Certificate in Landscape Design - Benefits? Drawbacks?

Hello everyone :)

I recently applied to several MLA programs in Canada, and after receiving two rejection letters, I'm getting worried that I may face the same outcome with the remaining schools, so I'm trying to plan my next steps. I'd like to reapply next year, so I was thinking it might be beneficial to take a certificate program in Landscape Design since I don't currently have a background in the LA field...  Do you think getting a certificate would be helpful or would I just be wasting my time? My hope is that it would help me improve my portfolio by giving me the ability to include LA-relevant projects and designs, but I'm wondering if any of you have any advice for creating a winning portfolio or if you might know of any online courses/webinars/videos etc. that might be helpful in a general learning sense. Thank you for your help! 

- Jasmine 

Views: 267

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

In my opinion, I don't think you necessarily need to demonstrate landscape relevant projects. Landscape is a generalist discipline, we must account for a broad spectrum of information. So having a different background is what makes you a unique candidate.  You just need to enhance this unique perspective and demonstrate how it could inform your thinking in the landscape design process.  While well executed graphics are important, I think more importantly is that you demonstrate your design thought process.

Maybe take some masters level courses. Read as much as you can about the LA field.  Best of luck!

Yeah, I thought that I would be an interesting candidate because my academic background is in a related field on the other side of the spectrum (environmental politics and geography), but I guess I didn't showcase that well enough. 

How would you suggest demonstrating design processes? I'm pretty new when it comes to professional design concepts, so I'm not sure how I would go about that. Do you use visual aids in the form of showing each step, or do you explain in writing? Which do you think is more effective? Thank you for your reply! :) 

- Jasmine 

Any thoughts on going for a BLA? ... or one of the programs that has the 5 year BLA/MLA. You might want to contact one of the universities that has been offering the fast track MLA with the BLA to see if you can get it done in three years since you already have a Bachelor's in another field.

My opinion is that if you want to design, the BLA will be more important to you than the MLA because of the rigors of studio. If you want to teach or work in the public sector it may be different. .... just my opinion.

Right, I hadn't considered that because I didn't want to do another 4-5 years of school; I'm 27 so I'd ideally like to get started career-wise as soon as possible. I'll definitely look more into BLA programs though, and see whether I would get transfer credits or not. Thanks for your input! :) 

Classes you might look for to boost your portfolio: drawing (horticultural based one if you can find it), photography.

Work experience that could be helpful outside of LA: construction, nursery work.

If a LD certificate program is available, it may not hurt, though it would depend on the relative strength of the program and who's teaching (if they're LAs, then you might pick up a nice recommendation letter).

One thing you might do is call up one of the programs and ask how you might improve your application and work on that.

Yeah, the certificate program I want to take is actually offered by the Horticulture department at my university! All great suggestions, and I'm definitely going to talk to each school and ask how I can improve. Thank you so much for your reply! 

- Jasmine 


New Jobs!



Which has a better employment outlook? 49 Replies

Hello, I'm currently a freshman environmental science major. I'm on the planning and administration track, which means I'm taking a combination of ecology courses, political science courses, and geography courses (including urban planning, physical…Continue

Tags: outlook, job, employment, major, education

Started by Kristen Barre in EDUCATION. Last reply by J. Robert Wainner yesterday.

Tree for inside/ outside 12 Replies

I'm designing a home in Temecula, CA, Zone 10, where i'd like to have a tree growing inside and the same kind of tree outside.  Both indoor and outdoor spaces receive partial to full sun depending on the time of day.I have 2 questions:- The height…Continue

Started by Paul Minotto in DETAILS & MATERIALS. Last reply by Paul Minotto on Tuesday.

School supplies

Hello all,I'm in the midst of moving and clearing out my la school supplies following graduation from the MLA program at Morgan state university.The supplies got me through school and would love to pass onto an incoming student. I've got velum…Continue

Tags: school, supplies, rendering, chartpak, Prismacolor

Started by Gerrit Shuffstall in GENERAL DISCUSSION on Sunday.

How to select a Master? 7 Replies

I’m planning to go for higher studies. Currently I’m a graduated with four year Bachelor of Landscape Architecture (Hons) degree. Now I’m willing to practice landscape architecture. But in near future I’m planning to have higher studies.What are the…Continue

Started by Nadun Jayasundara in STORY BOARD. Last reply by Nadun Jayasundara Jul 14.

© 2017   Created by Matt Alcide.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service