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College of Human Ecology

K-State Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Interior Architecture and Interior Design programs earn top 10 ratings

Thursday, January 10, 2008

MANHATTAN -- A nationwide survey rates academic programs offered in the College of Architecture, Planning and Design at Kansas State University as among the tops in the nation, as well as the interior design program offered through K-State's College of Human Ecology.

According to the 2008 survey of leading design firms across the nation, conducted by the journal DesignIntelligence and the Design Futures Council in conjunction with the Almanac of Architecture and Design, K-State ranks:

* First among bachelor of landscape architecture programs;
* Fourth among master of interior architecture/design programs;
* Sixth among master of landscape architecture programs;
* Eighth among bachelor of architecture programs;
* Eighth among bachelor of interior architecture/design programs; and
* 13th among master of architecture programs.

The annual survey is conducted to determine the top 15 colleges and universities for architecture and design in the U.S. A cross-section of firms with a disbursed geographic profile -- including firms that are leaders in their market sector and that have won major national, state, local and market-sector awards -- were surveyed. They were asked to indicate which accredited programs in the past five years produced graduates most prepared for today's and tomorrow's real-world practice.

Approximately 270 firms and organizations with 568,500 employees participated in this year's research.

"The rankings by DesignIntelligence are based on the skills our students acquire while enrolled within the College of Architecture, Planning and Design, particularly those useful to the professional office," said Dennis Law, dean of the college. "Many of the members of the professional community who are not graduates of our program are impressed with the work ethic, knowledge base and commitment to the professions exemplified by our graduates when they arrive in the office. It is a testimony to the hard work of our faculty and staff who always put students first. The Design Intelligence rankings are a credible peer review of our endeavors because they are outcomes based."

Both K-State's bachelor's and master's programs in landscape architecture have been ranked in the top eight in the four years the survey has covered those programs. The K-State interior architecture/design programs have been in the top eight during all nine years in which the survey has been conducted. It also is the seventh time K-State's architecture program has been ranked in the top 12.

K-State's College of Architecture, Planning and Design is currently transitioning its bachelor's degree programs into master's degrees in architecture, interior architecture and product design, and landscape architecture.

The 2008 study also asked participants about what educators they admired, how programs rated in various skill sets, and sustainability.

Employers in the Midwest ranked K-State's architecture program as the best nationwide and in the Midwest. Southern employers ranked K-State's architecture program as ninth best nationwide. In skills assessment, employers ranked K-State's architecture program second in construction methods and materials, third in communication skills, and fourth in analysis and planning. In addition, the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards reported that 96 percent of K-State architecture graduates have passed the pre-design portion of the Architect Registration Examination, which required in the practice of architecture. This compares to a current aggregate rank of 63 percent to 77 percent.

K-State's landscape architecture program was ranked first by employers in the West, eighth by employers in the East, second by employers in the Midwest, and fourth by employers in the South. In skills assessment, employers ranked K-State's landscape architecture program first in security design principles, first in analysis and planning, first in construction methods and materials, first in design, fourth in sustainable design practices and principles, and fifth in computer applications.

The K-State interior architecture/design programs were ranked fourth by employers in the West and first by employers in the Midwest. In skills assessments, K-State ranked first in cross-discipline experience, second in sustainable design practices and principles, and third in quality of graphic presentation.

Although K-State offers separate programs in interior architecture, through the College of Architecture, Planning and Design, and in interior design, through the College of Human Ecology, both programs are combined for survey purposes.

"We are thrilled to note that our program has once again been recognized among the top 10 accredited programs in the United States," said Jana Hawley, head of K-State's department of apparel, textiles and interior design. "Because our department has a strong focus on sustainability, we were delighted to learn that our program has a national ranking of second for sustainable design practices and principles."

Another survey question asked participants to nominate their most admired and respected educators based on their recent experiences with colleges and universities. K-State's Law is included in the list of 28 educators. Architecture students also were surveyed about the quality and value of heir schools. Of the students who responded regarding K-State, 100 percent said they would recommend K-State to other students and 79 percent rated their education as excellent, the second highest response of schools whose students were asked to participate in this part of the survey.

According to its sponsors, the survey, now in its 10th year, can be used, along with other considerations, to help current and future students plan their educational paths. The U.S. has approximately 114 accredited interior architecture-interior design programs, 119 accredited architecture programs, and 45 accredited undergraduate and 30 accredited graduate landscape architecture programs.

Sources: Dennis Law, 785-532-5950, dela@k-state.edu; and Susan Lannou, 785-532-5047, archdesstuserv@k-state.edu
News release prepared by: Diane Potts, 785-532-1090, potts@k-state.edu

This article was posted on Thursday, January 10, 2008, and is filed under Apparel, Textiles, & Interior Design.