their needs within regulatory frameworks. The course includes field investigations concepts, tools, and methods in practice, including setting performance goals of built work and collaborative production of a landscape performance assessment.

LAR 517, GIS For Designers

This seminar offers an introduction to the methods and applications of geographic information systems and technology in landscape architecture. By the end of the course, students will apply GIS principles and technologies pertaining to modeling and analysis in two and three dimensions as an integral part of the creative design process.

LAR 527, Grading + Drainage

Students in this course apply​ ​theories,​ ​current​ ​and​ ​emerging​ ​technologies,​ ​and​ ​best​ ​professional​ ​practices​ ​required​ ​for grading​ ​and​ ​drainage​ ​processes​ ​used​ ​to​ ​reshape​ ​the​ ​earth’s​ ​surfaces,​ ​influence​ ​functionality,​ ​and water​ ​infiltration​ ​and​ ​runoff​ ​in​ ​Landscape​ ​architectural​ ​applications.

LAR 535, Social + Environmental Equity

This seminar will increase student awareness of principles of environmental justice and social equity in the context of landscape architecture, planning, and design. This seminar uses case studies, readings, in-class exercises, and community engagement to gain experience with democratic design techniques including participatory design and advocacy strategies.

LAR 520, Landscape + Culture

This course focuses on an integrative approach to human + natural systems, specifically the dynamic forces that act upon, alter, and give meaning to landscapes. The dynamics of ecological scale, function, structure, and human-ecosystem interaction will be examined through multiple methods, lectures, field trips, case studies, and theories that operate at a variety of spatial and temporal scales.

LAR 540 Research + Methods

In this course, students interpret and evaluate the physical environment in relation to its social, political, economic, environmental, cultural and scientific contexts. Research and critical reflection are an integral part to achieve this learning outcome. They also assess the strength and weaknesses of various methodological approaches and field research techniques relevant to landscape architecture and apply various research tools systematically in a range of situations and places.

LAR 546 The Landscape Imperative

This seminar gives students exposure to the complex interrelationships of demographics, resource stewardship and land development in terms of the issues, questions, challenges and opportunities for landscape architects and urban designers.

LAR 545 City Planning and Design – Building Great Communities

This course explores the history and heritage of city planning and design in an ever-urbanizing world, the legal underpinning and practice of the tools of planning in the US – comprehensive planning, zoning, infrastructure planning and design guidelines, environmental and social challenges for an urban planet, and the procurement of planning and design services, both from the perspective of the hiring entity as well as from that of the consultant.

LAR 523 Landscape Architecture Plant Identification

Introduction to the vocabulary and methods necessary to identify ornamental and native plants in the built and natural landscape. The course is structured around the understanding of the taxonomic tools necessary to identify plants.

LAR 524 Planting Design Applications in Landscape Architecture

Introduction to theories, practices, and implications associated with the diverse uses of plants in landscape architectural design applications considerate of functional, ecologic, aesthetic, economic, maintenance, health, safety, welfare, and other factors.