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Master of Landscape Architecture

The Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA) program prepares students to engage in Landscape Architecture as both a cultural and ecological practice. The MLA program stresses development of critical thought, inventive curiosity and technical facility. Design studios, workshops and theory courses focus on the breadth of scales and cultural implications of the discipline, from site design to urban design to the management of regional ecosystems, while courses in technology and professional practice prepare the student for the rigors of professional landscape architectural design practice.

The Master in Landscape Architecture is consistently ranked among the top programs in the country and is the only fully accredited program in Ohio. Admission is selective.

To learn more about who we are and what we do, read the program viewbook.

Master of Landscape Architecture I - First Professional Degree

The Master of Landscape Architecture I (MLA I) degree is designed for individuals with no prior training in landscape architecture and is accredited by the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board of the American Society of Landscape Architects as a first-professional degree. The MLA I curriculum provides students with an in-depth education in the knowledge and skills of the discipline and provides opportunities for scholarly research. The first year of the curriculum builds fundamental skills in design, history, theory, and digital technologies. Years two and three focus on broadening student abilities in design and scholarship. The MLA I degree typically takes a minimum of three years to complete. Advanced placement consideration may be given to students with a degree in architecture, such as Bachelor of Science in Architecture or Master of Architecture, who can demonstrate advanced design skills.

Master of Landscape Architecture II - Post Professional Degree

The Master of Landscape Architecture II (MLA II) degree is designed for those with an accredited undergraduate professional degree in landscape architecture. The intent of the curriculum is to enable students to pursue two educational goals simultaneously—broadening their knowledge of landscape architecture and related disciplines while developing a specific expertise within the field. The degree typically requires two years to complete, including the submission and defense of a master’s thesis. Typical of post-professional programs, the MLA II is not an accredited degree program.

Future students

To learn more about the Knowlton School, its award-winning facilities, faculty, financial aid and educational opportunities including travel, career services, and student organizations, please visit the future students section of the website.


Admission to any of our graduate programs requires an online application and various other materials, which will allow our faculty to assess your potential for and your compatibility with our programs. Visit the graduate admissions page to learn more. Interested in this program, but not ready to apply? Complete an Inquiry Card for more information. 

Mission Statement

The MLA program cultivates future professionals to engage the environment as designers and critical thinkers. Our culture of making connects research with design innovation. Our Midwestern landscape—at once agricultural and urban, developing and waning—constitutes a living laboratory for teaching and research. Through an education in design, technique, and theory, students define their futures as landscape architects in private practice, public service, and academia.