Admissions: Ph.D. in Architecture (Focus in Landscape Architecture) | The Penn State Stuckeman School Skip to main content

Admissions: Ph.D. in Architecture (Focus 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
Stuart Echols
Phone: 814.865.9511

Be advised that the department accepts students only for entry in the fall semester. Direct any questions about the application process or the graduate program in the Department of Landscape Architecture to

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.

Application Requirements

  1. Your application must be submitted to the Pennsylvania State University Graduate School at the following website:
  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). There are no official GPA or GRE requirements, however, as a guideline, successful applicants typically have a Jr/Sr GPA greater than 3.3/4.0 and combined verbal and quantitative GRE scores of 1200 or higher.
  5. TOEFL scores from non-native speakers of English. Submit to Penn State (institution code 2660). The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 550 for the paper-based test, 213 for the computer-based test, or a total score of 80 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.
  6. The names, addresses, and e-mail addresses for three (3) people who will write letters of reference for you. Once you provide their names, addresses, and e-mail addresses, they will be contacted and prompted to file the letters.
  7. Aside from a one-page CV, a statement of purpose (Ph.D. essay) is required. The statement of purpose is approximately two pages long and provides the following information in a concise manner:
    • Your reasons for pursuing graduate training in terms of your career plans.
    • A clear research focus within your area of interest; articulate, in specific terms, the research topic on which you wish to focus and proposed methods to conduct this research.
    • An explanation of how your previous education, academic background, and/or professional experience provide a foundation for pursuing graduate training in this research field.
    • A demonstration that you have considered carefully our Ph.D. program and are aware of how your interests match faculty expertise and interests; please be sure to identify faculty with whom you are interested in working.

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. 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 on the Graduate School website.

Financial Aid Resources