Online Landscaping Degree Programs

Read on to discover how online landscaping degree programs can teach you to create attractive, yet functional, environments for others to value and enjoy. Continue reading to see what your program options include, the curricula of each degree level, and learn about possible careers as well as the job outlook in those occupations. Schools offering Landscape Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Types of Online Landscaping Degrees Are Available?

A variety of online programs is available with training in landscaping, including associate's, bachelor's and master's degree programs. Some programs are completely online, whereas others require some on-campus attendance. You should consider your career aspirations before committing to a program. Landscape technicians create and maintain lawns at private residences, businesses and public grounds. For larger areas, including roads, buildings and vegetation, a career as a landscape architect may be your path.

Degree Levels Associate's, bachelor's, and master's programs.
Associates Curriculum Development of ideas through sketches and model building, design through computer programs, plant selection
Bachelor's Curriculum Plant cultivation, landscaping, soil management
Master's Curriculum Soil science, pesticides, plant health, nursery management
Possible Careers Landscape technician, landscape architect
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 11% growth (landscaping and groundskeeping workers); 6% growth (landscape architects)
Median Salary (2018) $29,000 (landscaping and groundskeeping workers); $68,230 (landscape architects)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Can I Expect in the Associate's Degree Curriculum?

An online associate's degree program in landscape architecture will teach you the creative and technical skills used in designing landscapes. You will develop and represent ideas with sketches and models, utilizing specialized computer programs. Then you'll learn how to physically create your designs through courses in landscape construction. Instruction in plant selection will help you to choose the best plants for your landscape, taking into consideration climate, attractiveness, season of bloom and coordination with existing structures. Many students use the associate's degree in landscape architecture as a stepping-stone to a bachelor's degree.

What Can I Expect in the Bachelor's Degree Curriculum?

If you're interested in the science of plant cultivation, you may want to consider a bachelor's degree program in horticulture that includes training in landscaping. In addition to general education and research requirements, horticulture programs require you take courses in the cultivation, health and biochemistry of plants. You'll also become knowledgeable in caring for soil by taking irrigation and soil management courses. Most bachelor's degree programs offer a selection of electives so that you can specialize in an area of interest. For an emphasis in landscaping, beneficial courses include park and garden design, disease and pest control, landscape construction and nursery management.

Online bachelor's degree programs in landscape architecture are rare. Nevertheless, a bachelor's degree opens up more job opportunities and is required for licensure by the Council of Landscape Architectural Registration Boards (www.clarb.org).

What Can I Expect in the Master's Degree Curriculum?

If you already hold a bachelor's degree, you could enroll in an online master's degree program. A master's degree program in horticulture consists of advanced courses that provide in-depth knowledge on topics, such as soil science, pesticides, herbicides and plant health. This advanced education will help you create healthy and lush landscapes. Courses in nursery management are also common, in preparation for administrative duties associated with running a landscaping or nursery business.

What Would I Do with This Degree?

Your employment opportunities depend on the degree that you choose. With a degree in landscaping or horticulture, you may find work as a landscape technician. You would create and maintain functional and attractive landscapes in public, commercial and residential settings. This would include choosing the most appropriate plants and irrigation systems and then physically creating the landscape. Landscape workers also maintain current landscapes by watering, adding mulch, weeding, trimming and applying fertilizer.

If you complete a program in landscape architecture, you may work in a variety of settings or specialize in a particular area, such as recreational environments, commercial landscaping, roadways or waterfront projects. Landscape architects also work at preserving and restoring environmental and historic settings. The first step in beginning a project is to assess the existing vegetation, structures, roads and soil quality. Then you'd collaborate with other professionals to create a landscaping proposal, utilizing computer technology, drawings, models and cost estimates. As your design is implemented, it would be your responsibility to supervise the progress to ensure the plans are followed.

What Is My Career Outlook?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts an average occupational growth for landscape architects and faster than average growth for landscape workers between 2016 and 2026 (www.bls.gov). This is due to new construction, redevelopment projects and environmental concerns that are calling for people to go green. If you're pursuing a career as a landscape architect, you may earn a median annual income of $68,230, according to BLS statistics from May 2018. Landscape architects employed within the architecture/engineering industry made an average of $73,870, and those working for lawn and garden stores earned $55,120. In May 2018, the median annual salary for landscaping workers was $29,000.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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