Landscape Architecture Graduate Program
The Masters in Landscape Architecture (M.L.A.) program includes both the M.L.A. 1 (First Professional Degree Option) and the MLA 2 (Post Professional Degree Option). The M.L.A. is considered the terminal, professional degree in our discipline.
The M.L.A. 1 option serves those students who have previously earned a nonprofessional bachelors degree and who wish to practice landscape architecture (or closely allied disciplines such as urban design). In this program, students come from a broad array of backgrounds, ages and life experiences into a studio-centered pedagogical form that addresses real environmental design and planning problems. This diversity enables bringing multiple perspectives to bear on issues such as housing and open space, urban and suburban development, industrial redevelopment, parks and recreation, land use planning, gardens and more. In addition, because such students lack prior professional training, the M.L.A. 1 option provides them with coursework in the following areas:
a) landscape architectural history and theory
b) landscape design fundamentals
c) natural and cultural systems
d) design theories, methodologies and applications
e) landscape planning and management at various scales
f) site design and construction
g) communication in written, verbal and visual applications
h) plants and ecosystems at various scales and situations
i) construction materials and methods
j) earthwork and grading
k) professional practice modes, values, and ethics
l) computing applications and other advanced technology
Beyond these, students in this option are introduced to research and/or scholarly methods and their relation to the profession of landscape architecture. They have the opportunity for independent work in a scholarly area related to faculty expertise, with emphasis on the particular challenges of New Jersey, including brownfields remediation, historic landscape preservation, stormwater mitigation, land use planning, urban design and sustainable and regenerative design for housing and open space.
The M.L.A. 2 option serves those students who have previously earned an accredited professional degree in the discipline and who wish to develop advanced technical expertise and critical perspectives on the profession. Because such students have a professional degree and, often, professional experience, the M.L.A. 2's objectives are focused on scholarly work associated with faculty interests and the needs of the state, as indicated above. To produce new knowledge that may be applied to the resolution of these land use problems and to contribute directly to their resolution through creative works and outreach are the objectives of faculty and advanced students working in this option.