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Landscape Architects Technical Committee
2420 Del Paso Road, Suite 105
Sacramento, CA 95834
fax: (916) 575-7285
General Exam Information
Gaining Eligibility for Licensure
Individuals interested in obtaining a license to practice landscape architecture in California are required to establish eligibility by meeting the following requirements as mandated by Business and Professions Code section 5650 prior to registering for any section of the Landscape Architect Registration Examination (LARE):
- Be at least 18 years of age (or have graduated from high school in order to receive training/experience credit)
- Have a bachelors, masters, associate degree, or extension certificate in landscape architecture
- Have six years of qualifying education and training experience in actual practice of landscape architecture as specified below
Upon meeting education and training experience requirements the California landscape architecture candidate must apply for eligibility. The application and all required documents must be received by the LATC no later than 70 days before the first date of any LARE section the candidate wishes to take.
|LATC Eligibility Deadline||LARE Date|
|September 22, 2014||December 1 – 13, 2014|
|January 27, 2015||April 6 – 18, 2015|
|June 19, 2015||August 3 – 15, 2015|
|October 16, 2015||November 30 – December 13, 2015|
The Landscape Architect Registration Examination
The LARE is the national licensing examination that measures knowledge, skills, and abilities as they relate to the profession of landscape architecture; it is a product of the Council of Landscape Architectural Registration Boards (CLARB) and formally adopted by California as its licensure examination. It consists of four multiple-choice sections. Visit CLARB's Web site at www.clarb.org for more information on the scope, structure and preparation guide for the LARE. CLARB also has resources for exam candidates on their website that include practice tests and other resources to help candidates better understand the content, format, and delivery for each section of the LARE.
All sections are administered three times per year via computer based methodology:
- Section 1 — Project and Construction Administration
- Section 2 — Inventory and Analysis
- Section 3 — Design
- Section 4 — Grading, Drainage, and Construction Documentation
CLARB began administering a new LARE in September 2012. The new four-section exam format (1-4) has replaced the five-section exam (A-E). All four sections of the exam are computer-based to improve relevance, reliability, and accessibility for all candidates. A LARE Transition Chart has been created by CLARB and is a good tool to use to see how the previous sections of the LARE were translated to the new four sections.
Please visit the CLARB website to confirm specific LARE fees, schedules, examination dates and test center deadlines.
The California Supplemental Examination
In addition to passing the LARE, California candidates are required to pass the multiple-choice California Supplemental Examination (CSE) before obtaining licensure. The CSE is a 100-question multiple-choice examination of subject areas that are unique to the practice of landscape architecture in California. Once candidates have passed all sections of the LARE they may apply for and take the CSE.
The CSE is administered under contract with Psychological Services, LLC (PSI) at testing centers throughout California. Locations include: Anaheim, Atascadero, Bakersfield, Carson (Los Angeles Area), El Monte (Los Angeles Area), Fresno, Hayward (Bay Area), Redding, Riverside, Sacramento, San Diego, Santa Clara (Bay Area) and Santa Rosa. Please refer to the CSE Candidate Guide for a complete list of current testing centers. Upon receipt of the CSE application, candidates will receive a candidate guide from PSI allowing them to schedule for the exam.
In order to apply for eligibility, all California candidates must:
1. Meet California eligibility requirements
2. Submit an Eligibility Application and all required documents as specified below. Applicants must ensure that the LATC receives all documents no later than 70 days before the first date of any Landscape Architects Registration Examination section they wish to take.
- Sealed/Official Transcripts from a qualifying educational program(s)
- A Certification of Experience, with original signature, from each licensed supervisor qualifying candidate's experience (must be a landscape architect, architect, and/or civil engineer with a current and valid license)
- An Application Evaluation Fee payment of $35. Money orders, cashiers checks, or personal checks must be made payable to the LATC. Credit cards are not accepted at this time
- If applicable, a General Credential Evaluation (for foreign educated applicants only)
Qualified candidates will receive a LATC Notice of Eligibility and instructions from the LATC to register with CLARB to take the LARE. The Notice of Eligibility is a prerequisite.
Applying for Reciprocity
Individuals who are licensed to practice landscape architecture in another state may obtain a license from the State of California by completing the reciprocity licensure process.
Candidates must possess at least one year of educational credit to be eligible for the examination. No credit shall be granted for education units obtained without earning a degree or certificate from a qualifying education program as specified below:
|Masters or Bachelors Degree in Landscape Architecture from an approved school||4 years|
|Masters or Bachelors Degree in Landscape Architecture from a non-approved school||3 years|
|Extension Certificate in Landscape Architecture||2 years|
|Associate Degree in Landscape Architecture||1 year|
|Extension Certificate in Landscape Architecture plus a four-year degree in any subject||4 years|
|Associate Degree in Landscape Architecture plus an Extension Certificate in Landscape Architecture||3 years|
|Masters or Bachelors Degree in Architecture||1 year|
Candidates must possess at least two years of training credit to be eligible for the examination. Except as noted, at least one year of training shall be under the direct supervision of a licensed landscape architect and shall be gained after graduation. Candidates qualifying with experience as self employed landscape contractors and holding an Extension Certificate, Masters or Bachelors Degree in Landscape Architecture from an approved school are not required to obtain training under the direction of a landscape architect.
One year of training consists of 1,500 hours of qualifying employment. Employment in excess of 40 hours per week cannot be considered. Training received under the following circumstances will receive credit as indicated:
|Self-employment as or employment by a licensed landscape architect||up to 5 years|
|Self-employment as or employment by a licensed architect||up to 1 year|
|Self-employment as or employment by a registered civil engineer||up to 1 year|
|Self-employment as a licensed landscape contractor||up to 4 years|