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Master of Landscape Architecture

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  • Entry requirements
    Application Instructions

    Step 1: Submit the UC Berkeley Graduate Division Online Application

    * Statement of Purpose – State the purpose in entering the graduate program, your proposed emphasis of studies, and any special interest(s) in the field. Statements should be clear and focused. For tips on writing a statement of purpose please see the Graduate Division website.

    * Personal History Statement – Not required by the department.

    * Three Letters of Recommendation – Submit the names of your recommenders through the online application. The recommender is to provide a personal impression of the applicant’s intellectual ability, aptitude in research or professional skills, character, and the quality of previous work and potential for future productive scholarship. ONLY online letters of recommendation are accepted.

    * GRE - Domestic M.L.A. applicants and all PH.D. applicants must take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and have their official scores reported to the Graduate Division by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Only GRE scores taken after June 2005 are valid. School code: 4833. Department code: 4405.

    * TOEFL or IELTS - Applicants from non-English-speaking countries must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) examination or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). M.L.A. applicants who take the TOEFL or IELTS are not required to take the GRE.

    Step 2: Mail Supplemental Material to Department

    * Statement of Purpose
    * Resume
    * One set of official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended since high school.
    * M.L.A. Exhibit of Creative Work (Portfolio) – first and second professional applicants ONLY.

    Graduate Admissions Committee
    Department of Landscape Architecture & Environmental Planning
    University of California, Berkeley
    202 Wurster Hall #2000
    Berkeley, CA 94720-2000

    Step 3: Upload Supplemental Materials to the LAEP Admissions Intranet

    Applicants who have submitted the UC Berkeley Graduate Division Online Application by the deadline will be given access to the LAEP Admissions Intranet. Applicants will receive a detailed email with instructions on how to upload all required Supplemental Application Material.

    Supplemental Application Materials

    * Departmental Application:
    Interactive PDF Version | Microsoft Word Version
    * Statement of Purpose
    * Resume
    * Unofficial Transcript(s) – Note: Before uploading your unofficial transcript please remove your Social Security number and date of birth.
    * Exhibit of Creative Work (First & Second professional applicants)
    * Recent Publication (Environmental Planning applicants)
    * 5 to 7 page Proposed Research including methodology (Ph.D. applicants)
    * Recent Publication or Report (Ph.D. applicants)

    M.L.A. Environmental Planning Program

    Submit a recent publication or report that reflects your writing and/or analytical skills, and some aspects of your environmental interests. Electronic submission (PDF). There is no page requirement. Environmental Planning applicants are not required to submit an Exhibit of Creative Work (portfolio).
  • Course description
    The resources of the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning provide a rich and diverse graduate program relevant to today's world. The department offers three different Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA) degree programs. The three-year MLA degree is the first professional degree accredited by the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). This degree is for students with non-design backgrounds. The two-year MLA degree is the second professional degree for those students with first degrees in landscape architecture, architecture, or environmental design. These degrees are structured to equip the students with advanced design and planning skills. The department also offers a two-year Environmental Planning Program leading to the MLA degree for students with a strong background in the environmental sciences or management.

    A bachelor's degree is the minimum requirement for admission to the graduate program. Students are admitted to the department in the fall semester only. Applicants should have completed a minimum of one basic course each in the life, earth, and social sciences. In addition, graphics and freehand drawing are strongly recommended for applicants with non-design backgrounds.

    Students are required to select and complete one of two plans for the degree: Plan I-Thesis, or Plan II-Comprehensive Exam (professional project or designated studio.) The thesis is for students who wish to do original research on a problem in landscape architecture or environmental planning. The thesis committee is composed of two faculty members from the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning and a third faculty member from another department at Berkeley. The comprehensive exam format can be either a professional project or a designated studio that demonstrates broad competence plus the concepts and skills necessary to the field of landscape architecture. The professional project consists of a report of not more than 40 pages of text with appropriate professional drawings. It should document a real-world project. The professional project committee is composed of two faculty members from the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning and a third member from outside the University community who usually is affiliated with the project.

    Students may elect to fulfill the final degree requirement through the successful completion of a comprehensive exam studio taken in their final semester. Students who are in the Environmental Planning Concentration or in one of the concurrent degree programs are not eligible for the comprehensive exam studio option.

    In addition, a summer internship (preferably taken the summer before the student's final year) is recommended. Previous professional experience may be substituted for this internship.

    Normative time for the MLA degree is either two years (design background and environmental planning students) or three years (non-design background). A student's normative time is determined when the student enters the MLA program.

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