Current Students


The curriculum integrates the technical and design aspects of the Landscape Architecture profession. Technical education in this case includes site engineering, construction technology, construction materials, and computing.


"... all learning does not occur at the same pace or through the same means. True learning is holistic, not segmented into discrete facts and skills applicable only to specific tasks. True learning grows in an environment of trust where students and teachers perceive a freedom to inquire and to collaborate in a common interest for whatever time it takes to achieve a level of satisfaction."
Evan Garrett, A Real Paradigm Shift,
" The Teaching Professor," January 1997.

Laptop Computers

The Landscape Architecture Department has 24-hour general access Macintosh computers, scanners, and printers located in the studio environments.

The department has a requirement that all freshmen and transfer students have a laptop computer when they enter the program. In the profession of landscape architecture, computing is an integral component, and developing the ability to critically integrate hand and digital tools is a fundamental aspect of landscape architecture education. A laptop computer is key to having computing capabilities available at all times and at all locations. Financial aid may be available to cover the cost of the laptop computer (contact the Financial Aid Office for more information).

The studio environment has wireless access (as does the Cal Poly campus) to facilitate internet access to the web, email, instructional media, server storage, and student printing.

The department recommends a laptop with enough power and storage to create 2D and 3D visualizations and multimedia used in design projects at different year levels.

We recommend a Macintosh computer since it can run both the Mac OS and Windows operating systems. We have a Macintosh-oriented facility, although most of the software used is cross-platform. All students have access to printers and server storage.

Laptop Specifications

The laptop computer must meet or exceed the following specifications:

  • 2.2GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
  • 4GB RAM
  • 500 GB Hard Drive
  • 1440 x 900 display minimum
  • Current Operating System

Laptop Recommendations

  • MacBook Pro or equivalent


  • Printer and Scanner or Printer/Scanner combination
  • Flash Drive


Current version of the following software:

  • Adobe Creative Suite (Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign, Acrobat)
  • Mac and Windows Anti-Virus
  • 3D Modeling as specified by instructor

Educational Pricing

Call or visit Cal Poly's University Store (805-756-5311) for educational pricing on both software and hardware. Prices are also published on the university store's web site:

Academic Performance Policy

Students are responsible for reading and understanding the department's Policy on Academic Performance. Early in Fall quarter, instructors will discuss the Policy and distribute copies to all new students. Students are expected to return to the Landscape Architecture Department office a signed acknowledgement that they have received, read, and understand the policy. If the policy is updated, you will be asked to sign a new copy.

Studio Access

Students have 24/7 access to their assigned studio in the Dexter Building. All studios have key-code locks. Instructors will announce the key codes in class. Students are expected to keep the key codes confidential. Lockers and/or storage carts are provided in some studios. Students need to bring their own padlocks.

Studio Use & Stewardship Policy

A signed copy of this Policy must be filed with the Landscape Architecture Department by all students or an academic "HOLD" will be placed on the student’s records.  You only need to sign the acknowledgment of this policy once during your time at Cal Poly. If the policy is updated, you will be asked to sign a new copy.

Go to the Studio Use & Stewardship Policy, print, read, sign, date and deliver a copy of the document to the Landscape Architecture Department office.

The Landscape Architecture Office

Department office hours are 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday. The office may be closed for lunch between 12:00 noon and 1:00 pm.

Various bulletin boards and literature racks are located in the hall outside the department office (34-251), in the second floor lobby near the faculty offices, and inside the entrances to the labs. Types of information posted include announcements from the student chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects (SCASLA), Sigma Lambda Alpha National Honor Society (SLA), curriculum/advising materials, flow charts, and information about scholarships and competitions, employment opportunities, master's programs, conferences/workshops, off-campus study opportunities, etc.

Student forms, petitions, stapler, 3-hole punch, paper cutter, tape, pins, etc. are located in the department office.

Your Cal Poly Email Account

In the LA department, instructors and staff use email on a daily basis to communicate with students. You will miss out on important information from the department, the College, and the University unless you get into the habit of checking your Cal Poly email daily.

Related Content

Brandon Cornejo receives 2016 National ASLA Award!

Feasibility Study of the Integration of Epiphytes in Designed Landscapes.

Find out more.

Final Reviews

Come by Dexter to check out projects done by students in the Landscape Architecture department from fall quarter.