Master of Landscape Architecture

The Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA I) program in the College of Architecture and Environmental Design (CAED) prepares graduates for active, creative, leadership roles in the landscape architecture profession through inclusive and interdisciplinary design methodologies, issues surrounding urban landscapes, ecologies and social concerns through the exploration of project-based learning. 


The Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA I) is for those without a professional degree in Landscape Architecture.  Applicants with a bachelor's degree in any discipline will be considered for the three-year Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA I) program a degree that leads towards professional landscape architecture licensure and practice. Applicants with an accredited degree in landscape architecture, may be admitted to the two-year Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA II) program following approval by the program coordinator.


The mission of the CAED-MLA programs is to educate and prepare students for active, creative, leadership roles in the landscape architecture profession through inclusive and interdisciplinary design methodologies, issues surrounding urban landscapes, and community engagement.


Program Coordinator and Professor Cat Soergel Marshall gives an overview of the Master of Landscape Architecture program. 



The MLA I curriculum provides the foundational disciplinary knowledge and requisite intellectual base for adapting to the design challenges facing landscape architecture today.

This 72-credit hour program requires that every student take 60 credit hours of foundational courses in:

  • Design Studios and Visualization
  • Ecology and Planted Form
  • Site Engineering and Construction Methods
  • History, Theory and Research Methods


The MLA II is a post-professional program that allows students to develop new knowledge through research and design, and to provide professionals with the opportunity for specialization in an area of their choosing. The MLA II does not carry accreditation.

This 60 – credit hour program requires a plan of study is developed through the guidance of the Landscape Architecture Program Coordinator. The program requires 33 credit hours of courses in:

  • Design Studios and Research Methods

Students in both degrees (MLA I, MLA II) have two options their final year: an advanced studio option, or a Master’s Design Project option. Students considering the master’s design project should have a clear idea for a self-guided design project with a strong thesis and accompanying research to be explored with the help of an advisor and committee through a thorough design project. Students opting for the advanced studio option have opportunity to work on specialized faculty lead topics including interdisciplinary projects.


Master of Landscape Architecture, Master of Architecture, and Master of Urban Design programs all operate in the heart of Cleveland's vibrant Playhouse Square District, together with the College of Architecture and Environmental Design’s (CAED’s) Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative (CUDC). Cleveland, an urbanized landscape offers students unique opportunities to partner with the place and the allied areas of landscape architecture, urban design, and architecture provide students with an opportunity to expand interdisciplinary discourse.  

Students are engaged in issues ranging from hydrology in the Great Lakes – Ohio River Basins watershed to the role of urban landscapes associated with industrial cities and matters of global significance relating to the role of landscape and design relative to reclamation of urban vacancies, infrastructural systems, natural resources, climate change, water quality for health and social justice, and cultural landscapes. 


  • Urban Freshwater, Stormwater and Climate in the Great Lakes
  • Public Spaces, Urban Parks and Cultural Landscapes
  • Green Urban Infrastructure, Ecologies and Social concerns of Equity, Health and Pollution



Visit the American Society of Landscape Architect's Your Land publication and their Career Discovery and Diversity resources for more information on the field of landscape architecture and the work done by landscape architects.



For more information about graduate admissions, please visit the Graduate Studies website. For more information on international admission, visit the Office of Global Education’s admission website.

Application Requirements

View MLA Portfolio Guide

View MLA Booklet   


For current tuition and fee rates click here. 

A variety of graduate assistantships, scholarships, research and work opportunities are available to both new and returning graduate students. For more information, please contact the program coordinator or graduate secretary.

Graduate assistance and scholarship



Cat Marshall, MLA, ASLA CELA | Coordinator and Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture

Reid Coffman PhD, ASLA, CELA, GRHC | Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture

Charles Frederick, ASLA, CELA | Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture

Chunyan Zheng, RLA | Senior Urban Designer

Christian Lynn, PLA, ASLA | Adjunct

Jayme B. Schwartzberg, PLA, ASLA | Adjunct

Visit the for student work and online exhibitions.