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Bachelor of Landscape Architecture

Program Overview

Penn State's professionally accredited Bachelor of Landscape Architecture program is one of the nation's first, founded in 1907. Historically our undergraduate program has been respected by professionals for the solid skills of our graduates; more recently, we have gained further respect for our educational innovations and excellence. 

The goal of the Penn State BLA is to educate future leaders in the profession and/or the discipline of landscape architecture.  The program provides students an education in the creativity, technical skills, and ethical considerations necessary for practice. One particular requirement of the program, intended to enhance students’ breadth and perspective, is a semester of study abroad. The program also provides opportunities to pursue interests in a range of areas.

We recently refined our BLA, using the mantra “flexibility, opportunity, affordability.”  The result is a 139-credit curriculum that easily can be completed in 4.5 years.  Time to degree can be shortened to 4 years through participation in one of our optional summer abroad programs.  Students alternatively may extend their time-to-degree to take advantage of opportunities such as our Sustainability Leadership minor in Pittsburgh, PA, or our Integrated Undergraduate/Graduate program.


Study Abroad

Required Program

All landscape architecture majors are required to study abroad either the fall or spring semester following completion of the core studio sequence (typically the in the 4th year of study). The preferred study abroad program for this semester abroad is the Academy of International Education (AIB) in Bonn, Germany.

This program offers a required core of urban design courses and a selection of elective courses.  The required courses were designed and created by AIB to fit the curriculum of Penn State’s Department of Landscape Architecture.

The city of Bonn is particularly suited for the study of urban design. Bonn is a leader among European cities with excellent local public transportation system, tree-lined streets, riverfront parks embracing the Rhine River. It is a livable city characterized by economic growth, a wide range of cultural amenities and easy access to train stations and airports. Housing is with English-speaking host families which includes home-cooked meals and enhances the cultural immersion benefits of the experience.

Attendance at informational meetings will be required of all 3rd-year students to prepare them for they semester abroad. Students must submit an application though the Penn State Education Abroad web site regardless of which program they choose to attend.

Application Deadlines:
For Fall Semester: January 20th
For Spring Semester: May 1st

For more information about the AIB Bonn program, go to:

Study Abroad Alternates & Options

A number of alternate programs are available in lieu of the Bonn program. Additionally, Landscape Architecture has created a number of unique summer study options. View information about study abroad alternates and summer options.

Transfers and Change of Major/Campus

The department has created a unique program for Change of Major/Campus and Transfer applicants offering admission by essay and the opportunity for advanced placement by portfolio submission. The department also has created a Summer Intensive Program (SIP) to help students attain the design and technical proficiencies required to enter the BLA program with advanced standing. Details are provided in the BLA Change of Major or Transfer Application document and on the SIP page.



Collage of images of students working


Facilities tours and studio visits are offered most Fridays (by appointment) at 1:30 p.m. 

Please contact Kelly Praskovich, director of enrollment,  at or 814-865-9523, to schedule a visit so we may ensure students and faculty are available.

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