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Architecture, Landscape and Environment - MSc



1 year (Full time); 2 years (Part time)
Full-time; Part-time


The MSc Architecture, Landscape, and Environment (ALE) offers students the opportunity to advance studies in the dynamic teaching and learning environment of Edinburgh College of Art. As an Architecture, Landscape and Environment - MSc student, you will explore and work with an expanded understanding of critical theories and practices at the forefront of contemporary environmental and societal challenges, delivered by an experienced group of research-led senior staff at the University of Edinburgh.

Interdisciplinary in nature, the MSc Architecture, Landscape, and Environment will offer you a unique opportunity to explore the interconnected nature of site-based practices with environmental concerns. Supporting students across landscape studies, architectural history and theory, environmental arts and humanities, the programme has a generalist structure, which delivers individual student experiences through a flexible framework that focusses on student-led choice in the shaping of a learning experience. This will allow you to appreciate and develop a wide range of specialised and experimental approaches relevant to situated, spatial and site-related theory and practice.

Your learning experience will be defined by your choice of option courses and the focus of your final research project. You will draw on a wide range of courses addressing architectural, landscape, and environmental humanities themes, while compulsory courses address the sites and methods of creative research. You will work closely with academic staff in seminars; engage with sites in Edinburgh and Scotland, the UK and potentially abroad, through fieldwork; and undertake a supervised research project following two semesters of coursework.

As an advanced interdisciplinary programme, we welcome candidates from a variety disciplinary backgrounds related to contemporary environmental theory and practice, including Landscape Architecture, Environmental Humanities, Architecture, Architectural History, the Humanities, Social Sciences, Geography, or Creative Arts.

What you will study

The MSc Architecture, Landscape, and Environment is a one-year post-graduate taught programme delivered over three semesters. The programme structure includes compulsory courses which provide theoretical understanding of site-based/situated knowledge; experimental approaches to research; expanded conceptions of fieldwork; and humanities-based methodologies. Running through semesters 1 and 2, the aim of compulsory courses is twofold in 1) allowing you to develop a methodological approach to your final research project (60 credit compulsory course in semester 3), and 2) providing a theoretical foundation to which compulsory course options and recommended elective course options add specialist areas of practice and knowledge. 

Compulsory course options include a suite of courses specifically aligned with the programme as specialist pathways covering key thematic areas of environmental humanities, landscape theory and practice, climate action, and architectural history. Additionally, recommended elective course options include a suite of existing courses within ESALA and across the University of Edinburgh, offering you the opportunity to either diversify your interests or underpin your area of specialism. 

Who this programme is for

Recent graduates from diverse disciplines – but not limited to - such as architecture, landscape architecture, architectural history, architectural conservation, heritage and museum studies, history of art, the arts, design, geography, anthropology, history, literature, and the social sciences in general. 

Curious students who see the programme as an opportunity to critically examine their own disciplinary knowledge in relation to the interdisciplinary make-up of the programme. 

Students who are keen on building critical skills, experimenting with situated knowledges and practices and learning through participatory pedagogies.

Design practitioners with equivalent experience who wish to explore the role of interdisciplinary theories and situated research methods in their practice.


As an advanced post-graduate programme, the MSc Architecture, Landscape, and Environment will provide you with a strong foundation to further your career path in your chosen disciplinary areas, with an expanded understanding of critical theories and practices relevant to contemporary environmental and societal challenges.

The programme offers you the necessary critical skills to pursue a diverse career in spatial and design practices, the creative arts, policy (e.g. heritage management), advocacy in third sector organisations (e.g. international NGOs and charities related to climate emergency, landscape conservation, cultural landscapes), cultural organisations and museums and global media. The programme will also support those wishing to advance to doctoral-level research.

Why you should choose this programme


Adopt an ethos of situated knowledge and experimental engagement with the historical and contemporary landscape and built environment.


Engage with transdisciplinary research, landscape, humanities and architectural theories and practices with environmental concerns.


Select optional courses that will provide you with significant scope to build your own pathway of specialist learning.


Develop your critical thinking skills, collaborate and co-produce knowledge in a supportive learning environment.


Learn through the exploration of sites as diverse as, for example, an archive, a city, a building or a digital platform.

How to apply and entry requirements

If you'd like to study on a postgraduate programme at Edinburgh College of Art, you must apply through EUCLID, our online application system. You can find out how to do this on the University of Edinburgh website, where you'll also be able to:

  • See detailed entrance requirements for each programme on the Degree Finder
  • Get information on what to expect after you apply
  • Find out about study modes, start dates and fees
  • Find out if, and how, you need to submit a portfolio, showreel or research proposal
  • Find out where to go for further advice and guidance.

Get in touch

Edinburgh College of Art Postgraduate Admissions
+44 (0)131 650 4086

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