Landscape Design History
Image by Susan Cipriano from Pixabay
Landscape Design

Landscape Design History

WE ARE MORE than just a department. We’re a collective: thriving, interacting and sharing with each other as we work to make our landscapes better places.

The Department of Landscape Architecture is an intrinsic component of the School of Architecture and Allied Arts. Nestled in the heart of Eugene, Oregon, the University of Oregon is minutes from wild country or an hour from the Pacific coast or the mountains. From the woods to the Willamette River, from the coast to the Cascades, from progressive Portland to amazing Crater Lake – Oregon’s natural beauty and cities are a catalyst that inspires us to push boundaries and redefine our profession.

The UO’s Department of Landscape Architecture is the oldest landscape department west of the Mississippi. Evolving and growing for more than 100 years, our program’s roots started in 1911. We are the only program in Oregon that has accredited MLA & BLA programs and a PhD.

THE CURRICULUM: We like to get our hands dirty.

Our curriculum focuses on understanding landscapes across multiple scales. We partner with groups like designBridge, Urban Farm, and the local American Society of Landscape Architects chapter to focus on real-world projects that are carried through to completion. We focus on thoughtful design and real problem solving, not flashy presentations and short-term trends. The strength of our curriculum is offering design studios and courses with depth and variety. Design problems arise from real needs in real places that affect real people.

THE FACULTY: Educators, scholars and innovators.

Our faculty expertise expresses the breadth of the practice from a diversity of backgrounds: urban, international, national and regional. Our faculty is nationally recognized in landscape design history, landscape ecology, historic preservation, climate change, urban design and planning, river planning, historic landscape documentation, cultural ecosystem service analysis, visual resource analysis, and landscape representation. Nationally recognized as a research department, we have more grants per faculty member than any other landscape architecture program and widely cited publications. With two Knight Professors, two faculty recognized as Top Educators by Design Intelligence, and three faculty conducting major grant work, we are often in the top three programs west of the Mississippi River. In addition to landscape architecture, faculty have degrees in American history, architecture, geography, political science, environmental studies, American studies, forestry, urban planning, environmental planning, fine arts, education, mathematics, agronomy, economics, and ecology.

THE STUDENTS: Studying for more than a diploma. Seeking more than a profession.

We have one faculty member for every twelve students. Graduates, undergraduates and professors share ideas and expertise in small, 15-20 person classes and studios. Students attend the program from around the world. They come to the program with a variety of backgrounds, creating a rich educational environment. Students consistently win national and local ASLA awards and participate and are finalists in design competitions. Our alumni have gone on to work in various positions, practices, and locations across the country and throughout the world. More than 90 percent of our alumni achieved entry-level placements in the profession. We’re here because the Department of Landscape Architecture gives us the opportunity to pursue our ambitions and provides us with practical knowledge of the professional world.


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