Graduate Studies

Graduate Studies

Graduate study leading to a Master of Landscape Architecture degree is offered in the Department of Landscape Architecture; thesis and non-thesis options are available. Students in the program have the opportunity to work with faculty on a wide range of research and design topics within the profession of landscape architecture. Special program emphasis is placed on watershed planning, landscape management and community planning and design. The design studio courses broadly consider landscape issues related to water, health and habitat in an effort to achieve the department's mission of "…fostering the will and ability to plan, design, build and manage regenerative communities."


The Master's in Landscape Architecture is accredited by the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board of the American Society of Landscape Architects. LAAB accredited programs are required to provide reliable information to the public. Programs must report on accreditation status and its performance. This information is to help potential students make informed application decisions. To review this information, click here.

View our MLA 2014 Self Evaluation Report


The applicant to the M.L.A. program should have a minimum GPA of 2.80 on a 4.00 scale. A student without a bachelor's degree in landscape architecture from an accredited program may undertake the M.L.A. as a first professional degree but is required to undertake additional "leveling" coursework to ensure competency in the field; this typically requires an additional year of study. Submission of Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores is recommended but not required. The applicant's submission should include a letter of interest that includes a written statement (no more than 1500 words) explaining his or her interest in pursuing graduate studies in landscape architecture at Mississippi State University. Three letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the applicant's academic work, motivation, and character should accompany the application. The applicant should also submit a detailed resume. Applicants with degrees from allied fields (such as architecture or civil engineering) should submit a portfolio if they wish to be considered for course reductions during the leveling year. Please contact Cory Gallo, Graduate Coordinator if you have questions or need additional information.

International Applications

The Department of Landscape Architecture welcomes international applications to the MLA program. Please contact Cory Gallo, Graduate Coordinator if you have questions or need additional information.

Computer Requirements

All students in the Department of Landscape Architecture are required to have their own personal computer. Please see the department specific guidelines prior to purchasing a computer.

Graduate Assistantships

The Department of Landscape Architecture offers a limited number of research and teaching assistantships for graduate students. Please contact the Graduate Coordinator (Cory Gallo) for an application and schedule of applicable deadlines.


Download the curriculum

Program of Study

Thesis and non-thesis options are available. In order to complete the program on schedule, students should decide which option they have selected prior to enrolling in the second semester of graduate coursework.


The thesis option is appropriate for students who already have a BLA, those who desire a career in academia or anyone who has an interest in focused investigative research in the field. The curriculum is designed to assist each student in the selection of a research topic tailored to his or her interests and career goals. In addition to the core courses, the thesis option requires a course in statistics and a minimum of six thesis hours. Examples of recent topics are listed below.

Non-Thesis Option

The non-thesis option is intended to serve students who are primarily interested in design-related investigation and the professional practice of landscape architecture. The curriculum is designed to provide a balanced review of research and practical knowledge requiring additional coursework in construction documents, design/build and ecological planting design. The non-thesis option culminates in a final graduate studio that is tailored to each student's interests, requiring case study research, project critique and advanced design investigation in a chosen subject area.

For recent news about the MLA program as well as examples of work and interviews of students, alumni and faculty, please visit the Department of Landscape Architecture’s Blog.

Want to know more?

Cory Gallo | 662.325.3249