Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2022
Units: 3
Hours: 2 lecture, 3 laboratory per week (60 total per quarter)
Advisory: HORT 40 and/or drafting skills strongly recommended.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: CSU
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Exhibit an understanding of the elements and principles of landscape design theory through class projects.


Principles of landscape design theory. Intermediate studies in and applications of graphic communication, creative problem solving, design theory, and presentation skills. Residential site analysis and landscape design case studies.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Exhibit an understanding of the elements and principles of landscape design theory through class exercises.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of intermediate graphic communication skills as they relate to landscape design problems through a series of projects.
  3. Discuss and analyze design case studies and/or completed residential landscape projects.
  4. Understand the cross-cultural nature of landscape design.

Course Content

  1. Landscape design theory
    1. Basic elements of design (point, line, plane, form, texture, motion, etc.)
    2. Principles of organization (unity, harmony, scale, etc.)
    3. General philosophical concepts
    4. Specific functional concepts
    5. Overview of trends in landscape design
  2. Form development
    1. Geometric
    2. Naturalistic
  3. Case studies and analysis of completed residential landscape projects
  4. Intermediate graphic communication
    1. Analysis graphics
      1. Symbols and symbol palettes
      2. Functional and analytical bubble diagrams
    2. Color
      1. Color wheel
      2. Palette selection
      3. Rendering techniques
    3. The metric system as applied to landscape design
  5. Cross-cultural applications of landscape design process

Lab Content

  1. Basic design composition lab: Utilizing theoretical constructs, apply elements of design to landscape design project
  2. Garden gate lab: Students will explore the "garden gate" as a defining element of the typical garden. Based on research and field work, students will design their own "ideal garden gate"
  3. Color rendering lab: Following the lecture on use and application of color rendering products, students will practice developing these skills in the classroom
  4. Site analysis lab: Using a real site, students will practice and develop site analysis skills
  5. Landscape site design lab: Utilizing a real or fictitious site, students will create a landscape design based on a program which has been provided

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

1. Design laboratory with multimedia projection system.
2. Students provide drafting supplies and equipment as necessary to complete projects. Needs vary by student. Typical materials include vellum, tracing paper, drafting pencils, pencil sharpener, eraser, erasing shield, drafting tape, T-square, parallel glider, architect's and engineer's scales, triangles (30/60 and 45), circle template, drafting brush, and drafting surface.
3. When taught online, on-going access to computer with email and internet access.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

Participation in class activities
Weekly exercises and projects
Final project

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Oral presentations

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Booth, Norman, and James Hiss. Residential Landscape Architecture: Design Process for the Private Residence, 6th ed.. 2011.

Although this text is older than the suggested "5 years or newer" standard, it remains a seminal text in this area of study.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Reading assignments will include reading approximately 25 pages per week from the assigned texts with supplemental reading from a course reader. Out of class reading/assignments is approximately 4-6 hours per week
  2. Lectures will address reading topics and experiences of the instructor. Classroom discussion and demonstrations in support of lecture topics will be provided


Ornamental Horticulture