University of Oregon

Department of Landscape Architecture

Field Studies

The University of Oregon Department of Landscape Architecture offers a number of field study opportunities. Make exploration part of your education. Below are some regular and recent offerings.

Looking for Study Abroad? Here is more information on Study Abroad Opportunities.



Fuller Center at Overlook

Fuller Center

The summer field school at Overlook offers undergraduate and graduate students in landscape architecture and other design fields a unique opportunity to live, make, design, and study at the center of the eastern U.S. where so many important landscapes and evolving cities can be studied. Classes have a home base at an evolving, rural cultural landscape that is a wonderful place and source of inspiration. With faculty members and a visiting scholar or artist, students explore concepts of second nature – forms of productivity in landscape architecture. Students earn credit towards the University of Oregon BLA or MLA in this program sponsored by the Fuller Center for Productive Landscapes.

The field school takes place at Overlook, a 400-acre property in northern Pennsylvania originally designed by the Olmsted Brothers. A converted barn is our studio; the fields, woods and lake are our classrooms. Students are immersed in the vernacular landscape of northeast Pennsylvania, with weekly multi-day trips to New York, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC to visit places and design firm offices.

This field school is a regular offering every summer.

For more information visit the Fuller Center page or contact: Roxi Thoren


Croatia surveyThe Croatia Conservation Field School adds an exciting international element to the University of Oregon's Historic Preservation Program. The Croatia Field School specializes in the conservation of vernacular settings and cultural landscapes and sustainable design.

The Croatia Conservation Field School is an intensive program that allows students to gain hands-on experience in a culturally rich setting. Students will explore villages, while learning the history of the area, documenting and analyzing important structures, and participating in a hands-on building project. The program is open to undergraduate and graduate students and is primarily intended for students in historic preservation, architecture, landscape architecture, and other related academic fields. Students participating in this program will be registered at the University of Oregon and will receive UO credits for courses taken in Croatia.

The historic preservation program has offered this program, either in Croatia, Italy or elsewhere in Europe or the western United States, every summer for more than 30 years.

For more information visit

Willamette River Trip

Willamette RiverCourse intent: To introduce students to the challenges and opportunities of river restoration analysis, planning and design.

Course format: The course is offered jointly with students and faculty from Oregon State University’s Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and will consist of preparations for and participation in a 4-day float trip on the Willamette River. During the trip students will participate in discussions with the instructors and guest experts in exploring the lessons learned to date and innovative approaches to river restoration in the Willamette basin.

Goals: To expose students to the theories and the on-the-ground realities of ecosystem restoration in a large river, and for students to hear the perspectives of key participants in conducting such work. As a result of the course, students will:

  1. Better understand the challenges and opportunities of large river restoration;
  2. Gain deeper insight into the sometimes conflicting perspectives of constituencies who influence land and water use in large river floodplains;
  3. Obtain a more detailed and personal awareness of the Willamette River and its associated habitats.

*Please note, this course is not offered every year. For more information contact: David Hulse.

Oregon Wilderness Trip

Oregon Wilderness

This course explores ideas, experiences and ecology of wildness and wilderness. Over the summer, students perform a set of eight independent reading assignments and experiential exercises with short written responses that provide a common framework of experiences and understandings. The class culminates in a group backcountry experience during zero week (Sunday through Friday of the week prior to the start of fall term regular classes) as we explore and interpret the landscape of Oregon’s Kalmiopsis wilderness.  

We will engage in a variety of activities to sharpen our skills at understanding and “reading” the landscape—investigating the interwoven patterns and processes of the landscape and how they are expressed at different spatial and temporal scales and in the context of human experience. We will consider landscape history and human societies to understand how past events have shaped the landscape we see today, and how today's activities shape the landscape of the future. In the evenings, we will take time to reflect on the meaning of wilderness and other wild places, and of how culture and ecology interact to create places.  

*Please note, this course is not offered every year. For more information contact: Bart Johnson