Becoming a Landscape Architect - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- How can I obtain a license?
In California, a candidate for licensure as a landscape architect must have a minimum of six years combined qualifying education and training/experience to be eligible to take the Landscape Architect Registration Examination (LARE). Credit for education and training/experience can be accrued as outlined in the laws governing landscape architecture, specifically California Code of Regulations (CCR) section 2620. There are many ways a candidate may obtain a landscape architect license. It is always advisable for candidates to review the laws carefully and then contact the LATC for specific questions or information.
Candidates should be aware that although California accepts the education and training/experience as outlined in law, the Council of Landscape Architectural Registration Boards (CLARB) and other state licensing boards may not recognize the same education and training/experience. This can make obtaining CLARB Certification and reciprocity licensure difficult for those who deviate from the traditional method of acquiring education and training/experience for licensure.
- How can I determine if I am eligible to become a landscape architect in California?
Prospective candidates are required to complete and submit an Eligibility Application (PDF, 215K) to the LATC along with a $35.00 processing fee. All materials must be received at least 45 days prior to the licensing examination. Once eligibility has been determined, candidates must also successfully pass the national examination, known as the LARE, as well as the CSE. Changes to the LARE application/registration and administrative processes occur regularly; therefore, it is important for candidates to carefully read and understand all examination information found on both the LATC and CLARB websites.
- What are the Education and Training Requirements to become a landscape architect?
All candidates must possess at least two years of training/practice credit to be eligible to become a landscape architect. At least one of the two years of training/practice credit must be gained under the direct supervision of a landscape architect licensed in a United States jurisdiction as specified in CCR section 2620. Please refer to CCR section 2620 for a detailed description of credit granted for education and training.
- I want to begin the examination process. Can I just register online with
First-time candidates must first apply to the LATC and obtain approval through a Notice of Eligibility prior to registering with CLARB.
- Can I apply to take the
LARE before I complete all training and education requirements?
Candidates shall be eligible to take sections 1 and 2 of the LARE if they fulfill one of the following educational requirements:
- Have an accredited bachelors or masters degree in landscape architecture
- Have an extension certificate in landscape architecture from an approved program
Current regulations do not allow for early testing of sections 3 and 4 of the LARE. In order to take sections 3 and 4 of the LARE in California, candidates must meet all of the following examination eligibility requirements:
- Be at least 18 years of age;
- Have at least six years of experience credit; and
- Have at least two years of training/experience credit (1500 hours of qualifying employment equals one year of training/experience credit; limited to 40 hours credit per week) with one year of training/experience credit under the direct supervision of a landscape architect licensed in a U.S. jurisdiction.
- I have a unique situation that is not addressed in your examination eligibility requirements.
Can I appeal for an exception to be qualified to take the LARE?
No. Candidates must meet all education and training/experience requirements. Credit for education and training/experience can be accrued as outlined in CCR section 2620.
- Does the LATC
require a CLARB Council Record for licensure or for taking the
Candidates are not required to submit a Council Record to the LATC when applying for eligibility; however, CLARB requires all candidates to establish a Council Record before registering for the LARE.
- Where is the
Visit CLARB for testing center locations.
- I registered online with
CLARB to take the
LARE. Can you verify that I am scheduled?
All sections (1–4) of the LARE are administered by CLARB. Candidates may contact CLARB should they have any questions regarding registration.
- Does CLARB offer
reasonable accommodations for candidates with disabilities?
Yes. Any candidate who requires special accommodations must submit a request with the required documentation to CLARB. Requests are considered on a case by case basis. For CSE candidates, a request for reasonable accommodation can be made directly to the LATC by submitting a completed Reasonable Accommodation Request Form (PDF, 304K). Please refer to the form for specific details on the request.
- Does the LATC
offer study materials or any type of examination preparation for the
No, study materials are available from CLARB. Candidates may also contact a landscape architecture organizations (e.g., California Council of the American Society of Landscape Architects) for possible preparatory materials.
- How soon will I receive my
Official examination results are sent to the LATC by CLARB. The LATC receives examination results approximately four to five weeks after the examination date. Once the LATC processes examination results, the scores are immediately mailed to candidates. Due to confidentiality laws, score information cannot be released over the telephone.
- How do I appeal the denial of a license?
Under the provision of BPC section 485, a candidate has the right to a hearing for appeal of the denial of their application for licensure. The request for hearing must be submitted in writing to the LATC within 60 days after service of the denial notice, otherwise the applicant’s right to a hearing is deemed waived.