Landscape Architecture

The mission of the Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture program is to prepare students to become innovative leaders in the design and planning of cultural and natural landscapes with expertise in plants and ecosystems.  

Through courses, community-based service learning projects, internships, and global study abroad opportunities, students will develop diverse perspectives, critical thinking, and creative problem-solving skills required by future leaders in the profession of landscape architecture.  

The accredited program will also prepare students for the professional licensing examination.

The Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture (BSLA) in the Plant and Soil Sciences Department (PLSC) at the University of Delaware is a professional degree program that provides undergraduate students with specific competencies for leadership within the profession of landscape architecture including the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for successful practice.  

Key subject areas include plants and ecosystems; communications; site design and engineering; design, planning and management; public policy and regulations; computer applications; natural and cultural systems; sustainability; history, theory and criticism; professional practice; professional values and ethics; creative problem solving; art; business; math; and science.

The landscape architecture major at the University of Delaware evolved from Plant and Soil Sciences (PLSC) long established and respected landscape horticulture and design program. Today, UD’s landscape architecture program calls PLSC its home within the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR).

From 2006 to 2012, many faculty members had been working to establish a Master’s program in landscape architecture, but in 2012 Dean of the CANR Mark Rieger commissioned a focused educational survey which suggested that a Bachelor’s program was more feasible than a Master’s program. The conversation promptly switched to the creation of a Bachelor’s program instead of a Master’s.

In April 2015, Dr. Jules Bruck convened a focus group of professional landscape architects for a one-day workshop to help establish a relevant curriculum for a new Bachelor of Science Landscape Architecture (BSLA) program. After the curriculum was developed, the program proposal was sent to the University and approved by the faculty senate in the spring of 2016. That following September, the BSLA program, a First-Professional Degree Program, accepted its first class of 24 students and has been expanding its size and scope ever since.

The University of Delaware’s online catalog has a complete list of the courses required for the Landscape Architecture major. Learn more about the curriculum here.

It is the preference of the BSLA program that students use a PC system, as this is the platform used to teach introductory computer aided design. Learn about computer requirements for the BSLA major here.

Jules Bruck       Director of Landscape Architecture Professor Anna Wik poses for a head shot. Anna Wik                  Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture
Carmine Balascio Associate Professor of Water Resource Engineering Zach Hammaker      Adjunct Professor
Sue Barton     Professor and Extension Specialist, Ornamental Horticulture Nicholas Jabs        Adjunct Professor of Landscape Architecture
Erik Ervin               Chair and Professor, Turfgrass and Horticultural Systems Rodney Robinson Adjunct Professor of Landscape Architecture
John Frett             Professor and Director, University of Delaware Botanic Gardens Harsh Bais           Associate Professor of Plant Biology
Tara Trammell New professor profile Tara Trammell     John Bartram Assistant Professor of Urban Forestry Jeff Fuhrmann    Professor of Soil and Environmental Microbiology

The landscape architecture faculty conduct research in a wide variety of areas.

Dr. Tara Trammel is an urban ecologist whose lab studies how interactions with humans and the consequences of human society affect urban ecosystems’ structure and function. She investigates how collections of trees and plants that grow within cities respond to threats such as pollution and invasive species, and how these urban forests provide ecosystem services to the inhabitants of the city. Additionally, Dr. Trammel studies ecosystem function in residential lawns where most urban residents interact with their environment. She uses a variety of field, lab, and modeling techniques to understand how carbon and nitrogen travel through urban environments.

Dr. Susan Barton investigates roadside vegetation management strategies that enhance the environment, are aesthetically pleasing, and economically sound.  She works with the Delaware Department of Transportation to try to get more sustainable roadside vegetation models implemented throughout Delaware.  She promotes sustainable landscape practices through a variety of publications in the Plants for a Livable Delaware series, series of brochures that educates Delawareans on plants that will easily survive in Delaware’s climate, will help build more healthy ecosystems, and will not become invasive species. Dr. Barton also promotes good landscape practices through demonstration projects and presentations in the area.

Dr. Jules Bruck is a registered landscape architect who created the UD Coastal Resilience Design Studio which aims to reduce the risk of flooding on the coasts and mitigate the hazards that coastal flooding poses to coastal communities. Her scholarship includes design-based learning, creativity, and public perception of sustainable landscape practices like designing to support improved ecosystem services.  She also researches and designs green infrastructure for community redevelopment and recently extended that research into coastal resilience.

Anna Wik, MLA, is a registered landscape architect with experience in urban design, community engagement, and historic and cultural landscapes. She is passionate about equitable design and is interested in historical, social and cultural influences upon the urban landscape. Other research areas include outdoor learning environments and their effectiveness, productive landscapes such as edible forest gardens, and strategies of coastal resilience.

Dr. Carmine Balascio works in the areas of low-impact development, stormwater management, urban hydrology, and hydrologic modeling. Dr. Balascio works to manage the cycles of water, the problems caused by storm water, and the quality of water in urban areas in conservative ways that affect the ecosystems in the least intrusive fashion. Dr. Balascio also researches the assessment of problem-based student learning and teaching with technology.

Dr. John Frett is the Director of the University of Delaware Botanic Gardens and works with graduate students addressing current topics in public garden administration.

There are many different pathways and interest areas that students majoring in landscape architecture can get involved in. The PLSC BSLA allows students the flexibility to obtain a minor and further develop their skills in the interest areas of their choice. Many students find work doing what they love – whether that is designing and planning ways to make the environment more sustainable or researching ways to preserve or conserve historic landscapes, the career options for landscape architects are plentiful. For more information, visit the ASLA Professional Practice Networks site to see the many interest areas of current practitioners.

