Admissions: Master of Science in Landscape Architecture | The Penn State Stuckeman School Skip to main content

Admissions: Master of Science in Landscape Architecture

Application Process

Applying to the graduate program is a multi-step process. Prospective candidates are strongly advised to contact the graduate program coordinator to discuss his/her intended area of graduate study.

Landscape Architecture Graduate Program Professor in Charge
Dr. Stuart Echols
Phone: (814) 865-9511

Important Dates
Departmental review of applications begins January 15 for entry in the following fall. Applicants are encouraged to submit materials by January 15 to ensure full consideration for highly competitive teaching and research assistantships and fellowships. Applications received after this date will be considered, but note that funding opportunities may be very limited if at available all.

STEP 1: Penn State Graduate School Requirements

  1. Application to the Pennsylvania State University Graduate School for admission (
  2. Copies of transcripts, degree/study certificates and diplomas in the language of instruction from all institutions of higher education attended, both undergraduate and graduate, should be uploaded online as part of the Graduate School Application. If English is not the language of instruction, copies of all transcripts/documents in the English translation also must be uploaded.
  3. Once an applicant has accepted an offer of admission, he/she will be notified by the Graduate School that official/original transcripts/documents and their official English translation must be sent from the originating institutions for review by the Graduate School, in order to finalize an admission decision. Notarized copies are not sufficient.
  4. Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Please request ETS to electronically submit to: Penn State University (institution code 2660).
  5. TOEFL scores from non-native speakers of English. Submit to Penn State University (institution code 2660). The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 577 for the paper-based test, 232 for the computer-based test, or a total score of 90 with a 19 on the speaking section for the Internet-based test (iBT). See Graduate School website for more information; all test scores must be sent from ETS.

Step 2: Landscape Architecture Department Requirements

In addition to the materials to be submitted to the Penn State Graduate School, the Department of Landscape Architecture requires submission of applicant information specific our programs. The materials detailed below should be submitted via the Graduate School website with your other application materials. If you have any questions, or if you are unable to submit a portfolio electronically and need to make arrangements to submit a physical portfolio, please email:

  1. Individual MSLA application statement from the applicant stating why they wish to enroll for the MSLA at Penn State University and describing their professional interests, goals, and proposed area of concentration related to one of our research centers/initiatives – the Stuckeman Center for Design Computing, The Hamer Center for Community Design, or WATERxDESIGN. Students are encouraged to contact individual faculty members whose research interests intersect their own.
  2. Evidence of creative work, either through a digital portfolio or through examples of writing or some other creative outlet. (See Crafting a Quality Portfolio.) 
  3. Three letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic history; employer recommendations are also welcome.

Reference Links

Financial Aid: Graduate Programs

The department offers a limited number of teaching assistantships, which enables it to provide tuition and a stipend to about 60 percent of the students in residence. From time to time, the department is able to provide limited financial aid to others in the form of part-time employment. These assistantships are extremely competitive. Their recipients are chosen primarily on the strength of their applications, as well as on their ability to satisfy the teaching and/or research needs of the department. The University offers other sources of aid, which are described in the Graduate School Bulletin sections titled Summary of Financial Aids for Graduate Students and Information for Prospective Graduate Students. The Graduate School application form contains a section where you can indicate your intention to seek financial aid. If you wish to be considered, check the appropriate boxes; in addition, complete and return the financial aid application form. You do not need to submit a separate request to the department.

Financial Aid Resources