Environmental Design

Architecture (buildings), landscape (spaces between buildings), and interiors (spaces within buildings) organize and shape the contexts for all our activities and relations.

Students in the multidisciplinary Environmental Design major study in one of its two Areas of Emphasis. The Architecture/Landscape/Interiors Area of Emphasis uniquely addresses all three of the department's design fields within a single, sequential curriculum. The Interiors + Furniture Area of Emphasis focuses on the full material development of interior spaces that include custom cabinetry and complementary furniture.  Both Areas of Emphasis focus on design supported by technology and theory courses. At the core of both Areas of Emphasis are six comprehensive studios, five of which address potential real-world projects sited in Los Angeles and other cities. Support courses present the materials and methods of building, landscape, and interior construction; physical and digital communication skills and media; and the history and theory of spatial design.

In senior year, Environmental Design students travel to another city, such as New York, Chicago, or Seattle, to research the site and urban context of their final studio project. All seniors work together collaboratively to design, fabricate, assemble, and install a full-scale spatial environment as part of Otis College’s Annual Exhibition.

Environmental Design graduates work in architecture, landscape, and interiors firms as well as firms that address related fields such as exhibition, lighting, water feature, and set or production design. Our graduates have completed post-graduate degrees, such as Master of Architecture, Master of Landscape Architecture, Master of Interior Architecture, and Master of Science in Civil Engineering.

Architecture (buildings), landscape (spaces between buildings), and interiors (spaces within buildings) organize and shape the contexts for all our activities and relations. Students in this multidisciplinary program study all three of these spatial design fields within a single, sequential curriculum, focused on design empowered by technologies and theory. At the core of the curriculum are six comprehensive studio courses, five of which address potentially real-world projects sited in Los Angeles and other cities. Support courses present the materials and methods of building, landscape, and interior construction; physical and digital communication skills and media; and the history and theories of spatial design.

Each year, A/L/I seniors design and build a full-scale spatial environment in their final semester. See the design, fabrication and installation of several A/L/I environments on our YouTube Playlist HERE.

Download information about the Architecture/Landscape/Interiors program and its fields HERE.

We welcome and support transfer students at first and second-semester sophomore, and junior levels! First-semester sophomores and juniors may start in fall or spring semester. Second-semester sophomores may start in spring or summer semester. Download Articulation Charts for Sophomore, 2nd-Semester Sophomore, and Junior level transfer courses available at many California colleges.

The quality of the Architecture/Landscape/Interiors major is affirmed by our Advanced-standing Agreements, which allow graduates to start in the second year of three-year Master of Architecture I programs. Several A/L/I alumi have earned their Master of Architecture degrees in this manner: Jesus Aguilar (UIC 2016), Dolly Davis (UIC 2011), Justin Kim (USC 2013), and Sam Tanis (UIC 2013). Boo Y. Yang began Master of Landscape Architecture studies with advanced standing at the University of Washington, Seattle, this fall, 2016.

Learn more about undergraduate degrees offered by Otis, request our Viewbook.