If students wish to pursue a higher education in the field of landscape architecture, one option that UD offers is the distinguished UD/Penn Fellowship Award.

The Penn/Delaware Graduate fellowship will provide a pathway for talented  undergraduates to pursue their graduate education by offering financial support to assist with the cost of tuition. As potential fellows, top UD applicants to PennDesign’s Department of Landscape Architecture will receive special consideration each year to pursue either a master’s or a dual graduate degree.

Philanthropic support for students through the comprehensive campaign, Delaware First: The Campaign for the University of Delaware, will greatly help expand resources to fully prepare and support our landscape architecture students, including through partnership with the University of Pennsylvania’s highly respected and cutting-edge landscape architecture master’s degree program.

To grow this partnership, the College seeks graduate scholarship support that will help financially support Blue Hens accepted to Penn’s master’s program, after gaining their undergraduate foundation in landscape architecture at UD. Donor support will greatly help further the landscape architecture program’s vision to fully provide for students, expanding opportunities for our CANR Blue Hens achieve their professional goals.

Read the UDaily article on this prestigious collaboration.

For more information, contact Todd A. Mittlemeier, associate director of development, at 302-831-7454 or email mittta@udel.edu.

CANR would like to congratulate Nicholas Jabs, an adjunct for the Landscape Architecture major and a recent University of Pennsylvania graduate, on receiving a Fellowship for Innovation and Leadership from the Landscape Architecture Foundation. Nicholas will receive $30,000 to develop his own leadership skills as well as his proposed project of Working Landscapes and the Middle American City to create a positive and profound change in the environment, the profession, and humanity. We are very proud of Nicholas’s accomplishments and we wish him the best as he spends the next year improving the field of landscape architecture and the world around us, all while continuing to do outstanding work for us as an adjunct in the Plant and Soil Sciences department.

The BSLA program contributes to the community by engaging students in service learning projects.  The program seeks to expose students to the most pressing issues of our times through relevant coursework, extracurricular activities, and participation in both local and national conferences. The semi-annual student-run symposium allows students to actively network and develop relationships with practitioners while honing their leadership skills.
 
As students engage in active learning in studio courses and complete a required internship, they develop their capacity to creatively and successfully solve problems while advancing critical thinking, collaboration, and communication skills.
We collaborate regularly with local, state, and regional partners on conceptual designs for projects ranging from urban design, to coastal resilience, to landscape management and master planning. If you are interested in interacting with our students in a visioning or conceptual design project, we would love to hear from you. Please contact Anna Wik, annawik@udel.edu, and complete the Landscape Design Community Partnership Questionnaire: https://goo.gl/forms/pETEa5xCByhNXdbf2.
 

In recognition of the impact of the landscape architecture profession on public health, safety, and welfare, states regulate landscape architects through licensure. The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) is a group designed to spread the importance and legitimacy of the field of landscape architecture. One of the Society’s main functions is to ensure that all programs comply with externally mandated minimum standards via their Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board (LAAB), the official accrediting body for first-professional programs in landscape architecture.

On March 28th, 2018, the landscape architecture program at UD achieved Candidacy Status – a designation given by the LAAB to programs in the early stages of development that have the potential and are likely to meet all standards and requirements for an accredited educational program in landscape architecture. UD’s program is eligible for accreditation review in Spring 2019. Once accredited, UD will have the only LAAB-accredited landscape architecture program in the state. The letter from the ASLA declaring our program’s candidacy status can be viewed below.

Founded in 1899, the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) is the professional association for landscape architects in the United States, representing more than 15,000 members.  The Society’s mission is to advance landscape architecture through advocacy, communication, education, and fellowship. As well as being a leader in demonstrating the benefits of green infrastructure and resilient development practices through the creation of publicly-accessible sustainable design resources, ASLA also serves as the overarching accrediting body of all first professional degree programs for landscape architecture across the country including the University of Delaware’s program.

ASLA tirelessly works to make sustainability a priority in the minds of politicians and landscape architects so that the country can work towards making our habitable areas healthier and better for our planet and its people. The society also educates people of all ages on the evolving challenges of the landscape architectural practice and supports all professional degree programs to maintain their licenses so that Colleges and Universities can continue to properly prepare their students to be great landscape architects.

Visit the ASLA website for more information about what a landscape architect does and why their work is so important.

DELA Club

DeLA Club is focused on exploring every aspect of the field of Landscape Architecture. The club’s events throughout the semester include guest lectures from professionals in the landscape architecture field and similar fields, artistic and creative projects designed for the natural world, and discussions on methods to improve environmental health through various landscapes. Students will have the opportunity to meet and network with professionals and to further explore the field of landscape architecture through art and plant science. For more information, contact Faculty Advisor Dr. Jules Bruck at jbruck@udel.edu.

Design and Articulture

The Design and Articulture club is dedicated to creating an exhibit at the Philadelphia Flower Show each year. The Pennsylvania Horticulture Society grants Design and Articulture $10,000 to create a 760-square foot educational display at the Philadelphia Convention Center.  Students and faculty from multiple disciplines come together to showcase beautiful plant life and sustainable practices for the public and are judged in competition with the other exhibits at the show. On top of being a great resume builder, Design and Horticulture also offers college credit through the PLSC250 course. The 2019 Flower Show’s theme this year was Flower Power and Design and Horticulture displayed their exhibit from March 2-10.

For more information, visit the UD Online Catalog.

Visit the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Under Academic Program Interest, select Landscape Architecture.

Contact us to learn more.

Paula Annesi, undergraduate recruiter