Honours Bachelor of Environmental Design & Planning

The Program

The Honours Bachelor of Environmental Design & Planning degree is a unique blend of the theory and practice of landscape architecture, planning, geographic information systems and computer visualization. Sustainability is advocated as a goal for action in the environment from the scale of a single site to that of a region. Accordingly, students attend to the ecological, economic, socio-cultural and aesthetic dimensions of communities respectfully and responsibly.


The curriculum is thematic and streamed. Environmental scale governs core course content, problem definition and project identification within the four integrated streams of landscape architecture, planning, GIS and computer visualization. Students are taught using the latest industry standard software, including GIS, CAD, 3D modeling, remote sensing, spatial analysis and digital imaging/videography. A student’s core education is broadened by elective courses in the humanities and sciences.


Environmental Design & Planning graduates are trained, creative problem-solvers. They are adept with the technologies in common use in the field. They are conversant in the theory behind policy and decision-making and can speak to the environmental quality, capability and suitability of existing and proposed land development. The program offers an undergraduate education that gives students flexibility in choosing career paths and graduate programs.

Sample Co-op Progression Chart:

September Intake Only
  Sept-Dec Jan-Apr May-Aug
Year 1 Academic Term 1 Academic Term 2 Work Term 1
Year 2 Academic Term 3 Academic Term 4 Work Term 2
Year 3 Academic Term 5 Academic Term 6 Work Term 3
Year 4 Work Term 4 Academic Term 7 Academic Term 8

Learning Outcomes in Support of Employment

Year one:

  • Use design-thinking for problem-solving
  • Investigate/analyse a site and develop accurate base plans
  • Prepare basic land use planning reports utilizing GIS, CAD, and computer visualization skills
  • Comprehend the theoretical and practical meaning of site planning and design
  • Compile information using library and internet research
  • Apply knowledge of the Planning Act and associated policy statements (Ontario)
  • Create 2D drawings, maps and plans manually and digitally
  • Process, maintain, display and analyze spatial data using ArcGIS
  • Novice skills in Relational Database Management Systems (MS Access)
  • Use graphic presentation software (Adobe Illustrator/Photoshop)
  • Understand municipal government structures and organizations
  • Prepare technical drawings
  • Understand and apply the design process.
  • Understand how a modern landscape solution is affected by cultural and environmental context
  • Work as part of a team
  • Prepare and make basic presentations.

Year Two:

  • Design integrated urban landscapes including grading and drainage, planting, hardscape and details
  • Apply knowledge of urban concepts, environmental conservation and site assessment
  • Apply knowledge of the Planning Act and associated policy statements (Ontario)
  • Apply knowledge of land use planning policy and draft plans
  • Prepare official plan amendments
  • Apply land use planning implementation tools
  • Prepare planning reports on zoning amendments and plans of subdivision
  • Organize and carry out public participation programs
  • Administer by-law enforcement and property standards
  • Design field surveys based on observation and/or users
  • Apply, tabulate and analyze data from surveys
  • Carry out advanced library and internet research
  • Utilize advanced design visualization software to create 2d and 3d drawings, maps and plans
  • Apply working knowledge of web based GIS
  • Create custom GIS and CAD applications using Python scripting
  • Perform GPS data collection, aerial photo identification and interpretation and vector data modeling
  • Make a public presentation

Year 3:

  • Devise and illustrate environmentally appropriate and technically sound design solutions
  • Utilize remote sensing technology to support design solutions (PCI, Geomatica)
  • Conduct supervised and unsupervised classification on remotely sensed data
  • Utilize advanced techniques of raster and vector spatial analysis to support sound planning and design solutions
  • Comprehend and respond to rural planning issues and community design concepts
  • Use design visualization software such as Sketchup and the Adobe Creative Suite at a professional level
  • Interpret and illustrate demographic trends and statistics using SPSS/GIS and visualization software.
  • Apply knowledge of contemporary landscape architecture such as low impact development.
  • Apply knowledge of common business practice in private sector consulting

Program Courses by Level:


Level 1                                                 

Environmental Design Fundamentals, Environmental Design & Planning History, GIS 1, Design Visualization 1, Co-op Education Preparation, Report Writing


Level 2

Site Design, Site Planning, GIS 2, Design Visualization 2, Architecture, General Education Elective


Level 3                                                 

Neighbourhood Design, Neighbourhood & Community Planning, GIS 3, Design Visualization 3, Statistics, General Education Elective


Level 4

Urban Design, Urban Planning, GIS 4, Design Visualization 4, Demographic Studies, General Education Elective 3


Level 5

Rural & Regional Planning, Rural & Environmental Planning, GIS 5, Design Visualization 5, Macro Economics, Environmental Issues


Level 6

Environmental Design & Provincial Policy, Regional & Provincial Planning, GIS 6, Design Visualization 6, Multi-media Literacy


Level 7

World Environmental Design, National & International Planning, GIS 7, Design Visualization 7, Business & Professional Practice, General Education Elective 4


Level 8

Environmental Design & Planning Capstone (integrated term project)  

Program Residency

Students must complete a minimum of 34 credits in this program at Fanshawe College to meet the Program Residency requirement and graduate from this program.