How to apply

Read our guidance on applying to study in the Department of Landscape Architecture, which is designed to give you the best chance of a successful application.

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Applications for postgraduate courses must be made through the University's on-line application form.

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What to send with your application

When applying, you will be required to submit the following documents via our online application system. You are not required to send any hard copies to the department.

Supporting materials
  • A CV
  • A supporting statement of at least 300 words giving your reasons for applying and any other information you want to include in support of your application. Among the issues you may wish to cover are how your previous education and experience relates to the course, and how the course fits into your long-term academic or career plans
  • Two references by academic staff at the institution where you studies previously or former employers
  • A certified copy of your degree certificate or any other qualification relied upon in support of your application
  • A certified copy transcript of the marks awarded to you in connection with your degree (if applicable)
  • A short portfolio containing examples of your visual work. This could be any visual/creative output including drawings or images that you produced in connection with your first degree. If your first degree was in a non-visual discipline then it would be helpful if you could send us examples of other artwork, such as landscape drawings or sketches, or other responses to landscape. (Portfolio requirement only applies to the MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape Architecture (LSCT123) and to the MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape Studies (LSCT124).
  • (European and Overseas applicants only) A certified copy of your English Language qualification.
  • Certified translations for the degree certificate and the final transcript.
A landscape portfolio

Your portfolio

For applicants to MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape Architecture (LSCT123) and MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape Studies (LSCT124) only

The admission team is interested in reviewing your highest quality of work. Your portfolio should be a well-edited representation of your interests and skills in fields related to landscape architecture.

Your portfolio should demonstrate the depth and breadth of your experience and potential in studying landscape architecture. Anything included must be your own work. We are particularly interested in evidence of individual creativity and originality rather than a formulaic or derivative submission.

Applicants with a degree and/or work experience in a design-related discipline

Three projects that demonstrate critical engagement with topics related to the field of landscape architecture, for example schemes exploring urban ecological sustainability or social aspects of contemporary environments.

Each project needs to be clearly introduced with information such as:

  • the name of the project
  • year of completion
  • aims and objectives
  • name of tutor, if relevant

The portfolio should demonstrate your representational skills including drawing and models as well as your ability to engage with advanced studies in landscape architecture.

Other applicants

Roughly six examples of any previous visual/creative/landscape work, such as:

  • art/design work done at school
  • craft/hobby outputs
  • photographs of garden/planting design

Applicants should also send some landscape drawings/images (not photographs).

We recommend that you draw a landscape that evokes a strong response in you or that you are interested in. The emphasis should be on conveying the characteristics and qualities of this landscape as vividly and clearly as possible. You may use any media (pencil, charcoal, watercolour etc). We are not looking for technical competence at this stage but rather a commitment to expressing your ideas about landscape in a visual format. You may use a combination of words and text (restricted to 150 words).

Portfolios must be:

  • submitted digitally as a single pdf file
  • A3 equivalent single spread
  • no more than 12 pages in length and 25 MB in size

Course-specific portfolio requirements:

Applicants to MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape Architecture (LSCT123)

Demonstrate your interest in the field of landscape architecture and design, using your own original work, primarily visual in nature with limited text. In addition to the general portfolio requirements, the first two pages of your submitted portfolio need to include your response to the following tasks:

Page 1: A series of five vignettes visually describing a typical walk through the place where you currently live. Each vignette should have a one-sentence description of this 'day-in-the-life' journey. The five vignettes should be keyed to a map outlining the route in question. (map may be hand-drawn or produced by others, e.g. Google Maps). All six components are laid out using an invisible 3 x 2 grid.

Page 2: A series of plant studies of vegetation typical to the place you currently live, including original hand drawings of plants in their context. Include botanical and/or common names if known. The page may be laid out however you choose. 

Applicants to MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Landscape Studies (LSCT124)

Demonstrate your knowledge of the field of landscape architecture and your ability to engage with the design of open spaces. In addition to the general portfolio requirements, the first two pages of your submitted portfolio need to include your response to the following task: 

Use the street where you live or equivalent close by (courtyard / urban square / outdoor communal space) to design a new place for people ( yourself, neighbours, local community) to meet which offers seasonal changes, taking into account the impact of climate change.

Drawings required:

Location and Context:  Location plan + analytical plans (Form - Uses - Users - existing vegetation) Proposed changes (3D drawing / sections / sketches /before and after images) Proposed new vegetation with annotations and sketches illustrating the seasonal changes.

Please note: We don't accept portfolios sent by weblinks, so please upload your portfolio directly to your online application. Please ensure that your name appears in both the file name and in the portfolio itself.

If you submit a portfolio that exceeds 12 pages, or you submit a 12-page double spread portfolio,  we will ask you to reduce the content giving you 4 weeks to do so.  If we do not receive a revised portfolio from you after this time we will automatically reject your application.  However, if you need longer than four weeks to make the necessary adjustments please contact us

What happens after your application is received?

Your application will be reviewed by a panel of academic selectors within the department of Landscape Architecture.  As we receive a large volume of applications, the most being received between November and March, we will review and make decisions in stages at the following times:


For complete applications received by:

We aim to return decisions by:


17 November 2023

9 December 2024


12 January 2024

3 February 2024


16 February 2024

17 March 2024

All complete applications received from 17th February will be reviewed on an ongoing basis.

If you need further information about studying at Sheffield, start a conversation with us or contact us by emailing

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As the UK’s only independent department of Landscape Architecture, we are passionate about the power of our profession to address pressing global issues.

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We offer a generous package of financial support for international students, including undergraduate and postgraduate taught scholarships towards the annual tuition fee. Applications are open for existing offer holders.